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  • Adult Leader

    I never really wanted to join the scouts but my older brother was in it and I think my mum thought it would be good for my confidence to join too. We were a single parent family, I was shy and awkward as a ten year old. The scout leader was in his 60s.

    Looking back I think he recognised how vulnerable I was. My mum must have thought it was good for me to have a strong “father figure” and he gave the impression of being this.

    One weekend he was taking a “business trip” and asked my mum if I wanted to come along. At the time I suppose I thought it was exciting to be going anywhere outside my home town. In a hotel room he abused me. He performed oral sex on me and made me touch his penis. He fell asleep cuddling and stroking me.

    It only happened that one time. I didn’t tell anyone about it until I was in my twenties and even then I only told my partner (now husband).

    Last year I suddenly started to experience panic attacks and anxiety all related to the event. I reached out to a group specialising in this type of abuse and am currently on a list awaiting a counsellor.

    The leader in question committed suicide. I don’t know exactly what happened but I think other allegations of abuse were directed towards him. Despite vague attempts by me to research it, I’ve never been able to find any information on this.