DEAR ABBY: I have been in a serious relationship with my boyfriend for two years. He shared with me that he was sexually abused by a cousin for years as a child. He told me he has never disclosed it to anyone but me.
My boyfriend says he has come to terms with the abuse and his abuser, but I'm not sure it's true. He became really upset when he spoke about it the one time, and we haven't discussed it since.
I'm afraid to pry, but I think he may need help. His abuser is still present in his life. I'm not sure what's stopping him from seeking help. What do you think I should do? -- ONLY TRYING TO HELP IN OHIO
DEAR ONLY TRYING TO HELP: Your boyfriend may not have discussed what happened because of fear or embarrassment, or because his abuser made him feel it was his fault. When someone is abused for years, that person is the victim of a predator.
Talk to him again about this. I agree that he should consult a mental health professional. Not only would it help him, but because therapists are "mandated reporters," it would also ensure that this cousin doesn't sexually abuse other children.