Hi! My name is Abi and I would like to welcome you to The Thursday Group blog!

If you are looking for support and information about healing from sexual abuse, you have come to a good place. You might have come to this blog because someone you know has been sexually abused or you might be here because you’ve been sexually abused yourself. Either way, you could still have some uncomfortable, difficult, or scary feelings about what happened. It is wonderful that you are looking for more information and support. If you are like me, just thinking about the topic of sexual abuse can be stressful.You may want to take a few minutes right now and notice your breathing. If you are holding your breath, or taking quick shallow breaths, see if you can take a deep breath into your belly, letting your stomach go out as you breath in. When you breath out, just let the air flow out slowly and easily. Take another slow easy breath into your belly, and then let the air flow out slowly. If you want to, slowly take three or four more breaths, making your stomach expand like a balloon each time you breath in, and relax each time you breath out. Inside yourself, just say hello gently to your body and any feelings you are noticing. Look at some of the things that are around you wherever you are. Breathing, and noticing things around you like this, is something I learned about when I was in a support group with four other middle school girls in my town who had been sexually abused. I wrote The Thursday group to hopefully make things easier for others. This blog tells about the book (including messages from the other characters and sample chapters to read or listen to), and where you can order it. You will also find links to other good books and web sites. If you start to notice that your breathing becomes uneven or really fast, or your heart feels like it is pounding in your chest or you get dizzy or feel unreal; please, get up from the computer or iphone, look at the things that are around you, and go find or call that trusted adult. If you don’t have an adult in your life that you can talk to, please call a hotline number.

I am a fictional character, but I was created out of the very real feelings and experiences of the girls PeggyEllen and Kimber used to be, and the girls they have known.

We hope that this blog and book will help you heal.


Need to talk to someone or report abuse? Call: 1-800-4ACHILD or 1-800-422-4458

The person who answers your call can help you figure out what to do and how to get help. If you call from a land line instead of a cell phone, the call will be free and will not show on a phone bill.



Abi:  The book was my idea.  I wrote down all my weird thoughts and the stupid things I did basically because it makes me mad that kids get sexually abused, and I didn’t want, and I still don’t want anyone to feel as lonely as I did afterward.  So, don’t let all my embarrassing honesty go to waste, okay?  Like Carol says, be a friend to yourself.  Let people around you know if you need to talk, or anything! It can be embarrassing, but it is better than pretending you are okay when you aren’t.

Danielle:  I hope that you read our book, or maybe you already have.  When Abi told us she was doing this, I couldn’t believe it. It really freaked me out at first, but it turned out better than I expected.  Here is my wish for you: That you will be able to feel safe and relaxed. That is my biggest wish for myself and it is starting to come true….not all the time, but more often.  (Also that you will always treat animals and
people with respect.)

Imaya: I was in the group because I was hurt by a man my mother used to be married to. I ended up having to go to a kind of hospital for people who have mental problems. If you ever have to do that, remember, it’s not as bad as it might seem at first. The people who work there really do care.  The more honest and open you can manage to be the better they can help you.  It will get better (over time!). My wish for you is that when you laugh or run it will feel great, like you are totally ALIVE and that afterwards you will feel fine, too, not nervous about having fun.  And that you will be safe and happy.
Jessica: I am the one who told the school counselor about what Phil was doing to me (and Abi and some other girls). That was hard, but now I am glad that I did. Thanks for reading about us.  My wish for you is that you will feel okay about yourself always. It helps if you can remember that you have a core self that is strong and good and remains protected, no matter what.

Tara: I was in the group because of what happened with my brother. My wish for you is that you will find good friends (like Abi) --people who love you and accept you completely.  And that if sexual abuse happened in your family, you won’t get blamed, and if you are getting blamed, at least some of the people in your family will start standing up for you.
Carol: I am the therapist who led the Thursday support group for girls healing from sexual abuse at Women’s Resources in Bluff—the group that Abi tells about in the book.  I wish for each of you love and safety, on the inside, and all around you.

Jake: one of Abi’s friends.  I have never been sexually abused but I know a lot about it, now.  I think that friends of kids that have been abused should read this book.  It helped me understand some things that happened between Abi and me. I hope that you have friends that care about you.