My will never flourished in the fertile soil of childhood, nor did it find the roots required for the rigours of adulthood. I entered adulthood with the deficits of an abused child, lacking the capacity to detect and self-protect against predatory people.
I have encountered multiple abusers in adulthood, the last of which was an elite global evangelical leader. He groomed my deeply felt spiritual needs and various vulnerabilities which ended up in a traumatic sexualization of what was a sacred fiduciary trust. I and my spouse were devastated, both becoming suicidal for a protracted period of time.
The power imbalance that permits clergy sexual abuse extends far beyond the time when frank sexual abuse stops. Power-equal people agree to contractual terms — but there is no equity between the offender and the victim. I was coerced into signing a NDA, which steals my voice, choice, and agency. This is the exact same sequela that occurs when a victim is sexually abused.
NDAs are a tool of oppression used by the powerful, against the powerless, and as such should be abolished.