The Girl in the Closet

An 8-year-old girl spent six years locked away in a closet, naked, starved, infested with lice and surrounded by human waste. For the first time, Lauren, now 18, bravely speaks out about the unimaginable horrors she suffered at the hands of her own parents.

In Her Own Words



Lauren, 18, recounts the unimaginable horrors she suffered at the hands of her parents, from age 2 to 8. “I was locked in a closet for six years. I could not get out, no matter what I did. It was always dark. I didn’t get fed. I didn’t get to eat. I had to go to the bathroom in the closet, where I slept. I had a pillow on the floor and maybe a blanket every now and then if I was good. I would cry until I fell asleep,” she says. “I thought I could escape by clawing the door, and they were furious. My parents said if they couldn’t have me, no one could. I did not try to escape again.”

Lauren says being taken out of the closet only meant one thing. “They took me out of the closet to have sex with me. There were three steps. The first step was oral. And then the second step was they would have sex with me on the bed and tie me down. There was blood all over the sheets, everywhere. The third step: They would take me to the shower, so that they could have sex with me in there. When they were done with me, they would beat me and throw me in the closet. It was like torture.

“My mom would bring home guys or girls to have sex with me. If I screamed or yelled, that really made them mad. My parents thought it was hilarious for them to watch. And I had to do what they said, so I could stay alive. My parents would use some kind of weapon to beat me. I have scars all over my body where they have cut me. My stepdad would get the gun that was beside his bed, put it to my head and pull the trigger, pretending to shoot me.”

Lauren thought she was going to die. “My mom did try to drown me,” she says. “I remember passing out, not being able to breathe. Next thing I know, I’m waking up, and my mom is standing over me, laughing, like I was a wimpy kid or something. I think God was with me that day, or I’d be dead right now.

“If I had a message for my parents, it would say, ‘Rot in jail,’ because that is where they belong,” Lauren says.
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