Alice Munro’s daughter reveals abuse by her stepfather.

In 1976, nine-year-old Andrea Skinner, spent the summer at the home of her mother—Nobel Prize-winning author Alice Munro—in Ontario.

According to the now 58-year-old, as she slept in her bed one night while her mother was away, her stepfather, Gerald Fremlin, climbed into the bed alongside her, and sexually assaulted her.

Munro died from Alzheimer’s Disease in May this year, aged 92. Two months after her death, Skinner wrote about the rape in an essay written for the Toronto Star.

In the essay, Skinner claims she eventually told her mother about the abuse, but the award-winning author chose to remain married to her daughter’s abuser, even after he admitted it was true.

Skinner was 25 when she wrote to Munro in 1996 to disclose the abuse.

But Skinner described her mother’s response as “incredulous” and “as if she had learned of an infidelity”.

“She said that she had been ‘told too late,’ she loved him too much, and that our misogynistic culture was to blame if I expected her to deny her own needs, sacrifice for her children, and make up for the failings of men,” Skinner wrote.

“She was adamant that whatever had happened was between me and my stepfather. It had nothing to do with her.”

While Fremlin admitted to the assault, he described it as a “sexual adventure”, calling the then-nine-year-old little girl a “home-wrecker”.

Despite her mother’s response, Skinner maintained a relationship with her mother until she had children of her own, and told Munro that Fremlin could never be around the children. The pair fell out and never reconciled.

In 2005, Fremlin received two years’ probation after pleading guilty in Canadian court to assaulting Skinner.

Although Skinner wrote in the essay that she was satisfied with the legal outcome, she wanted her story to be told, about both Fremlin and her mother.

“The fact that my mother, confronted with the truth of what had happened, chose to stay with, and protect, my abuser.”

Source: Alice Munro’s daughter reveals abuse by her stepfather.

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