They said that I was wrong—Bill would never hug a girl, and that I shouldn’t make claims that weren’t true. A short time after that meeting, I was walking home alone when a car pulled up beside me. He told me that what happened between us needed to stay between us.
I was never to tell anyone else because it was our little secret—was that clear? Bill would have me accompany him in his car to the airport, and be there to pick him up when he got back from trips.
It all came to a head one night when I told one of my housemates about the long hugs Bill gave me.
She got very upset and told me that I was lying, that Bill would never touch a woman.
Bill arranged my flight back to O’Hare so we could ride back to Headquarters in the car together.
That’s when he first put his hand between my legs and felt me all the way up. My brother started hearing things and asked me about it. Bill had sworn me to silence with both guilt and fear.
My parents told Gothard that, because of him, they were convicted to have more children.
I was born in 1975, and from the get go I was told that I was special—the seventh child, God’s perfect number—and that I owed my life to Bill Gothard.
In the world I grew up in, the pastor and his family always had to be perfect.When we got back from Australia he added counseling after-hours, at night. He gave me cash and told me to buy bras that pushed me up more; he wanted me to always wear them when I was around him. He would hold my hand and rub my leg and tell me not to tell anyone about what we did in his car. I was known as Bill’s “pet.” I loved the attention, but I felt dirty.We would meet after dinner in his office around 7 or 8 p.m. But a part of me thought this was how I was to treat “godly” men. I was turned on by Bill, but I also felt terribly guilty.My parents told Bill that they, like Hannah, were giving me back to God. I hadn’t felt “pure” since my father took my virginity when I was eight years old.My parents hosted Institute in Basic Youth Conflicts (IBYC) seminars in California, and were deeply involved in the IBYC (later renamed the Institute in Basic Life Principles, or IBLP) way of life. I was put into Christian school there until the second half of first grade, when my Mom pulled me out to homeschool me. The Advanced Training Institute (ATI, Gothard’s homeschooling program) was just starting, so my parents were among the first hundred or so families to be enrolled in this new program when I started second grade. We went to a conference in Knoxville in July of 1992. I remember he wouldn’t let go of my hand, and he kept telling my parents how sweet, beautiful, and pure I was. My brother was working at Headquarters as the head landscaper.He wanted me around him as much as possible, wanted me to be with him as much as he could get me.I started meeting with him in his office in the morning, every morning.She was so upset that she reported it to one of the staff leaders.Next thing I knew, I was called into a disciplinary meeting with a couple of senior staff members and Bill, and they confronted me about my claims.We have interviewed witnesses, some of whom have agreed to go on the record.Combining this investigation with what we have previously researched, we believe this to be credible.