I am a female, 16 years old. I was assaulted by my uncle at age 9 to 11. I was a sexually curious child, and after those events, I became more curious. Before puberty at age 12, I tried to experiment with my cousin who is also a female. It happened only once. I was unaware what sex is, and my parents never talked to me about sex. Will I be held accountable for that?
There is a simple hadith about this:-
"The pen has been lifted from three: From the sleeper until he wakes up, from the minor until he grows up (puberty), and from the insane until he comes back to his senses or recovers."
The pen being lifted here means that sins are not written down and are not held accountable for until a certain time. If you were before puberty, then it should In-sha-Allah not be a sin on you. But, now that you are no longer a minor, you are held accountable for your actions, and such a thing will be a sin if you do it again.
And Allah knows best.
The answer is simple: no. You were in the first place a victim of your uncle. From ages 9-11, you were absolutely a child. Children are by definition innocent in Islam and are not held accountable for their sins.
Beyond that, even if you were 18, for example, and engaged in such an activity, and then after being aware and realizing it is a sin, and you asked Allah for forgiveness, and do not go back and do it again, Allah will absolutely forgive you as promised in the Quran.
Holy Quran 3:135 ------------------ وَالَّذِينَ إِذَا فَعَلُوا فَاحِشَةً أَوْ ظَلَمُوا أَنفُسَهُمْ ذَكَرُوا اللَّهَ فَاسْتَغْفَرُوا لِذُنُوبِهِمْ وَمَن يَغْفِرُ الذُّنُوبَ إِلَّا اللَّهُ وَلَمْ يُصِرُّوا عَلَىٰ مَا فَعَلُوا وَهُمْ يَعْلَمُونَ
And those who, if they commit lewdness, or wrong themselves, they remember Allah and seek forgiveness for their sins. And who can forgive sins except Allah? And they do not knowingly persist in what they have done.
أُولَٰئِكَ جَزَاؤُهُم مَّغْفِرَةٌ مِّن رَّبِّهِمْ وَجَنَّاتٌ تَجْرِي مِن تَحْتِهَا الْأَنْهَارُ خَالِدِينَ فِيهَا ۚ وَنِعْمَ أَجْرُ الْعَامِلِينَ
For such the reward is forgiveness from their Lord, and Gardens beneath which rivers flow – abiding in it forever; what an excellent reward for the performers (of good deeds)!
So here the Quran is telling us clearly that to ask for forgiveness from Allah is a good deed and will be rewarded: first with forgiveness (granting your request), and second with paradise in the hereafter. The Paradise reward is for the second clause above “and they do not knowingly persist in what they have done”; because this is an added level of repentance, the completion of the intent to do what is right and avoid sin.
So Allah forgives all those who ask forgiveness and stop doing the bad deeds for which they ask forgiveness. You must recognize that what happened was wrong, but also that you were a victim. In the eyes of Allah, you are absolved instantly of all guilt in two ways: as an underage victim of a sex crime, where the perpetrator, your uncle, is entirely at fault as an adult; and as a teenager who has reached puberty, but who later saw such actions as wrong and — this is the part repeated throughout the Quran as you can see in these examples — asks Allah for forgiveness.
Holy Quran 39:53 ------------------ ۞ قُلْ يَا عِبَادِيَ الَّذِينَ أَسْرَفُوا عَلَىٰ أَنفُسِهِمْ لَا تَقْنَطُوا مِن رَّحْمَةِ اللَّهِ ۚ إِنَّ اللَّهَ يَغْفِرُ الذُّنُوبَ جَمِيعًا ۚ إِنَّهُ هُوَ الْغَفُورُ الرَّحِيمُ
Proclaim, “O my servants, who have wronged themselves, do not lose hope in Allah’s mercy; indeed Allah forgives all sins; indeed He only is the Oft Forgiving, the Most Merciful.”
All you need to do to be forgiven, according to the Quran, is to ask Allah (genuinely from the heart). That simple. Because In doing so you remember Allah and address Him directly. This is in Arabic called thikr Allah. Allah says about thikr Allah that it is the highest form of worship: to remember and call upon Allah. In fact, remembering and calling upon Allah itself helps prevent a person from committing sins.
Holy Quran 29:45 ------------------ اتْلُ مَا أُوحِيَ إِلَيْكَ مِنَ الْكِتَابِ وَأَقِمِ الصَّلَاةَ ۖ إِنَّ الصَّلَاةَ تَنْهَىٰ عَنِ الْفَحْشَاءِ وَالْمُنكَرِ ۗ وَلَذِكْرُ اللَّهِ أَكْبَرُ ۗ وَاللَّهُ يَعْلَمُ مَا تَصْنَعُونَ
Recite from the Book which has been sent down to you, and establish the salat prayer; indeed the prayer prevents immorality and vice; and the remembrance of Allah (thikr Allah) is the greatest; and Allah knows all that you do.
So the Quran tells you here clearly another benefit of calling on Him for forgiveness, that by simply mentioning Him you will be supported in your effort to avoid the sin, and even prevented from doing it. Allah in this way makes it easier for you.
Having faith that Allah will forgive you is a part of necessary worship and being true to Allah. He is the All-Merciful, so the true believer, the faithful one, will accept this as true and act on it. He understands fully as our Creator that we are weak and make mistakes. In fact, we can only learn by making mistakes. Don’t let anyone tell you otherwise. The Quran makes this point very clear.
Holy Quran 4:106 ------------------ وَاسْتَغْفِرِ اللَّهَ ۖ إِنَّ اللَّهَ كَانَ غَفُورًا رَّحِيمًا
And seek forgiveness from Allah; indeed Allah is Oft Forgiving, Most Merciful.
Holy Quran 4:110
وَمَن يَعْمَلْ سُوءًا أَوْ يَظْلِمْ نَفْسَهُ ثُمَّ يَسْتَغْفِرِ اللَّهَ يَجِدِ اللَّهَ غَفُورًا رَّحِيمًا
And whoever does evil or wrongs his own soul and then seeks forgiveness from Allah, will find Allah Oft Forgiving, Most Merciful
Holy Quran 8:33
------------------ وَمَا كَانَ اللَّهُ لِيُعَذِّبَهُمْ وَأَنتَ فِيهِمْ ۚ وَمَا كَانَ اللَّهُ مُعَذِّبَهُمْ وَهُمْ يَسْتَغْفِرُونَ
And it is not for Allah to punish them while you are amongst them; and Allah will not punish them as long as they are seeking forgiveness.
Holy Quran 18:55 ------------------ وَمَا مَنَعَ النَّاسَ أَن يُؤْمِنُوا إِذْ جَاءَهُمُ الْهُدَىٰ وَيَسْتَغْفِرُوا رَبَّهُمْ إِلَّا أَن تَأْتِيَهُمْ سُنَّةُ الْأَوَّلِينَ أَوْ يَأْتِيَهُمُ الْعَذَابُ قُبُلًا
And what prevented the people from believing when the guidance came to them, and to seek forgiveness from their Lord? Are they waiting for what happened to the people of old to come to them, or that the retribution be brought to them face to face?
In this last aya, Allah even blames those who don’t ask for forgiveness, such an easy and simple act. It’s almost incomprehensible why anyone would not ask forgiveness since the Quran clearly states that if you ask you’ll be forgiven. You can see how many ayat mention this as quoted here, and there are more than these. The frequency with which something is mentioned in the Quran correlates to its importance. So clearly this is one of the most important points!!
So you’ve asked an extremely important question and the Quran has provided many verses (ayat) to show you the answer. May you be guided and learn to accept Allah’s forgiveness and then also to forgive yourself and see the good in yourself.
With peace/ Salam.