I was a sophomore in college when my world was changed. I had invited a guy from one of my classes over to hang out before we were supposed to go out on a date. Even though it was late, I made it apparent that if he came over it was not for sex and he agreed. However, as the night progressed, it became increasingly obvious that was his only intention. When he finally felt he had tortured me enough trying-to undress me, physically forcing my clothes off, touching my body in ways that were intended to be intimate between me and my future love-he left but not before he stopped by door stating, “last chance,” to which I responded, “you can’t force me.” I remember him smirking leaning over me as if to kiss me, another intimate moment he teased me with but never actually did that night, placed his hands at the waist of jeans and tugging on them said, “it’s called rape.” After that I remember laying in my bed thinking I’ll go to bed and wake up and it will have just been a dream.
When I woke up the next morning it of course was not but what I realized was that the actual event itself was not over. I called one of my dearest friends and told him what happened wanting that moment of knight in shining honor honestly but instead was greeted with, “well but he didn’t actually rape you right? So nothing happened?” So in my mind I decided that was true. To make a bad situation worse, I had class with my attacker the day after, I was petrified I didn’t think I could face him and was going to skip, but luckily I had a roommate that knew better and told me that if I did that he won, so I went. The rest of the semester continued this way, I had class with my attacker twice a week, this in some ways was worse than that night. He would stare at me follow me, anything he could do to get under my skin. All the while I kept most of this in because nothing happed right? Wrong. Long story short after discovering that my school not only lost my incident report that I had filed the following morning, but also blamed my RA, the ONLY person of authority in the school who had helped, with losing it, all the while still allowing this man to attend college and even graduate.
It has taken years to get to where I am today. I used to find myself flying into a rage at TV shows that mentioned similar incidents. I had boyfriends after that and any sort of physical contact sent me into a tail spin of guilt. It has taken my psychologist finally telling me that if I felt fear that meant something happened and amazing friends and family that let me still have my break downs years later.
The hardest thing was I didn’t ever want to be one of “those girls.” Those girls that people looked at as damaged because they have this experience that will always be a part of them good or bad, so instead I denied it. However, by the grace of God, and amazing support I realized it isn’t even about that, and while yes that will always be a part of me, it does not define me. I am beautiful, I am smart, and funny, I make mistakes and am horrible at math. All of those things are who I am. So if you get nothing else out of this: hear this please he CANNOT take you any more. He took a night don’t give him your life.