How I became a rape victim

I was eighteen years and four months old, so officially already an adult woman.  It was the summer holidays before the start of university and independence.  We’d all got our A Level results and were sorting out university places and someone at school had a big party in a church hall, a present from her parents for doing well in her A Levels and being eighteen. I wore my new dress of blue velvet, the possession of which I felt, placed me in the realms of the cool people.

Early on in the evening, I was talking to a friend when a boy came up to me and kissed me. I say boy, I suppose I mean man, but I still thought of male peers as boys. (He was 19 by the way.)  Without warning, without comment, he just grabbed me, held me close around him so I couldn’t move and thrust his tongue into my mouth and kissed me.

I found this repulsive and startling, yet Bohemian, exciting and off the wall.  I had no idea who this guy was, had never seen him before in my life, knew immediately that I didn’t fancy him, but it didn’t even cross my mind to question his right to simply overstep any normal boundaries.  It was a party.  Men were supposed to behave like that, as far as I knew. It would have been uptight, prudish, strait-laced, to object. No-one had told me that only rapey men behave like that, normal men who fancy you but don’t have a sense of entitlement, don’t just grab you in that way. I ran off giggling with my friend, who was slightly perturbed by his behaviour and with hindsight, probably by my reaction. “He was wierd”, but I was too excited and naievely flattered that I’d notched up an “I’ve got off with someone” mark so early in the evening – it meant that a man had noticed me and that was something to strive for, wasn’t it – it’s what women are socialised to do – strive for positive male attention.  It meant I could be in that group on Monday morning, who had got off with someone on Saturday night.  I’d never been in that group before, I felt like I’d arrived.  I’d grown up in a family where my personal boundaries, privacy, self-determination, had never been respected, so I didn’t find it as much of an intrusion as my friend did.

For the rest of the party though, I deliberately avoided him because although his behaviour had given me access to the cool group, I didn’t fancy him and found him pretty repulsive and didn’t really want to repeat the experience of the kiss.  I occasionally saw him watching me, intently, and I saw nothing sinister about it. I had no suspicions, no sixth sense, no spidey feeling that warned me that this man was a sexual predator. How could I have?  I grew up in a society where the Impulse ad was on the telly- a man grabs a woman at a station and snogs her and no-one calls that sexual assault, they said that “Men just can’t help acting on Impulse”.  That was the slogan.  So when a man did that to me at a party, I didn’t think it was a sexual assault, I just thought it was some unattractive chancer who was behaving normally.  The whole of my culture and upbringing, told me that.  Besides, I found out he was the brother of someone in my class, someone I fancied to be honest; someone I was rather hoping to get off with at some point, but I figured that this bloke might have ruined that for me tonight.  People’s brothers were OK, you didn’t need to worry about them.

It took me years to realise that that kiss, had been a set-up: that the reason he had targeted me in that way, was to ensure that later on, if I complained about being raped, he could point to that and have lots of witnesses saying that we’d been seen kissing earlier on at the party. That way, he could be absolutely sure that he’d get away with it, because as everyone knows, once a woman kisses a man, he then has the right to penetrate her body whether she wants him to or not.  I heard later on, that he’d kissed another girl in exactly the same way.  So he set two of us up, but she was the one who got away.

When a bunch of us left in a big group to walk down to the cab office, he was in that group.  As we walked along he sidled up to me and started talking.  I talked back out of politeness.  Women are socialised to be polite, to respond to men’s conversational overtures, even where earlier on they may have over-stepped a mark, we’re supposed to put it behind us and move on and not think anything of it.  So that’s what I did.  I conformed to normal behaviour and talked normally to him.

Without really knowing how it happened, I realised we were somehow falling behind the rest of the group.  At first it didn’t worry me.  They were in sight, it’s just that we were far behind them now.  At one point I said something about it and tried to catch up with them, but he pulled me back.  It was at that point that I suppose the victim-blamers will say that I should have screamed, shouted, cried for help.  Because it was at that point I should have realised he was planning to rape me.  But I didn’t. Because I was also taught, that to assume that a man is a rapist just because he’s stopping you doing something you are showing clearly that you want to do, is hysterical, man-hating, hairy-pitted feminism which is a Bad Thing.  And so once again, his boundary-breaking behaviour, didn’t really bother or alarm me as I didn’t perceive it as boundary-breaking, I perceived it as normal.  Women’s boundaries are constantly being broken by men and we are told all the time, that if we make a fuss about it, we are unreasonable, unfriendly, rude, hysterical, difficult, confrontational – all negatives, all things we should strive not to be.  So if you are young and have never been raped and don’t know how common it is and you know that your boundaries are supposed to be broken because that’s what society has told you, you don’t feel alarm when a man breaks them yet again.  In my case, I felt slight irritation, but nothing more.

When he pulled me back, he drew me into a doorway and started to kiss me.  I resigned myself to the prospect of having to snog him for a bit before going to get my cab, because it didn’t occur to me to knee him in the balls and run away screaming from him, as some will say I should have done at that point; if I had done,  doubtless I would have been accused of hysterical over-reaction, but seeing as how he was bigger and stronger than me, that wasn’t an option anyway.  Every now and then, we carried on walking and he would draw me into another doorway and kiss me some more.  Little by little, we were getting closer to the cab office.

One little doorway turned out to have a little alley way next to it.  Before I’d even noticed it, he was pulling me down the alley, laughing conspiratorially as if this was my idea too, drawing me into his “naughtiness”.  Even then, I didn’t feel threatened.  Even then, I didn’t expect this man to rape me.  Why would I?  He was someone’s brother, not a rapist in a dark alley… oops.

Right up until the moment he actually pulled my knickers down and I felt his penis, I genuinely had no idea he would actually rape me.  Even as he entered my body, my main emotion was utter incredulity.  I simply couldn’t believe this was happening.  This repulsive man had somehow separated me from my friends, dragged me down an alley and was raping me. And I’d bloody co-operated, I hadn’t made a fuss, I’d gone along with it, I’d just let him do it. I felt total disbelief.  And I felt bloody stupid.  Like so many rape victims, I blamed myself for not spotting that he was a rapist and extricating myself from his rape, instead of blaming him for being a rapist.  I lay there and waited for him to finish, hoping it would be quick so that I could get home.

Afterwards, he asked me if I was OK and then asked for my phone number.  I gave him it, too stunned to know what else to do.  He then walked me to the cab office, “so that I’d be safe” (!) and said he’d call me.

All the way home, I thought about whether I’d been raped or not and like many rape victims, convinced myself I hadn’t been.  I felt like I had, but I told myself what society would have told me – that I was wrong and unreasonable to feel that way, I hadn’t said no, or at least, if I had, I hadn’t said it strongly enough, aggressively enough, I hadn’t fought him off, I hadn’t resisted being pulled down the alley, I hadn’t resisted at all. Except that I had resisted, just not in a way that society defines resistance.  Society has allowed rapists to define what resistance is: screaming, crying, scratching, pushing, kicking, biting, punching.  I didn’t resist like that.  My resistance was to wriggle a bit, turn my head away when he tried to kiss me, try to stop his hand going into my bra and knickers, push him ineffectually, talk about wanting to get my cab; all things which normal men recognise as not being enthusiastic participation when they are engaging with women but pretend it’s a grey area when they talk about rape.  Rapists have managed to get society to believe, that what I did, was consent. Because I didn’t resist in the way rapists – and society – say that women should resist, they define our non-participation as consent. (More about why consent has been constructed to enable rapists to get away with rape here:http://herbsandhags.blogspot.co.uk/2012/06/whats-wrong-with-consent.html)

I hadn’t treated him the way society says women treat rapists, I’d treated him the way many women actually treat rapists – like a bit of a nuisance who have to be tolerated for a bit. I’d been socialised to believe that you just had to put up with men touching you when you didn’t want them to.  The one time I’d seen a woman react furiously to such treatment, everyone laughed at her and said how over the top she was and how unreasonable when he didn’t mean anything by it.  So I’d absorbed the message, that to treat a man who was acting like a rapist as if he were a rapist – the way society tell us to – was to be an hysterical, unreasonable bitch and you lose approval ratings if you’re one of those, don’t you, so like most young women, I’d buckled down to that message.  It’s what women do.  And then society tells us that it’s our fault we were raped, because we didn’t do the thing they call us hysterical bitches for, when we do do it.  I didn’t act like the unreasonable bitch everyone had laughed at when he first overstepped my boundaries, so it was my fault he raped me.

And besides, I had had a couple of beers (although I wasn’t drunk) and I was wearing a short, skin-tight blue velvet dress.  The blue velvet dress which had marked me out as belonging to the cool crowd, also marked me out as the sort of woman who doesn’t have the right to “cry rape” when she’s raped. The police would just tell me it was my fault.  My friend had been raped when she was 14 and they’d told her to go away and stop wasting their time. She had been legally a child and I was legally a woman and she’d been dragged into a park by a stranger – the classic, rare, stranger rape, not someone who was someone’s brother and therefore couldn’t possibly be a rapist. And even then, they weren’t remotely interested in catching the man who raped her or investigating the case at all.  So I knew there was absolutely no chance, that the enforcers of the law, would be remotely interested in enforcing it in the case of a grown adult in a blue velvet dress.

I even felt guilty about allowing the thought that I’d been raped, to cross my mind. Like most of us, I’d absorbed the lie that women “cry rape” (that phrase that means women habitually make false allegations about rape) and that there are millions of wronged innnocent men walking around having had their lives ruined by hysterical, man-hating women who imagined that they’d been raped because they’re so stupid, or deliberately lied about it out of pure, unbridled malice.  The horror that I might be one of those women, made me feel pity for my rapist and shame that I could even think such a thing about the poor man.  I had no pity for my eighteen year old optimistic, rational, honest self; society had brain-washed me so effectively, that all my empathy was for him, none for me.

When he called me two days after the rape to ask me out, I said yes immediately.  Mainly because I was afraid that if I didn’t go out with him now, he would tell everyone what a slag I was, fucking him in an alleyway, but also because if I went out with him and was his girlfriend, then that meant it couldn’t be rape, it would all be OK and I would stop feeling as though I had no control whatsoever about what happened to me with sex. I wanted to have sex with him in a normal way; in a bed, with me having some choice over it.  It would mean that he hadn’t raped me.  It would make that Saturday night OK, the beginning of a romance, not what it still felt like – an attack on my autonomy.

I found him utterly repulsive, boring to be with and I couldn’t wait to get away from him, but I went out with him for 3 weeks to make it respectable and all OK in my mind and then I told him it wasn’t working out for me and I thought we should stop seeing each other.

When we parted, he kissed me, put his hands down my knickers again, just to show me that he could, and said to me “have a great time at university and don’t sleep with anyone you don’t want to”.  When I assured him I wouldn’t, he said: “you already have”.

I couldn’t believe what he was telling me.  He was telling me, that he was a rapist.  That he knew he was a rapist. That my three weeks of boredom and bad sex with him, had been wasted. It hadn’t been him being a bit drunk, not understanding my ineffectual wriggling away, not realising I didn’t want to have sex with him;  he knew it wasn’t the “grey area” of rape myth. I was so startled that my immediate response was to deny what he said.  “I haven’t – I never have”.  He smiled.  “Yes, you have.”

Again it took me twenty years to realise what he was doing there.  He was taking away any semblance of control or dignity I had.  He wasn’t willing to allow me the pretence that it had all been a big misunderstanding, that I’d tried to go out with him afterwards and see how we got on but it hadn’t worked out; he wanted me to know exactly what he’d done and that he’d got away with it with my connivance and there wasn’t a single thing I could do about it.

It took me twenty years to face up to that.  In those twenty years, my immediate response to him raping me, was to leave me with a fatalistic attitude to sex; I felt totally unable to set any boundaries.  I felt scared to tell a man I didn’t want to have sex with him just now, or just here, or like that, because I couldn’t take the risk that my wishes would be over-ruled again and I would have to face the fact that I’d once more been forced to have sex I didn’t want and that would prove that I was one of those women who were somehow designed for men to use and exploit, not like normal women.  So I had lots of sex I didn’t want, with men I didn’t like, who didn’t force me to have it but who didn’t much care if I wanted it or not, to prove to myself that an unwanted fuck was no big deal and not worth getting upset about.  I went through phases of celibacy lasting years followed by phases of one night stands with men who were of no interest to me whatsoever.  I suppose it’s fair to say that it pretty much ensured, that I had a totally screwed up attitude to sex without realising that that’s what I had.

All that time, I only once tried to tell someone that I’d been raped.  Two friends at university.  I read an article about date rape, which presented the revolutionary concept that rapists aren’t necessarily men in balaclavas with knives in dark alleys, they’re just men who make you have sex you don’t want to have.  This revelation shook me so much, that I told a couple of friends about what had happened to me, but both of them suggested that I write him a letter saying how I felt – their primary concern was to ensure that I didn’t call it rape,because obviously it couldn’t be (like most women, it was more important to them to protect a man they’d never met from being called a rapist when he was one, than it was to acknowlege the rape of a woman who was a friend), it was just a misunderstanding (I had blocked out his parting shot so hadn’t told them about that) and that he would want to reassure me that he hadn’t meant to seem rapey, it had all been a big misunderstanding and then I’d feel better.

I did think of doing that, but something told me that he’d get off on a letter like that, so I left it and never told anyone else about it for another couple of decades.  Like most rape victims, I was effectively silenced.  What silenced me most, was the dread of not being believed.  The knowledge that I would be asked: “but why didn’t you shout?” “why did you let him separate you from your friends?” “why didn’t you tell him to stop kissing you and to go straight to the cab office?” “why did you give him your phone number?” “why did you go out with him afterwards – even sleep with him afterwards?” “why didn’t you tell your friends what had happened?” All the questions I asked myself for a couple of decades.  Even now as I wrote this, You, Dear Reader, will note what care I have taken to try and explain my behaviour, to pre-empt the questions and criticisms and scepticism.  To do what rape victims are always required to do and rapists rarely are: to account for my behaviour, to explain why I became a rape victim.  The explanation: “because I was unlucky enough to meet a rapist” will not do, I know.  Society doesn’t want to blame men for making the choice to rape women, it wants to blame women for enabling men to make that choice and usually it succeeds. Rapists very rarely get to accept responsiblity for their choice to rape, even rape victims blame themselves for their rapist’s choice to rape them. .

I’m done with accepting that blame.  It was not my fault.  I didn’t do anything to make him do it. My fabulous blue velvet dress was not responsible.  The fact that I’d had a couple of beers was not responsible. Even my abusive childhood, with its failure to inculcate self-esteem, was not responsible. Because I went out with him afterwards and had what society calls consensual sex with him a couple of times, doesn’t mean it wasn’t rape that one time.  Because I didn’t behave the way rape victims are supposed to behave (more on the image of rape survivors/ victims here:http://herbsandhags.blogspot.co.uk/2012/06/youre-not-like-rape-victim.html) doesn’t mean it wasn’t rape. Because I spent between two or three decades feeling unable to tell anyone in case they wouldn’t believe me, doesn’t mean it wasn’t rape.  It was rape, he is a rapist and I am a rape survivor.  And the fact that neither of us behaved the way society says rapists and rape victims behave, doesn’t mean it wasn’t rape, it just means that society has got to stop misinforming the public, about what rape is.  Society keeps selling us the version of rape that rapists have invented: the one which enables them to carry on raping women and know that they will get away with it.  We keep on making excuses for rapists, convincing their victims that they have no right to call it what it is.

For years I blamed myself for dating him afterwards, knowing I hated him and found him repulsive. I could never understand, why I’d done that to myself, why I’d thought it so necessary. Why had I punished myself like that?  I blamed myself for handing him power over me, the power to penetrate my body again when he knew I didn’t want him to, the power to pretend that he wasn’t a rapist, because his victim had gone back for more. Now, I blame the society which convinced an intelligent, popular teenager, that the only way to make rape OK, would be to date her rapist.  It’s nearly 30 years since that happened to me and society is still blaming women for rape, instead of blaming men.  My daughter is facing the same dangers I faced: a 25% likelihood that she will be raped or sexually assaulted in her lifetime.  If that does happen to her, like her mother, she’s statistically unlikely to report it – only 10-15% of rape victims file a report.  If she does, she’s got only a 6% chance of seeing her rapist found guilty in a court of law.

When it comes to rape, not much has changed for women in nearly three decades.  I guess all I can do for her, is to raise her to expect her boundaries to be respected, to make her aware of how common rape is and to let her know that if she does get raped, it won’t be because of anything she says or does or wears, it will be purely and simply because she has the bad luck to meet a rapist.  And for all the other girls and women out there, all I can do is speak out about my own experience and raise my son to know that if he is not sure a girl or woman wants him to carry on doing whatever it is he’s doing, then he needs to ask her and respect her answer, because if he doesn’t, then he may be a rapist.  Because rapists aren’t usually scarey men in dark alleys, they’re someone’s son, brother, father, uncle, cousin, friend, colleague. Somewhere out there, the man who raped me is probably raising a family and living a normal life, like most other rapists.  And he’s probably still pretending that he’s not a rapist and society is still supporting him in that.

And that’s how I became a rape victim.  Thanks for reading.

This post is a part of a series to talk about stories of assault and violence and help break the silence.
Twitter – @being_feminist 
The post was sent by the writer of this post.
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59 thoughts on “How I became a rape victim

  1. This is a brave and moving post – thank you so much for sharing this.

  2. your post made me become cold inside. i’m so sorry for all you’ve been through 😦
    in 1999 I was raped, drunk and unconscious, by an ex…the little i remember was brutal, cruel and horrible. even now i have serious issues from that…what’s sadder, is that I endured after, 5 years of extreme psychological violence from another ex….and if that wasn’t enough, in 2008 (and your post made me figure that out), at a party I got drunk with this guy who was “friends”, ended out making out with him; later we retired to inside the house, some were sleeping in the first floor and we’d sleep in the ground at a room on the ground floor. I know I passed out when laying down, and woke up with him pulling my pants off and jumping on me and – you know. i have had all kinds of mixed feelings about this – he never asked me if i wanted to, i never told him yes, just because i made out with him it didn’t mean i wanted to go all the way…he wasn’t violent and didn’t hurt me, i do remember it felt like “normal”, uncompromised, one-night-stand sex…but TRUTH IS, i never gave him consent and more than anything – no, i NEVER asked for it…
    so now my mind is blown, if this is to be taken as is and if this means date rape, then I’ve been a rape victim TWICE, i have cut ties with this guy 2-3 years after that incident, ironically, because of a discussion with a friend where everybody got insulted and he threw drama and left and I never cared to talk to him again, good riddance…then this boggles my mind and how the fresh hell do I come to terms with myself for having fooled myself 4 years straight on “yeah ok it wasn’t rape because he didn’t hurt me and was always nice to me” – no, it wasn’t nice to jump over me without consent and happily go at it as if it was all fun and games…and the kicker is, as far as I know he didn’t use protection, now looking back I’m very lucky I didn’t got pregnant or acquired something nasty.
    but unlike the first time i was raped this doesn’t make me feel gutter miserable and wanting to die, i just ask myself now, how could i let that happen, how could i trust this guy and think he wouldn’t take advantage, and knowing him as I do, he must have thought it was all ok and acceptable and if i now confront him with – dude that was date rape – i’m sure he’d laugh in my face and call me mentally insane. yes, it’s very sad…
    i hope you have found your happiness, that you deserve, and hope you’re definetly safe. none should have to go through these horrible things. thank you for sharing your opinion. hopefully it enlightens and raises awareness in many, and helps them avoiding this happening to them.
    best to you.

    • natasha

      something similar happened to me I was 17 at that time , I had an affair with one of my class students (i can’t mention his name) .
      he had many friends who had a crush on me . At that time i felt proud for that but i didnt knew that all these will spoil my life

      once i was with my bf and his 3 friends came to us they requested us to come to a bar , stupid guy agreed to it and we went to that place . There we started to play truth and dare .
      I was given a dare i had to drink wine i refused but all those wicked guys forced me to drink it my bf locked my hands and others poured that fishy thing in my mouth thennnn it all started i was drunken and my metabolism weakened they took advantage of my condition. I had worn a short skirt and a tee-shirt .
      they took me in a gents toilet they started tickeling in my private parts then the next moment i wass stripped completely

      they also stripped themselves and started a camera recording .
      i didnt knew what was going on i was helpless as my weak shouts didnt made any notice aamong the loud music of the bar they started to rape me they all raped me but still they were not content with that they pissed in my mouth and then they asked me to put on my clothes i was taken on a road behind the bar it was empty at that time (2:30 AM) then they stripped me off andgave me a dose of a drug i was unconscious.
      the next morning i was lying on the road completly naked!!!( there was no public on that road ) but i had to go home how could I ??/

      then one boy came he was of around 16 years of age he said that he would help me but at one cost .He tooked naked pics of me and then he gave me his coat and shirt i somehow wrapped myself up and came home at home my mother slapped me an told me that i couldn’t complain to police so i didnt
      from that day everyday i live with a feeling of disgust and am trying to forget that mishap

  3. Dnada

    I could have wrote this myself. Thanks for sharing – it’s really strong of you to write this down and also publish it. Thanks for making me feel a bit less stupid and naive.

    All love.

  4. anaimal

    I feel really sorry for you and thank you very much for sharing. I will share it too so that we all can learn from you experience.

  5. Thank you for sharing your experience and your strong journey through the years to both understand and come to terms with the incident and what happened afterward. I wish you happiness with your children and your life now.

  6. Stef

    thank you for sharing this moving and so extremely honest piece. DOnt blame yourself for anything- what is crucial for all of us is to learn how to set our boundaries and not to react passively to men’s sexual advances. we have to learn to say NO, show NO, act NO, no matter what the surroundings will say. Let s hope this story gives courage to many other women in your situation and sends out the message that rape is always rape.

  7. Alicia

    As a child, I was sexually abused by a neighbour and that definitely left me with some major issues, and once I was at a bar and I was grabbed by a complete stranger who shoved his tongue down my throat. I didn’t think much of it as you didn’t with that guy at the time, and just like you, I ended up being separated by my group of friends only we both got into the cab and went back to his place. I ended up having a panic attack and jumped out of the cab while it was moving and making a run for it just because I was no longer comfortable being around this guy, only he got out and followed me. Then he convinced me to take him back to his place as he didn’t know the city and for some reason I felt obligated to show him the way.

    We ended up in his room when he pounced on me. Thankfully my parents always taught me to be strong and know that I have every right to get out of any situation I didn’t feel comfortable with and I pushed him off of me, but he persisted to grope me and shove his tongue down my throat. After a while of me faking chest pains and being uncomfortable and trying to get him off of me, he gave up (thankfully) and passed out. I then got up and snook out of the building and did the walk of shame home in my outfit from the night before. I felt shamed because I voluntarily went home with him from the bar, but I knew that even then I had every right to say no. Everyday I’m exceedingly greatful that I was able to fend him off and he didn’t rape me, which he very well could have, having been bigger than I was and I’m a small girl, but it reminds me everyday that so many other women aren’t lucky.

    There was also a time where I’ve was roofied, shoved into a cab, and the cab driver carried me into my house and attempted to rape me, but thank God my roommate was there and she’s a broad girl and she chased him the hell out of our house while I was passed out next to my toilet. But I do distinctly remember him grabbing me, trying to take off my clothes and forcing himself on me until I threw up in his face and crawled to the toilet.

    Everyday it fills me with rage that things like this are such a common occurance to damn near half of the female population. I feel your pain, and the pain of every woman out there that’s forced by society to just deal with what happens to them because we “let” it happen. I’ve been fortunate enough to have a strong support system and have always been very apt to informing men who think they can force themselves on me that I will make a fuss if they don’t stop, but I know so many women who’ve been conditioned to just allow themselves to accept the fact that they’re going to be harrassed/abused/assaulted, and the justice system is rarely on their side which just further discourages us from placing the blame where it belongs and not on ourselves.

    Thank you for this exceptionally well written piece of work. I’m going to be posting it all over my FB page as well as printing it off for my personal archives.

  8. Thanks for your post! Helps to open my eyes for a better understanding of such situations and to become more aware of their meaning and what’s actually going on. Will help in education as well.

    I’m afraid even the law often requires a girl (/person) to fight back in such a situation. In Essen/Germany there was a judgement right two or three days ago, telling a 15 y old girl, that she didn’t fight back enough … though she told her rapist that she does not want to and he even confirmed her words at court! She knew him to be brutal and acting hard, so I guess she was mainly/rather frightening than wondering what’s happening and what others/society will think about …

    To me it’s easy to comprehend your acting and thinking (though I’m male and didn’t have similar experiences). So thanks for telling again – may your written experiences be a help to some others!

  9. Moving on and letting go.

    I’ve got so much respect for you, writing this out in public. When I was 11 my brother went to jail for rape and I’ve always imagined it being like in movies. With the victims screaming, crying for help. This really helped me understand, so thanks. And never ever feel that it was your fault, because it wasn’t.

  10. Gabriel

    As always when I read posts like this I feel ashamed of being a member of a sex that has the capacity to act in this way.

  11. Pingback: Cómo me convertí en víctima de una violación | Proyecto Kahlo

  12. angela dawson

    this was a good but hard article to read. you have articulated an experience so close to mine that happened 27yrs ago when i was 13 ( and then again when i was 16 and 17). thank you for an awful lot of clarity and insight. it helps me to understand and forgive myself.

  13. I’m so sorry for all you’ve been through 😦
    I know how you feel and how other rape-victims would feel.
    Here’s my story;

    I’m a 17 year old girl.
    I’ve been raped for 4 years long.
    It started when I was about 7, 8 years old.
    My neighbor, a man (he was 32 that time) just dragged me into his bedroom.
    And I just wasn’t thinking any of that..
    He showed me his waterbed and let me play on it for a while with his daughters.
    Then he’d send them away, downstairs and that’s the point where it all happened.
    Every week I was a victim of him and he just kept going, and going and going.
    He always grabbed me when I was playing outside. Just when my parents didn’t saw me and then he just raped me every single time he’d grabbed me at that point.
    It was a living hell, I just wanted to be normal.
    I even had suicide thoughts. Do you even believe it yourself?
    An 7 – 8 year old girl with already suicide thoughts?
    But it went on till I became a year of 11 (almost 12) and we’d go move out to another side of the city. He’d stopped by for several times, but I refused to play with his daughters. I was so scared every time I saw him. Even harder; my parents and sisters don’t know anything about this situation that happened in the past. I’m to afraid they’ll threat me different. In a different way. I don’t want that!
    What I want is to find peace. To find peace with myself..
    I’m still struggling with it, because my parents do speak to him sometimes.
    Just chitchatting like you would do with your friends, but they don’t even know what he had done to me.
    I think that kills me the most, when they just talking to him.

    I’ve told my mentor from school lately. She was shocked by the way I brought it.
    Now I would get a social worker to have a conversation with every week about all the problems I’ve been through and where I’m going trough right now. By all this, I even got epilepsy. That was right away when I moved out to the other side of the city. I think a social worker would help me see my life clearer, better and even more worthwhile. Maybe someday I’ll have the strength to tell my parents about ‘the rape’.
    But for now, I’ll stick to that social worker and my friends and mentor.

  14. Reblogged this on N A N A and commented:
    “Society doesn’t want to blame men for making the choice to rape women, it wants to blame women for enabling men to make that choice and usually it succeeds. Rapists very rarely get to accept responsibility for their choice to rape, even rape victims blame themselves for their rapist’s choice to rape them.”

  15. Pingback: Saturday Links | End Rape Culture

  16. We at DrinkSavvy commend what you are doing to raise awareness about this subject. We are also attempting to do the same, particularly with drug-facilitated sexual assault, and preventing it from occurring by developing color changing cups, straws/stirrers, and glassware that immediately change color when a drug is slipped into your drink. If you agree with what we are doing, check out our campaign http://www.IndieGoGo.com/DrinkSavvy and spread the word by sharing the link with others. Together, we can make drug-facilitated sexual assault a crime of the past.

  17. Mel

    This is such a beautiful article. Thank you. Many points resonate with me, I went through something very similar only he;d walked with me to my flat and hung around so I felt obliged to ask him in. Then when he assaulted me I was terrified because I was in my home – where could I go to?!
    Brought tears to my eyes. Brave article.

  18. girl

    I needed this today. Thank you for sharing your story.

  19. hope

    you are amazing, strong,brave, smart, etc. You went through so much pain and suffering you could have given up but you didn’t! YOU ARE A FIGHTER, A SURVIVOR !!!!!!!!! i admire you ! i would never EVER wish something this horrible happen to anyone and i’m really sorry you had the misfortune of it happening to you but all this made you the person you are today a Strong Wise woman who i idolize 🙂 ❤

  20. rising

    Thank you for sharing this.

  21. Kat

    Thank you so much for writing this and posting it online. You may have saved my life today… Honestly. At least you’ve saved my sanity. I’ve been going out of my mind lately trying to make ‘sense’ out of the sexual assaults and rapes I’ve been put through in my life. This post explains it all so well. I finally feel peace in my heart, knowing that it was never my fault for “not doing enough”. Your words are exactly what I needed to hear. I hope I’ll never doubt myself again, I feel stronger after reading this. I hope I’ll always choose to be laughed at/whatever instead of accepting sexual abuse (even “just” in words) as something ‘normal’ women have to learn to put up with. I hope I’ll remember to expect my boundaries to be respected.
    I guess what I need now is to find a way to deal with all the anger I feel over the fact that this is real; That society is this way, this bad, in this day and age when we all want to think we’re so equal. It’s degrading, and that’s extremely infuriating.

  22. lee

    well, you’re all gonna hate me. i showed this post to my gf, she laughed and said it was really funny. showed it to 4 other women i’m freinds with. not a single sympathetic response. general attitude was, get a grip you dozy bitch. i promise you, their words not mine. my advice. suck it up and move on. it was according to you, 20 years ago.

    • chris

      obviously your girlfriend has never been raped. She wouldn’t laugh if it were her. that’s what makes it sickening, that not even women get it.

  23. C.J. Edwards

    To me, this doesn’t feel like rape. How was the person doing this suppose to know that you weren’t along with it? I don’t see where he was suppose to understand that this wasn’t a drunk sex night. To be honest with you, this feels like a few nights I’ve had. I might not have just kissed the girl, but it wasn’t like we had a big talk about it. I used instinct to see what would happen, I wouldn’t be surprised if I misjudged sometimes, but if somebody says no or resisted, it would not happen.
    If anything, this is you not learning from a young age to set boundries. But somebody who doesn’t see you opposing, why would he feel like he’s doing anything wrong?
    Don’t misunderstand the point I am making. Rape is a bad thing! But you can’t just call your own lack of resistance rape. From birth you are free to think as you will. You blaim it, you not responding to it correctly, to the environment you grew up in. This might be possible, but every human being has this sence inside saying ‘this is wrong’. There are at least 5 or 6 moments you could have objected and did not do so. Not saying you deserve what happened. But without any opposing actions, how would an outcome ever change as expected.
    What happened to you is a bad thing and I feel sorry for you having to go through this, but in my opinion you were not raped. You just hadn’t learned to stand up for yourself yet. A shame.

    • Aoife

      The fact that the guy told her that she’d had sex when she didn’t want to is actually a pretty big indicator that he knew what he was doing was rape. Telling this woman this happened because she didn’t learn to set boundaries is awfully disrespectful and rude, as well as victim blaming. You’re perpetuating rape myths by telling her not resisting means it wasn’t rape. Some people resist, others don’t – it’s fight or flight, your instincts decide, not you. This is an obvious case of flight, in that her mind convinced her that if she went out with him, had consensual sex with him, that it would not have been rape that one time. Her mind was shielding itself from the truth to protect her. Flight.
      It has taken this woman 20 years to accept that she was not at fault, to overcome every part of society that tells her she was to blame. What do you hope to gain by saying it wasn’t, apart from further perpetuating rape myths and a culture of victim blaming?

    • JustAGirl

      She turned her head away, she tried to move his hands,she said she wanted to go, her body language and facial expressions would have been obvious to him. They WERE obvious too him, considering he told her he knew she didn’t want to have sex with him. If someone is acting like they don’t want you to touch them, you shouldn’t touch them. It doesn’t matter if they do not physically stop you. This comment is so, so, insulting, and wrong. You don’t know how it feels to be in her position. Why it is her job to resist to an amount or degree that you deem appropriate? Why is iti ok for someone to force themself on you as long as you don’t scream at the top of your lungs and violently shove them away? Rape is a terrifying, awful, confusing experience. There is no right way to react. It is people like you that help people like him get away with rape. It is never ok to unexpectedly shove your penis into someone without their consent. You can’t just assume consent. Why is a woman considered to be in a constant state of consent until she physically, violently, and audibly rejects someone to a degree of your satisfaction? Why is squirming away from someone and saying you want to go not considered a rejection? Everyone always wants to blame the victim. We live in a culture of rape apologists. And you, though you may consider your comment to be innocent, are one of them.

    • Only "Yes" means yes...

      Thanks for the insight, troll.

      Now run along under your bridge and drown yourself.

    • chris

      C J Edwards, you cannot understand someone unless you have stepped in their shoes and walked around in them. That’s what atticus finch said in ‘To kill a mocking bird’. It’s easy to point your finger from afar when you are sitting on the other side of the fence. I would say, ignorance is a dangerous thing.

  24. Woman

    Thank you so much for sharing your story.

    I am a young girl in college, and last year ended up losing my virginity when my then boyfriend raped me. Throughout our whole relationship he would force me into things I felt uncomfortable with, and despite saying no, I never fought back, and kind of just endured it, like you did. He forced me to give him oral sex, despite me gagging and turning my head away and groped me several times without my consent during the early parts of our relationship. But I never realized he was a rapist, much like you. Finally, right before finals, one of my good friends from home passed away, and I was really bummed out. He showed up at my room to “cheer me up” and proceeded to pull off my clothes, despite my resistance. I still wasn’t expecting it to go as far as rape, since he had done similar things without that drastic of a result. Like you, it wasn’t until I felt his penis that I realized what was happening, and although I tried (feebly) to get him off of me, I still mostly let it happen against my consent, since I felt disgusted with myself for letting it get that far. I ended up breaking up with him the next time I talked to him (3 weeks later), but I still have difficulties with that experience.

    I tried to make a report, but the faculty advisor of the Sexual Harrassment and Abuse Resource Board at my school told me I couldn’t make a case. Society said to me: You were in a relationship, and therefore you consented. One of my male friends made a report to the same board and succeeded in getting a no-contact order with his attacker, but still must attend classes and share a role in a play with him. Because the board doesn’t want to disturb the attacker’s role as a “student at the university with academic responsibilities.”

    Since I was raped, I’ve ended up initiating a lot of sexual experiences I normally wouldn’t have, just to be able to feel in control of my own body. And I still victim-blame myself — yes I was raped, but I still ask myself if there was anything I could have done to avoid it.

    My mother was also date-raped twice in college, and ended up with unwanted pregnancies both times. She tells me a lot how happy she is I haven’t taken after her in that respect, but I’ve never been brave enough to tell her what happened. Although I’ve told a lot of my friends that my ex was sexually abusive, I’ve only told two people that it went as far as rape. One of them didn’t believe me, and the other one had experienced the exact same thing with someone else on our campus.

    Thank you for being brave enough to share this and for being willing to open up the discussion on this topic! This is something hugely wrong with our society that needs to be changed.

  25. Pingback: Cómo me convertí en víctima de una violación | Mamma Testa!

  26. Pingback: “…en la ‘zona gris’ del mito… así es como me convertí en víctima de una violación…” Hmm | ...Alwari...

  27. Anthony

    This is heartbreaking but really well written. Thank you for sharing it is very brave of you to open yourself up like that I imagine it wasn’t easy. We need to have better discourse about rape and a greater confrontation of rape culture in society and your experience only serves to highlight that need.

  28. why hello there

    god whats the big deal

    • Tesko

      This wasnt rape…. You never gave him a non consensual notion.. That u never wanted it…. Males get molested just like this n they don’t go calling females rapists…. Males get raped more…. Yet there is no protection for males…. Get over ur self…. Fake victim…. If u didn’t say no…. No resisting…. This wasnt rape…. N u r very disrespectful…. Repulsive.. Boring…. U still had sex faster wards…. U were in a relationship…stop faking urself…. No one is after ur daughter…. Females are rapists…. Mention that to ur son…. Mrs. I’m a victim.

      • i thought people like u went extinct not long after the stone ages
        how dare u say that to her
        way to make things worse for her shes going throo a hard enough time she doesnt need these comments

      • Only "Yes" means yes...

        Another troll! Kindly follow the advice given to the above troll, CJ

      • chris

        i don’t agree with you. and you say that you were a victim. then you should understand. did you fight back ? what is the issue here? is it about whether we think it was rape. It was! End of story

    • chris

      oh god another one!

  29. C

    Your blog post was a real eye-opener for me. I was in nearly the exact same situation as you. It happened 5 years ago when I was only about 14 or 15 years old. And for the past 5 years I blamed myself for it. I absolutely hated myself. After reading this, I was able to convince myself that it wasn’t my fault and that I should let it control the rest of my life. That being said, I don’t know how to go about it. How did you overcome it?

  30. if u want me to be honest
    i know of women who have lied about rape and i hate them
    because people like me who wanna help rape victims
    end up looking a fool because of these women

    however they are rapes that have gone unpunished because the woman wasnt frantic enough
    or she was drinking
    or she came onto him
    none of those excuses mean shit to me
    if i can keep my hands to myself
    and keep it in me pants
    i dont understand why they cant
    how ever i am slowly studying the mind of a rapist and have learnt a few things

    there is nothing a man can do to ok rape
    its a disgusting pathetic crime that shows desperation and datelessness.

    some rapes i found are commited purely out of sexism
    and some rapist think rape is a way to get a girl’s attention
    or make her wanna date u
    sick sick sick

    now im only making an offer
    i understand u dont know me and this might be uncomfortable
    and if it is too forward or pressuring
    then please disregard the next paragraph

    i am offering that if u ever need anyone to talk to im always open
    need to vent or cry, u can always use my shoulder.
    need someone to remind u that it wasnt ur fault
    ur not the dirty one
    i can be that person if u want me to
    again i dont mean to make u feel uncomfortable just saying its there if u want it, anyone here who is interested in my offer
    its always open

    again im sorry if this scared u

    try to have a good day, it is NOT ur fault
    dont ever forget that

    i was raped at 10 by my cousin
    believe me, i got a pretty good idea on how u feel
    i am a male
    please dont assume me to be like the others
    im very different.

  31. Vivian

    Thanks for your post, unfortunatelly i have felt really identified…..

  32. Jessica

    I feel so sorry for u my lil cuz got raped and she’s only 2 Thank u so much for sharing

  33. Jennie

    Why thank you for sharing CJ! Thanks for making the rape victim feel even better about herself after her harrowing experiences. By the way-what the hell are YOU doing reading a Feminist blog? Thanks for proving once again that men are unfeeling-victim blaming assholes. I too am a rape SURVIVOR. Thank goodness I wasn’t killed afterwards. Today I never let men into my apartment and only hang out with homosexual men. Men are dangerous and sex (penis) ruled. Just read the papers-look at the sex offender registry-prison population-other countries where women are raped just walking down the street (sometimes in the US too..) Thanks for stunting our freedom as women. How would you like it if you were forced to fellate a man or be penetrated in the butt by a penis? Not so much fun right? Next time go read something else and keep your unfeeling comments to yourself.

  34. Pingback: Advice for Men: How to Prevent Rape. « Matt Loves Writing! A Dreamer's Blog.

  35. Aria Reeder

    I was on the phone talking about my recent experience with rape when a stranger wrote down this article’s URL on a sheet of paper also telling me to be around supportive people. People do care :’)

    Dear beingfeminist,
    I’ve a very similar experience which occured in Nevada less than two months ago. I explicitey and implicitey told an acquaintance I couldn’t have sex with him, and he did it anyway. The whole time I was being raped I was convinced that because I was intoxicated it was my fault. I didn’t touch him, I didn’t hit him, I just cried as he proceeded to ejaculate on me. There were no witnesses, this happened in the driver seat of my car (and if you’ve ever had car sex you know that the steering wheel is an obstacle and thus not a favorable/inviting place to have consensual sex). I was silenced and felt obligated to take him home and I can’t excuse this action for any other reason than for my belief that the rape was also my fault. I reported the incident an hour after it occurred, have forensic evidence, and got counseling. My detective issued a “thourough” polygraph yesterday which took several hours to which the rapist turned out to show no signs of deception and was cooperative. My detective said that because of this, the case must be witheld as “insufficient evidence.” She told me, “you know, most rapists are extremely uncopperative unlike this one and the fact that we can prove that he believed it was consensual (via A POLYGRAPH) I can’t take your case to court.” It was after reading this article that I realized she assigned an image to rapists; that Ted Bundy is an exception. Feeling confused and hopeless, I decided that one person who works for the law shouldn’t stop me from fighting. I talked to her supervisor who was very nuetral about factual evidence. This sargaent told me that this case wouldn’t make it to court because a defense attorney would pose, “why didn’t she run away? why didn’t she scream? why didn’t she run down the street?” like a typical victim of rape. I then offered to take a polygraph myself and was denied one! This proves that the legal system has a very systematic approach to how women are suppose to respond to rape. My natural response to rape cannot be proved and consequently this rapist is a free man. I am still fighting, though! I’m doing as much as possible to take this to court no matter the outcome, this rapist deserves the exposure and guilt.
    It is no wonder why rape is the most undereported crime because when it is, the only way to incarcerate a rapist is if the victim runs down the street screaming like a banshee and has bruises all over. Most victims end up getting revictimized by the law.

    MY ADVICE TO ALL VICTIMS OF RAPE:
    Get counseling as soon as you can, it is never too late! At the end of the day you have to make sure you take care of yourself. My recent experience with rape opened a box of my childhood experiences with sexual assault. Don’t box up your feelings and set them aside! They WILL come back if you don’t treat them. Most importantly, DO NOT LET THIS DEFINE YOU.

  36. Kayleigh

    I have been raped. I haven’t told anyone because I was 10 I am now 13. Only one person knows and that’s my one and only friend who has also been through the same experience. I was confused and lonely after my rape I didn’t know if anyone would believe me or even listen to me. Sometimes I think it was my own fault, for letting him get that close. He was 13 and was so lovely at first, but now I know he was grooming me. He bought me presents and sweets then one day said “I have done loads of things for you, now you’re going to pay me back.” Then he lead me into a forest I had tried so hard to break free. I had tried screaming anything I could but as it was 10 o’clock at night, no one was around or close enough to hear my screams. And so he raped me in the forest and I still have nightmares and flash backs and I self harm because of it. I have two bandages on from it. I am afraid to tell my mum because she never listens to me.

  37. Thanks so much for sharing.
    I was raped at least once and many of my other sexual encounters were not what I wanted. I know sometimes I did it for stupid reasons, like the idea that like men gain power by having sex I would get power if I just did it without thinking about what a woman is supposed to do. In other occasions I just wanted to flirt or kiss a men and he made me feel guilty or pushed me into having sex.
    What I really hate about society is that – as you described – they educate you, form you in a way that makes it very likely to be a rape victim (like being nice and educated, like accepting that they don’t respect your boundaries), then they tell you what to do if you are in a situation like that (be just the opposite of what we told you before, be aggressive – something that by the way will not work if you are weak and afraid and will just cause a stupid smile on your rapists face) and if you don’t behave in that way it is not rape and if it is not rape you are a slut for having sex that easily. Is there any way to behave in a way that society accepts? And then there happens something interesting: some of us (like me, too) stay with their rapist (to feel better, to seem decent) and it seems even less likely that it was rape. And that gives the man the power to start a relationship against your will, to possess you, just by raping you. In some cultures raped women have to marry their rapist for questions of honor or whatever. Here nobody tells you that you have to and we look down on these cultures. But actually society works in a way that something similar happens in a much subtle way. They make us accomplices of that.
    I know that to me it happened too often to be just normal. I think it has to do with experiences in my life that somehow traumatized me or made me believe that my boundaries don’t count and maybe even look for men like that, I tend to re-victimization over and over again. Well, not that much as before, but it still happens. In that situations everything gets so blurred, I get so confused. But even if I would have had a more normal life – chances are high that stuff like that would have happened and that I would not have understood that this is not weird, but just the normal case.

  38. Anna

    Thank you. your story really made me… i dont have words for it… but thank you very very much for sharing.

  39. I met this 28 year old Serbian guy in a cafe and we got talking. I’m in Slovakia and I’m eager to meet people. He invited me out for a drink and at first he was nice then all of a sudden he was kissing me hard and I was pushing him away but I was sat with my back to a wall, then he pulled me onto his lap and I was struggling as hard as I could and he was just saying no no stay here please please and I was so so embarrassed as we were in a pub and there were quite a few people and its just not the kind of behavior I take part in, I felt so stupid. Then we met again and I told him I like him but he seriously needs to slow down as I knew him only 2 days.. then last night he said I should see his apartment.
    Why did I even go there? I thought he was a bit forward but he didn’t seem like a pervert or anything so I went. I’m lonely here.. I walked in and he immediately started kissing me and trying to take my clothes off.. he promised he wouldn’t touch me beforehand but then he grabbed my boobs really hard and it hurt and when I struggled and cried he kept saying relax relax don’t be scared I said I am scared I don’t want to do this please don’t but he didn’t listen so I slapped him hard and he said, why? Don’t you like? You will like it. Its OK don’t be scared and I said please get off me this doesn’t feel right.. it was like he hadn’t bloody heard me and then he took me down and he pulled my leggings off and raped me..it hurt so much I buried my face in a pillow and didn’t dare look and cried out.. then he wanted to walk me home and I let him I felt so confused and then he raped me in my room again and pulled my hair and hurt my body.. I feel like I let him I feel so guilty and stupid and if I tell anyone then it will be my fault and I don’t know how to get rid of him as he now calls me constantly.. I don’t even think I like him and hes scary and I just had to write it I have no family no friends and I’m on my own here I’m 21 I should know what to do but I don’t..

    thank you for your story I feel better about it and am getting online help

    I want to go back to England 😥

    • Only "Yes" means yes...

      Go to the police. A rapist is a rapist. It doesn’t matter what his nationality was, it has nothing to do with being in a foreign country with a foreigner. All men know that “no” is “no”, and if he ignored you, he is a rapist. Tell the police. He needs to be on their radar, b/c rapists don’t change.

  40. Teri

    Thank you

  41. chris

    the most tragic aspect of all is that society condones this and victims go on living with the shame. One needs to only look at how many people said they did not or have not told anyone.

  42. AJ

    Thank you so much for this article. Because of this I was able to stop myself from staying silent & stand up for what happened to me two nights ago. I blamed myself & now i realize that I am a victim & I have every right to file a report.
    Thank you so much! You’ve helped make this horrible thing a lot better for me to deal with.

  43. Kate

    I would just like to say thank you. Thank you for sharing this. Your story is so close to my own and I really appreciate you being able to share this.

  44. Ashley

    Thank you for writing this.

  45. Etty

    You are a brave and wonderful woman. Nothing that was done to you will ever change that. Thank you for sharing.
    I’m a survivor of date rape. Very few people know, but I’m sure many guess.
    Thanks again.

  46. Robbie

    I think he was hoping that you would come to like or at least accept him so he could continue to have you without feeling that he was raping you or that he had raped you.
    If women were not indoctrinated to believe they were ruined for life by being raped it would be better for them. Everyone is used and abused from time to time. I vividly recall being kidnaped. I recall being robbed at gunpoint. I recall being shot for interrupting a rape. I recall being shot at by a robber. I recall each time I have been assaulted by homosexuals, and the circumstances. I could point out on Google Earth and Street View where each of these attacks came, except one. I know that these experiences had an influence on me. It probably is more risky for anyone to make me think he is about to attack me.
    I don’t think any of these experiences, or all of them combined, has ruined me for life. Why? I was not told over and over as I was growing up that I would be ruined for life, even by homosexual assault. No one taught me that I must not submit to any kind of attack at all costs or I would be ruined for life.
    Women, though, are given messages like this. Over and over again. Should it be any surprise if such indoctrination “takes”?
    A former girlfriend came to me at a party and told me that she had been at a (now former) boyfriend’s apartment when without any warning, seized her, took her down onto the rug, pulled her pants and underpants down, and raped her.
    I listened to her until she was finished, then asked her what she would like me to do, if anything other than just listen. She asked me what I thought she should do. I asked her when this was done to her. She said it was the evening before. I asked her if she was physically injured. She said she wasn’t. I asked her if she was willing to go to the district attorney’s office or police and file a formal complaint. She didn’t want to. I asked her if she would feel bvetter if I went and beat him up. “No,” she didn’t want to do anything to him. I asked her if she knew of him doing any others like that. She said that she didn’t. I asked then if what she really wanted was just to have someone to listen to her. She said it was.
    Another former girlfriend from whom I hand not heard for a year called me and asked for me to come over. So I did. At her apartment, she invited me in and offered me food and drink. I accepted and when finished we sat at opposite ends of her sofa. She was wearing a T-shirt blouse and bikini panties. This was pretty dressed for her at home as we always were naked when we were BF-GF. She then told me that she had gone to a former BF’s place when he asked her to come over and talk. He fixed supper for them and then when they were finished, he took her in his arms, pulled her pants and panties down and raped her. When he was finished, he helped her up from the rug and let her go to the bathroom to clean up. Just from semen, not blood. When she came out, he gave her her panties, sat her down next to him and talked as if nothing had happened. When he was done, for he knew that she needed to go home so she could get sleep to go to work in the morning, he pulled a pistol, a revolver, on her, pointed it at her, cocked it and pulled the trigger. It snapped. It was not loaded. He said, “The art of deception.” She then left.
    When I saw her it had been about 3 months since that happened (was done to her). She had missed her periods. A preg test showed positive. She spoke of this being her parents’ first grandchild, her baby. Then she said she knew that he would demand to be involved with her and the child, so she couldn’t see going through with the pregnancy.
    I suggested that he didn’t have to know about it. She said she was sure he’d find out.
    So she went and had a (botched, it turned out) abortion, as I learned later. She was showering before going to work when a bloody mass fell out into the tub with a lot of blood following. It was the baby’s head, part of its body, and an arm and a leg. She had been feeling bad for a couple of weeks.
    A co-worker fromher office called me and said that she had asked for me to come to the hospital. This was the first I had heard since that night when I went to her apt.
    When I got there she said, “I suppose you can say I got what I deserved.” I said, ” that didn’t occur to me. What’s done is done.” She told me all the details of the botched abortion, how badly the abortion staff treated her, and how rough the abortionist treated her. They had told her that “it wasn’t a baby yet” and she had believed them, she guessed because she wanted to believe that. But she saw in the shower that it was fully formed, just little. And the abortionist had left part of it inher to rot for 2 weeks. She had been hemorrhaging for two weeks and finally blew the packing out of her cervix and vagina.
    She had gone back to the abortuary for the pain she was suffering from but they wanted more money to see her. She never would tell me which abortuary these incompetent slimeballs ran.
    A couple of months later I called her and took her out to lunch from her office. She was recovering well. I didn’t mention any of the sordid mess; what for?
    No, we didn’t get back together. It’s been 28 years since we dated.

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