Sexual Assault as defined by Wikipedia: Sexual assault is any type of sexual contact or behavior that occurs without the explicit consent of the recipient. Falling under the definition of sexual assault are sexual activities as forced sexual intercourse, forcible sodomy, child molestation, incest, fondling, and attempted rape.
We’ve seen movies about sexual assault. The girl (or boy) gets assaulted, he/she is beaten, bruised and bloody and left to die. We don’t see the movies where the girl/boy is lying in bed, sleeping next to a person they know and trust that takes advantage of their small frame and inability to push them off. We don’t see movies where it’s quiet and the girl says “no” over and over again. There’s no beating of any kind, no visible bruises or blood. Just a person left, laying there, left broken, confused and worthless. A person that will have nightmares almost every night afterwards and assumes that any man/woman that comes near them will do the same thing.
2 years ago, I was raped. And for the first time since it happened, I’m strong enough to say it out loud.
It took me 2 years to acknowledge that what happened was wrong and that I didn’t do anything to provoke it. I wasn’t wearing a short skirt, I wasn’t “asking for it” and I hadn’t been drinking. I was a girl, fully clothed, laying in a bed, just trying to sleep when a man twice my size used his weight to hold me down and force himself on me after I repeatedly said “no” and “please stop”. For 2 years it has controlled my life, it has controlled my ability to eat normally, have normal relationships and for that I am angry. I have been angry since the night my innocence was taken away.
I write this in hopes that it will help even just one person. Not for sympathy, not for attention, but because I don’t want any other girl or boy to feel like they don’t have a voice. I stayed silent for too long and because of it, my health deteriorated, my feeling of self-worth diminished and my ability to let people into my bubble became impossible.
Please tell someone, a doctor, a therapist, if you don’t feel comfortable telling your family (like me), tell your best friend, someone you trust. I’ve been in therapy for a little while now and the night I told my therapist what happened, I felt an immense weight come off my shoulders. I’m no longer hiding behind a smile, I don’t get as tense when someone touches me in the grocery store or a man looks at me for what I think is too long when I’m in a public setting.
Below is a list of services and hotlines for you or for anyone you know that needs help, the first step to getting better is admitting that it happened. Saying it out loud.
National Sexual Assault Hotline: 1-800-656-4673 (24 hours a day)
National Domestic Violence Hotline: 1-800-787-3224
Victim Connect: 1-855-484-2846
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