This is and will be the hardest post I’ll ever write. I don’t even know if I will end up posting this. The feelings of shame are something I struggle with every day. For over 10 years, I haven’t told anyone about it except my best friend and my husband, but I’m trying to get the courage to do it now. Big breath.
I was raped.
I’ve never really discussed it. It was at a party in high school that I shouldn’t have been. Where I was drinking alcohol, I shouldn’t have been drinking. I was in a relationship, but he was distant. I could feel him pulling away, feel us falling apart. While waiting for the inevitable, I drank. And smoked. And did everything you’re not supposed to do. He told me he’d never dated a skinny girl, as though that should explain why we couldn’t be together. As though me having thighs and breasts was somehow not enough. He wanted hip bones and a flat stomach.
So I partied hard. I drank until I could hardly stand and started making out with the hottest guy in the room. And when he led me away, I knew exactly what to expect, and I wasn’t going to say no. I wanted to show my boyfriend that someone did want me. That skinny girls weren’t the only beautiful girl. That he could go fuck himself.
What I didn’t want was the dresser being pushed against the door, locking me in. His friends behind the dresser. A camera. All the memories of the room spinning and me too drunk to say no. Or did I say no? I think I blacked out, but I’m not sure. And the shame of that night. So much shame. It was all my fault, wasn’t it?
Going back to school the next Monday was the worst. The boys spread it around campus that I wanted it, even asked for it. I was too ashamed to say anything, so I just didn’t say a word. Everyone knew. And they looked at me like a whore. My senior year was a blur after that. I just concentrated on graduation and work.
But now it’s different. I’ve got something to say, and I won’t stay quiet anymore. To the ones who did what they did, you didn’t take away my power. I know what happened that night, and I hope it haunts you in your dreams. I hope you understand that I am not less because you treated me like less, I am more. Stronger and bigger and pissed off. And I won’t shut up about it.
To any girl who’s blamed yourself for too long, it was not your fault. Regardless of what situation you put yourself in, drinking or not, it was never your fault. No means no. It requires no explanation and no further discussion. You gave me more power because I won’t hide behind shame anymore. You’re the ones who should be ashamed. I was blackout drunk. You were the ones who did the wrong, not me. You should’ve been prosecuted, but I was too scared. I’m not afraid anymore. You know why? Because you’ll never be real men. All you’ll ever be are little boys.