- DISCLAIMER: This is not meant to be a comfortable topic, this is meant to spread awareness and show the damage that is being done every day to ALL genders and the lack of action being taken for the victims.
- We reached out to as many people as we could encouraging those who feel comfortable to share their experiences. These are anonymous responses out of respect for the survivors, we asked them to do one thing:
- Go into as much detail as they feel comfortable about their experiences.
To the eight year old who found herself trapped in a dark and sensual prison.
To the eight year old who felt safe until the touch of a foreign finger grazed her lower back.
To the eight year old who felt paralyzed
To the eight year old whose heart raced out of complete fear for the first time
To the eight year old who also experienced a thrill through this new touch
To the eight year old who did not understand what this feeling meant
To the eight year old who felt shame
To the eight year old who no longer felt like an 8 year old
To the girl who knew something was wrong
To the girl who paced her room back and forth, searching for ways to cry for help to her mother
To the girl who had never had her own secret until then
To the girl who needed a friend
To the girl who lived with this terror of being caught and shamed for what happened
To the girl who became known as the “jumpy” one, the “scaredy cat”
To the girl who believed the police were out to arrest her for this unforgivable act
To the girl riddled with sexual dreams consisting of fear and torture
To the teenager who turned the entrapment by cause into an entrapment by choice and isolated herself emotionally
To the teenager who pushed this event as far from her mind as she could to remain sane
To the teenager who felt different and isolated from others because of what happened
To the teenager who desperately wanted love but was too afraid to touch
To the teenager who shrunk back from physical contact, from her mother’s hugs to her friends pats on the back
To the teenager crying of loneliness
To the teenager who turned her cheek against her first kiss
To the teenager who began to crave innocent touch but her heart beat too quickly for comfort
To the young woman…who began to explore these sexual feelings and allowed herself a true first kiss
To the young woman who observantly followed her partner’s lead for fear of messing up and revealing her true unexperienced body.
To the young woman who began to allow herself to revel in this newfound relationship with skin on skin
To the young woman who was reminded her of past when he asked her to bed.
To the young woman who brought her wall back and said no.
To the young woman who felt that disappointment from another.
To the young woman who now knew she needed to take a step back.
To the young woman who wanted true love this time, not just lust for the body.
To the woman I am today, who has found deep love within another who appreciates her on dual levels.
To the woman I am today, who tip-toed into the makings of love and after months of debate, took the plunge.
To the woman I am today, who confessed to her mother of the deep pain she had held within for so long.
To the woman I am today, who confides in her mother for all things now.
To the woman I am today, who communicates her hesitations to her partner and works together with him to create a safe space
To the woman I am today, who has grown like a tall sunflower as proud a worker bee at the end of the day.
To the woman I am today, who believed she was unlovable because of this thing, and has now found love in so many places.
To the woman I am today, I am beyond proud of you and you are more than what happened to you.
Some people think that sexual assault is only when there is full on penetration but that is not the case. Sexual assault is when someone violates you as a human being and disrespects you as if you are an object that they own. I guess you can say I never really trusted men. I was always bullied as a child by guys and I decided right then and there I would always keep my guard up. In 2014 my family and I went on a family reunion and a 2nd cousin of mine kept groping me and slapping my ass, touching my boobs as if it was ok and keep trying to get me to sleep in his room. I felt so uncomfortable but didn’t know how to say something without ruining the trip my grandma worked so hard to plan for two years so I kept it to myself and told myself only 2 more days….fast forward to 3 years ago in April. I was a senior in high school. Me and a who I thought was a close friend were saying goodbye to our mutual best friend before she went on a vacation. Afterwards we decided to go back to my house, he followed me there and we turned on the TV just like any normal day. Except for this day was different, we were watching my favorite show at the time when he pulled me down next to him to cuddle. At first I was ok with it, I had feelings for him for like 3 years prior and we often cuddled up in bed to watch a movie as a group so I rolled with it. It wasn’t until he started to put his hand up my shirt that I became uncomfortable but by the grace of god my phone rang and that’s when I thought I was going to be able to flee the situation. So,when I went to get up after answering it he pulled me back down and wouldn’t let me get up so I sat there under his strong grip trying to get up while being on the phone. I said stop and tried to get up but then he proceeded to try to pull me down. He continued until he heard my dad pull in the driveway. He never stuck himself inside me but it still made me feel like I was worth nothing. Especially when he didn’t talk to me for like two weeks after that incident. Don’t ask me why I wanted him to talk to me but I wanted something, an apology or maybe a explanation on why he did what he did. I never did end up getting one but what he did give me was a level of anxiety and depression I didn’t know I had in me. What he did give me was a fear of guys. What he did give me is the inability to be touched without reliving the situation. Yes, this nervousness towards men has gotten better since then and I’ve learned to love myself a whole lot more but I’m most definitely not back to where I used to be. I for one am not one to hold grudges but I do believe that being civil with him has made it a little easier for me to heal because I do see him often due to mutual friends and if I face him I know that I have required the strength to fight off any other guy because no one can take what he took from me ever again.
Me and my roommate invited this guy over who was an ex of a friend of mine. We found out (me and him) that we went to the same college and just started hanging out a bit here and there. So my roommate also got to know him and invited him to pregame with me and her in our room for a few Halloween parties. We never made it to the parties that night. Me and my roommate got incredibly drunk, we offered him some but he didn’t drink much. When my roomate left to go to the bathroom I went and laid on my bed because I was drunk and tired. He started kissing me at first I was so started I didn’t know what to do and then he tried to grope me. My mind snapped back on and I told him to stop and pushed him away. I could still feel his sweaty hands still on me. I felt like I was going to throw up and it wasn’t from the alcohol. I walked out of the room and get some water and take some time to gather myself. When I got back to my room I find him on top of my roommate, he jumped off when I came in, her lipstick was all over him. I walked him to his dorm after that and he asked if we could all still be friends I said we would but I knew I was lying. When I got back to the room I took off my Halloween costume I had been so excited about and went to my bed and cried for hours. The next morning I felt even worse, I felt so taken advantage of, when I talked to my roommate she agreed last night felt horrible. For a year I refused to talk about what I did for Halloween. I avoid all jazz nights my school has now because he is a jazz drummer. He waved to me once in the cafe and I was frozen. I have never reported it, I don’t even know if I can report something like this. He made me feel so gross and violated my depression spiraled. I am stronger now and I will stand up till the day I die fighting for other women who have gone through any sort of sexual abuse. This story wasn’t my end it was a beginning.
The first time unwanted hands touched my body, it was by my best friend’s brother. I was 7 years old, and he was 14. I didn’t understand what molestation or rape, or any other thing involving sex was at that time. What I did know was that I was uncomfortable. One day, my best friend left her brother and me in her room for about an hour. He decided to make me sit on his lap, kiss me, and rub my vaginal area. I didn’t understand what we were doing, and when I told him I would tell someone, he threatened me. Then he decided that he would promise me all these gifts to keep my silence. I kept quiet, I never got anything in return, and I had to see him everyday for years after that.
Growing up in New York City, sexual abuse, catcalling, and rape were the norms. When I was 10 years old a friend of mine, 14 at the time, was raped on the top floor of my building by a 30 year old neighbor. She had his child. Everyday coming home from school, I had numerous men approach me and call me “baby” or “sexy” or say that they want to sleep with me. I rode the train one day during summer break and I was wearing a sort of tight orange romper that my Dad had bought me a few months before. The train wasn’t too crowded, but it wasn’t a lot of space. I vividly remember a white man coming up behind me with an erection and rubbing his penis against my back side. I was too afraid to say anything so I just cried and no one noticed my tears.
Way too often we’re told this is the normal. I’ve believed this was normal for years. Now everytime I’m in the room with a man, I get afraid. When my father tries to hug me, I get afraid. When my boyfriend tries to do anything, I get afraid. I’ve never told anyone this because I didn’t want to be shamed. Society gets annoyed and starts to torment people who come out about sexual assault. I didn’t want to hear that I shouldn’t have been alone, I shouldn’t have worn something, I shouldn’t have been over at anyone’s house, etc. This is me, this is my story.
Sexual assault comes in many forms and looks different for a lot of people. As for my recent experience, I classify it as date rape.
In July of 2017, my relationship came to an end. I was madly in love with a man who had helped me find what was sexually liberating for me. My experience with him was great, nothing short of a learning experience. After this relationship ended, I was uncomfortable giving my body to other men. I knew that if I were to partake in sexual activities with others that it wouldn’t be because I wanted to do so with them, but because I missed the feeling. I decided to continue my sexual conquests with my now, ex-boyfriend. Continuing this pattern, we decided that these actions were emotionally unhealthy for the both of us.
In October of 2017, I decided to open myself up to dating. There was a guy who I had met two years ago at a party, for the sake of this story we’ll call him Jesse. When we met, we exchanged contact information but never followed through with connecting with one another. Jesse decided to begin messaging me saying that he no longer saw me posting my significant other on social media. I began to explain to him that I was no longer in a relationship. Following that discussion, we began having regular conversations, almost daily. Jesse doesn’t live in the same town as me so he offered to drive up one weekend in November to take me out on a date. I decided to take him up on his offer. Our first date went really well, we laughed, talked about what made us who we are today, and he explained that he used to be a bad person. We didn’t go into too much detail about what that looked like except that he had anger issues in the past. I thought nothing of this, as we all have things in our past that we may not be particularly proud of.
Later in November, Jesse decided to come visit and take me on another date. Living at home with my mom at the time, I decided I would drive to meet him wherever he was at so that I could avoid bringing any man to my mother’s home. Jesse and I decided together that we would go to a bar and have a few drinks. He got a hotel room and I parked my car there so that he could drive to the bar. Instead, Jesse invited two friends to go out with us. He drove his car to his friend’s apartment and from there we took an Uber to the bar. At his friend’s house we drank a little bit, all of us consuming small portions of alcohol out of one bottle so that none of us would drink too much before going out. I felt comfortable with Jesse until he had made the decision to bring his friend’s along for a night that was supposed to be a date night. That was one red flag to me. As soon as we got to the bar Jesse bought us all a shot and one drink. At this point I felt good, tipsy but not drunk. We walked around for a bit, talked about different things and sat down to have a conversation. When we found a seat, I asked Jesse to watch my drink as I ran to the restroom. We sat in a booth with only him, his friend’s and myself. Still feeling tipsy, I returned to the table to continue the night. I finished the drink I had been drinking for the 45 minutes we had been there. As soon as I finished my drink Jesse looked at me, then at his friend’s and asked if we were ready to leave. I thought it was still pretty early but I rolled with the punches. After this, all I remember was feeling light headed and getting in another Uber. I woke up in his hotel room, naked, with two empty condom wrappers lying on the night stand beside me as he was penetrating me from behind as if that were his way to wake me up and say “good morning.” Jesse then said to me, “you didn’t do anything last night when we had sex either, you just laid there.” Not knowing that we had, had sex I was terrified and confused.
After waking up to this encounter, I picked up my belongings and got dressed. I got out of that hotel room and jetted home to my bed. I then looked into my recent calls, snapchats, and text messages to see if I could piece anything together from the night before when I think I blacked out. Again, I was not drunk, only tipsy. I had contacted two of my best friends and my ex-boyfriend to let them know that I did not feel safe leaving the bar and sent them my location in case anything were to happen to me. I believe I was drugged and taken advantage of. Date rape is a real thing. Jesse did not have my consent to have sex with me. I had told my mom that I would be home that night, as I planned on having a few drinks and coming home. I never made it back home. At this point, I still did not feel comfortable with having sex with another man. I only have sex on my own terms. I felt completely stripped afterwards, I felt extremely vulnerable and ultimately, weak. I know that I would never go out on a date and get drunk because I am an observer, I have to be aware of my surroundings at all times and that night…I wasn’t. My mind was altered by something other than alcohol and in turn I was date raped by a man who thought it was okay..
It’ll be two years in January, but the nightmares make it feel like last night. We were basically dating without the title for quite some time. You knew I was scared to be touched because I had been touched all through middle school. It was almost like you didn’t care. You did as you pleased and I just took what I could get because bad attention is better than none, right? I used to think I bruised easily but I’ll be honest, I barely ever get a bruise. I would go to school with sweatshirts or long sleeves daily because my wrists would be purple from where you would hold me down just to show you were stronger and could dominate me. To prove I had no power, no say, no anything. Drinking made you the most violent and it was petrifying. You choked me until I blacked out. I had to put makeup on my neck and wear a turtleneck to hide the handprint from anyone. Yet after all of this, I still let you in my house, my room. One night, as sober as they come, we were making out. You got a bit handsy and I would push your hands away, but yet you continued. I was on top of you only kissing you and you pulled my pants down. I pulled them back up, but you did it again and you forced your way in. I moved off and onto my side in an effort to get away. Again you pulled my pants down and forced yourself in me. I laid there unable to move, to talk, or anything. I blame myself because it was me who turned you on. I blame myself because I wasn’t able to say no. I blame myself because you had proven you were no good and I let you in over and over again, I couldn’t help it.
The assault happened pretty recently for me, the summer of 2017. I went to a small party with my close friend, it was being held at this guys house which she knew really well from high school. Everyone attending was apart of her small friend group from high school so to me that was an automatic comfort. It was a going away party for the host since he was going to play football for a private christian university in Kansas, there was some drinking as well as smoking and remained relatively small in the population of people showing up. For me I got along with many of the people there and just relaxed and hung out, I participated in the activities of smoking and drinking (lightly, I wasn’t completely smashed at all) once it got to be around 3am I got pretty tired and started to head upstairs to find a place to sleep. I returned to a room I was in previously that had two queen beds in it, I was hanging out with this one guy most of the night, just talking. He took one bed and I took the other, I remember being so cold and tired, finding a big warm blanket and passing out underneath it. I am not sure how much time went by, but I remember the host of the party waking me up by kissing my neck. I was pretty confused since I just woke up and I didn’t really want anything to happen let alone someone touching me. I just felt so out of it, being so tired as well as still slightly feeling the affects of the alcohol I drank earlier in the night. I remember thinking that if I kissed him back maybe he would stop trying to pursue me, obviously that didn’t work. He kept kissing me and then he started to feel my body, I remember questioning why he was touching me and just doing nothing about it, it’s as if I wasn’t present. He stuck his hand down my pants for a moment and started to finger me, then decided to feel up my breasts instead. While he was doing this he asked me if it was okay and I said “yes.” Now looking back, I’m not too sure why I even said yes because I knew the moment he laid his lips on me for the first time I wanted nothing to happen, but I just went along with it. It all started to escalate and he ended up taking off my pants and eating me out, I remember looking down and seeing a ring on his finger. I knew his parents were pastors and I asked him “Is this a purity ring?” and he said “no it’s a gift from my dad, and even if it was isn’t it a bit late for that.” After he was done he kept hinting at me giving him a blow job. I knew I didn’t want to do that, I kept responding with statements like “eh, I really don’t know” “what if you end up giving me an STD, I don’t really know you”. He kept pressuring me, he said “well I just risked that with you so you should return the favor” and kept pushing me to do it, until I did. That still wasn’t enough for him, he followed that up with asking to have sex. This is where I said no, it started off with me saying things like “uh I really don’t know you, if I knew you better I would say yes” and he kept trying to sweet talk me. He told me how beautiful I was and how it would be so enjoyable. I knew him and my friend also kind of had a thing so that was one more reason not to sleep with him and when I stated that he told me “she’s in the other room right now probably fucking one of my best friends so what does it matter” I kept telling him “no, I don’t want to have sex.” Things died down for a bit and I was still so unbelievably tired and started to pass out again, only to wake up to his man in-between my legs pushing the tip of his dick inside me. I remember just placing my right foot on his chest, with no pressure at all and just looking at him. He immediately pulled out and said “Sorry I figured I would try.” A feeling of pure sadness just engulfed my body and I tried to forget everything that happened in that moment, and I did. My body surpressed that memory for months, the trauma it brought to my emotions as well as the frustration to my mind is beyond me.