I was Date Raped

Trigger warning for sexual assault. 

Disclosure
Two years ago, I finally opened up and shared my story in the article, Is It Rape If. I was prompted to come forward after the person who stole my trust decided he could insert himself back into my life via a Facebook Friend Request.

Writing the article, and reading through old journal entries from that time in my life, helped me to process through a lot of things I had buried deep. At the same time, it unlocked a lot of pain, questions, and rage.

As per the cycle of my life, I turned to food to cope with these emotions I wasn’t prepared to face. Now I’m struggling to comprehend how I allowed someone who I haven’t seen in 18 years to still have any power over me.

While I have him blocked on Facebook, I find myself spending time on his wife’s Facebook page and wanting to hit the message button and send her my article. I think about how doing so would make him feel as violated as he violated me.

Probably not the healthiest thoughts to be having, but they are mine and they are real.

Why am I sharing this?

Just last week I had coffee with a fellow blogger. I was sharing with her how I’m extremely transparent with my audience and share all of myself in hopes it can help others. I told her about writing, Is It Rape If, as an example.

Before I knew it, her rape story poured out of her, a story she has never told her husband. A story older than mine and yet just as raw. A story that left me with chills.

Then we commiserated over mutual feelings of shame and self-blame, despite all the time and space since.

You might be reading this and shaking your head in acknowledgement that you’re not “over” an abuse or assault that happened to you in the past…regardless of how many years it has been.

I’m here to tell you that you’re not alone.

Society makes us feel like we need to remain wrapped in silence and move on with our lives. Just move on… Many days we are able to put the past behind us without a second thought, but some days that feels like an impossibility.

I’m here to tell you that you’re not to blame.

You can replay what happened one thousand times, I know I have, and that will never change the fact that regardless of what you were wearing, if you had been intimate with this person in the past, if you were intoxicated, or whatever if you can come up with….you are not to blame!

I’m here to tell you that it’s never too late to get help.

Therapy is amazing and that’s one of the gifts I gave myself last year and plan to re-gift myself with this year.

If money is a barrier, there are countless therapists that work on a sliding scale, community mental health programs you can find with a simple Google search and organizations like RAINN that have free resources (National Sexual Assault Hotline at 800.656.HOPE (4673) or chat online at online.rainn.org.)

18 years ago I was date raped and I’m not alone, I’m not to blame and I’m ready to get more help.

 

Recommended Reading: 
        

Please share any books that helped you to heal or other supportive resources within the comments below…

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