I was 19, just walking home from a friend’s, it was only 11 o’clock at night. It happened so suddenly, I didn’t fight, I just froze. For a long time, I did not know if it was ‘really’ rape, I never said no, I never said anything. It was surreal, it almost felt like I was watching it happening to someone else from above.
For months I had severe nightmares, everything played over and over in my mind, “I should have done something,” “I should have fought,” it would not stop. I couldn’t talk about it to most people. I felt so numb and empty, like something had been taken away from me but at the same time it did not seem real. I couldn’t do anything; my world came to a halt. I felt so disgusted and ashamed of myself. And it was not just me who was affected, I drained everyone around me emotionally and everything I touched seemed to break. For a long time, it felt like things could never be ‘normal’ again and nothing could ever get better. I attempted suicide a month or so later, with this being a very large contributing factor. Fortunately, I survived, however to this day I am still haunted by the whole situation.
I think it is important to note that these stories are only a tiny fraction of what occurs at this University. People don’t feel like they can talk. For all you know someone around you could be affected. This is a problem that affects everyone. No matter how many stories are told, no matter how many victims are out there, it won’t get better until we face the fact that it’s a problem and make it ok to talk about. This is something we all need to confront regardless of our gender.
To other victims, it is not your fault, you did not do anything wrong. There is support out there and eventually it will get better.
“A small gesture can turn somebody’s situation around. Support survivors by leaving ONLY a kind and thoughtful comment.”