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Continued… HERE’S THE THING NOW. Like I said after this incident, my brother and I never spoke of it again. So, we continued our relationship as usual (only now I had a sudden and intense urgency to constantly beat him up, which I would. Of course, now it all makes sense). But, we’ve been best friends since. Now that I’m thinking of it, what probably happened was that he was entering the puberty-age, and I think maybe he was scrolling through TV channels late at night. Sometimes, on HBO or Showtime, they would show dirty movies (I know this because I later discovered this when I first started puberty at around 9). I know that when I came across a dirty film for the first time (around puberty age too), THATS WHEN I first had any feelings of arousal and a desire to just touch myself. I began masturbating at…

I keep replaying a faded memory in my head lately. These past few years, I think I’ve only thought about it 3 or 4 times (and only for a split second). However, for some reason, for the past few months, I’ve begun to remember bits and pieces more and more. Each day, I think about it more frequently, and I’m hoping that since I’ve recently reinforced my daily self-care routine (daily meditations, writing my poems/lyrics, daily cardio, doing word puzzles, learning at least 1 new thing per day, keeping the house clean) that this new method of Philosophical Meditation will help me in uncovering and finally one day facing the truth. I’ve told ONE person before since it happened, and she was my best friend in middle school. I remember being in absolute shock that I had even admitted it. I don’t remember going into details, I don’t even really…

My rapist was my ex-girlfriend. I’m a man. We weren’t together at the time. Actually we broke up due to her being quite abusive. She took advantage of me while I was drunk. She then kept messaging me and saying how she was pregnant and now we get to spend our lives together. I was depressed for months. “A small gesture can turn somebody’s situation around, support survivors by ONLY leaving a kind and thoughtful comment.”

The time immediately after a rape ordeal is confusing, emotional, and charged with anxiety –for the victim and their loved one(s). It is also a time of physical discomfort and high risk for them, high risk because they are most likely thinking about their experience in relation to how their loved ones will feel about it/about them and how they would react, this contributes a lot to what choices they would make in how to handle the experience. Not only have they been terrorized and totally violated, but they fear that their closest companions may not be supportive or believe them. One of the most frightening experiences for a victim is having the courage to talk to anyone and wondering how the person will react. Your reaction can set the tone for their recovery in years to come. They will wonder, “Will I need medical care?” “Should I tell my…

I was in 300 level in the university of Lagos and for all my outgoing persona and loud talk, I was still a Virgin. It was internship period and there was a break that year, so students were few in school. This guy had been hitting on me for a while and one evening when everyone had gone out I decided to finally take his offer for lunch. Later, he asked to get something from his flat and looking back I blame myself for being naive, trusting and not discerning. While in his house it began raining and I asked to go back to my hostel. We went out and he tried to start his car but told me that it couldn’t start and I believed him. He then called a mechanic,  when I told him that it was getting late and I would just get myself home, he said the…

Stigma is a set of negative and often unfair beliefs that a society or group of people have about something; a mark of disgrace or dishonor – Merriam Webster. Stigma—it’s an ugly word and it’s even uglier to experience. Yet a large number of survivors of sexual violence have endured the pain of stigma. It includes: Stereotypes: to believe unfairly that all people or things with particular characteristics are the same. Prejudice: a feeling of like or dislike for someone or something especially when it is not reasonable or logical. Discrimination: the practice of unfairly treating a person or group of people differently from other people or group of people. Stigma often brings experiences and feelings of shame, blame, hopelessness, distress, misrepresentation, and reluctance to seek and/or accept necessary help. The impact of stigma is twofold. Public stigma is the reaction that the general population has toward victims and survivors…

The festive season or holiday can be a stressful time for many people and for survivors of sexual assault, it can feel particularly challenging. All of us have our unique set of strategies – usually on a spectrum between healthy and less healthy – which help us to cope with difficult times. This is a time when it might be helpful consciously to consider what existing coping strategies are going to serve you well, what you might adopt to get you through and what feels possible to you. Here are some thoughts of what might help: 1.   Being realistic: The myth of the perfect holiday always disappoints one way or another, there really is no such thing as the perfect holiday, unless you choose to see and experience it from that perspective. Setting realistic expectations of how things might be will protect you from feelings of disappointment and a sense of…

“Stealthing” refers to the act of deliberately removing a condom during sex without your partner’s knowledge or consent. It’s illegal in many countries, and is a form of sexual assault. This catchy phrase doesn’t actually mean it’s a new trend but coins a new term for a kind of sexual assault. Women are being warned against this horrifying practice of men secretly removing their condom during sex without consent. The disturbing sex trend was examined by Alexandra Brodsky for the Columbia Journal of Gender and Law who said the practice is “not new” but is rarely spoken about. Even more troubling is the online community Brodsky uncovered, where men encourage other men to “stealth” their partners. These perpetrators — both gay and straight — believe it’s a man’s right to “spread one’s seed.” Stealthing leaves a victim vulnerable to pregnancy or STIs, and can cause emotional, physical and financial harm. What is more worrying is…

The subject of rape is a very sensitive one, both for the victim and the culprit. We read about different experiences the victims go through. Worse, our society has over time learned to tilt the table in favor of the culprit, while further victimizing the victim. Although there have been numerous instances where people have used the false accusation of rape as a weapon, causing havoc in the lives of many, tarnishing their reputation and damaging the credibility of those who are actual victims of rape. Findings from a National Survey carried out in 2014 on Violence Against Children in Nigeria confirmed one in four girls reported experiencing sexual violence in childhood with approximately 70% reporting more than one incident of sexual violence. In the same study, it was found that 24.8% of female victims, between 18 to 24 years old,  experienced sexual abuse prior to age 18 of which…

Navigating romantic relationships has proven to be challenging. In our desire to make a true, heart felt connection we fail to build a solid foundation for our relationships, which is intimacy. Intimalogy is the study of intimacy and its complexity. In this talk, Intimacy expert, Dr. Kat Smith, shares her story of triumph over trauma. After childhood abuse and date rape, she was able to use her challenging life experiences to open up to the transformational power of love. With today’s challenges of sexual assault and domestic abuse, Dr. Kat uses her past as inspiration and enlightenment and helps to motivate and re-educate men and women on all the components of intimacy, emotional development and the differences between intimacy and sex. She teaches couples how to create the deep intimate connections they desperately desire. Intimalogist, Dr. Kat Smith is America’s Intimacy Expert and formerly a co-host of an ABCradio syndicated…