For the first time in a long time I am writing something painful – but I've always wanted to write this, in the back of my mind, and being as this is Sexual Assault Awareness Month, it's the perfect time to do so. I am writing about the sexual assault that happened when I was on the cusp of seventeen. This is likely to be a very awkward entry, as I have no idea just how to express what happened and my emotions about it rather than just let them flow onto the paper and leave them sans any editing beyond spellcheck. This isn't a clever story or an everyday anecdote or a bit of erotica, after all, this is something that happened to me and left me unsure of how to feel about myself but with a burning sense of hatred for the one that did this.
On April third, 2006, I was sexually assaulted.
On April first and second of the same year, I was newly talking to a boy online, less than a week after the end of my first relationship – an end that I wasn't entirely willing to accept. This boy's name, I will say it, because it is his name and I don't have a surname and I highly doubt there's anyone reading this who will know the boy that I refer to and if there is I hope they never were in my shoes with him. His name was Montana. I didn't really think there was anything strange about our conversations at the time. If anything, they bolstered my confidence a bit. Looking back, I wonder how I didn't see it, and then I have to remind myself that I shouldn't have had to be looking for the warnings. He said he loved me and was dreaming about me on the second day of chatting. These days, if someone said that to me that soon, I would be terrified. Sixteen-year-old me was flattered.
Sixteen-year-old me agreed to meet Montana. At a bus stop by his house. And go to his house. She did not tell her parents about this, or tell friends where she was going and who she was meeting. The only people that knew were her and Montana. Yes, very unsafe, but sixteen-year-old me wasn't thinking about SAFE. She was thinking 'I'm sad, I thought my first boyfriend would last longer, this guy likes me, let's see if I like him', which scares me now as I'd read ten bazillion accounts of sexual assault and rape, watched countless tv shows involving it, for heavens sake my favourite tv show at the time was Law & Order: SVU – but here I was, meeting a strange guy after two days of chatting and going to his house without anyones knowledge.
That's one of the big things that occasionally crops up when I fall into a self-blaming trap.
I felt something was off the moment I stepped off the bus and into a hug. Something about it felt scummy, rather like his aura was dripping black goo. I ignored it though, and went with him. His mom was home, I figured that meant he couldn't do anything I didn't want, surely I'd speak up if something was going on and I didn't like it, right?
He put a movie in for us to watch. Saw 2. I can still remember the scenes I saw vividly. I still can't watch a Saw movie because of how it makes me feel.
We sat on the couch. He started snuggling. Okay, whatever, I snuggle all my friends and he's a friend, snuggling is fine.
Then he started kissing me. Here is where I froze up. I didn't want him to, but I suddenly felt terrified of saying NO, just because I thought he might hurt me if I did. He slowly pinned me down on the couch while kissing me. I lay there like a limp corpse, not moving, scared out of my mind, but he didn't bother seeing this. I don't know if he was just oblivious or if he was intentionally ignoring the fact that I wasn't participating.
Then he got up, took my hand, and led me to his bedroom, where he got his...Bloody hell, I don't know what to call it, I like all the words that aren't ridiculously silly for the phallus too much to describe that thing with them. I just know that in my eyes then, it was huge. In my minds eye, it was and still is as thick and long as my forearm. This memory may be skewed by fear, but it was what I could swear I saw.
He put my hand on it. He moved my hand for me. Eventually, I went on autopilot and moved it of my own accord. He didn't finish, I don't recall why, and wanted to go back and watch more of the movie. I feigned agreeance, and then checked my cellphone and pretended that my mother had texted me asking that I come home right away.
He bought it, thankfully, He walked me to the bus, I wanted to just run the entire time but I restrained myself. I don't know how I did. The moment I was on the bus and safely away, I started bawling and trying to contact my best friend. I kept bawling all the way to the library downtown, right into said friends lap. While my friends were entirely supportive, I had not the courage to go and report it to the police, and they didn't bring it up. Even then, I suppose, it would have been my word against his due to the only documentation of anything was in my messenger logs.
Not that long afterwards, a friend of mine figured out his username on Nexopia and left him a nasty comment. It led to a girl messaging me asking what he'd done to deserve it. I told her my story, she met him anyhow but left when she got a bad vibe. Since then, I have never told my story in full. Not even my fiance knows everything, he just knows that it happened, the guys name, and that Saw movies send me into the memories. And that I consider the evidence to be have been barely existent at best when it happened and lost forever now.
I still blame myself sometimes. I should have known better. I should have reported it. I know I shouldn't blame myself for it now, but there's that little nagging goddamn voice at the back of my head that says 'YOU are an idiot for letting this happen to you, it's YOUR fault'. I try to silence it. Sometimes I succeed, sometimes I fail and find myself curled up in a ball weeping and resisting all my urges to destroy myself with everything I have.
Every time I see something about a sexual assault on the news, I take a deep breath and read to see if the suspect matches him. I don't doubt that he's at least overstepped one boundary other than me since then. I don't dare doubt it. If he ever does get nailed on something, I will step forward and tell the authorities of my experience. I doubt it'll carry any weight, given the lack of proof, but every little bit helps. Just on its own, it doesn't stand, and I don't know his last name, or where he lives now, or any way to get ahold of him now. I have no idea how to deal with it in any legal way, so for now, I can only deal with my emotions surrounding it – teaching myself that what happened WASN'T MY FAULT.
All I can really say to wrap this up is actually a message to that rat bastard:
Montana. I never said no, but I never said yes either. I lay beneath you still as death out of shock and fear, and you never pulled back and asked if I was okay. For four years now I have blamed myself so many times, but it is your fault this happened. I never asked to be so afraid that I couldn't say no. I didn't come to your house expecting you on top of me. I didn't want it. I wasn't giving my consent. And without consent, you shouldn't have done anything.
What you did was sexually assault me. If you were truly oblivious, which I doubt, I hope you snapped out of it, for the sake of all the girls after me.
If you weren't, I hope someday you get caught with actual proof. I hope karma turns around and bites you in the fucking ass for all the years of my mind working both for and against me whenever I think of what you did.
No matter what, I will NEVER forgive you, or forget. I can't.