NOTE: Fair warning, this month I decided to post only once. Today’s blog is incredibly long but completely worth the read. I will be posting again before you know it!
In this week’s post, I need to get a lot off my chest. This time, I plan to talk about something that makes a lot of fucking people uncomfortable. However, it still needs to be discussed. The topic that make some people cringe is something that people sometimes turn a blind eye to, but no more. The topic(s) I will discuss is rape, abuse, and harassment. Uncomfortable yet? You shouldn’t be, but if you are, please click out of this post now while you still can, because this is only going to get worse.
In light of the most recent events involving, Harvey Weinstein. Wait, sorry, I shouldn’t even address him by his actual name, let’s just start calling him what he actually is, i.e. a piece of shit. Here we go, a person of power taking advantage of others by praying on the weak because they have this insane mentality that it’s ok to just “grab them by the pussy” so to speak. There are some out there giving the victims a lot of heat since many stars are coming “out of the wood work” at the same time accusing the same man of sexual abuse. Here’s the thing, it’s a fucking scary situation to talk about. Whether you’re famous or not. No one wants to relive a horrible situation by discussing it repeatedly. Not only that, but when issues like this are taken to court for instance, sometimes it is just swept under the rug as you sit there and continue to speak of the situation with a room full of strangers and/or loved ones. That all takes a toll on a persons mind. Currently, I have a friend going through this exact situation and it’s been over a year. Nothing has been done for her and in the process, while this man still roams free, she’s getting sick over this due to the amount of stress it has put on her life.
Yet, let us not forget that this isn’t always a male attacking female thing. Sometimes it’s vice versa and yet those are rarely ever discussed. But I know at least two men that it has happened to, one of which I will bring up further into this blog.
Some of you have not gone through such a traumatizing situation and maybe some of you have. To speak out about an ordeal like that is incredibly strong, whether you talk about it immediately after or twenty plus years later. Some of you may wonder, well if it happened why now? Why say anything at this point if you could have stopped so many others from being a victim? Sadly, it’s not that easy for some people.
At the age of 19, I was forced on by my “friend” at the time. Not only did I try to fight him off, but he continued to push himself onto me. After? After, I had to share a bed with the man that raped me because I was afraid. I didn’t sleep, I didn’t even move until my alarm went off and I had to go to work. Only, by the time I got in I was shaking. I felt strange but continued to stay at work. Soon after, I fell to the floor, vomited, and passed out for a moment. I told everyone my sugar was low and maybe it was because I didn’t eat breakfast. I was sent home and immediately went to my room. From there, I called my ex-boyfriend because I didn’t know who else to tell. While telling him, he began to raise his voice and then refused to believe me. Instead, he blamed me and thought I was trying to get back at him since we only broke up a couple weeks prior. After he hung up on me, I called his mom trying to explain what happened and still he continued to blame me.
Do you know what it feels like to be blamed for something you had no control over? To replay that scenario over and over in your mind and trick yourself into thinking it was actually your fault? I wanted to die. I wanted my skin to be burned off. I was terrified because I began to believe I actually did it to myself. Maybe it was something I did or said that provoked him? Maybe I shouldn’t have had those two bud lights and could have been drunk? Maybe I should have called for help and it would have never happened?
I laid on my floor crying for a while, getting text from the man that hurt me and I refused to speak to the person that completely destroyed me and for a while it worked, I ignored all his calls. Then finally I responded because I began to think that maybe he was the victim here and I was blaming him for something I did. After all, my ex hated me so maybe I was this “slut” he thought me out to be. I remember telling one of my friends at work, she turned to me and asked if I said no. I told her I said no repeatedly and it just happened and she looked down and said, “Christie if you said no then that is technically rape” but I already had it set in my head that it was still just a miscommunication. I thought about what she said, I thought about it for months. Till this day I even think about it. I was in such denial about what happened to me. Until one day, a few months down the road, I was in a women’s studies course. Now you’re probably thinking, school? Where the hell is she going with this?
My teacher at the time, a male, was asked by a student asked why and English professor was teaching the class. Flat out, he admitted the department was short staffed but also he is “a strong advocate for women’s rights”, going on and on about voices needing to be heard, and not always by a men. Then, a girl in back asked why, and all he did was turn to her, giving an answer along the lines of, maybe he will tell us one day. The night before the next class, he sent out an essay he wrote years ago. Within that essay, he discussed his experience of being molested as a child. Our teacher, a complete stranger at the time, told us his entire story in just a few pages. In our next class, everyone poured their heart out and I just remember crying. I remember crying because it dawned on me that what happened to me at 19 was not a “misunderstanding”. I raised my hand, and I told a room full of strangers what happened to me on that day. Slowly, one by one, others shared their story. A room, full of twenty or so strangers, and almost half of them were sexually abused, molested, or raped. Almost half of the class. I’m not telling this story for sympathy or pity, I’m telling this story because I know what it is like to take time and understand what it is that has happened to you. So, women “coming out of the wood work” involving Weinstein, should not be belittled or degraded for telling their story. Why? Because sometimes you have to hear that you aren’t the only one and you should no longer live in fear of something that you were completely powerless of.
During the “Me too” movement, in under 24 hours, more than a dozen people posted “me too” on my news feed. More than over a dozen is a fucking big deal! People have suffered and there is so much pain out there. Some have yet to tell their story or name their attackers out of fear, discomfort, or reliving a traumatizing event. So yes, I understand why some people take years to say anything at all, however that does not take away from the fact that it has happened. A human being has destroyed another and it is a vicious cycle that continues to happen but we as people need to fucking do a lot better. Starting with how we treat and care for others. This is a very large issue that continues to happen all over our world and this should not be taken lightly. There needs to be some serious repercussion to all the individuals that are so willing to break us.
I want to make it clear to anyone who has gone through this or is going through this, you are not alone, you are not broken, you are whole, you are here, and you are strong. We no longer should let this destroy our soul. Together, we will not let them break us but instead we will rise and continue to grow.