There’s a phenomenon that’s apparently not so phenomenal. A lot, if not possibly the majority, of my friends have been raped. Not “BOO!” I just came out of the bushes and you don’t know me kind of rape. But, hey we’re together, we’ve actually already had sex so why wouldn’t you want it now kind of rape.
I was 17 when mine happened. I didn’t know it was rape. Or (admittedly) admit that it was rape until I was a sophomore in college. I convinced myself that I had given him mixed signals and maybe when I said “no” he heard “oh.” Wow. I was delusional. Maybe he didn’t see my tears, feel them on his arm. Maybe when he was practically smothering me he didn’t hear my whimpers. Ah, but I do remember when I said “stop” he said, “Give me a minute.” Came. And then went. I still had a tampon shoved up in me. He didn’t care.
So wow. Apparently this isn’t so rare. The more open I am about what happened to me, the more I find out it’s happened to a lot people I know and care about. People think rape is with someone you don’t know, or barely know, or don’t have feelings for. I’ve found it to be quite the opposite.
These guys. These rapists that don’t think they’re rapists, are the boyfriend, the guy your dating. The womanizer. He who thinks he can take what is rightfully his. You’ve given it up before, right? You like him, right? You want to be with him, right?
What doesn’t help is when you think about rape, when you hear a presentation about it–you think to yourself about what you would do in that situation. Kick, scream, pull hair out, do everything you could possibly do to inflict pain. But what did I do? I just laid there. Cried. Curled up after wards and felt confused. What does that say about me?
Years later he would Facebook me and tell me I was “looking good.” I didn’t respond. I just sat there staring at the screen. Was I really reading this? Was he joking. And then the next year I would see him at a concert arresting a drunk girl on the street. He’s a cop now. Serving. And protecting.
So, tell me, why don’t we talk about date rape. Not the roofy kind, but the kind where your significant other forces you to have sex with them. Why is that?