The Summer Everything Changed
A survivor story written anonymously
I was 21 when I was sexually assaulted.
I had a male friend named D and we never had a flirty friendship, I was there for him through his failing marriage and he let me talk about the guy I had a hopeless crush on. We hadn’t hung out yet, just texted as we both were busy. I never once thought anything would ever happen with him.
One day, I was hanging out with my friend D and we all decided we’d hang out by the pool. He came over to my house, we hung out by the pool, and then I said I wanted to show them a scene from a show. The scene was raunchy but I sincerely didn’t think it would make him behave the way he did. After the pool, I had changed into work out shorts, I put on a sports bra and a zip-up jacket. I was in the middle of the couch and my friend was on my right.
After the scene was over D looked at me and said the scene was really hot, to which I laughed because of the weird way he was staring at me. He asked me to kiss him. I thought he was joking so I laughed and said no, he then asked again, which I repeated no. He replied with “come on, kiss me.” He then started kissing me. I felt uncomfortable so I reminded him my friend was over and was right next to us, hoping he’d drop it.
He then said, “tell her to leave.”
My friend overheard this and walked upstairs to which I followed, begging her to stay. She was clearly annoyed and said she was leaving.
I went back downstairs to where he was on the couch and he asked if everything was good and I said yeah. I felt incredibly nervous but I figured it was because I was basically virgin Mary, I had never done anything besides kiss and a little over the clothing feel up. I sat back on the couch and before I knew it, D had my sports bra pulled up and was kissing and licking my chest. I found myself kind of zoned out, looking at the TV while this happened.
He then had his pants down and before I knew it, oral was happening. He stopped and said he had to go the bathroom and I sat on the couch just asking myself what the fuck was happening and why I wasn’t shouting NO. He came back and stood right back in front of me and pulled my head forward. He then told me to lean against the couch to where he tried to insert his fingers in me, he laughed a bit because I was very tight and asked me, “are you a virgin?” He then told me to lay down and he went down on me.
Again, I found myself looking at the TV, completely ignoring what was happening. I truly mean it when I say a part of me completely left my body that day. During all of this, he tried to get me in a position to where he could have sex with me. Thank God, I had the guts to speak up and say, “I’m not going to have sex with you.”
He proceeded to try 3 more times during the whole thing. He sat up and said he had to go so he left and as soon as I shut the door, my heart pounded.
I felt sick. Dirty.
My parents had been upstairs in their room during this whole thing and I felt like a slut. Who does that with their parents upstairs? My mom had even walked down during a part, where I sat up and he sat back on the couch and she looked at me and I stupidly said things were okay.
I ran upstairs and said I was going to a friend’s house across the street because I needed to get out of there. Tell someone. I called my other best friend as I drove other there and just completely had a meltdown. Why would I do that with someone I had never hung out with before? Or even liked?! I hadn’t even done anything with the guy I did like besides some harmless kissing.
When I got to my friends, I told her what happened and she said, “Don’t worry, no one has a pleasant first hook up.” I tried to explain myself but it wasn’t working.
He then texted me and I immediately went to her bathroom, wanting to throw up. He had wanted me to know that he hoped I didn’t take what happened as something more serious. I replied with “I didn’t, I took it for what it was.” I didn’t want to talk. His name made me sick.
After I left my friends I came home and showered, scrubbing at my skin. My vagina hurt because of where he tried to finger me. I felt disgusting. I kept telling myself it was just because I had never done anything sexual with someone, that this is why I was feeling the way I was. I even tried to laugh it off, brag like it was actually something I enjoyed and “couldn’t believe happened.” I was embarrassed. If I didn’t want it to happen/continue, why didn’t I say no? Why could I not speak?
I blamed myself for a very long time. My friend even said, “you know you wore what you did because you wanted to look sexy.” Did I want to feel cute, yes? Did I want to be assaulted? No. I don’t know who wouldn’t want to look cute in front of someone they had never hung out with in person before.
Shortly after that, I even talked to him. Flirted. He said he’d missed my boobs and I was stupidly going along with it, saying I missed him too. I know now that this was just me trying to justify what happened. “You’re into him see!!”
We stopped talking as often but before that, he had the nerve to say, “I didn’t want to have sex with you because you’re a good girl and I’d slept with 17 other girls since my break up and I didn’t want you to be ONE of them.” I laughed at this considering he did try to have sex 3 TIMES. To this day I battle with it.
I told my mom about it more in detail recently and every time I tell someone about it I try to express, “it’s like I wasn’t even there, I zoned out.” I want them to know how badly I felt and how uncomfortable it really was. My friends mock it, bring up his ex-wife and joke about how if she found out or if I saw her in person, what would happen. I felt really upset as I had just finished telling them what a horrible experience it really was.
I’ve come to terms with the fact most won’t understand but I’m lucky that I have a few people who support me for what it was and make me feel less crazy. My mom tells me that the next time I’m ever in a situation like that to trust my gut and not to be afraid to say NO or to even ask for help if I’m in a situation I feel I can’t get out of.
It still hurts to talk about because people don’t understand sexual coercion.
I feel misunderstood.
My experience is one that I keep deep inside and I truly don’t feel angry at D. He probably thought I was into it, even though I’m sure anyone smart could tell I wasn’t.
I feel bad for saying it sometimes, sexual assault, because I don’t think he’s a bad person. I think he’s someone who’s not used to hearing no and is used to getting what he wants.
We say hi every now and then but will I ever put myself in a position of seeing him? No. I actually watched the specific show scene that we watched the day it happened and I felt weird. Gross. It’s hard to explain.
I really wish I could go back and have the courage to stand up and say no, I don’t want to kiss you. End it before it could start. I wish I wasn’t so easily pressured and manipulated. I already struggle with anxiety when it comes to intimacy.
Even before it happened I had vaginismus which made it difficult for me to even wear tampons. I cried during my first pap smear. This has definitely made things worse and I haven’t had a guy touch me since.
I’m afraid. What if it happens again? What if I allow something to happen to satisfy someone else, even though I don’t want it?
I’m in the process of healing and I just wish it was a bit easier. I hope to find a community to feel safe in and to feel supported by others who have experienced the same.