In the United States, every 107 seconds, someone is sexually assaulted. Four of every five sexual assaults are committed by someone known to the victim. 68% of all sexual assaults go unreported to the proper authorities.
Why? Why do so many sexual assaults go unreported?
Shame. Self blame. Embarrassment. Fear that no one would believe their story. Fear that they may have caused it. Not wanting to be the victim. Wanting to move past the sexual assault. There are a multitude of reasons why sexual assaults go unreported.
Just as there are a number of types of rape (gang rape, date/acquaintance rape, intimate partner rape, statutory rape, sexual assault), there are a multitude of responses to sexual assault. Each of which is completely normal.
This April, The Band Back Together Project is shining a light into the darkness of sexual assault. Please share your story of sexual assault so that we can Light the Darkness.
All are welcome.
I’ve been with my boyfriend for seven months. He moved into my university house, and it wasn’t long before we fell in love with each other. He is the most incredible, caring and loving person I have ever had the pleasure to meet, and I love him so ridiculously much.
He has tried so hard (and it has been hard) to help me become my own person. I’m only 19, but I have been through a lot in those 19 years. I used to live in a women’s refuge, I have been raped by several people, including my uncle who groomed me and coerced me when I had nobody else to show me love. I was 15. Due to all this, I had very very little self respect or self worth.
A few days after he moved in, the evening of our first kiss, I raped him. It was my 19th birthday, and I was so drunk I can’t remember it in the slightest. I didn’t even find out until a month or two afterward. Apparently, I was pulling him onto me, trying to take both of our clothes off. He kept saying no, but in the end, gave in and had sex with me. He did it because he knew I’d never been fully accepted by anyone before, and he wanted to give that to me. Even if it meant giving that.
For seven months, he has felt totally okay with it. Until this morning. He keeps saying he’s sorry because he loves me so much and wants so much for us. He knows it wasn’t really me, but he doesn’t know if he can be with me. He doesn’t know if he can forget. He won’t even let me touch him anymore.
I don’t know what to do. I want to be with him so badly. I’ll never love or be loved like that again. How can I help him to move on from it? How can I help him rebuild his self worth?
April 20, 2016, 10:29 a.m.
Dear wholly and fully accepted beautiful girl! I wish there were magic words that I could wrap around you and comfort you during this painful time. You are so giving to want to help him first, but it’s you who you need to think of right now. This morning was not so long ago. Give yourself time (and allow him time) to deescalate a little bit and see if you can find a place of peace. You deserve this, and so much more! Time is a healer.
April 20, 2016, 10:44 a.m.
First of all, thank you for being so brave to share your story and to share your mistakes. Amaze-balls. Second, be patient. With him. With yourself. It was brave of him to admit his discomfort to you. Let him know that. All the best vibes I can send are heading toward you.
April 20, 2016, 11:19 a.m.
Aunt Becky says…
April 20, 2016, 10:44 p.m.
Oh sweet girl. My heart hurts for you. I’m so sorry about your upbringing- no one deserves that ESPECIALLY a child. I think what happened with your boyfriend was that when you were intoxicated, your mind simply reverted to what you know. I think the best way to help him is to start couples therapy. It can work absolute wonders. He sounds very special and you are special too – keep us posted!
April 20, 2016, 11:46 p.m.
I’m so very sorry for what both of you have been through. I agree with Becky. If you could get couples therapy, it would be of great help. Unfortunately, the Beatles got it wrong – love isn’t ALL you need. Sometimes it’s not enough. When there is trauma and hurt feelings, you need help. And you two should do that together. Best of luck to both of you.