A Small Example Of Why It Can Be Hard To Share A Sexual Assault Story

Sunday, October 9th, 2016

Picking up from yesterday –

So, I shared the story of my sexual assault from college on twitter…

(I know the one that’s seemed to basically kind of “traumatize” me (even though that seems like a dramatic-ish word) is from this year,  is still hard to talk about. And to me, it doesn’t feel quite as “cut and dry” as that one… But a conversation about sexual assault was being sparked by Donald Trump’s terrible comments. And it is something that’s affected me a lot. So, I thought it was important to be part of the conversation…)

Anyway, I shared that story – that I feel like is pretty cut and dry. I never stopped asking him to stop… And yet, someone quoted a tweet from my story and said, “He didn’t f*** me good, so I was raped.”

And not long after, he had over 100 likes on his tweet (and 20 retweets). Now, those aren’t record numbers or anything. But that’s enough people invalidating my experience that it doesn’t feel good.

Then, some followers of his started commenting stuff such as, “Dude, I like your comment, but this is f***ed up. Her other tweets explain how she told him to stop and he didn’t.” “Whoa, yeah, I though you were hilarious and this is so f***ed up. Stop means stop.”

I thought that would help the situation, but instead he doubled down and retweeted a tweet bragging how he “triggered” people – because for some reason, on social media, people seem to think that word is really funny and that triggering someone is an honor of some kind.

[Ultimately, the guy did delete his tweet – though, to my knowledge, he never tweeted any acknowledgement of crossing a line.]

But this little story is a huge reason why it seems so easy to question myself. I mean, I can’t speak for other women, but when I tell a story this cut and dry and people still question if it was assault – heck, I still question if it was assault… that’s when/why it becomes so potentially hard to have a conversation about sexual assault and how we treat women…

And tomorrow, I’ll talk more about the “gray” area (and if it even exists).

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