It’s Easy To Feel You Need To Minimize Your Experience… But You Don’t

Thursday, November 24th, 2016

[This is another oooold post – back from November¬†2016. I think I’ve said similar stuff to this. But I’m not sure I said this, so I’m posting it now. Thanks!]

[Trigger warning: There are details of sexual assault in this post.]

After all, the second assault sounds “worse” (I guess, if they need to be compared), as in that one I was crying. And I was literally told “You think you’re upset about this, what you’re really upset about is [stuff going on in your life right now].”

I said I was uncomfortable and I wasn’t only merely ignored. I was told I was wrong. And he proceeded forward, even though I was crying (even though I voiced that I was crying because of him), because I was “wrong” about my own emotions. And “everybody cries during sex. This happens with hormones. It’s just not a big deal.”
(Gaaaaah!)

Anyway, we don’t need to go over that night again as it’s already been documented here in the blog. And we don’t need to compare the two. What’s the point in that?

But going back to the first one… I could see how *some* people could say some version of, “Well, it’s not violent. It shouldn’t be all that traumatic. You’re fine.”

 

And there are days where even I think this perhaps isn’t enough to be so upset by… I mean, I ended up literally moving (granted, in large part due to some other circumstances, but this was a factor for sure). And I got a whole new bed simply because I didn’t want to lie in the place where he said, “It’s time.” It was too hard to sleep there.

And that may seem like an overreaction.

But I really don’t think it is, because when someone enters your body when you’ve made it so very clear that you’re not ready, and not only do they ignore you, but they tell you, “It’s time.” That’s really wrong. And that’s really not okay… at all.

[Edited to add: When I told this story to a room full of women as we were getting ready for the Dr. Oz. show, they all gasped and recoiled at “it’s time,” because that is truly not okay in any way.]

Sometimes I get so wrapped up in “well, some women had it so much worse! They were threatened with a gun or a knife, etc. How can I possibly be so upset about this? And yet, I have never met a woman, no matter how horrific her story is, who tries to compare the experiences or “win.” Nobody “wins” at sexual assault stories. We are really there for each other, no matter how “small” the story. And there are great male allies out there too. (And I know that there are male survivors too… This isn’t only a female problem.)

And I don’t know how we’re gonna agree to stop minimizing without feeling so “dramatic,” or apologizing for being rightfully upset, or making excuses for people…

I just… I’m trying to learn not to be afraid to talk about this stuff… And I’d love to encourage people – when you feel you’re safe to do so – to not be afraid to talk about this stuff either.

I'd love to hear from you! So whaddya say?