My Story of Rape: Prelude

I’ve mentioned the fact that I was raped this past January, but I’ve never discussed the details or told the story. A huge part of healing from and moving beyond trauma involves telling the story of your trauma, in detail. This may be done in a therapy session, in a group session, or on your own. The rationale behind it is that the more you tell your story, the more you are able to separate the emotion of the event from the story that you are sharing. While it will always be an awful and traumatic event, eventually it will become just another part of your life, this thing that happened to you. You’ll be able to talk about it and share your story without emotionally reliving it.

I’m able to share my story fairly easily. I can talk about it without breaking down. It’s not hard for me to talk about. However, I don’t share all the details because I worry that someone will blame me for the rape. There was alcohol, an ex-boyfriend, and consensual sex involved before the rape took place. Many people may hear that and say that it’s my fault. Or that I had already consented. Or that I shouldn’t have done X, Y, or Z. Or that they can see why he thought he could do it. But the truth is, the second I said no, it should have stopped. I did not consent to what happened and I voiced my unhappiness and told him to stop. He did not. That makes it rape. And I feel that it some ways it’s even more important for me to share my story because it does consist of what so many think of as gray areas. It’s one of those rapes that isn’t as blatant or obvious as being “rape,” so many women that experience them may question whether what happened to them was rape or do feel like maybe they did consent, yet can’t figure out why they still feel so dirty and violated.

Studies show that women who are raped by intimate partners suffer even deeper and longer-lasting effects than those who are raped by strangers or nonintimate acquaintances (Bancroft, 2002). Not only has the woman been violated and assaulted sexually, she’s also been betrayed and hurt by someone that she trusted and thought cared about her. For me, dealing with the fact that I was violated by someone that I had trusted and that I had dated was just as hard, if not harder, to cope with than the rape itself. On the other hand, it made it easier for me to not blame myself for all those things that I listed above, because of course I let my guard down and put myself in a vulnerable position; I trusted this man and did not think he would do anything to hurt me.

Yes, I was drunk. And so was he. But intoxication is no excuse for not accepting no for an answer.

Yes, we had just stopped dating the week before. But previous involvement is no excuse for not accepting no for an answer.

Yes, I was having consensual sex with him. But consenting to vaginal sex is no excuse for not taking no to anal sex for an answer.

He told me that I “couldn’t claim to like rough sex and then object when it starts to get rough.” But there is a difference between rough sex and forcing someone to do something that they have already said no, and that had been discussed prior to any sexual activity as being a hard limit.

He had me pinned below him, me on my stomach and him ready to mount. He growled in my ear that I was “taking it in the ass whether [I] want[ed] to or not” before forcing himself on me. And with those words, he verbally confirmed what his actions would accomplish.

Those words haunt me more than his actions do. The one time I was in the same place as him, it was not the sight of him that made me sick to my stomach. It was the sound of his voice. A friend came up behind me while I was sitting at the bar and began talking to me very close to my ear. The feeling of someone talking into my ear from behind me triggered such an intense flashback that I started shaking and crying right there.

I shared a bed with a male friend that I’d shared a bed with dozens of times before and began hyperventilating with the fear that he would do something to me. A client told a story of being raped by her husband during a group session and I had a full on flashback.I fell into a really deep depression for about 6 months and couldn’t figure out why.

I don’t blame myself for what happened, and I’m thankful that I am a strong person with a good understanding of trauma and how to cope, deal, and process it. Not everyone does, and many women feel a great deal of guilt and shame about being raped, especially if it was perpetrated by someone that they trusted. They feel violated because they were violated. And I think that’s why it’s even more important for people like me to tell our stories. It reinforces the fact that it is rape, it’s not the victim’s fault, it’s okay to be affected by it, and that they (you, me) are not alone. This post was the prelude to my story. I’ve given details, but have yet to write it out in a linear narrative. That will come next. Not tomorrow, but soon.

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  1. elitza
    Posted October 21, 2009 at 2:17 pm | Permalink

    You're amazing. Thank you for putting this out there. Love you.

  2. Sylvanus
    Posted October 21, 2009 at 2:23 pm | Permalink

    I hate hate HATE the blame the victim attitude people take. It is horrible to the victim and insulting to men.

    I've been drunk plenty of times and never raped someone.

    I've been around ex-girlfriends, while drunk, and not raped them.

    I've been naked and drunk in bed with a woman who didn't want something I did, and I did not rape them.

    I am a man, not some stupid ape that can't be expected Not to follow his dick everywhere. Rape is ALWAYS the fault of the rapist. It is NEVER reasonable to expect that dressing sexy, or being drunk will result in rape. You have a right not to be raped, and that is never relinquished, no matter what the knuckle-draggers say.

    I applaud you for telling the story, and to admitting to so many uncomfortable details that bring so much unfair judgement on you.

    Be strong, take care.


  3. champagneandbenzedrine
    Posted October 21, 2009 at 2:23 pm | Permalink

    Anybody who ‘blames you’ for your terrible ordeal is a dick and I don’t think they’ll get any support here.

    Everybody makes rape so complicated, but it’s not. It’s simply one person doing something when the other person said ‘no.’ That means it doesn’t matter whether you were both drunk, high, naked, or whatever. You could have done every sex act imaginable with the guy, but as soon as you drew a line and set limits – and he deliberately crossed the line and went beyond the limits that you’d set – the formerly consensual sex became rape. It’s not rocket science. If somebody says ‘no’ and you do it anyway, that’s rape.

    I don’t know if this is appropriate, but I would like to ask about how this experience has affected your relationship with your new Dom. You appear to totally surrender yourself to him on occasion – letting him piss in your mouth and beat you. Where do the lines get drawn in that relationship and how have you managed to be so successful at it? If you’re tied up, have submitted yourself and are totally helpless, how does your Dom know what is acceptable and what’s not – especially when things can be so extreme between you. Do you set the limits beforehand – you can do this, this and this, but don’t touch my ass.

    The clear difference is consent – you CONSENT to let your Dom do these things to you, willingly surrendering to him. Your rapist tried to ‘take’ something you hadn’t given – your ass- which makes it clear and obvious rape. I don’t see any blurred lines or grey areas between the two, but do really respect the way you can keep an extreme sexual relationship safe and healthy, even though some of the things you allow your Dom to do to you are aggressive and degrading.

  4. Aurore
    Posted October 21, 2009 at 2:58 pm | Permalink

    Thank you for being brave enough and strong enough to put this out there for all to see.

  5. La Roo
    Posted October 21, 2009 at 3:08 pm | Permalink

    Thanks for sharing, you will help many people with this . Like the others said, you are brave and you are strong. I admire that in you.

  6. Emmy
    Posted October 21, 2009 at 3:08 pm | Permalink

    It is so tremendously fucked up that you don't feel you cannot share the details of the story without worrying about being blamed. I won't go through the reasons it is fucked up because others have done a great job already. Sylvanus outlines it well, in fact.

    I applaud you for wanting to share it despite the facts you outlined.
    Way to be strong, Britni!

  7. alana
    Posted October 21, 2009 at 3:32 pm | Permalink

    I don’t agree that rape is as simple a matter as champagneandbenzedrine, but in this case it clearly is. And the sad thing people will still look at your situation and dismiss it because it’s easier that way (didn’t you have a close friend or ex boyfriend who did that? I think I remember you posting something about it…).

    It’s amazing to me how many victims of rape or sexual assault feel the exact same way. I went through the exact same feelings as you did (especially since there was alcohol involved and I had slept with him before – my young age is really the only thing that keeps most people from blaming me). Like, shouldn’t we have a louder collective voice?

    And I totally get what you’re saying about how it’s what he said that gets to you. I feel practically apathetic about my rape, but I’ll never forget what he said to me. Never.

  8. mrs. m
    Posted October 21, 2009 at 3:48 pm | Permalink

    i went through my adolescent and teen years feeling guilty and full of shame.

    i still carry guilt.

    reading this helps, writing my story helped, but i wonder if it will ever fully go away.

    knowing that at least one person understands is a huge deal for people like me.

    thank you.

  9. Eve
    Posted October 21, 2009 at 3:49 pm | Permalink

    I agree, your story is an important one to tell, particularly since a lot of the circumstances fit what some people would mistakenly believe are "gray areas".

    After all your support and encouragement when I told my story, and the healing it brought me, I'm happy to see you doing the same. I hope it helps!

  10. AlwaysArousedGirl
    Posted October 21, 2009 at 3:53 pm | Permalink

    Good for you for writing this. No, this was definitely not your fault. His words show that drunk or not he understood that he was doing something you didn't want to do.

    I'm glad you're getting some help.

  11. Topaz
    Posted October 21, 2009 at 3:59 pm | Permalink

    I have told you before and will tell you again – you are both brave and strong for sharing in the hopes of helping, and following through with helping those who have suffered. Violence and abuse are never warranted. What is truly sick about it is when the perpetrators of that violence have no regrets. When they actually enjoy the memory of it, and would do it again.
    Many keep their silence in fear of the repercussions. So it's no small thing to say you are strong. It's what I admire about you.

  12. voyeur36
    Posted October 21, 2009 at 4:10 pm | Permalink

    This post proves you are stronger than you thought you were. Hopefully talking about it and realising it was not your fault will help with the healing. Be strong, or should I say, be stronger.

  13. Meg
    Posted October 21, 2009 at 4:50 pm | Permalink

    You are stronger than you know, Britni. Good for you, getting the story out and being a survivor.

  14. Sa
    Posted October 21, 2009 at 4:51 pm | Permalink

    Thank you for sharing, thank you for telling your story. It makes such a difference to those who've blamed themselves already for something they had no responsability for. You are wonderful :)

  15. RavenQuince
    Posted October 21, 2009 at 7:12 pm | Permalink

    I wish I could say that I can't relate. Upon breaking up with an ex, he raped me. It wasn't violent, it wasn't physically painful. But it was totally non-consensual. Apparently repeating "NO. NO. NO. …" didn't mean anything to him. Sadly, at the time, I didn't feel that I could tell anyone about it. The first person I told is my husband. By that point, it had been 10 years since the rape. I thought I was over it. But the release of telling someone about it and having him love me and accept me and console me and assure me that I'd done nothing to deserve it was incredibly powerful. I realized that it wasn't until that moment of telling someone that I truly began to heal emotionally.

  16. Barefoot Dreamer
    Posted October 21, 2009 at 8:41 pm | Permalink

    what to say? you have made telling your story look easy – that is like saying a professional chef makes cooking look easy — it is something not at all easy. thank you for sharing with us, and for trusting us.

    I know the feeling… I know

  17. Britni TheVadgeWig
    Posted October 21, 2009 at 9:17 pm | Permalink

    Sylvanus: Thank you for your comment, really and truly. More men should be even half the man that you are.

    Champs and Benz, you asked:
    I would like to ask about how this experience has affected your relationship with your new Dom. You appear to totally surrender yourself to him on occasion – letting him piss in your mouth and beat you. Where do the lines get drawn in that relationship and how have you managed to be so successful at it? If you’re tied up, have submitted yourself and are totally helpless, how does your Dom know what is acceptable and what’s not – especially when things can be so extreme between you. Do you set the limits beforehand – you can do this, this and this, but don’t touch my ass.

    It hasn't affected my relationship with my Master because I trust Him, and I choose to submit to Him. It's all my choice, and like you said, consensual. He know's what's acceptable and what's not because limits and boundaries have been discussed beforehand. They were discussed before we ever played in any capacity.

    He knows what the absolute hard limits are, and those are always off limits. I have a safe word, and if I use it, He stops. He also knows me well enough to know when I am really and truly in pain or not enjoying what is happening. And I trust Him to stop and to trust the boundaries that we have set. If I didn't, I wouldn't submit to Him. I touch on it more in this post.

    mrs. m: Guilt is one of the hardest feelings to let go of and tends to linger a lot longer than anger. When you're angry, it's usually directed at someone else, and you blame them and feel that *they* should have acted differently. Guilt is directed at you, nd it's much easier to forgive ourselves when we feel like *we* should have acted differently, because we feel like we should be able to control our own actions.

    You can read here about some of the effects that survivors suffer as adults, and this link has good information, as well as a "special note on guilt and shame" that is worth reading.

    It's a natural feeling that many (if not most) victims of abuse of any kind feel and hold on to. I know that you mentioned that you were afraid of therapy, but it really is a good idea and very helpful in helping you let go of that guilt.

    To everyone that said that they understand, because it's happened to them: I'm truly sorry that any of you had to go through anything like this. No matter how different your story is than mine, that doesn't make it any more or less traumatic. You all are amazing.

    Thank you guys for your support and encouragement. All of you. You guys are amazing.

  18. Another Suburban Mom
    Posted October 21, 2009 at 9:32 pm | Permalink

    Dear Britni:

    Thank you for sharing your story. You are a brave lady for sharing it.

  19. Ghouldilocks
    Posted October 22, 2009 at 4:20 am | Permalink

    All I can say is thank you for being strong enough to share your story. I'm sure it will help many of the women (and some men, I'm sure) who read your blog, and have also been sexually assaulted/raped, become SURVIVORS instead of victims. I have never experienced what you have, but I hope that if – god forbid – something like this were to happen to me, I would be able to handle it the way you have.

    And anyone who blames you for what happened is a fuckwit, in my opinion.

  20. Florida Dom
    Posted October 22, 2009 at 6:22 am | Permalink

    I'm glad you're not blaming yourself. No means No and you were violated. Good luck in dealing with the trauma.


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