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About this blog

My journaling attempts following the book "reasurection after rape". Thankyou to whoever it was on here that suggested this book. I don't have a therapist so I hoped posting on here for feedback might help me get the most out of this.

Entries in this blog

JustSam

I don't know. 
I don't currently have a therapist, I'm considering restarting.

I'd like to be able to accept it as part of me, to love myself and enjoy my life, to get past feeling guilty and obsessing about this. 
To live, free from the little voice in the back of my head convinced every little noise is Luke come to make good on his threats, blaming me, shaming me. Making me feel like nothing I do could ever be good enough because every decision I make is affected/tainted by what happened to me. 
I'd like to be able to talk about it, even vaguely, even online -anonymously, without panicking. I want to be able to use my experiences to support and help others.

JustSam

What prevented me from healing is that I never addressed it. I've believed that it was my fault, not that bad, no one would believe me anyway, etc. He told me it was OK and I thought he believed it, I thought everyone would, they'd think I was overreacting. I felt so ashamed so I stuffed it down. Now I feel ashamed that I still let this affect me. I thought it wasn't that bad, that people go through a lot worse without letting it affect them this much, I should be over this by now.

I've discovered that so many of these beliefs were based on fear and misinformation, and no longer stand up to scrutiny. I'm starting to chip away at the silence, and hence at the shame, and I really feel now that I am starting to heal.

JustSam

I've been thinking about forgiveness. I don't forgive them, if I saw them about to be hit by a bus I think I'd hesitate to shout "look out" and I'm pretty sure I'd smile to myself after. I don't really care what this says about me. But given that that is unlikely to happen; I'm no longer angry that they're out there, un-smooshed by buses, living a life. I just hope that they're surrounded by people who have corrected their view of the world and their place in it. I hope their attitudes towards others have dramatically improved. I think everyone deserves a second chance (within reason) and if they're now functioning members of society then I can live with that. If they're the same arseholes then that's not my fault or concern, I can't change them and I can't keep punishing myself for that, I just hope that bus finds them, Soon.

JustSam

What was he thinking? Why did he do it? Did he hear me? Did he realise what he was doing? Did he care? Would he care if he knew how it would effect me?  

^I wrote this a while ago. I wasn't happy with it but I wasn't sure why. I got a bit stuck. I've just looked again and found the solvent:
I DON'T CARE WHAT HE THINKS!
I know the truth. I know that he was fully aware that I didn't want to. Hence I know he raped me! I don't need him to confirm that, I don't need anything from him.

😊 unstuck

JustSam

That it is not (as I've tried to believe) "just something that happened a long time ago". It is something that still makes me feel sick inside every day. 
That the effects run much deeper than they could imaging, deeper than I ever thought before I started really looking, and probably deeper still than I am currently aware. 
That So very many things can be a trigger, and this can change depending on how I'm feeling. If I'm feeling low, Everything makes me think about it and feel even more sh!t. 
Mostly I just wish people understood rape. I wish thay knew that it isn't 'normally' like what you see on the news. 75-90% of the time it is someone you know, a date/friend/boyfriend, not a stranger at the bus stop, it happens at their house or your own, somewhere you should have felt safe. That freezing is as 'normal' a response to this as 'fight or flight'. I wish people just knew this, I wish I'd known this.

JustSam

I still feel like I can't trust my own judgement, it can be crippling at times, I feel stuck, unable to make even a simple decision for fear that I'll get it wrong and fear of the consequences if I do. I know now, logically, that it wasn't my actions or my choices that caused the assaults but sub-consciously I still fear making the wrong choice and worse still- letting myself and other people down with my wrong choices. I hate feeling like 'they' have such a big part in my life, my thought processes, my choices. 
I'm very uncomfortable with anything even remotely linked to abuse, rape, etc. I avoid conversations, I avoid relationships and getting close to people in case they somehow see, somehow know what I'm hiding. I isolate myself even from people who might understand.
I'm distracted because I can't stop obsesing about this. I just don't know how to deal with this. I feel trapped under his weight still, the weight of his (W) decision. 
I'm scared because of threats I heard 15 Years Ago! I'm afraid on a daily basis that L will turn up in my life demanding what I owe him, what I promised, that he will finally follow through with his threat to rape me. I'm scared of shadows and things that go bump in the night in case it's him. And I'm so frustrated with myself for being so afraid, I should be over this, I bet he is. 
I hate that I feel like I'm wasting time I should be spending on my current life, that I'm letting everyone down by not being over this. That I'm just using this as an excuse for being sh!t at life. I hate that this guilt and shame, that I can't seem to shift, even though I can logically see that it shouldn't be mine, makes me feel like I'm doing sh!t, when I can see that objectively I'm doing pretty well. I should be able to feel good about that. 

JustSam

It made me feel weak because I couldn't stop it. I always thought I was a strong person, physically and mentally. The fact that I was so scared, I couldn't even make him understand that I didn't want it (how I saw it at the time) made me feel So weak and pathetic. How could I expect anyone to understand, to care, to help me if I couldn't even help myself? I felt like that was my fault for going back to him/staying with him, I felt weak for thinking I needed him. I felt like I couldn't trust myself because I hadn't been able to see that I shouldn't have been there and I hadn't listened to my guts when I felt that something was wrong. I couldn't trust anyone around me (if my boyfriend could do that to me what was everyone else capable of?) I couldn't trust myself, my body, my instincts, my decisions. I felt damaged and dirty inside, I hated myself. I didn't want to get to close to anyone for fear that they'd see, there'd know what I'd allowed to happen.

It's only now that I can see why I felt the way I did, at the time I couldn't face what had happened and I just thought I was crazy or being an over dramatic teenager. 

JustSam

I told My best friend and my boyfriend (now husband) because I couldn't keep it in, I was having suicidal thoughts, cutting myself, I'm not sure I would have survived with this eating me away inside. I didn't Talk to them back then but I told them about the rape. They're the closest friends I have and have never made me feel judged. Still I found it so very hard to speak to them again recently when this all came back up. 

I don't remember what happened the first time I told them. I know I didn't want to really talk about it, so I don't think they asked. 
Recently when I told them I was struggling again (after a LOT of Dutch courage) they were very supportive, offered to talk/listen, asked me how counselling was going. They didn't treat me any differently, didn't make me feel judged.

I told my counsellor too when I went.

....it's just dawned on me that I've had a lot to drink most times before talking to people I know about this. 

JustSam

I'm afraid to feel exposed. I'm afraid people will see me differently, as weak, damaged, I'm afraid they will pity me. I'm afraid to face unintentionally hurtful comments that can be made by well meaning people who just don't understand. I'm afraid that people will believe that it wasn't my fault. I'm afraid they will see the guilt and shame I feel, they will see that part of me feels responsible still, and they won't understand. I'm afraid that if people know it will be completely real for me, I'll never be able to hide from it and believe it didn't happen ever again. Im afraid that I will still feel the same, guilty, and that their belief in me will make me feel like a liar, like I'm making it up. What if I really did imagine it, my memories have been wrong before, what if it didn't happen the way I think.... 

JustSam

I find it quite difficult to think about it most of the time. If I try to it feels like my minds pulling away from it. My gut reaction to thinking about the rape is to feel trapped, scared, panicked and unsafe, or to feel nothing, numb, disconnected. I went through all these emotions during the assault. I also feel very guilty, especially over certain parts, parts where I feel like I lead him on and let him think that I was OK with what he was doing.
It makes me feel sad for the person who was lost, the person who never I was, who I could have been if this hadn't happened. I'm sad for the girl I was, for all the pain/shame She went through after the rape, blaming herself, hurting herself. I feel defeated, crushed, used. I feel so confused, I wish I understood why he would choose to hurt me like that, what was going through his head. It makes me feel sick inside. I feel betrayed that someone I trusted could do that to me, and betrayed by myself for believing it was my fault so easily, for freezing up, for going along with it rather than face the truth and fight. I feel so guilty, I should have fought, I should have confronted them after. I didn't, I let them get away with it and maybe think they could get away with it again. I feel like I let down every girl in their lives by doing nothing to alert them to the danger. 

JustSam

As I've said, I don't feel like I think much about the actual events. When I had counselling it was suggested that my imagined scenarios were a way of me reliving what happened/ how I felt, without actually facing the truth. I feel like I'm lying when I say that my daily life is affected by this, when I don't even have many thoughts about what really actually happened. 

The main 'memory' I have of my rape, of W,  has no visual, no real sense of my physical self. I just remember the sudden fear, panic and confusion. I hear my weak, panicked little voice saying, "no, no" (as he forced himself inside me). I remember feeling so utterly crushed, so lost in that darkness, so alone, so confused. Like nothing in the world could ever make sense or ever be right after this. I sometimes feel like I'm still trapped in this dark, lonely, scarey place.


The memories I struggle with most are flashes of L's face, the one I saw when I told him I wanted to break up. I could see that he wanted to hurt me but I couldn't understand what was happening at first, this version of him just jarred so much with the person I thought he was. The way he just, informed me that he could have sex with me if he wanted, there was nothing I could do about it, so calm on the surface but that terrifying danger behind his eyes. I know I was breaking up with him, but I still cared about him. The hatred and malice I felt from him in that look cut right to my core. I felt so guilty that I'd upset him so much, I thought he really was the lovely guy I believed him to be and I'd brought this hatred out by hurting his feelings

JustSam

I think about it (them?) directly at least once or twice a day, but most of my thoughts are indirect. What ifs. I find it hard to face the truth, to think about what actually happened. But the what ifs are so hard to stop, it's like I have to imagine the entire scenario, I can't stop till it's over, but it's never over. It doesn't end. I imagine being raped by strangers, acquaintances, friends, but mostly by Luke. I'm so scared that he still believes I owe him because I agreed to stay "friends with benefits", that one day something will happen in his life and he'll decide to act on this.

JustSam

My hope: I still have hope that one day I will feel genuinely, completely comfortable and happy in my own skin. My love: for my husband, friends, family, pets, colleagues. My drive: to build a good home life, a good business, to experience and enjoy my world. My diplomacy and ability to see all sides of the argument/situation (usually) to find a fair compromise. 

 

(This was much harder to answer than the last 2. I feel like I focus so much on the bad, trying to block it out, trying to face it, just trying to live with it, that I forget what's left, I forget about me. I find it hard to see myself as the person others see, not just someone who was SA'ed and is struggling to handle it)

JustSam

Rape stole the close relationships I had. The shame/ need to keep my secret led me to push people away so they wouldn't see. It stole my sense of safety and trust in people. It stole what should have been fun happy memories with friends, replacing them with memories of feeling triggered, upset and unsafe. Rape stole my concentration and hence my school and collage grades. It took my sense of self worth, then compounded this with the feelings that I'd let people down/people had less respect for me, e.g. my Mum for "not focusing on my exams", My best friend because I asked about the morning after pill again. It stole the person that I thought I was, the person I thought I would be. Rape stole my trust in myself.

JustSam

Dear Sam,
Tomorrow something is going to happen to you. I wish I could warn you, I wish I could prevent it and save you, but I can't, I can't save either of us, it's already happened. Tomorrow your boyfriend is going to rape you. He won't leave injuries that people will see, he won't punch you, kick you, threaten your life but don't let that stop you from acknowledging the pain and injury he does cause. 
I understand why you won't be able to bring yourself to face what happened and speak about it. Re-victimisation is a perfectly sane thing to fear and to want to avoid. Having your control taken away again by parents, police, hospital staff, teachers or friends all trying to do "what's best for you". I still believe that not reporting it to the police was for the best, but not being able to legally prove the facts doesn't make them less true or painful, and doesn't stop you from getting help.
I know you will feel ashamed and believe that it was your fault, it will be in no way your fault. Not being able to prevent it is in no way a failure on your part, if you were the victim of any other crime this wouldn't even cross your mind. I want you to know that to freeze, like a rabbit in the headlights, is a normal response to terror. As is playing along, going through the motions, biding your time until you can make a safe escape. Don't believe that any of your actions cause his, or absolve him of the guilt. He will choose/ has possibly already chosen to hurt you. That is his choice, his fault, not yours. Please try to spend your energy grieving for your loss (your innocence, trust, childish cares) and taking care of yourself, rather than punishing yourself and making excuses for him. 
I already know these words are meaningless, I know you will pull away, lock away the memories, accept the fear and shame and guilt as part of you and hate yourself for it. I know you will be depressed and hurt yourself. I'm learning to accept you, and the choices you made, I forgive you, you will learn to forgive yourself. It wasn't your fault, you may not believe it now but take comfort knowing one day you will.