I am a survivor of sexual violence and this is my story!
I was born and raised in beautiful British Columbia, Canada. I am a product of divorce and I have one brother, a half sister and a step brother. I was a happy child until I was 7 years old......
When I was 7 years old my great uncle started following me into my grandmas basement where I would play on her computer. He would sit beside me with his hands down my pants pretending to help me play games.. He would never say anything while he molested me... Not a word it just happened..or maybe he did talk to me and I just blocked it all out.... When he would hear someone coming down the stairs he would pull his hands out of my pants and tell me he would be right back... I hated being down there with him and after a while I gained the courage to stay upstairs when visiting my Grandma so the molestation would stop. When my Grandma asked why I didn't want to go down stairs anymore I told her that Uncle was creepy. She told me that he was mentally challenged and that he would never do anything to hurt me. Boy was she wrong!!! Turns out my great uncle molested my mother when she was younger as well. After the abuse he started asking me for hugs I never wanted to touch him, but my Grandma would insist and I did not want to disappoint her.
When I was 10 years old my Uncles girlfriend who was 19 years old at the time use to babysit me and my brothers. She was such a cool person until she started making us watch porn and look at dirty magazines. It was the weirdest porn too! She would google Simpsons porn and Disney porn thinking that since we were kids we would like it better. At first I thought to myself "right on she is so cool letting us watch this sort of thing!" But eventually it started to make me feel very uncomfortable. Thank goodness my older step brother told my dad and we were never allowed over there again. It was such a relief!!
At the age of 12 I had a crush on my step brothers best friend. I wanted him to like me so bad, but one day when he slept over he snuch into my room and he sexually violated me when I was sleeping. He started rubbing my vagina and fondling my chest. It woke me up, but I froze and pretended to sleep. I am so ashamed that I never stopped it. I was scared that if I woke up he would get into trouble and he would not be allowed to hang out with my brother. The same thing happened to me by my neighbor a few months after when I was at sleepover party. He tried to put his hands down my pants when I was sleeping, but this time I woke up and was able to stop him. Now that I look back at the situation I consider it a small victory and a glimpse of what ever self respect I had left at the time.
By 13 I trusted no one in my life because everyone close to me either betrayed me by letting people molest me after I told them what happened or they tried to exploit and abuse me themselves.
When I would visit my dad on weekends my stepmother would continuously tell me that I dressed too provocatively, I looked like a sl*t, I was going to be promiscuous and become just like my mother. All the negative comments took a toll on my self esteem, I became depressed and started to act just like my mother.
Let me tell you a little about my mother: She was the product of incest. Her mother and her father where cousins. She was molested as a child and she was criticized everyday at school for being inbred. One night to numb her pain she got so wasted that she blacked out and ended up cheating on my father. They divorced when I was 5 years old. The divorce was the straw that broke my mothers back. She began to drink like a fish, do drugs heavily and sleep with anyone who would give her the time of day. There was always creepy men in our house. One day my mom met a man who beat her to a pulp and then raped her while her children were in the house. She charged him and he went to jail. He was sentenced to 2 years in jail. I remember the day she was assaulted and I remember the day the police called her to let us know he was back on the streets. I never felt safe anywhere after he was released.
After her assault and rape she met a man online. She took us to Vancouver Island where I was forced to babysit 5 kids at the age of 12 in a strange house and place that I knew nothing about. That night they went to the bar and the house I was babysitting in was robbed. To protect the children in the house I hid us all in a room upstairs locked the door and turned off the lights. After about an hour of rummaging through the house the robbers left. When my mom and the man got back she was so drunk that she could barely stand. The man took her upstairs and I could hear them having sex.
When I turned 13 years old I met this a girl my age on a trip to see family. She introduced me to two 19 year old boys. While they where at the place I was staying one of the boys stole $300 from my suitcase with out me knowing. They ended up using my money to buy drugs and alcohol. I wanted to numb the pain I felt inside so I decided to get drunk! We hitched hike to an old school bus that the boys converted into a house. While we were there I was almost raped by one of the 19 year olds, but luckily I was spared and he only put his hands down my pants. My friend wasn't as lucky and the other boy raped her in front of us. In the morning the boys kicked us out of the bus and made us hitch hike home alone and hungover. When we arrived back to the place I was staying at I discovered that all my hard earned money was gone and I had to phone my mom to tell her I was robbed. I left everything else out knowing I was in the wrong and that it was my fault that this had happened to me.
I ended up losing my virginity at 14 years old to a 18 year old boy who pressured me into having sex with him. We had sex in my Grandmas house when she was at Bingo. He didn't tell me he had a girlfriend at the time. He lied to both of us by telling her I was his cousin and telling me she was his cousin. He took both our virginities that summer and I regret giving it to him because he didn't deserve it.
As soon as I turned 15 I started lying about my age telling boys that I was 17 years old so that I was allowed to consent to sex. I believed that lieing about my age some how made me feel better about myself. I honestly didn't know what normal behavior of a 15 year old girl was suppose to be. I just thought sex was normal and that's all I was good for. That's all anyone ever wanted from me.
I was desperately looking from love in all the wrong places. Thinking that if I found it I would feel whole again. When I moved in with my Grandmother at 15 I met a boy my age and we were together for 6 years. We were both young and raised by dysfunctional families. His mom was a crack dealer and her boyfriend was a very scary man. He once held a lady hostage with a shot gun in the basement while we where in the house. Eventually the Emergency Response Team caught wind and they raided the house, but instead of treating us like victims when they broke down the door they pointed guns in our face, tackled me to the ground and drug me through the snow with no shoes on. At the time I was only 16 years old. I didn't even know what was going on in the house. From that moment on I couldn't trust the police to protect me. They treated me like I was the one holding that lady hostage when in reality I had no idea until after the fact. They kept me in a cell and refused to feed me or let me talk to anyone until I told them what happened in the basement.
When I was 19 years old we had a beautiful baby daughter. Her father told me to get an abortion and told me he never wanted to have kids. From that moment on the relationship was doomed as we were not ready for this much responsibility. The stress of having a child lead to our break up a year later. A week after the break up I decided to go to the bar to look for a rebound. Little did I know I was going to receive the rebound that could have ended my life. I was date raped by two men who drugged my drink. They took me from the bar and then brutally raped me in the middle of no where in a trailer on a mountain. One of the men strangled me until I would black out and hit me in the face while yelling at me to pee on him. I tired to, but couldn't. He threw me in a shower and started spraying me in the face with water. I tried to give him what he wanted so that he would stop hurting me, but I couldn't. He turned the water off, spit in my face and left the room. His friend entered the room after he left, pulled me out of the shower and raped me as well. When they were done with me I didn't know what to do, I was so traumatized. In a panic I decided to put my clothes back on and I walked over to the first guy, gave him a hug and told him "I had a great time." It was the hardest thing I ever had to say. But by doing that they decided to drove me into town where they left me to find my way home. It took me forever to find out where I lived. I never told anyone what happened to me. The next weekend I was out with friends and I saw the same two men who raped walk into the bar. I froze and the flashbacks started!
I felt lost, discouraged and I didn't know what to do with my life. I became so severely depressed from being raped and abused most of my life that I made the awful decision to sell my body. I felt as if this was the only way that I could support my daughter and my alcohol addiction while coping with the trauma. My self worth was at an all time low as I started meeting men online without anyone knowing. I figured that the sexual abuse in my life was never going to stop, so I decided I might as well give them what they wanted and make some money doing it! During this time I was introduced to MDMA and Cocaine. It numbed my pain and I formed a bad habit. I told myself I would never do drugs, but I also didn't think I would ever be molested as a child and raped as a woman. My life was spiraling down hill and no one knew... I was so good at pretending everything was okay. I had to be strong for my daughter and the people around me. Everyone thought my life was perfect, but it was far from!
While online I met many men who tried to coax me into pornography. They wanted to exploit me in any way they could. I kept refusing and promised myself that I would never go on film for my daughters sake. It was one of the best and hardest decisions that I ever made in my life. One of the men who tried to exploit me on film forced an object inside of my body when we were high on MDMA and I had to get it surgically removed. The man wouldn't even take me to the hospital after I begged him to. I had to call a so called friend to take me to the hospital to have it removed. My friend eventually raped me a few weeks after the incident when I was passed out in a hotel room during my friends birthday party. When I woke up the next morning I knew that I had sex and I asked him if it was with him. He said " Yes, I thought it was okay because we are friends"
at 23 I was recruited by a pimp to join a brothel located in Kelowna, BC where he made me and numerous other girls sell our bodies to anyone who entered into the building. I was raped 4 times while working there and watched other girls endure the same abuse. I was also beaten, robbed and mentally abused by the girls, clients and the man running the brothel.
By this point in my life I was completely broken and wanted to end my life. I considered suicide numerous times. I tried cutting myself and overdosing, but I just could not follow through with it. I had a daughter to live for! She meant everything to me and I wanted to break the cycle for her!
Luckily I did not kill my self because when I turned 24 years old I met the man of my dreams. We fell deeply in love and he promised that he would protect me from all the toxic people who ever hurt me in my life. He made every one go away! I was able to get out of prostitution immediately with his help, but with leaving came a price. I was being sexually harassed for wanting out. Men would send videos they took of without know and they would message my husband saying things like "how could you marry a good for nothing hooker" ,"I hope you know who she use to be" they would threaten my life and the lives of people I loved. One man hunted my Grandmas address down and told me that I owed him sex for money he gave me to help pay my bills and if I didn't give it to him he was going to her house to hurt her. The stalking lasted for quite awhile and I could't understand why thee men would not let me go!
6 months after meeting the man of my dreams we were married. He continues to protect me from the demons of my past and he has taught me how to love and respect myself. Recovery is a hard road because I feel that I don't deserve to be happy or treated with dignity and respect. My road to recovery comes with a lot of baggage and it strains our relationship from time to time, but I let him know everyday how much he means to me and that I don't ever want to ever lose him! We now have a beautiful baby daughter together and he is an amazing step father to my first daughter. He has now made me feel worthy of self love and respect and we continue to grow together.
I struggle everyday with the psychological, Physical and emotional effects my sexual trauma has caused. I still try to numb the pain with alcohol from time to time, but it makes my symptoms worse. Slowly I have quit drugs and now only smoke pot to help relieve my anxiety and depression. I have never talked to a professional nor have I ever shared my story because I am afraid to be judged and unloved. I feel that no one will believe what I have been through and they will think I brought this lifestyle on myself. For the record I did not choose to be raped, I did not choose be abused as a child and I did not I did not choose the consequences of this trauma and how it effected my ability to love myself . But I did choose to be a warrior! It is not an easy road, but it is sure in the hell better then the road I was on.
I hope to one day live a sober life, so that I can feel free from the pain of the past... Volunteering has made a big difference in my life and I have volunteered for Lyme disease, the womens shelter, cancer, the city parade, the womens coalition, Christmas food hamper, youth groups and many other not for profit organizations. Giving back to my community has made a huge impact in my recovery and I am so grateful to have the opportunity to help others in their time of need. One day I plan to create a youth program ran by survivors that will teach children how to use their voice when someone tries to abuse them in any way. It will offer a place for children to turn to when they have no where else to go or when no one believes their story. I want to call the program H.O.M.E ( Healing Our Minds Everyday)
It has been almost 5 years since my abuse ended and I am now 29 years old. Ever since high school it was my dream to plan events and I have finally achieved that goal! My occupation is office manager and events coordinator of a successful family resort. This milestone would never have been reached without the support from my amazing husband, the love of my daughters and my will to survive!! I get to live the life I've always dreamed and I honestly would not change a thing. All the trauma and all the pain has made me who I am today!
When you are in the midst of experiencing abuse and trauma you never believe it is going to get better and the violence becomes normal. I cannot be more grateful for my guardian angels who watched over me during my early years. They sent me my husband just in the nick of time! I would not be here today if he did not come along and teach me how to love myself.
My goal is to help shed light on the ugly truth that sexual violence is more common then you think. I want to help other survivors end their silence by sharing my story in detail! The longer you stay silent the longer you will take to heal. The more we talk, the louder we will become and the louder we are the more people will listen!
Thank you for taking the time to read my story! I am so grateful to be here today to share it with you all!