April 2019; it was close to my A-Level exams so I was already stressed. I was already suffering from depression, for about 5 years at that point. I was walking home from work, it was a Saturday evening and I live near quite a few pubs so there were lots of people drinking and standing outside. I’m used to getting harassed by drunk guys who stand outside the pubs but they’ve never done anything. This time was different.
This was the last pub I had to go past before I would be on my street; there was a large group of men standing outside the pub, I wasn’t too sure if they were all drunk or not, I didn’t really care, I was tired and wanted to go home. They had already started cat-calling me so I decided to turn and use a different route to go home. I had my earphones (noise-cancelling) in and continued walking. I didn’t realise one of the guys had followed me. There is a little secluded alleyway behind this pub and the guy grabbed me and dragged me into the alley. He covered my mouth and told me to not scream or he’d make it worse. He ripped my clothes and my underwear and tried to rape me. I had managed to hit him with my keys and get away from him. I ran home and chucked my clothes in the bin. I was terrified to even leave my house. I took the next day off of work and luckily had school holiday so I stayed home.
I went to a doctor to check on my injuries, she said I was lucky he hadn’t actually raped me and that it wasn’t a big deal since I still have my hymen. After that, I became so scared to tell anyone as I was worried that I was just making a big deal as he never got to get that far with me. I felt stupid for being so scared and I blamed myself as I wasn’t paying attention to my surroundings. It took me 5 months to tell my friends and my sisters.
I had managed to put it to the back of my mind during my exams but afterwards, it hit me like a truck and I couldn't face people without feeling ashamed. I felt dirty and felt like a disappointment to my parents. I have not told my parents nor did I report it.
That is the beginning of my story.