Being born female is a privilege because I can do something a man cannot. Give birth and be a Mom.
But I often think the privilege ends there. I am an outspoken, intelligent woman. I believe I can do just about anything a man can do.
But most men do not see me/women this way. To most men, I/we are breasts and a vagina. Maybe ass and legs. To most men, I/we are not as strong, physically or mentally, intelligent, dedicated, or important as they are. We are classified by are looks. Thin, fat, tall, short, big/small chested, pretty/plain/ugly.
When I was young, I wanted to study law and music. My parents told me to take typing.
I was sexually harassed in every job I held through my life.
I was degraded/assaulted in relationships.
I have allowed myself to be defined by others opinions of me all my life.
I lacked something as a child….attention/love…not sure what…I know I was ostrasized as a child in school. I remember tiny little snippets of being told I smelled bad, was ugly…..neglect maybe….my mother had her issues. I have a gut feeling there was sexual assault in my earliest years. I have no distinct memory of it, but it fits….wetting the bed and my pants during grade school. Poor hygiene. Poor self esteem. Avoiding people as a whole. Depression. Freak. Outcast.
I became sexually “loose” as I got older. Always “safe” but never loved. Guess I confused sex with love. Didn’t realize at the time men never make that mistake. Most men will have sex with any woman. I was never “horny”. I was love starved.
I suffer from depression, Low self esteem and more recently, anxiety. I think I always had a level of depression, probably genetic. Would have been able to keep in low key if it weren’t for several experiences in my life…I have always called them the “assaults”.
The actual word is rape.
First one was my 22nd birthday. I was working at a retail department store. I and the crowd I ran with were mostly the “elite”…we worked in the management/administrative side of the business. All about the same age. Party age. We thought we were so cool…dressed in business suits, dresses & high heels, going out and getting hammered a couple times a week. We didn’t “just” drink, we did parties and dinners and sports…but the alcohol was always there.
So this particular year, my birthday fell on Holy Thursday, also payday. I was able to talk my boss into having the weekend off…Friday/Saturday/Sunday. We got to our usual establishment about 9 (we worked late that day). Being my birthday, I was getting shots from every direction…mostly tequila. Having a great time, until about midnight when I ended up on the bathroom floor with the waste basket between my knees.
I lived about a mile or so from the bar, but was no way able to get behind the wheel…so “Joe” tells everyone he will take me home. No big deal…we had know each other for long enough that sober I would have trusted him. I remember he drove a tiny car, stick shift, and the passenger door wouldn’t open (these jobs did not pay very much, and we all lived the high life, so we all drove junk). I had to climb over the stick shift to get in the passenger seat, wearing a mini skirt…that would have been tough sober. Drunk…well, you can imagine...
So we turn up the hill toward my house. I think he asked me where the little league field was from there – he used to play there when he was younger….I told him a block up and several blocks left. I had my eyes closed through the ride….when the car stops, I open them and see we are at the ball field?? “Come on, I want to show you something”…”no, I want to go home I don’t feel well” “come on the air will do you good”….ok, out I climb. I get out to the dugout where he was standing…next thing I remember, I am on my back, my skirt is hiked up around my waist and he is on top of me. Must have blacked out again, and he is sitting on my chest trying to get me perform oral sex on him….next memory he is pulling down my skirt, trying to get me to sit up. I get up, stumble out of my shoes, and start walking, barefoot, in the direction of my house. I feel disgusting, dirty; I have burrs and leaves in my hair. He grabs me and forces my back into the car…and drives my home. I get out of the car and say to him “Why me? There were several women there who would have willing jumped you (I name several)….why did you …” “they’re dogs, would need to put a bag over their heads first” “Happy Birthday”…and he drives away. I shower until all the hot water is gone….climb into bed and think I stayed there for the better part of three days, sleeping.
Work on Monday. Getting serious snickers as I walk to my office. “JOE’s girlfriend is here!” is the first greeting I get. WHAT? Lots more snickering…He walks in, smiles and nods, and walks out. I am shaking. Disappear into the restroom for an hour, till someone comes to check on me. I tell her the extremely edited version of what happened. He, on the other hand, told everyone about his big score. I quit in less than a month.
Second experience. “Ben”. Met him at a bar my one girlfriend and I liked. He hit on my girlfriend, asked for her number. He called her a few times, but she had started seeing someone and blew him off. Lucky her.
I ran into him with another group of friends a few weeks later…He was all over me. I was very attracted to him, went outside and “made out” with him…he called me the next night to go out.
He was sweet, asked a lot of questions about me. After a few dates he got angry about something, can’t remember exactly what, took me outside and slapped me. I was in shock! He took me home, called the next day apologizing profusely and brought me roses.
That night he asked me a favor….he came up short and couldn’t pay his phone bill….could I help?? Of course. Next month it was gas money, etc. etc.….then he has an accident and broke his leg. Not able to work. Now I am funding our relationship. And he expects to go out every night of the week. And he is drinking, heavily. His car is a manual, so he cannot drive it with a broken leg, so when we go out, he is driving my car. It is nothing for him to get angry and push my head off the dashboard or the car window. One night we pulled up at a traffic light behind a police car….he says “go ahead, try and signal the cop, try and jump, I will floor the gas and ram this car right up his ass.” Yes, he would have done it, I am sure. This went on for months, every night him forcing me to have sex with him before I left.
I tried breaking up with him, but he threatened to burn my house down, get me fired from my job, follow me and hurt me.
I started to not answer his calls when I could…after about a week he calls, very late, and tells me if I don’t meet him at a certain bar by midnight, he will burn my house down. I meet him…we sit at the end of a practically deserted bar, while he calls me every foul name he can think of. The other people at the bar can hear…no one says a word. Finally he tells me to drive to a field across town. He will follow me, and if I do anything but drive directly to this place, he will ram my car and kill me.
He gets out of his car, gets into mine with a gun. Puts the gun on the floor of the car and tells me I will have sex with him, here, now. I try to open the car door and he slams me against the door and the dash and says that was my one and only warning…
After he is finished, he gets out of the car, says if you tell anyone, I will have an alibi and no one will believe you. He leaves….after he pulls away; I vomit several times….drive to the nearest pay phone and call him. Again, “I have the best alibi and you will look like a psycho”. A police car show up…alarms at the convenient by the pay phone are going off….police start questioning me…I am a mess, crying, shaking, bruised…cop finally says “oh you had a lovers spat, go home, it will be all better in the morning”.
Coworker again. “Dan” He flirted. I liked the attention. Thought we were friends. I am married at this point, but saw no harm in a male friend. We hung out; double date (his wife, my husband). I find out he is allowing people to think more is going on. I think it’s funny and let it go, at first. Then I start getting worried. I am married; this could get back to my family. So I confront him. He is angry I am angry, he is in my face yelling, I push him away, he pushes back, harder. Something changed…I got scared, fast; he grabs me from behind, holds me against my car and starts pulling off my shorts. I really don’t remember too much after that….Got dressed, went home, showered, made dinner and went on like nothing happened.
But I still had to work with him. He has since received a huge promotion and a transfer…I am still in the same position and building.
Boss figured something was up…asked, and in a moment of weakness I told him, but with the idea he would not repeat it He felt it was necessary to “go up the chain”…after several meetings and discussions, I end up in a conference room with a VIP, telling me if I don’t write a retraction, saying what I had said was all a misunderstanding and it never happened, my life would be ruined. No, I could not leave the room and think about it. No I could not call the union or a lawyer. Now or ever. My husband didn’t even know what had happened at this point. My marriage, my career, my son?? I wrote the lies they wanted, even dictated to me, and I signed it.
I started what was essentially a breakdown. Don’t want to detail that, but I did end up in the hospital on several occasions. Been on medication ever since.
There are other incidents…sexual harassment, assault….seems to be a pattern in my life.
Low self esteem I know plays a huge part. Why I tolerate these behaviors.
Plus the constant reminder that people do not want to believe these things have happened. I told my mother after #2…My own mother made the statement about “….you’re SUPPOSED rape.”
Fired from a job after reporting harassment, yet the perpetrator was not.
No convictions. First two men did jail time for other crimes they committed after my assaults.
First one had the nerve recently to “friend” me on Facebook. No, I didn’t accept…I deleted the request....and My Facebook....