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First Time/Losing Friends?


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Posted (edited)

I recently lost a few close friends due to fall out of my sexual assault. I guess I changed too much and stopped being as much fun. I've been having a hard time with feeling as if I should have explained myself better or feeling like I could have done more. I recognize that these were not healthy friendships for me to be in. And since they have ended I have read other survivors accounts of similar situations happening to them. But I will still have to see my abuser when I return to college and having even fewer friends makes me fearful for the future.  My therapist thought it would be a good idea for me to find an online support group. So I figured I would give it a try.

Edited by MilaRoho
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Hi!

First off, I wanted to say welcome and that you are certainly not the only one who has experienced a friend fallout. I, too, lost 90% of my friends when I started sharing what happened. Even though I had always been there for them, they couldn't be there for me when I needed them the most. It's been around two years since that happened, and I still struggle with it. Friends just up and leaving because they can't be around you anymore is one of the most hurtful things. Plus, a lot of people deal with hard things through comedy. There are a bunch of people who make rape choices because they're insensitive. But there are also people who make rape jokes because something problematic happened to them as well (I was definitely guilty of laughing at those jokes when I was in the denial phase, refusing to believe that what had happened to me was assault) or because they literally just don't know what to say. 

But I've done a lot of thinking about it and have decided to cut the people who were my friends and left some slack. They just didn't know how to be there for me, and so they disappeared. And I get it, kind of. Before I was sexually assaulted, I wouldn't have known what to say/do if one of my friends had been assaulted. I don't think I would've dropped them, but I wouldn't have known how to be a good friend. And that's a hard thing to acknowledge. 

As for seeing your abuser again once you return to college, I'm sorry you have to deal with that. I, too, had to live on the same campus as my abuser for months. I was scared all the time. But I also became friends with other survivors, and we looked out for each other. Maybe reach out to a group on campus that deals with sexuality/sexual respect/violence. A lot of people in those groups are passionate about the subject because something has happened to them. 

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Dear milaroho

Welcome to After Silence!!

I'm sorry for what you have been through.  I find it is easier to talk on forums then out loud.  Being here has helped me so much, even from the first time I ever posted.  It is still helping me - I have so much support here and I know you will, as well.  Here at AS, we are like a big family and our members are kind and non-judgemental.

I am sending you lots of safe hugs! 

Take care!

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Hi, @MilaRoho - 

Welcome to After Silence! I'm sorry to hear not only of your abuse, but also that you've lost friends because of it. This is a time where you need friends more than ever and I hate that you have lost yours. I know, though, that you are certainly not alone. I didn't have a lot of friends to support me after my incident and my therapist recommended me to this site. I was apprehensive at first, but I am so glad I joined. In times where I felt like I had no one, I knew I could come here and feel the love and support of this online community. I hope this will be the same for you too! 

If you need anything at all, please don't hesitate to message me any time you'd like. :) I'm around frequently so I should be able to respond relatively quick! I hope you're feeling welcome here...just remember - you're not alone :throb:

Warmest welcome,
Poppy

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Hi MilaRoho,

Welcome to AfterSilence. I am very sorry for the trauma you have experienced and the struggles you face. This is neither fair nor right. You will find tons of support here, as our members are truly supportive and kind. It does seem many do not real understand what a survivor goes thru or feels, but you will find that here. You are validated and your experience is validated. You are not alone.

I am glad you decided to reach out, as it is somewhat easier to deal with things when you have a community like ours to support you. I wish you nothing but the best as you begin this journey we call healing.

Mary

:aswelcomesu:

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Welcome @MilaRoho  to After Silence.  I’m sorry for what brought you here and that you have lost friends.  I’m happy you are here reaching out for support.   Good job taking this step in your healing process.  You are not alone and what happened to you wasn’t your fault.  Take your time exploring and post when you are ready.  If you have any questions feel free to message me. 

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On 5/14/2020 at 9:55 AM, MilaRoho said:

I recently lost a few close friends due to fall out of my sexual assault. I guess I changed too much and stopped being as much fun. I've been having a hard time with feeling as if I should have explained myself better or feeling like I could have done more. I recognize that these were not healthy friendships for me to be in. And since they have ended I have read other survivors accounts of similar situations happening to them. But I will still have to see my abuser when I return to college and having even fewer friends makes me fearful for the future.  My therapist thought it would be a good idea for me to find an online support group. So I figured I would give it a try.

My heart goes out to you. Yes same with me. I lost my "friends" who looking back, even before the SA, they were toxic. I was just so desperate to be accepted that I took whatever abuse so I could have someone. Now I regret it

You are not alone.

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Dear @MilaRoho,

First, welcome to After Silence.

I am sorry for the experiences that brought you to us.  

Second, your post resonated with me because I'm dealing with the exact same issue, with one of my dearest friends of over 20 years.  It's painful, confusing, and makes me really angry, so many things.  My friend knows my attacker, and it's sad to say, but I feel like my friend defends the attacker more than me.  It's like my friend just can't apply the word "rapist" to this individual or can't connect my story with the stories they see on TV or read about.  I think people like to think they would be a good friend to someone who is assaulted, but when it comes to it, many either can't accept it or don't know what to do with the information.  

I wish I had some insight or helpful answers for you, but I really just don't.  The only thing I can offer you is the assurance that you're definitely not alone in this issue.  

Hope that is a little comfort, at least.

Blessings,

Gold Raindrops

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Thank you to everyone who responded to this post. It means so much to me. The friends I lost I felt I was very close to. But, when I opened up about being raped and my sexual trauma their response was indifference, dismissive, and honestly apathetic. It almost felt as if everyone just wanted me to keep my unpleasant feelings to myself and to keep up the image that everything was okay. I began to re-silence myself. I thought that if they could not understand then nobody else would surely care. I am very glad to have found this community. I feel seen and understood. And now that I have started to open up to more people about it in my life, I recognize that they just weren't my friends. My true friends have and always will hold space for me my unpleasant feelings. I thought they were and I could trust them but looking back I am now able to see that they never really were. So @Minccinno65! I completely understand what you mean when you said you recognized it beforehand.

These posts provided me with comfort and I am in a better place than when I first joined AS.

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Aw I am glad we can be here for each other. Yeah finding friends is a doozy. I don't think I have many lol. I struggle thanks to all the trauma I've been through so I feel incompetent in that regard. 

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I'm sorry for what you're going through. 

I totally get what you're saying. When I was raped, suddenly I lost all of my best friends that I had had for over 9 years. It's still hard to wrap my head around. But hopefully they will be replaced by people who would never do that to you.

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