Monday, December 6, 2010

A Little More on My Rape

Funny how things can take twists you didn't expect. The character in the storyline did come around to tell her story. By that time the prosecutor refused to bring charges against the perpetrator because of the victim's initial actions leaving this perp out there on the streets.

While the details getting to this point are different from my rape, the end result is the same. I think the thing victims fear most is perpetrators still out there doing what they're doing.

In my case it was so long ago that the term "date rape" hadn't even been born yet. The fact I knew my perpetrator, even though I was not dating him, put law enforcement in to that mode it somehow must have been my fault. They didn't come right out and say that to me but they did say that rape would be very difficult to prove because I let this man into my apartment, not to mention the fact I'd been wearing my pajamas and a bathrobe when I did.

I don't really understand how my system functioned to get me through this ordeal. I have few memories of the actual assualt although I was covered in bruises and my body ached. I do have clear memories of speaking with the two officers that responded to my call, our conversation and the physical shape I was in.

I think these officers did believe me. I also think they thought the guy who did this to me was scum. I think they were frustrated by the system and how it functioned. I never got the impression from them it was my fault, only the impression that the system would not be so kind.

Since the patrolmen discouraged me from pressing any charges, they did agree they would speak to the man. They threatened him with charges if he didn't keep his distance from me. Keeping his distance was not going to be any easy thing to do because we worked in the same department at a large aircraft production plant in the computer division but they spelled out what they expected and this guy really did not come near me again.

I ended up loosing my job because of this rape. After the assault each time I reported for work my pulse elevated through the roof and I was sent home. I would miss weeks and weeks of work before my pulse would settle down where it belonged only to report back to work to have it rise through the roof again.

To be honest I didn't really even correlate the connection between the rape and these incidents at the time. It was only when I got older looking back on it that I put two and two together. Recently I was speaking about this with a friend and her response to me was "Your were having panic attacks."

Back in those days there wasn't such a diagnosis. No one, not even the doctors had an explanation for what was happening to me. Eventually my employer got tired of all my missed worked and it was used as an excuse to lay me off so there I was another example of how the victim is punished and the perpetrator goes free but even that is not why this rape mills around in my mind.

To be continued......................


Anonymous said...

I am so, so sorry. :( That's terrible. I'm glad that now you're at the point where you can speak openly about it. That shows true courage and strength.

Ivory said...

I have a daughter because of date rape. Thirty-nine years ago, I didn't even think to tell someone that a boy I was willingly with on a "date" raped me. you are right, date-rape wasn't even heard of then. Tho "date-rape" gives that kind of thing a "name" to identify it by, it still gets me smirks from people when I say it. I totally understand the panic attacks.

Faycin A Croud said...

I was raped by my ex-boyfriend in the early morning hours of November 1 1997. I thought that we were "still friends." I did many things that were stupid that night. One was thinking we were still friends. Another was driving drunk to get him away from the party where he had gotten so pissed off when one of my co-workers kissed me. The third was thinking the bastard had left my house and going to bed (albeit with all my clothes on) without being sure he had gone and locking the door.
I was so trashed I probably shouldn't have been walking, let alone driving. I woke up with my clothes off and him on top of me. I groaned at him to stop it but of course he didn't. He did his thing for several minutes, then after he had ejaculated he got up and said "well, now we're back together again." He then left.
I had panic attacks for a year following this assault. There really wasn't much in the way of penetration--the guy had a very small penis (I'm pretty sure he had Klinefelter syndrome) and difficulty getting erections. But I was crushed underneath him, he had undressed me, and he hammered and ground his genitals against mine until he ejaculated. Only the physical pain was missing.
I never pressed charges because I was sure that being drunk, the police would think I deserved it.
I was also raped at the age of 18 by a guy I met in line for concert tickets. I thought he was a nice guy so I went back to his place with him. I ended up with a horrible infection and a tremendously lowered sense of self esteem, not that I had much in the first place. This predator came back later to tell me that he hoped I was pregnant so we'd have to stay together. Thank whatever powers there may be that I wasn't. Once again I did not press charges because I was sure that since I had been drinking and smoking marijuana at the time, the cops would not take me seriously.
With the rape at 18 the guy had a normal size penis, so there was penetration and it was painful. However, the psychological trauma was equally bad in both cases, although I did not have panic attacks after the assault at 18. Maybe it's because I was conscious the whole time. Waking up to someone sexually assaulting you opens a whole new can of worms.
Sorry about the rant, but thank you for your honesty. I am able to think about these events now without having severe traumatic reactions. However, I still sleep on the couch even after 13 years. Sleeping in a bed leaves me feeling vulnerable.

Donna said...

People's reactions are always so interesting. There have been times when I've been listening to or part of a conversation involving incest or rape and at the point where the person speaking starts indicating what they would do in that situation I quietly jump in and tell them -- no, you don't know. You can't know what you would do if you haven't been there, and I know because I've been there. There have been people who have been too embarrassed or too narrow-minded to keep me in their lives because of these conversations but that is their loss. I don't feel the need to tell everyone (anymore, I did when I was in active therapy), but I don't shy away from talking about it if the context warrants it. It's a good way to remind myself that I did nothing wrong; because that voice is still in there.

TinaM said...

I don't know how I missed this post.
I love your honesty (and that of your commenters also!) and admire you, you are a strong woman.

It is all so unfair, how women are raped, and then violated again by the system and other people in their lives. SO sad.
I think it is better now days... or at least I HOPE it is!

I was catching up on my blogs when I saw this... I really stopped by just to say I hope you are well and have a happy holiday :)

purple cupcakes said...

not sure what to say except that ive read

Just Be Real said...

Appreciate your honesty and I am so very sorry for your pain.

Val said...

Thanks for your brave posting...
As I surf around, contemplating this sad state of affairs (whomever coined the term "Rape culture" was spot on) - I come to my own realization that a LOT of the sex I've had has been semi-non-consensual...

Gotta sit down to post about it sometimes; it's certainly therapeutic.

Blooming Psycho said...

I sent you an invite to my Chronicles of Hoarder X blog, which I'm doing under the Faycin A Croud name. I'm hoping to one day turn the results into the book I wish I'd had so I knew that I was not the only one who struggles with this.