I think it’s time to talk about it because I don’t really think I can afford to be quiet anymore. Last night I reached an epiphany that has given me simultaneous feelings of terror, hopelessness, and a strange sort of weightlessness I guess people call freedom. I realized that I may never feel completely “okay” again and that sexual trauma isn’t just something you just magically erase from your life. The truth is ugly and wretched but I’m never again denying what happened to me because I know that to deny my rape is an insult to not only myself but everyone who has ever had the same experience.
Part of why I had been denying what had happened was because it didn’t match the scenarios I had seen on TV, but that doesn’t invalidate my experience and nor should it invalidate the experiences of people who have been sexually assaulted in a way that has been commonly illustrated in the media.
Just because we haven’t all had the same experiences that doesn’t mean that our attacks are any less brutal or horrific or scarring-and they are attacks for those of us who have long since evaded that word for fear of the implication that an attack only comes from a stranger.
Just because we weren’t all hurt in the same we see perpetuated and even glorified at times, that doesn’t mean it didn’t happen.
No one can tell me that I’m exaggerating or lying or that I was subject to that sort of abuse because I was dating the person who hurt me, who raped me. And if they do, I’ll spill their blood and wear it as lipstick, fuck civil discourse. You don’t have to maintain civil discourse with a person who’s essentially calling you a liar. You don’t have to be polite to a person who is trying to instill shame and fear in you.
If anyone ever voices doubt about what happened to you, kick their ass if you feel the need to or climb up a tree if you need to remove yourself from the situation and hit ‘em with a motherfucking branch (M.I.A.’s Big Branch, anyone?)
But don’t let them tell you any different. If we don’t believe ourselves, if we don’t admit what happened, how are we going to move forward?