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Rape and Abuse If you or someone you know is being abused in any way and you need support or advice, don't hesitate to reach out to us here.

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  (#1 (permalink)) Old
Jess~ Offline
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maybe it is my fault - April 4th 2016, 03:49 AM

last month i was raped. it was my first time and he stole my virginity.

i feel like i should be a lot more upset than i actually am.
the thing is, i wanted to have sex with him, like badly. but i just didn't want him to be my first time. i really didn't want it to happen at that time.
is that still rape?

everyone asks me if i'll ever trust men again or to let them know if i'm uncomfortable when they're touching me like... no.
hugging my friends doesn't immediately send me back into a flashback about getting raped like..? that's not how it works for me.
and i'm beginning to think that maybe that's how it's supposed to work?

and because i'm not hurting as much as i maybe should be, people are getting suspicious.


okay, so people have told me that it's basically my fault since the very day it happened.
the first person i told, one of my closest guy friends, said "i hate to tell you this, but you should've cut it off when i told you to. this never would've happened if you just listened to me."

i ranted to my best friend about this, and she sarcastically said, "yeah... what an asshole." then made an obvious facial gesture like she agreed with him.
so i asked her what she thought and she said, "i mean.. he was mean about it, but he's really right."

and i know he's fucking right. obviously it wouldn't have happened if i just cut off all the contact i had with the guy. like no shit, it wouldn't have happened?? but saying that doesn't stop the fact that it DID happen.
it's not like i knew that it was even going to happen.
we had an agreement of oral sex only, and i thought that's how it would be that day too. but he had other plans. how was i supposed to know that?

but still, i can't help but feel i could've done more.

even my aunt, who is chill enough to help me get tested for STDs, when i first told her it happened, she said, "now, don't lie to me. if this is something you wanted, you don't have to tell me that he raped you. it's okay."
she then asked why i didn't use my martial arts training to fight him off.
and honestly, i couldn't answer her.

how do you answer that?
like, honestly, why the hell didn't i try to fight him off?? i just kind of accepted that it was happening and let him have his way.
i was in this sort of daze.

mind you, me and this guy were having a grand old time before it happened. so i was still in the mindset that we were just having our regular FWB fun...
i just. i couldn't see myself fighting him off, because we still had that relationship.
it's the hardest thing to explain.
but i guess i didn't want to try to fight him and then ruin the FWB thing we had going??
i really don't know...

and all these questions that people ask just make me think that it's all my fault that i let this happen, that i'm not dealing with it the way a "real" victim of rape would, and that it's not even rape -- because i would've had consensual sex with him had i not been a virgin.

what's gonna make it worse is that i will probably become FWB with this new guy (whom i've known for 5 years, like we have a really solid bond, so i'm not worried about him) after i get my STD results to make sure i won't give him anything.
so when people find out about that, they're just gonna take my "rape accusation" as a complete joke.
and honestly, maybe they should. it could've been so much worse, and girls are raped in much worse situations than mine was...
in a way, shouldn't i just be grateful it wasn't a worse rape? and stfu about it??


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  (#2 (permalink)) Old
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Re: maybe it is my fault - April 4th 2016, 03:08 PM

Hey Jess,

Yes, itís still rape. Even if you wanted to have sex with him badly, you didnít want him to be your first time, and you didnít want to have sex with him at that time. It wasnít consensual, because you didnít want to have sex with him at that particular time, so it still counts as rape.

Secondly, everyone reacts differently. What doesnít affect you, might affect someone else and vice versa. You could be numbing it out, or you may genuinely be more Ďresistantí to what happened. At the same time, some people may be traumatised not long after the event, others may find that it takes ages for them to feel any effects. And some people just donít find themselves that affected at all.

With regards to physical affection and intimacy, again, everyone is different. Some people might not want to be touched after being raped, others donít find touch triggering at all. Some rape survivors may worry about having consensual sex, and worry that they might have flashbacks, only to find that they didnít have any flashbacks or any reminders at all.

Iím sorry to hear that your friends havenít been very understanding of your situation. Sometimes, people might not understand rape and there are many myths surrounding it. Whatever situation, whatever the scenario, the rape is always the perpetrators fault. Saying that you shouldíve cut contact with this guy, puts the responsibility and the blame for the rape on you, and thatís not true. It doesnít justify his action at all- he simply shouldnít have raped you regardless of whether or not you were in contact with him.

You are also right that saying things like that doesnít change the fact that you were raped. If there is one thing that you deserve after being raped, itís to be listened to, without being judged. You deserve to be heard and understood, not be told that itís your fault, or that it wasnít rape.

You trusted this guy and had a contract with him. But rape violates all of that, and you can be left feeling powerless, but also feeling that you shouldíve done more to stop it. But you couldnít have done more. Youíre probably feeling this way, because you feel blamed for the rape. That if you had done more, then you wouldnít have been raped. But it doesnít work that way, because itís not your fault or your responsibility to stop it. He should never have raped you. Iím also sorry to hear that your aunty wasnít quite understanding either. It may be that she doesnít understand the friends-with-benefits and how your contract with this guy didnít include sex.

The reason why you didnít fight him off, was because you couldnít. When we go through traumatic situations, our body responds in one of three ways: fight, flight, or freeze. All responses are designed to keep you safe. You say that you were in a daze, and this sounds like freezing (dissociating is the real term). When you donít know what to do, you freeze. It doesnít sound like keeping you safe, but actually, your brain is trying to shut off your senses and protect you from feeling traumatised (which may be why it doesnít feel so bad now). It sounds like you didnít run or fight, because you thought he was a person who could be trusted, a friend, and that complicates things when your trust is broken. So you froze instead. And thatís one way of dealing with rape.

When it comes to other people, you could either ignore them, or try to educate them about rape. Let them know that everyone responds differently to a rape, and that you couldnít have done anything to stop it from happening, and most importantly, that it isnít your fault. Perhaps you could print off information from the internet to prove your point?

The other thing is, being a virgin had nothing to do with it. If you had had consensual sex before, this would still class as rape because you didnít want sex at the time. Even if you have consensual sex several times before, this time when you didnít want sex, would still be rape.

Itís completely your decision whether or not to become friends with benefits with someone else afterwards, or to wait a little while. If people start gossiping, ignore them. You donít have to stop what you want to do, just because people may gossip about it.

Try not to compare your situation with what others have been through. As I said above, everyone is different. At the very least, your feelings do matter, and you do deserve to have them validated, so comparing yourself wonít do any good. No, you shouldnít have been grateful that it wasnít worse, for the simple matter that it should never have happened in the first place. All rape is bad.

Itís good that you tried to open up to people about your experience, even if you didnít get many helpful responses. Are you able to talk to a counsellor? It might be worth looking into, even if itís just a few sessions, it can be very therapeutic to have your feelings properly validated and to know that it wasnít your fault at all.


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Re: maybe it is my fault - April 4th 2016, 03:48 PM

Hey Jess,

As it's been said, this isn't your fault at all. It is most definitely rape. IYou didn't want to have sex and he forced it on you and that is what rape is. Holly made a good point in that everyone responds differently to rape. Some people struggle right away, others take months or years, and some don't react much at all. There have been people who have stayed in a numb or dissociative state for months after a rape because they weren't able to cope with it all. You said you were raped about a month ago so I think you should give yourself some time to really process what has happened and some feelings might come back along the way.

Holly also mentioned freezing during a traumatic experience. From what I've read, I think a lot of people end up freezing instead of fighting or leaving. You didn't let him do anything to you because you were in a daze. Your body already knew you couldn't leave, and it was too shocked to fight, so it started shutting yourself down.

I like the idea of educating other people about rape, but based on how your friends are acting, I don't know if they're true friends. Do keep talking about it, but maybe change who you tell things to? Maybe you can consider talking to a school counselor or someone you trust. Someone who will treat you better with all of this.


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Re: maybe it is my fault - April 9th 2016, 04:09 PM

If it makes you feel any better, I knew I made it very clear I did not want the assault to happen, but I still think I should have done more to stop him. I think I got to a point where my body was experiencing so much stress that I just kind of went into this dissociative state and blocked everything out. I went into survival mode and my body took over my brain. The person who assaulted me was so charming and manipulative, I actually still hung out with him for a very long time and even saved his life. He made everything seem so normal, I didn't question if anything was wrong, even though I now know that is was very wrong. I finished up high school all fine and dandy, didn't tell a soul until I got into college and I had to be completely independent. It was then when my counselor figured out I was assaulted before I could even say it. I had symptoms but not even think to put two and two together...

All that to say that your process is your process... Try not to have expectations for what it "should" look like. I would highly recommend getting some outside help with a counselor so you can talk openly about it without judgement. I have learned to trust very little people with what happened to me because I never like what people say or how they react. People are just ignorant. I have a service dog and people will ask me what she is for... I would say I had PTSD and then they would ask "What happened?!", not knowing that obviously if I am in need of a service dog to help me live like the rest of you, I probably am not going to feel comfortable telling a stranger a devastating event that happened in my life. Be kind with yourself. PM me if you ever want to talk. Take care
   
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Re: maybe it is my fault - April 17th 2016, 03:03 AM

thank you guys all so much for the helpful and supportive responses. they've actually given me a LOT of insight into my own thoughts on this.

the thing about freezing, rather than fighting, sounds exactly like what happened to me. i was shutting down and just letting myself go... i was forced to accept it at that point.
it still makes me feel kind of pathetic, and like i could've done a lot more. i've heard some stories on here where the rape victim has actually at least TRIED to fight... i just wonder why i couldn't even try. even if my body was trying to keep me safe by freezing, it didn't.
i can't help but think that if i tried to fight him, maybe he would've actually stopped. (on the other hand, he more likely would've started hitting me back. i might've even died, because he was into choking me, and joked many times that he could break my neck if he wanted to.)

i've found that i've gotten a LOT more sexually open since it happened. not only talking about it and talking about what i've done, but i actually really want another FWB now.
and i don't know if that should be a red flag to me on how i'm dealing with this. i've heard that rape victims often either stop all sexual acts immediately (even masturbation) or they actively search desperately for sex and even use it as a form of emotional self harm.
so right now, i'm not really sure if i want a sexual relationship because i actually want one, or because i feel like that's all a friend could use me for.
i think it may be a little of both?? but the friend i'm talking to about it is very understanding of what happened. he even thought it was a bit weird that i had been responding to his innuendos and hints and such.

i don't know. i'm still confused.

but one of my friends came forward to the school and told the office what happened.
so i had to go in and talk to the counselor. i stressed how desperately i didn't want to get my parents involved, and she said that since there were so many layers to my case that she could just deem it as a "counseling case" and do regular counseling sessions with me until i come to a decision about what to do.
(by the many layers, she meant that because i had initiated everything up until it happened -- i invited him to do stuff that day, he was in my car, i was the one driving, i basically put myself in that situation... so she said that i could either treat it like a rape if i feel that i was the innocent victim, or i could just accept it as an act of sexual abuse that i shouldn't have been in that situation to begin with.)

so now i either have to live with reporting this to the police and dealing with the consequences of that (my parents finding out, the guy lying to the police, i have no real evidence this ever happened, the guy will be telling them all the details about me loud and clear and in exaggeration...)
or i have to deal with moving on, letting the guy go without any punishment or anything, and living with the fact that because of me being too cowardly to report it, another girl might be raped by this guy.

i don't want either option, but i have to choose one. i just don't know what to do..


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Re: maybe it is my fault - April 17th 2016, 03:52 AM

Your body froze because it knew you would not be safe physically and it was trying to numb you and keep you as safe as it could mentally, given the situation you were in. Dissociating during an assault isn't voluntary and it is almost impossible to come back to the present during an assault. I know it is hard knowing you didn't fight back, but what was done to you is wrong regardless of whether or not you fought back.

You're right in that people who have been harmed in this way tend to either become afraid of sex, or they want to continue having sex. Since you were raped fairly recently, I think you should look at this as a red flag when it comes to how you're coping with what you're going through. Having sex can be hard after an assault. I think you should take some time to figure out whether you want a sexual relationship or if it has to do with being raped.

It wasn't weird of you to respond to him like that. You wanted to have sex up until a particular point, right? So, it doesn't make that weird. Even if you responded after you made it clear you didn't want to have sex, it still isn't odd.

I don't like what your counselor said to you. You were raped, or sexually abused, depending on how you'd like to refer to it. You need to refer to it in whatever way you want to. It is your experience and she isn't in the place to say that you should just accept it because you shouldn't have been in that situation. You did not put yourself in that situation. Up until you said you didn't want to have sex, you were in a safe situation. He is the one who made that situation unsafe. He put you in that situation, you didn't. In my opinion, your counselor implied that you're not innocent and she is very far from the truth in implying that.

In regards to what to do, take some time and thoroughly think about it. Maybe write a list of pros and cons. I had to speak to someone from the special victims unit over a year ago, but against my will. It can give you closure, but it is emotionally tiring and that is something you have to prepare yourself for. You're going to have to tell someone the details of what you have experienced. You're right in that it is your word against his, but police are very intelligent and they will know that he is guilty based on his body language.

I know it is easy to think that someone else can be harmed by this guy, but try not to think about that. You can't control his actions, you can only control your own and right now, you need to do what is best for you. If you decide not to tell the police, I don't think he'll get away with it. I don't know what you believe, but I personally believe in karma and I think he'll get what he deserves.

You're more than welcome to PM me if you ever want to talk.


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Re: maybe it is my fault - April 24th 2016, 01:13 PM

I probably should have read this before posting in the other thread. Still, it doesn't change what I think of this.

I understand that knowing someone for 5 years on "good terms" can cloud your judgement of them when something bad happens. Don't let it. There are several very clear signs here that he is fucked in the head, not you. I've had some slightly distant family members who have known me longer than I can remember, older than myself, whom I pointed towards the door when they tried to take advantage of me one time too many. It was cold, but necessary. There were some negative repercussions, but it also sent a strong message to any other potential "abusers" (if I may call them that) and put them off trying their luck on me. It was about money, not rape, so it doesn't compare at all to what you're going through, but I can relate at least slightly because of it.

And this little "aura" of popularity & charisma that seems to surround him (from what you describe), does not lend him any credibility. In fact if you read the links I posted in your other thread, you should see that it is just another bad sign of who he is.

Finally, everyone responds differently to crises situations. It's called the "fight or flight" instinct. How someone responds, depends a lot on the context of course, but it also depends on fundamental personality traits, which themselves depend partially on genetics, and partially on the person's upbringing. Your response isn't any more "normal" than it is "abnormal". It is your response.

You shouldn't interpret the "fight or flight" instinct too literally either. It doesn't mean that you either "fight" or "flight". Freezing is also very common. And in most cases, maybe even all cases, ordinary martial arts training is unlikely to "program" this reaction out of you, so it is irrelevant in that regard. Mental conditioning, can do that... but most martial arts classes do not go into that, because it is far too time consuming, much harder, and not very marketable (doesn't make them money). And if they do go into it, then like I said, it is pretty hard and very time consuming. They usually just teach you how to throw harder/faster punches, twist arms, throw opponents, maybe disarm them, etc. They rarely address the underlying instincts which drive a person in a crisis situation, so you could have a black belt and break bricks with your head, and still freeze if an 8 year old pulled a 3" knife on you for your wallet.

.


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Then politics doesn't care about you either. Truth. You've got to make your voice heard, if you want to be listened to. But that's too logical for some people, so let me go a step further. Not making your voice heard, leaves other people free to hijack it by speaking on your behalf, even if they don't actually give a shit about you. That's politics. So, make your voice heard. That's not a quote from anywhere. That's just me.



Last edited by BDF; April 24th 2016 at 02:26 PM.
   
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Re: maybe it is my fault - April 27th 2016, 03:23 AM

Hey there,

I don't like what your counselor said to you. The fact is that no matter what kind of 'situation' you were in at the time you are not to blame. You were okay with oral sex. You thought you had an understanding. You did not consent to being raped just because you agreed to one form of sexual contact. You have to consent to every act or it's considered rape.

Unfortunately, in society today, we tend to blame women for being raped or sexually abused instead of placing the blame on the perpetrator.

I think that you are the only one who can decide about pressing charges. I think maybe making a pros and cons list would be good.

I hope that this helped and I am wishing you the best of luck.


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