Don’t let the title fool you, for this won’t involve steamy bed sheets, loud moans and fireworks.
Instead, this is about a girl who religiously checked under her bed for monsters. What she didn’t realize is that monsters appear in all shapes and sizes. Not realizing that the devil itself could appear to be so beautiful, she inadvertently invited him into her bed. That girl is me.
I grew up in a Christian family, and for a plethora of reasons and had decided to wait until marriage to have sex. It took nine months of being in a relationship for our first kiss, and after three years he has respected my decision never to try anything. We broke up because of distance, but I will always cherish that relationship because of how he respected my beliefs.
In the midst of my heartbreak, Vincent appeared. He went after me fervently at a point in time I never thought I could love again, and I watched myself slowly fall. In spite of the tinder messages I found on his phone, and the lies about his ex girlfriend and after I uncovered his vices, I still wanted him. Call it love or infatuation, but I loved him with everything that I had, and consistently made excuses and ignored the red flags.
I made excuses when he held open my legs to touch me, and when he went down on me after I told him when he wasn’t ready, but most of all, when he put himself in me after I told him I didn’t want to have sex.
The first time, he told me it was an accident and apologized, but soon after that he stopped apologizing and started pretending it didn’t happen.
Call it stupidity, or call it infatuation but I grabbed a shovel and digged deep inside my mental cavity until my hands were calloused and bleeding to try to bury this. For me, this had to work, needed to make it work. I loved all the dark skeletons in the closet, even though I had to hold back screams when they came tumbling out of his closet.
I always thought I’d marry the guy I slept with, and I was determined to make it work even though being with him tore me apart inside. At one point of time, I couldn’t handle what happened to me and just watched the crimson bleed out of me as the water ran down the nape of my neck until I saw black. I couldn’t even go to the grocery store without feeling like a demon was pulling my lungs out of my body. There are days I still find myself crying without a real reason and the pain still resonates within my soul.
I read the Stanford rape victim’s statement on a Friday at my desk. I tried to control my sobbing as I realized how her words impacted me. “My damage was internal, unseen, I carry it with me. You took away my worth, my privacy, my energy, my time, my safety, my intimacy, my confidence, my own voice, until today.”
Most people have a certain impression of rape. They think that rape involves force, bruises, screaming and crying. While that may be an aspect of rape, that’s not only what rape is. Rape is very simply, sex without consent. Whether it’s done when the victim is unconscious, intoxicated or even silent if there was no consent.
If you are reading this, please don’t let the only thing that you take away from this be that you can go to jail for six months for rape (if you get caught). Please understand that your actions have an impact on the people around you. Whether it’s someone you love or even someone you don’t, it’s a matter of human decency and enough respect for them as a person. Please realize how it tears your victim apart. Please realize that what you do and how you treat other people has a permanent impact.
Even though you may be able to walk away unscathed, your victim won’t and they will carry that burden and those scars with them for the rest of their life.