On June 26th of this year, I went on what I had hoped to be a date with an older guy. I was 17 at the time, and he was 20 or 21 I believe. When he asked me to go out over the phone, he told me he’d buy me dinner- leading me to believe it was an actual date. I hadn’t been on a date in over a year at this time and even though we had only spoken over snapchat for 2 days, I went. He picked me up and took me to a park. We walked around for less than 10 mins as he took pictures of the sunset and talked about himself. After we got back in his car, he started making out with me and immediately grabbed my crotch. I was taken off guard, barely moving my mouth at all. He grabbed my hand and moved it to his crotch and then asked me to give him head. I complied hesitantly. After a minute or so, he pulled my pants down, pulled me onto his lap, and stuck it inside me. I winced in pain, but I didn’t say anything. I decided to go with it because I would have felt bad if I didn’t. He drove 45 mins to see me, and being the person I am, I felt like I was obligated to give him what he wanted because of that. Things changed when cars started pulling in to the parking lot. I stopped moving, and I said, “We shouldn’t be doing this here. We should stop.” He continued to move my body up and down on top of him, insisting that it was fine. I felt paralyzed in a way that I can’t describe. I didn’t move, I didn’t speak. Eventually, he decided to bring me somewhere else, somewhere more private. As soon as we got there, I was quiet. I got the eerie feeling that he wouldn’t take me back if I didn’t have sex with him. I knew that even if I said no, he would force himself on me anyways, so I just complied. I finished him off as quickly as I could, got back in my seat, and he drove me back to where my car was parked. I felt relieved that he drove me back, and I got out of the car frantically.
I know that this isn’t rape, because I ended up complying and just getting it over with. I didn’t say no, even though I feel like my body language must have given him the hint that I didn’t want to. I can’t shake the feeling that this is my fault. I can’t shake the guilt that I feel whenever I talk about this to my boyfriend, no matter how many times he tells me it’s not my fault. I wish I said no, just so I could feel like it wasn’t my fault, that I didn’t enable it to happen to me. I told him to stop halfway through, which made me unsure about what you would call this, but I ended up just letting it happen to me anyways. It’s not rape, but it doesn’t feel right. The closest way to describing how I felt after was that I felt like a prostitute, but I didn’t get anything in return besides guilt and shame. I felt robbed of my autonomy.
I know it wasn’t right of him, that he took advantage of me, but I can’t shake this feeling of guilt. I have ALWAYS believed that the victim is NEVER at fault. I have always considered myself a feminist and I have participated in so many things to help end sexual assault and liberate victims, but when it comes to myself, I throw all of that away. I just wish that I said no so, so bad. Even though I was almost positive that he wouldn’t take no for an answer, at least I could say I tried hard enough. I just wish I knew what this is considered. I think it would help me to cope in a way.
— Survivor, age 18