My Side of the Story: I’m Sorry If Assaulting Me Hurt You
I was trying to find someone special. And as much as I wanted you to be it, I knew you weren’t. And I tried to tell you that. I thought I had. But I don’t think you heard. Because after throwing out phrases of reassurance and feminist ideals that treated me as an equal and and made me feel comfortable, you pinned me down to the carpet.
Yes, I will admit that I tried to go along at first. I didn’t want to hurt you. I kissed you back, and I tried to move with you.
And when your hands kept moving toward the underside of my shirt or the back of my pants, I hoped to god you wouldn’t touch me and gently guided them away. I really didn’t want to hurt you.
But as I stopped returning the kisses, and I stopped moving with you, you didn’t share the same caution.
You were thrusting in to me so hard I couldn’t make sense of how a body could hurt another like that. I was certain in that moment that there’d be bruises tomorrow. And I tried to move from underneath you, but you were too strong.
This is when it started to seem like I wasn’t even myself—like I wasn’t even there in that moment. Like all I could do was lay there and soon it would be over.
But it felt like it went on forever. And soon I couldn’t breathe.
I tried speaking. But you didn’t listen. You didn’t even stop to hear or answer me.
Without any help or invitation you pulled up my shirt and started squeezing and kissing. I hated it. I couldn’t believe you were able to do that. I couldn’t believe I couldn’t stop you. I hoped to god that you wouldn’t take anything else off me.
And all thoughout this you’re still hurting me with the same force and what felt like an increasing intensity. And I was hurting. You were coming at me so hard for so long, I remember thinking something in my body was going to have to give. How long can someone sustain that feeling?
And I’m trying to talk to you. But everything I say goes ignored. And that’s when I started to push.
I put my hands on your chest and pushed as hard as I could.
You didn’t budge. You didn’t even miss a beat.
I couldn’t understand what else to do. I was panicking. I just wanted to get up so badly and I couldn’t fathom the fact that I was physically incapable of doing that. My body repeatedly moved to sit up almost on its own—I don’t remember thinking to do that, I just remember it happening almost automatically multiple times quickly, almost manically. But I failed.
And I was somehow able to squeeze out something that made you stop for just a moment. Because you misinterpreted what I was saying, and you thought it’d be something you wanted to hear. I didn’t realize that in the moment. All I realized was that you had eased up. That I had enough room to squeeze out from underneath you. That it was over.
And I felt so overwhelmed with guilt. I felt like I was unfairly depriving you. Like I was being unreasonable.
I can’t believe the number of times I asked you if you were okay. Because I was so worried I had hurt you.
I was shaking as we left that room. I haven’t been back there since.
And I felt as if I was going to puke and I couldn’t even understand why.
It was my fault.
That’s all I could think.
All I could think was how badly I felt for messing things up. I couldn’t even comprehend what had happened to me.
It took me 24 hours to finally admit to myself that it was assault. It was a week before I reported it. And two months before I decided to add your name to that report.
I still constantly find myself apologizing when it comes to what happened. And sometimes I feel so confident that I did the right thing. But other times I feel awful.
And I knew how long Title IX cases took. But I didn’t know how much of me they’d take.
I think about what happened everyday. Some days, it’s all I think about.
And then I hate myself for thinking about it. I tell myself that I’m overreacting and this shouldn’t still be affecting me.
I’m convinced my friends are tired of hearing about it. But I’m not done talking about it. And simultaneously, I never want to talk about it. There’s never been something I’ve had a harder time talking about—thinking about. But I find myself doing it all the time.
But the decision has been made. What’s happened happened. I don’t know what more I can accomplish by rehashing things in my head.
And even now as I relive what happened, and I try to remind myself that I made the right decision, I can’t even let myself finish writing this without saying I’m sorry.
How messed up is that?
— Survivor, age 20