It was November 30, 2013. I was a freshman in Memphis, TN. I was was 15 years old and a virgin. I had just finished spending the day with my cousin. They came down to visit from Chicago for Thanksgiving. I was going over to my friends house later that night to help her set up for a party that she invited me too. It was her 18th birthday in a couple of days. My mom dropped me off and we got started. About 2 hours later people started to show up. I recognized some people that went to school with us. I had 2 beers and a couple of shots of Fireball. After a while a bunch of us went upstairs, shared a joint, and played spin the bottle. I ended up kissing her cousin 3 times. Around 1:30 or 2:00 in the morning the party was dying down, she asked me if I could stay the night and help her clean up the next day. I said yes because I knew that her mom was gonna be in Mexico for a while and it was just her and her brother. He was 21 at the time and I figured they could use the extra help. I called my mom to see if it was OK and she said sure. My friend gave some sweatpants I could change into so that I could go to sleep. I figured her brothers friend and their cousin had left. Her brother went to bed with his boyfriend. She had a single bed so it wouldn’t fit both of us. She slept in her bed and I slept on the floor with a blanket and a pillow. About 30 minutes later, her cousin came in, got under the blanket with me, grabbed me around the waist, and pulled me across the floor towards him and wouldn’t let go. He then proceeded to pull down and pants, take of his, and rape me. I tried to push him away and he just rolled me over on my back, got on top of me, put one hand over my mouth and told me to calm down. After that he just held me really tight around the stomach. I started to feel really heavy and didn’t move. I just laid there trying to go to sleep, hoping that when I woke up it would all just be a night mare. A few minutes after he laid there holding me, my friend woke up and they talked for a while as he put his hand inside of me and started kissing my neck. I just prayed that she would come over and came him stop instead she just talked to him some more, rolled over and went back to sleep. It took a year and a half to tell someone. Back in September of 2015, I finally told my best friend hoping that she would just give me the support that I was looking for. Instead I was met with the phrase, “No you weren’t and you’re a lair.” After that I thought that I shouldn’t ever tell anyone again. I realized that not everyone was as cruel as her and I told my parents recently. They just hugged me and told me to go to bed. We don’t talk about it to this day. I started to wonder how much more I could take but once I saw Brave Miss World then I knew that things will better. The next person I tell will be someone that will support me no matter what and will be someone that deserves to know me enough so that I will tell them. I have learned to deal and am currently trying to cope day by day.
— Kayla Wilburn, age 18