Rape isn’t love, Rape isn’t sex, Rape isn’t a relationship, Rape isn’t consensual. The only thing that had my dignity written all over it was taken from me, The one thing that meant so much to me was taken from me, the one thing that made me feel more like a women now makes me feel disgusting, the one thing that was suppose to be a beautiful moment to me became a horrific and terrifying moment for me. I was take advantage of and it’s not my fault. I was nine years old when i was raped, i was raped by my cousin who everyone believed was an angel, who everyone believed he was a “shy one”. I remember every single detail like it was just yesterday, i can’t and will never forget it. I was nine when i shared a room with my older cousin and my twin brother, we all had different beds and different sides of the master bed room. One night, i was sleeping and i woken by someone crawling onto my bed, i was half asleep so i didn’t really pay any mind to it. But, then i got woken up to being touched, i was being touched in a place i shouldn’t have been touched, at least not by my cousin, at least not by a 21 year old. I WAS NINE, when i was taken advantage of. I WAS NINE, when i started dying inside. I remember trying to yell and trying to fight against him but theres only so much a nine year old little girl can do. When i did try to yell he cover my mouth with his hand, and used his other hand to touch my private area’s. a couple minutes passed and then he inserted his penis, i will never forget running to the bathroom crying while blood was running down my panties and legs. I tried to tell someone, i told my older cousin and my twin brother but, i wasn’t believed because “he will never do anything like that, he’s too good of a person” my dignity was taken for me that night and for various nights after that. I hated myself so much, i hated my life, i hated my family , i hated everything and everyone on this planet. i hated myself so much because how could i allow a man that isn’t my man or husband touch me in a way he shouldn’t, i hated myself because i couldn’t do anything about it, i hated myself because i was called a liar. It all stopped and i wasn’t being taken advantage of when he moved out of my house. But, my dignity was still taken, i still hated myself, i was STILL hurt! Then years passed, i didn’t mention it to anyone else, i kept it to myself, it was killing me on the inside but i kept it to myself because i was a “liar”. When i turned 15, him and his wife offered to pay for my cake, i didn’t want anything from him because he disgusted me. i just wanted him to be away from me. Summer, July 2015 i was taken advantage of again by the SAME PERSON! except this time, it was in MY house. and this time he just used his finger and mouth. I tried to yell, i tried to move away but i couldn’t. When i felt him on me, i just froze and cried as i felt him on me. I froze and couldn’t even move, it was like i was frozen by ice. I was so stuck it didn’t feel real, it felt like i was dreaming because it was happening all over again! I was in soo much pain, it led me to drugs. I was using drugs and popping pills to stop the pain, to forget everything that happened. Drugs were my pain reliever! 2016 wasn’t the best year for me, i fell the hardest anyone could’ve ever fallen. September of 2016 i fell into deep depression, it was so deep and bad i tried to kill myself multiple times, i didn’t succeed because i was always stopped by my ex boyfriend. It got to a point i couldn’t handle myself, i couldn’t handle my mind, i couldn’t handle the nightmare’s and flashbacks, i was them admitted into a mental hospital in florida called lakeside. My mind was then my worst enemy, my mind made me suffer! Once i told the state because i was then in the states hands, they believed me. They fought for me! I am currently in trial and fighting this case. But, i just thought i’d write my story and tell the world because i know how it feels and i know so many people are going through what i went through, But i am here to tell her it’s not the end and it does get better! Life sucks sometimes, and things that shouldn’t happen to people happen to them, But being raped does not define you nor me, We’re beautiful inside and out, We’re someone in this world. And we mean so much to so many people in this world, Iw ill continue to fight my case for US, for the survivor’s, for the little girls and little boys in this world! i’ve been hurt in so many ways but i will not become who hurt me. this doesn’t define me or my person and it never will! I haven’t learned to love myself fully yet, but i am still learning. Life isn’t tied with a bow but life is a gift. and god gives his strongest and best battles to hi s strongest angels. I’ve never been more proud of the person i am today. I AM BEAUTIFUL AND I WILL NOT LET SOMETHING THAT HAPPEN TO ME DEFINE ME! YOU are beautiful and I BELIEVE YOU!
— Denisa, age 17