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» Scarleteen Boards: 2000 - 2014 (Archive) » SCARLETEEN CENTRAL » Support Groups » Dealing with Rape

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Author Topic: Dealing with Rape
Lookitsmyusername
Neophyte
Member # 50039

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First I just wanted to say that stumbling across this website was such a blessing and it has been incredibly helpful. Seven months ago I was raped by my boyfriend, I thought it was my fault and repressed any feelings I had about it. Through a friend and this website I've come to the realization that it wasn't my fault, but I don't know how to handle it now. I can't tell me parents for a list of reasons, which rules out professional help. I'm not ok, I feel like I need to talk about it but I don't know what to say and I don't want to burden anyone. Now that I've allowed myself to be emotional about this it's overwhelming. I feel like breaking down. He was my best friend, he said he loved me, I don't understand why he thought he could decide for me. I don't know why he didn't stop, especially when I started bleeding so profusely. I feel lost, any advice would be appreciated.
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Heather
Executive Director & Founder
Member # 3

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I'm so glad we've been of help to you, and so glad you're moving away from self-blame. Hooray for you!

We're happy to try and help you find counseling/support resources if you like, and your parents don't have to know if you don't feel ready to disclose to them yet. As well, I don't know about you, but supporting the people I care about is never a burden. So, if you want to disclose to anyone in your life, I'd suggest you let go of the idea that asking for that help and support is an unwanted burden. It most likely is not.

We're also happy to listen and get started on talking here if you like. Would you like me to start talking a little about the things you asked about?

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me • Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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September
Scarleteen Volunteer
Member # 25425

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Welcome to Scarleteen, Look. I'm so sorry to hear what you've been through.

Please know that we will never be burdened by anything you would like to say, and we will gladly listen to you if you just want to talk about what happened, or work through any feelings you may have around this now. We're here to help, so don't worry about us, okay?

Let's start with by finding you someone you can talk to, so you don't have to feel so alone in all of this. Is there anyone in your life (friend, relative, mentor, etc) that you can confide in?

As for professional help, not being able to tell your parents certainly doesn't make that impossible. Though if you want, we can also talk about why you think you can't talk to your parents, and see if there isn't a way, after all. But taking them out of the picture, you can still approach someone like a school counselor, or you can look into rape crisis centers near you. (RAINN lists centers on their web site, or you can let us know your ZIP code and we can take a look for you.)

What else can we do for you? Is there anything specific that you need from us?

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Johanna
Scarleteen Volunteer

"The question is not who will let me, but who is going to stop me." -Ayn Rand

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Lookitsmyusername
Neophyte
Member # 50039

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Sorry I wasn't very specific, I guess I'm just don't know what to do next. I want to stop feeling like this (and do it independently) do you have any ideas how? And Heather if you could clear up any of those questions for me I'd really appreciate it.
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Heather
Executive Director & Founder
Member # 3

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quote:
He was my best friend, he said he loved me, I don't understand why he thought he could decide for me. I don't know why he didn't stop, especially when I started bleeding so profusely.
One of the toughest things about a question like this is that all people who rape don't share the same motivations. Most typically, people who rape do so either out of core motivations like out of anger, to humiliate someone, or to assert their power. Sometimes from more than one of those places.

Not knowing your ex, I can't know where he was coming from. But I also can know that saying we love someone and actively loving are different things: the former is a lot more challenging, whereas the latter can be very easy. Additionally, many people who abuse others do earnestly think they love them, but don't have the self-awareness to realize that what they think of as love -- which is more often control, validation, ownership -- isn't love at all.

Of course, while it's far more rare, we do always need to leave room for the people who really did not intend to rape anyone, but just have very messed up ideas of what sex is supposed to be like. Again, rape-as-misunderstanding is not at all common, and is more often an excuse than a truth, but now and then, it does happen.

In terms of how to manage and process your feelings around this, would you like my help in seeking out some in-person supports? Like I said, you don't have to tell your parents to get those. If that's something you want, we can usually find resources with just a zip code.

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me • Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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Lookitsmyusername
Neophyte
Member # 50039

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I don't feel comfortable with giving out my zip code over the internet, though I really appreciate your offer. Your answers have being extremely helpful though, thank you. I have just one more question (sorry it seems so shallow under the circumstances) I began a new relationship before I came to this revelation about not being at fault. He is wonderful but I am his first girlfriend and I don't want to overwhelm him but I don't want to keep secrets so should I tell him about being raped or not?
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Heather
Executive Director & Founder
Member # 3

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That's okay. In the US, if you feel comfortable doing it by phone, you can call RAINN's hotline, and they can connect you with local service,s too. They're at 1-800-656-HOPE.

I don't think your question is shallow, and I hope you realize that just because any of us have been assaulted does not mean that any other experience we have in life is expected to have the same kind of gravity when we talk about assault. [Smile]

With this new relationship, are you two becoming sexual yet or getting close to it?

--------------------
Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me • Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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Lookitsmyusername
Neophyte
Member # 50039

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No, we've been taking it very slow. Honestly the idea of having sex terrifies me.
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Lookitsmyusername
Neophyte
Member # 50039

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And I'll give the hotline a try, thank you. =)
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Heather
Executive Director & Founder
Member # 3

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Okay. So, for now, I'd say that unless you feel close enough to him to share that, there's no reason you have to.

If and when things start becoming sexual, it'll likely be pretty important that you do share it, or at least share what you need to in order to have consent go the way you need it to and to best avoid triggers.

But otherwise, it's really about you and what you feel comfortable sharing or don't.

--------------------
Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me • Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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Oskar
unregistered


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Hey Look (sorry your name is kinda long [Wink] )!

I signed up to these forums just so I could reply to your topic. I want to reply because I currently am in the same situation, only 'the other side'; my girlfriend was raped about a year ago.

We've been in a relationship for almost a month now, and of course there was some time spent flirting before that. I am totally into her and she's totally into me. She's also my first girlfriend (actually she's the first girl I ever kissed! - she was quite surprised when I told her)

About 1 or 2 days into the relationship (deciding when a relationship starts is quite arbitrary...) she told me she was raped. I was shocked. This beautiful, smart, wonderful girl was raped. I couldn't bear the thought! The only thing I wanted to do was support her, hug her, be there for her. So that's what I did. Ever since I try to be there for her. We've talked about it extensively; what I should do when she gets a sort of 'flashback', at what pace we want to advance through the several stages of sexy-things, etc.

At the risk of making it sound wrong: I was kind of happy she told me she was raped. I was NOT AT ALL happy with the fact that she was raped, but I was happy with the fact that she communicated it with me. Now I know why she's sometimes in a crappy mood. Now I know it's not me, but her past. Now I know what has happened and that I should support her. If she hadn't told me, I would be going crazy...

Now on to you. First of all, it's all about you. You need to decide what you want, we can't decide for you. First of all, if you haven't already, I suggest you DO contact a professional. My girlfriend told me this has helped her a lot.
Also, I suggest you DO tell your parents, though of course I don't know your reasoning behind not telling them.
If you trust your boyfriend enough, I think you should tell him about what happened. If he's a good boyfriend, he'll support you. (and frankly, I think that's his job)

Good luck!

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wanting2forget
Neophyte
Member # 51132

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(lookitsmyusername) i know how u feel
I STILL FEEL LIKE ITS MY FAULT AND SO FAN NOTHING HAS BEEN ABLE TO CHANGE MY MIND!
I wish i knew why he did this to me. i dream cry and scream all the time thinking i did something wrong. I havent told my parents but i want help. i dont know how to if i cant tell them. if u want we can talk maby that would be good for both of us!

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Confused, but not disoriented!

Posts: 1 | From: charlotte, north carolina | Registered: Dec 2010  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
   

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