Saturday, April 20, 2013

Without My Consent: A Guest Post

April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month. I dream of a world when we don't need to raise awareness for sexual assault, but sadly, we're not there yet. The more I speak out on sexual assault and consent, the more men and women come forward and confide in me. Another friend of mine asked me if she could share her story.

I want to preface this by saying that when I first read her guest post the other night, I started crying. Beau had to hold me for about ten minutes until I could stop. When I tweet angry things, and when I argue passionately on my blog, it's because hearing these stories from people I love just wound me so deeply.

I was anything but innocent (and definitely wasn’t a virgin), but that still doesn’t change the fact that it is my choice who I do and don’t have sex with. Just because I had sex with your friend doesn’t mean that I am obligated to have sex with you. Just because I had sex with you previously doesn’t mean I am obligated to have sex with you again. These are some fundamentally misunderstood issues in our culture.

You, and only you, are in control of your sex life in every single instance, no exceptions.

I was violated without my consent.

Because I have had sex before, my friends wrote it off as me getting what I had coming. The fact of the matter is that this philosophy on sex is NOT okay.

This is my story.
Like many other girls in college I liked to have fun, drink, occasionally hook-up with a hot guy in a non-committal situation, the usual. One night it went a little too far. I was invited to go out to hookah with some guys from my school’s soccer team. They were cute so I agreed to go. The night took us from the hookah lounge to back to the dorms where we made the unfortunate decision to drink.

I was having whipped vodka with coke—it didn’t seem to be that strong but I didn’t make the drink myself. Yet another mistake I’ll be sure not to make again. I was with two of my friends and four soccer players. We played drinking games for about an hour. I don’t remember having anymore than 2 or 3 mixed drinks, but my friends were getting tired and wanted to leave. I lived 2 floors down in the dorm building we were in so I decided to stay a little longer. That’s were the trouble began.

I’m not exactly sure how it happened, but at some point the party moved to my room with two of the guys, one who I had previously hooked up with the previous school year. Once we were in there, a bottle of tequila appeared, and we began taking shots. I felt so woozy. I couldn’t figure out why because I didn’t think I had drank all that much.

We started playing truth or dare, which quickly turned into dare. The boy that I had been with before was leading the game. He told the other guy to take my shirt off and then to kiss my neck. I didn’t object, but I remember thinking that I should. I knew it was a bad idea and that something bad was about to happen, but it was like it was out of my control at that point to say the word no.

The next thing I can remember (I apologize because this is graphic) was feeling something in my mouth. I was confused because I had no idea what it was. Then slowly I realized that it was a penis—whose, I didn’t know. I also felt someone behind me. It was an out of body experience feeling this happen because I wanted to yell STOP, but I couldn’t. After a few moments I found my voice and pushed it out of my mouth and yelled stop.

I told them to stop and to get the fuck out of my room. I can remember screaming that at them. I was completely naked so I pulled on the cami that was lying on the ground next to me. It was then that I felt all the alcohol and whatever else coming up. They left while I was puking all over myself into the sink.

I felt disgusting so I got into the shower with the shirt still on and just sat down. I don’t know how long I let the hot water run over me. It felt like an eternity. I didn’t know how to process what just happened. I had just had a threesome, but I couldn’t remember any of it. I felt more disgusting than I can even possibly describe. After I got out of the shower I didn’t bother with drying off or brushing my hair. I just laid in my bed and passed out.

It took me a while to tell my friends about what had happened. I felt so dirty and like they would judge me. Their reaction wasn’t what I had expected. They didn’t really care all that much. They told me I’d already had sex with one of them and I shouldn’t have gotten so drunk. I’m not sure but hearing that may have even been worse than what happened to me.

Belle is actually the first person to make me feel validated in describing what happened to me as rape, or at least a violation of my body. That was more incredible to hear than anyone can imagine. To hear that what happened to you WAS wrong and isn’t okay. I know that I chose to drink, but you cross a line when you have sex with someone who is only semi-conscious.

Going to a small school I have to see those to boys nearly everyday. While one of them hasn’t been able to look me in the eye since, I like to think that that’s remorse; the other talked to me about it and said, “I liked it.” Who is he to tell me that I liked having sex with two people I didn’t want to be having sex with? Who is he to tell me I enjoyed it when I screamed at him to stop?

As Belle has been saying and I will continue to say, we need to redefine consent in our society. Just because I didn’t verbally say no doesn’t mean that I said yes or agreed to anything that happened to me. I’m not exactly sure what all did happen. I’m not sure if there was more than alcohol in my drink, though I suspect strongly there was. But what I am sure of is that it wasn’t okay.

To any other girls out there that have had similar experiences I just want you to know that it’s not your fault. You are not a slut or a bad person. You always have a choice regardless of how many times you’ve had sex with someone or whom else you’ve chosen to have sex with. It is always your choice.


  1. Thank you so much for having the courage to share this. I've been in an eerily similar situation (college campus, drinking party with girlfriends & a few guys, being drunk, consenting to KISSING, and getting taken advantage of). Thankfully for me, our stories ended a little differently because I was able to snap out of the drunken stupor I was in. Nevertheless, the situation was awful and I, too, had friends who were unsupportive because I "put myself in a suggestive situation."

    My heart literally hurts for you. I couldn't agree more with your feelings - you WERE raped and taken advantage of - and agree 110% that just because you have had sex before, even sex with that person, it does not go without saying that consent is YOURS to give or not. I just wish that there was justice for you when it comes to those two boys.

    Again, thanks for sharing, and thank you Belle for posting this. XO

    1. I welcome guest posts. It just saddens me that two of my friends needed to guest post about being sexually assaulted. Neither of them had friends who took them seriously. It absolutely breaks my heart. Giving them a platform to speak out against sexual violence is the least I can do for them.

  2. A similar thing happened to me in high school. It was my 'first time' and I was raped by a friend. I do not remember it, but was told I 'wanted it'. He knew I had been molested as a child. He said he helped me get over my fear. Because of the marks he left on my body, I had to explain to my friends what had happened. A person who I thought was a friend felt hurt that I had done this with someone other than him, ignoring the part where I said I didn't remember, and had not knowingly ingested more than one drink and definitely no drugs. By the end of the week I was a 'bitch' 'slut' 'whore' 'prostitute'. I lost all of my school friends because they didn't want to get a reputation like me. In the end I was so lonely I willingly dated the boy who had raped me. Our relationship was emotionally close and physically violent. He would have me have sex with his friends for drugs. I have never told anybody the full extent of this. My closest friends know it as 'my first time was with a friend while I was unconscious, and I was stupid enough at the time to believe him when he said I wanted it, even though there were obvious marks on my body showing he had to force my legs open.'
    My current friends have never seemed to realise that this was in fact rape. As someone known for partying, this story was met with shrugs, a play with fire and you get burnt story. My first kiss, touch, boyfriend and lover were my rapist, because he was the only one who gave a damn about me, which really shows how murky areas of consent and violation can be... And the extent to which slut-shaming in a religious based community can change a persons reaction to it.
    I am now abstaining by choice, until I find someone with whom to spend the rest of my life with, who will respect my body, and who will understand that I wasn't a slut who got herself into a bad situation, I was a virgin betrayed and discarded by supposed friends. And due to that I went on to engage in bad sexual practices that I would never have chosen .
    Thank you for your blog, and this piece, I am glad to realise I am not alone. And especially glad of your religious feminism, and your acceptance of different walks of religion and feminism. I feel like a weight has been lifted from my shoulders just knowing someone with your views exists in the world, and is supportive of this guest poster.


Thanks for reading and commenting!

Anonymous commenting disabled while my mom is sick.

Comments are moderated because I receive a lot of spam, and I think CAPTCHA is annoying. I reply to most of your comments within the comment section because it inspires discussion between readers. For first-time commenters, I try to reply by email.

Yes, you can comment anonymously. Yes, you can disagree with me. However, as of 05/31/2013, if you are commenting anonymously, and your words are hateful or abusive, I will publish these at my discretion. I like that my blog can be a forum for discussion, but anything that blames or mocks survivors of sexual assault will NOT be tolerated.


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