Overcoming Rape

Added by admin 3428 days ago under Knowledge Network

The harshest way to relate to a situation, or to empathise with someone, is having to go through it yourself.


In the past I would have been unable to help, understand, or empathise with a rape victim. I would not have known what to say. In my narrow mindedness I would have thought that maybe they had provoked the victim.

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Well, a married guy I had known for at least a couple of years, raped me. The only wrong thing I did was agree to be a listening ear, although it took a whole year to acknowledge this.

After the event I went into shock. I could not and did not want to believe that something like this would happen to me. I was supposed to be a strong character, and no one would mess with me. I did not know what to do and who to tell. What were people going to think of me? A supposedly happily married man, I must have asked for it!

I had many sleepless nights because my dreams were being plagued by the dreaded experience. I plunged into a depressive state. The thought of getting out of bed in the morning was unbearable. I could go for days in an unkempt state.

I started to see a counsellor on a weekly basis, often having double sessions. It took months to even say the word rape, for the whole concept of being raped was too real and overwhelming for me. I found it very difficult to come to terms with the fact that I was unable to defend myself.

I felt like I was a weak person with no or very little self worth, at the least. I thought that there was no point in living. I began to self-destruct by drinking heavily, smoking and not eating much. The only thing that I could get out of bed and allow myself to function for was my job.

I went through a period where all I felt was anger. It did not take much to go off on the deep end. The sound of something shattering or smashing from me throwing something felt so good. It made me feel powerful, but only for a moment.

I was strongly advised to go on anti-depressants, which I did. I was dubious because of the taboo around anti-depressants. I was prescribed a non-addictive anti-depressant, which helped take the sharp edges off my strong emotions and re-establish a balance. Whilst on medication I began the healing process.

The first step to my healing process was to re-live mentally the events leading to the rape, and the rape itself. There was no way I provoked the attack, and no, does mean no. After all, how many ways can you say no?

The second step was to allow myself to feel the emotions and believe that I had the right to own those feelings. I was, and still am, allowed to be angry, upset, and hurt, but need not to allow the bitterness to be what controls who I am.

The last step to my healing process was to acknowledge that I am a victim of rape, but use it to help others who have gone through similar experiences. The more I wallowed and let the bitterness control me, I felt like the offender still had power over me. By taking this approach I feel I am now an over-comer, and
the offender has no more power over me.

The healing process did not happen over night, but quite the contrary. I do still think about the rape, and do sometimes feel the emotions of the event surfacing again. When this happens I remind myself that I no longer need to be controlled by past events, but I can use the negative and turn it around for the positive. I can use my past events to be someone who can empathise and help others.

 






Tags: Rape,Sex,Abuse,Anti-social behaviour

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