Truly believing this can be difficult. Finding support can be difficult. Endless questions may fill your mind: “What if I am judged and called a slut? What if no one believes me?”
Try your best to remember H.U.G.
Hold Off On Self-Judgment: You were deceived and assaulted
“I was going to a party and was dressed in what I thought was a nice outfit…had on my ‘smell good’, hair was great and most importantly, my shoes were fabulous. He picked me up and noticed my shoes—good start! He was a friend of a friend so I wasn’t concerned about my safety…until the unwanted gestures were forced on me, when I was being overpowered and smothered and…”*
*Keep remembering that is wasn’t your fault!
Understand that you aren’t alone and there is hope after this Nightmare: Seek out Support
You were raped and it may take months to talk about it and even longer to recognize that you are not to blame*. You might find that select friends are Angels from Heaven. You might find that prayer and meditation are very important. And finding the right therapist will be helpful beyond measure.
*You are not alone.
Gently Work Through the Pain
Having gone through this experience, I found that there is no easy way to come to terms with it. Early on, the negative voices that swirled in my head were difficult to quiet. The shear acknowledgement that it happened to me was hard to recognize as a reality. But I was raped. In an attempt to lessen the emotional pain, I got involved in reckless behavior. Of course the pain persisted and the behavior didn’t help.
I was fortunate*. I don’t know what I would have done without my dear friend who said, “I know you. You can’t do this alone. You need help.” She went to the library—yes, in those days people didn’t go online for information—she checked out books for me because I was too ashamed to be seen with a book on “rape”. She supported me in getting a therapist when I had no idea what a “therapist” was. Slowly and with the help of my therapist, I learned how to dissolve the misplaced shame, to forgive myself for the self-judgment and eventually, to trust again.
*I trust again.
All of your seemingly random thoughts and feelings are normal. The struggle to make sense of it all can seem endless so reach out to me. Learn how EMDR may help.