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Living with Post Rape Syndrome

 
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"I never thought it was rape. There were no weapons. I didn't kick and scream and fight. It took years before I learned the complexities that date rape will leave if you don't share... if you don't face it."

When You Realize What Happened, Your World Will Fall Apart...

I can't exactly tell you when I realized there was something wrong with me. Sex is something you're supposed to enjoy, something you're supposed to look forward to. Most importantly, sex is supposed to bring pleasure.

It developed slowly but at some point I was very aware that, for a reason I was not yet aware of, I avoided sex. There were extremes I had taken... that varied from a devotion to staying single all the way to never leaving home (out of fear that a stranger might compliment me and that would mean only one thing...)

It wasn't until I finally spoke to somebody that I realized there was nothing wrong with me. Now that's jumping to a very quick conclusion...

It still took time before I was so comfortable -- with the floodgate of new emotions I'd unlocked -- that I could say everything was okay. Even now I am hesitant because there is still a part of me screaming "nothing is okay!" but the difference is knowing where that voice comes from and what it really means.

Talking about it was possibly the hardest thing I ever had to do. It did not make me feel better. It made me feel worse. Now I was forced to feel everything I had made every effort possible to avoid feeling. And I had to feel it all at once.

Picking Up The Pieces

I don't remember how long it took. I do remember it was excrutiating. I strongly, strongly recommend that when you transition (from the position of bottling it up to spilling it all out in the open) that you participate in counseling. I do not recommend medication, as this state will leave you vulnerable to drug addiction... but it is necessary for some.

After having built a little prison of confusion and ignorance for myself for years, what was a few more months (or could it have been years?) in a self made prison of awareness, understanding, acceptance... and transformation.

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EmpowHER Guest
Anonymous

I have talked, I have come out to "face" my demons, but it doesn't seem to matter, today I feel no better than when I came out and faced them. I still have points in time, as I did before when it effected me in certain ways and to certain extreemes, I feel like no one understands. That what I went through wasn't as bad as some and therefore less important. It should effect me the way it does. I have not been able to get any consitant counseling enough for me to open up to a counselor about any of it.

April 15, 2009 - 9:56am
(reply to Anonymous)

Thank you for writing, I know it's been awhile since your post but I appreciated reading it. I haven't ever written or barely spoken with anyone about my experience and mainly for the reason of the fear that once I do, it won't get any better. tonight I tried to have a real conversation with my boyfriend (who has known of the incident for some time but we both avoid the issue) and the conversation was wrought with the fact that I just have to 'choose' to get over it and have to have the strength. He is kind, don't get me wrong, he knows if I could choose to, I would have this behind me but the pressure that it is all up to me feels unbearable...what if I try and still feel upset sometimes down the road. and I said that to him and then he thinks I am just using that as a cop-out that it's not possible to get over it so why try. That's not what I mean, I am just scared. I don't want this to hurt him, or me, or us, anymore. I don't know what to do. Any advice? I tried to go to a counselor, it took a lot out of me. and honestly, her advice was elementary. It upset me more than anything, it was such a waste. I felt angry I even put forth the effort to tell her. anyway, I am sure some counselors can help but I was frustrated with my attempt. And then felt like a failure again for not being able to 'fix it'. I will try to go to someone again, but I refuse to go to someone who's advice is inferior to what I could give myself. just hoping you'd have something better, pretty much anything will be....

May 24, 2010 - 8:32pm
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We value and respect our HERWriters' experiences, but everyone is different. Many of our writers are speaking from personal experience, and what's worked for them may not work for you. Their articles are not a substitute for medical advice, although we hope you can gain knowledge from their insight.

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