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WHAT'S ON YOUR MIND?

A Survivor’s Story; In Progress

4 comments | January 23rd, 2012

(story submitted by Bee, a 22 yo Chestist)

When we explain Off Our Chests to people, we've said there are few issues germane to the experience of having been a girl or being a woman that we haven't had addressed, here, in our little more than a year online.  Then we get a story like this from one of you, and realize how sheltered our view of "experience" can sometimes be.   

Rape.  Assault.  Abuse.  Surviving.  We're not sure which is (are) her curcumstance, but this is her story:

Sometimes I feel like Tom Hanks at the end of 'Cast Away'. Everyone is flying around me and going about their lives not really remembering to integrate me. And in fact, sometimes they're awkwardly tip toe-ing around me.

And then making me feel like an idiot when I find enough strength in myself to tell them that rape jokes aren't funny. They think I'm socially overbearing and too sensitive. But then remember what happened and give me this awkward face like they want to run away and feel sorry for me at the same time.

But, unlike Tom Hanks in 'Cast Away', I don't carry gallons of water with me to make me feel better. I carry words, mostly words that other people have written that make me feel not as alone when even my parents shy away from saying the word 'assault'. I only wish they had made a sequel so I could have some idea of how to start over and not feel so apart from everything and everybody.

I want so badly to be a part of the world again but have no desire to be a part of a world where people still yell across the quad "man, that test freaking raped me!" And it's hard some days to find enough words to fill the void of words that I should hear from friends and family. But how can i blame them when they don't know how to deal with me partially because I don't know how to deal with them?

For me, it's impossible to not be an activist after being a survivor, but it's also hard to be an activist because I'm a survivor. These tensions are killing me. Thank holy feminists for being able to buy books online and for people who still write things that matter to speak to people like me who rarely hear it from anyone else. {end story}

 

4 comments

  • Denise

    Posted on January 23, 2012

    You are so strong and brave. It can be so hard to exist in this very insensitive world! Have you been to a support group? It’s different than being an activist. It puts you in a room with people who speak your language. I went to one for another reason, and I felt like a foreigner who had finally found people who could understand me.

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    • Anonymous

      Posted on January 27, 2012

      I can only echo what she’s shared. Little has helped me more than being surrounded by those who could truly relate to that which others could not.

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  • B.T.

    Posted on January 23, 2012

    You are 100% right. Rape jokes are not funny, even if you haven’t been raped. Know it’s hard, but keep telling them!

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  • J.M.M.

    Posted on January 27, 2012

    You are so young and so strong and have been through so very much. You have and you will make it through to better and stronger. Be true to you and your emotions.

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