When I was about 7/8 I was sexually assaulted & raped by my step-brother up until I was about 14/15 years old (I am currently 27). I finally got the courage to tell my parents it was happening at 15 and they didn't believe me, but I wasn't surprised. Thankfully when confronting him, he admitted to it...shocking, I know. We went to court and he got 1 year in jail..yepp just one....because my step-mom had talked me into saying that our family had suffered enough and that we needed to start the healing process and him being in jail longer would only postpone that. I was told not to tell anyone, not even my own mother, because that would only hurt our family and she "didn't deserve" to know what happened. He did his jail time and once my family noticed that his name would be in the paper, they decided it was time to tell the immediate family...but little did I know they originally told them that he had sexually assaulted a random girl at a party and that she had lied about the whole thing. I could not believe that that was the story they told them, I am absolutely furious about it to this day. When my grandparents found out the real story, on my Dad's side, they were supportive and there for me, they told me he would not be allowed at any more family functions, it made me happy. My grandparents, on my step-moms side, have yet to say anything to me about it. They also expect that my Dad and myself are completely comfortable being around him at holiday gatherings. They, along with my step-mom, think that we should be able to just get over it because it was such a long time ago and because I have already forgiven him. I am sorry that I can't get over it, I am sorry that I forgave him for myself and because I felt like I had to, I am sorry that apparently my comfort and safety isn't important to you...but mostly I am sorry that you can't understand what I went through for 7/8 years and how what he did has continued to have an effect on my life.
The last few years of my life have consisted of a whirlwind of milestones scattered with abuse. After my junior year of college I was heartbroken and lost and after finally letting go of an emotionally draining on and off relationship I decided to take time for myself. I spent the summer and the remaining months working on myself until my senior year began. Sometime in mid August, I was swept up by a guy that ended up doing more harm then good. I was told he was great, and that he would treat me like a queen, yet all I got in return were vague messages, new insecurities and a flood of doubt as I begin to watch him drift away as other girls closer to him began to peak his interest. 6 months came and went and I found myself heartbroken yet again 2 days before my 22nd birthday. February ended and I slowly began to deal with the mess that unfolded 2 months before my college graduation. To this day it pains me to think that in May of 2018 I made the worst mistake of my life. I allowed myself to let my guard down and let myself get distracted by a boy who shall remain nameless. He made me feel like I was worth something, but something in my gut told me something was not right. Those feelings that I had were right. After two months of back and forth I finally agreed to date him, and dismissed these feelings as insecurities caused by past relationships. For 3 months I found myself constantly battling my inner emotions to be with someone I did not love. After being contacted by an ex boyfriend and realizing that I was still not over the past I decide to end things once and for all with the unnamed boyfriend. What should have been a simple breakup became 1.5 years of grueling abuse. I was stalked, harassed, threatened, and manipulated. I was told I was a prize, and it was said that if I didn’t get back with him suicide wold be the only option. As a self respecting educator as well as a decent human being I did not want this outcome, so I reported these matters to my school. The issues were temporarily resolved, until I again found myself tangled in a web of lies. I lost friends over this matter and for months I believed that misery was a norm and that this is how everyone felt. I was a shell of myself, lifeless, scared and trapped. Time passed and I graduated with my MAT in 2018. I got away from the toxicity at my school, and I began to rebuild. In September of 2018 I connected with a guy that I happened to go to college with. We ran in the similar social circles, but we never friends. Though I was warned that I needed time to myself something in my gut told me to go on a date with him. Trusting myself was the best decision I could have ever made, because from our first date until now James has brought nothing but laughs, smiles and pure happiness into my life. His personality and demeanor made me feel alive again. My attitude changed, personal goals and overall moral. He supported me and pushed me to finally take the steps I needed to resolve the issues I had been facing for once and for all. I am a huge believer in personal growth and self advocacy, but I will never be able to find the words to say how much I love and appreciate every bit of sunshine and happiness James has brought into my life. The door to my past has finally been sealed for good and I am now in a place where I am enthusiastic to see the bright future ahead.