My Story

I guess things started when I was 14, in my freshman year. I was so, so depressed. I didn’t tell anyone about my thoughts of suicide or my constant self-harm. It was only when friends in my gym class saw the damage I had done while we were changing that I was urged to confess to my mother. I started getting help, got on medication, but at the time it didn’t feel like any of it was worth it. I wasn’t worth it.

In a club I was in I met her. And it was instant infatuation. She was beautiful, funny, she understood me. Understood my pain and I knew she did because she held the same pain. I was 14, she was 16. I didn’t care or think anything of it. Because she told me it was okay, and I wanted someone to tell me things would be okay. She told me everything I wanted to hear. So when I was texting her after I had just self-harmed, blood still on my wrist, and she told me she loved me? I was ready to love her back. I loved her so much.

And love meant sex, right? So I would lay there or do what she wanted, even if I wasn’t enjoying myself.

Love isn’t supposed to hurt. It isn’t supposed to isolate you from your friends and family. The summer we got together I remember nothing but her. I stayed at her house constantly, and if I couldn’t come over she would get mad at me, withdrawl affection as a punishment. I wanted her attention so, so badly and if I agreed to sex I would get it.

It was at an anime convention when it happened. A guy who was probably 20, 21 started hitting on me. My girlfriend at the time was punishing me by withdrawing attention and I wanted it so badly. He viewed me as something sexual and that was attention I thought was positive. I had only just turned 15. He didn’t care. That night there was a rave and we made out, and when I changed my mind because it felt wrong I couldn’t get out. He held me there and touched me and I felt so, so dirty. And since I had flirted with him and kissed him none of my friends or the person I called my love believed me. She had been using me the whole time and when someone else dirtied me she was done with me.

Writing this has made me so tired. It’s been years since this happened yet I still have bad dreams. Now I am in love again, in a healthy relationship with someone I hope to marry someday. We made love and it was the first time I’ve engaged in sexual activity since my assault and abuse. I still struggle but now, I am safe. I am loved. And this love doesn’t hurt.


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18 comments

  1. Mary Volunteer

    Hi feraltoms,

    Thank you for sharing your story. You are right. Love is not supposed to hurt. I am so sorry for everything that happened to you. I am glad to hear that you are safe and loved. We are here for you.

    Mary

  2. Janelle K

    Hi there. Thank you so much for reaching out, we recognize the courage that takes. We believe you and are so happy for you in your new relationship! Those people are in the wrong for their abuse and actions. She was wrong in her manipulation and he was wrong for touching you. You are in charge and have the right to say “no” at ALL times. They didn’t respect you and that is not what you deserve. You are so loved and worthy. Thanks again for reaching out. Have you been able to share your story with your current partner? Let us know if we can support you in any way!

  3. Jade Volunteer

    Thank you for reaching out and sharing your story, it takes courage. I’m sorry for everything you’ve been through. None of it was your fault and you didn’t deserve any of it. Your ex-girlfriend had no right to take advantage of you and use you. And that boy had no right to touch you when you didn’t want to be touched. You deserve to always be in control of your happiness and your body. I’m glad to hear that you have found a new love that is healthier and better for you, you deserve it. Stay strong, we are here for you.

  4. Northlane1991 Volunteer

    hey i am so sorry this happened to you. None of this was your fault and just know life is like a roller coaster it can bring joy and pain. Just know we are here for you and also I am glad you are doing better. It’s totally normal to feel upset because we all are humans. Thanks for sharing your story and know we all are here for you. You are loved and this is a safe space for you.

  5. Natalie M Day Captain

    Hi there,
    I am so sorry that you went through all of that. None of it was your fault! It was not okay that they took advantage of you. But, thank you for sharing your story with us. We understand that is a really tough thing to do and can be very tiring at times. We are here to support you, and we are glad that you came here! I am very glad that you found love again and that you are in a healthy relationship now. That is awesome to hear. After experiencing a traumatic event such as an assault, your journey to healing can be a rollercoaster. It sounds like you are doing well and getting through it, but know that it is okay to still not be okay sometimes. We are here for you. We are very glad you are safe and loved. Come back anytime you would like to share more.
    -Natalie

  6. Gamato04 Volunteer

    Thank you so much for sharing your story. I’m so sorry this happened to you. You didn’t deserve any of it. I’m so happy for you that you are now in a healthy relationship. You deserve to be loved and pampered.

  7. alexcostello Volunteer

    Hi feraltoms,
    Thank you so much for sharing your story with us, it took an incredible amount of courage and you should feel a great deal of pride in yourself for that! I am so sorry that you have been treated this way, and that you were introduced to romantic love in a way that felt manipulative and unfair. I can’t tell you how happy i am to hear that you are with someone that makes you feel safe and strong and loved, and know that still struggling sometimes is perfectly ok! I like to think that naturally we ebb and flow while we heal to some degree but even when we ebb we are still strong and we are still making progress, we just have to try our best to be kind to ourselves. We believe you here, and I think how a certain situation has made you feel is the most important thing, so I hope you know that we believe you and we are here for you.
    Sending love and light to you
    Alex

  8. Thomas Volunteer

    Hi feraltoms,

    Thank you for sharing your story with us. I am so sorry that this happened to you. You didn’t deserve this. Even if you flirting and kissed earlier on, that does not mean you can’t change your mind later. We believe you. Your feelings are valid. It makes me happy to read that you are now in a healthy relationship, are safe, and have managed to make your life better for yourself. You have shown so much perserverence and strength, I have no doubt that you can face whatever challenges come your way. Healing is rarely linear. There are twists and turns. But I know you can do this. Stay strong. And please let us know if there is anything else we can do for you. A Voice for the Innocent has many resources available.

    Thomas

  9. Zoe Volunteer

    Hi, feraltoms.

    I am so sorry for what you went through. You didn’t deserve to be treated that way. And it didn’t matter if you were flirting and kissing, you have a right to stop at any time you want. You should never be forced or coerced into doing something you don’t want to do. And I’m sorry that no one believed you. Just please know, it was not your fault. And we believe you.

    I’m glad you were able to get out of that terrible relationship, and that you’re with someone who is healthy for you now. You deserve to be treated with respect, and listened to. I know some days are still really hard, but I hope you’ve been able to start healing.

    Thank you for sharing your story with us. Please feel free to reach out again at any time, or let us know if you need anything from us. We’re here for you.

    Zoe.

  10. rkr18 Volunteer

    feraltoms,

    Thank you for sharing your personal story with us. I am truly sorry that you experience this you did not deserve any of it. I am happy for you that you are in a safe and good relationship and you feel loved. Please know that we are here if you need anything, you are a strong person and we are truly proud of where you are now and where you are going!

    -Marie

  11. music2799 Volunteer

    Hi feraltoms,
    I’m so glad that you’re in a healthy relationship and that you feel loved. You deserve a love that doesn’t hurt.
    That being said, I’m so sorry about how that girl treated you. It sounds like she was guilt tripping you by withdrawing her affection. That’s not okay. Affection should be consistent, and it shouldn’t isolate you from the people you care about.
    Also, what happened at that convention was not your fault, and you didn’t deserve it. You can change your mind, and the person should respect that. Consent can be withdrawn at any time.
    Thank you for trusting us with your story. I understand why sharing this can feel exhausting. I’m proud of you for deciding to share this with us because it takes strength to be vulnerable. Please write back if you need anything. We’re in your corner.

  12. JFeeney21 Volunteer

    Dear feraltoms,

    Thank you for sharing your story with us. It sounds like you have made some progress in your romantic life and that is great. It shows a lot of strength and courage to put your trust in someonelse again. Have you been able to talk to your new significant other about your experiences? Toxic relationships can be completely draining and I am glad that you are in a safe space now. If you ever need to talk through it more we are always here for you.

  13. kelly Day Captain

    Hi, feraltoms. I’m so sorry that happened to you and your friends weren’t there for you. Your body is yours and you have every right to say no or stop at any time you feel uncomfortable. It doesn’t matter what happened before, it doesn’t matter where you were – no means no and you deserve to have your boundaries respected. Even if you didn’t say one word, he still should not have done that. You have the right to leave and him forcing you to stay was so wrong. Thank you for having the courage to share your story. You are not alone and this happens all too often.

  14. MH Volunteer

    Hello feraltoms,
    I am so sorry that this happened to you. Thank you for trusting us with your story. If you are open to get help in regards to those bad dreams/feeling you may still have about the abuse, please take a look at the “Find Help” section.
    I am super happy to hear that you are in a loving and healthy relationship right now. You deserve that!
    Feel free to come back at any time. We are here for you!
    MH

  15. Ryan4121 Volunteer

    Feraltoms,

    Thank you for sharing your story of abuse. I am so sorry that someone did that to you and we believe. It is great to hear that you are getting better and I assure you, you are not alone. Please continue doing your best. I know the best of recovery isn’t a straight shot. There will be ups and downs, but I am confident you will handle the wave well. If you feel inclined, please continue have bravery in sharing your story. Thank you for writing to us.

    Ryan

  16. bknopf Volunteer

    I’m so sorry that this happened to you & that you didn’t get the support you deserved. I’m so glad to hear that things are going well now and that you are safe. You deserve to have a safe and happy life. Thank you for reaching out and sharing with us.

  17. blashea

    Hi, I am so sorry that this happened to you and that you didn’t receive the support you deserved. I am so glad to hear that you are safe now and doing well. We are all here for you and support you. I am proud of you and your strength. Please never hesitate to reach out to us if there is anything that we can do to help.

  18. Erin O'Callaghan Day Captain

    I am glad to hear that you are safe now, and that you feel loved. You deserve that. I am so sorry for what happened to you. You didn’t deserve any of it, and none of it was your fault. I know that sharing your story is exhausting, but I hope it was cathartic to release it here. Thank you for sharing with us-we are here for you.

    Erin