After-Aftercare

It’s been a long time, but I think I’m going to take up this blog again. Why? Cause I need to type sarcastic posts to distract from the stress and hurt of everyday life.

So, here’s today’s question. What do you do when the person you love most breaks your trust in the worst way you can imagine?

I wish I had known the answer over a year ago. It was a year and a half relationship and in that time, he tore down every part of me. I am only now coping with the fact that this relationship was emotionally abusive. And, in at least one case, physically abusive.

Quick warning: stop here if you are put off by discussions of sexual assault. It won’t get graphic, because nothing got graphic, but it will be emotional.

I’m going to try to explain this story a bit… It’s been difficult to vocalize it, even just to the two people I’ve ever even mentioned it to. That isn’t because it’s extremely private or gives me some kind of PTSD, it’s because my judgement was horrible, and I am ashamed of myself for it.

I had invited my partner up to my family’s cottage. We had hung out, had fun, etc. We decided to go on a walk in the woods and I wanted to show him a place where I used to go as a kid. We got out there, somewhere in the little wooded area by the lake, and we were just being teenagers. Making out, joking around. Mostly making out. He reached for the hem of my pants and I was fine with it, as just part of the aforementioned facebattle. And then I got uncomfortable. And I said the safe word. And he kept going.

I probably said the safe word two or three times at least. He kept trying to undress me and I promise you I fucking struggled. I was halfway to jumping out of my skin in fear, and already in the middle of a panic attack, begging him and asking what was happening. And then he stopped.

I didn’t leave him after he ignored the safe word. I believed him when he told me an excuse. And I didn’t leave him after he told me that he had, in fact, wanted to continue. I believed him when he told me that he was just a troubled soul, and seeing the fear in my eyes reminded him how much he cared about me.

It’s been over a year and now more than ever I am trying hard to cope with this reality. The only thing I ever did right when it came to this was denying him the ability to gaslight me. I called him out when he claimed not to remember the confession, but in hindsight, he never admitted it when I called him out. While this incident was just one of many instances, it’s hard to say the other things. I still emotionally feel that it is somehow my fault, and I still sometimes slip back into believing his manipulation, that all of this was caused by my “trust issues.” I claimed to have solved my trust issues soon after the breakup, but now I understand why. They were never even there.

All of this seems like a sufficiently depressing reality for a 16 year old boy at this point. Not the most depressing, by far, but depressing enough to earn me my “fending off attempted rape” patch. It’s time to face up to it and move on, however. I’ve decided on a plan to avoid this in the future.

  1. I will not be dating anyone over a year older than me. A slight age gap isn’t anything as adults, but for teenagers, that means quite a bit. My ex intimidated me emotionally, and although I was just as mature as him, I treated him as a superior and acted like he could do no wrong.
  2. I will keep constant close friendships. And I’ll make sure that I listen to them. Apparently, many of my friends saw how unhealthy our relationship was, and either chose not to step in for fear of losing my friendship (and thus doing no good whatsoever) or did step in, but gave up after I had told them off enough times. No more of that.
  3. I will not fix problems that don’t need fixing. Trust issues stemming from multiple experiences with a cheater and an attempted rape? Justified, goddamn justified. This is why I have a therapist. No more being manipulated into lacking trust in myself.

sertraline, lorazepam

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