Extra, Extra! Healthy Sexuality |CAN| Save Lives!

People get uncomfortable when I tell them what I want to get into; I want to study Human Sexuality. We’re talking GLBTA issues, sexual abuse, healthy communication, masturbation, psychosocial aspects and all the stupid myths that surround sex that cause shame, guilt and very often – traumatic experiences. The following story is incredibly personal to me, but I’ve found that it has molded my life into the path I walk now.  Please be mindful that this is a rough story, but feel free to ask questions, too.

The following entry contains some pretty uncomfortable descriptions and stories. But I feel it’s most important to get it out there. Please feel free to read it, but don’t feel obligated to finish reading it.

When I had just turned 17 years old, I dated a 23 year old man. He was the most manipulative, cruel man I’ll ever know. But he started out sweet, loving, perfect. He was manipulative, to make the story short. If something happened or went wrong, he would scream at me until I felt like it was my fault. My parents hated him, my friends didn’t trust him…but I didn’t know why. What exactly was wrong with the relationship if we were in love? *Correction: I was in love with him; he actually hated me.

I was a virgin. We’d been dating for 8 months and I continually told him how important it was for me to stay a virgin, at least until I was 18. I remember him yelling and screaming at me because I didn’t let him touch me “down there.” And he’d scream, so loud, I was afraid. So I eventually started to break down… He says I don’t love him… Well, I thought I did, but now I have to prove it to him. I had sex that I didn’t want. I figured out, rather abruptly, I was raped. But it was my fault anyways, because, I wanted to prove to him that I did love him…and so he would yell at me anymore.

Other incidents? We’ll stay away from the nitty-gritty for all your sakes’. He punched me, in front of all my friends, because I gave him a wedgie. No one helped me. No one said anything. And I lived the next year thinking it was my fault I’d been hit by my boyfriend. He called me nasty names. He scared me constantly, but he was my first  and I was young. And I would have done anything for him. He told me I needed to go to the gym. He told me my body was so disgusting he couldn’t touch me. He told me about my impending double chin and how I constantly disgusted him. He grabbed at my belly fat and told me it needed to go. He told me that I was lucky he was still with me. I learned to hate my body with such revulsion, I starved myself. I did everything I could to take the attention away from my body. But still, I was “too disgusting to touch.” He asked for pictures – so he could see how beautiful I was when he went away. To think that he thought I was beautiful again? He used them against me. He put them online when I finally walked away – his last words were “I cringe when I think about touching you.” He would have gotten away with it – I would have gone back; but I started to read about human sexuality. I learned about what “Rape” was and what “Abuse” was. I also learned that the statistics are true – there is no justice when it comes to sexual violence, or relationship violence.

The following is an entry I wrote when I was dealing with the restraining order against this guy; it was a rough time. I was also afraid that he was going to kill me… Notice the fear; So bear with me. (Also, I am safe now)

(He is a Shooter in the National Guard, hence the gun references)

One of the things that upset me the other day was the fact that **Maxwell** will get away with this. He will not be charged with sexual assault.. I have no proof. I have no evidence. And it was ‘consensual…’ because we were dating. It makes me nauseas thinking that this man, this unstable, emotionally abusive, verbally abusive, violent, angry boy knows how to fire numerous amounts of weaponry. This MAN can find me. He could shoot me. He could hurt me… And I doubt he would be convicted until it got to the point where my lifeless, cold, dead body was buried in the dirt. This BOY is fighting for MY country and he is killing … he has the capability to kill without question. This BOY is CRUEL and EVIL and MANIPULATIVE and ABUSIVE. And our justice system will not be punishing him.

His education is being paid for, while he harasses me. While he blackmails me. While he emotionally abuses me day after day… While he hit the walls and the car doors and screamed and yelled and pushed me.. crushed my fingers until he could feel them snap. This man… this BOY.. this CRUELTY is going to be forgotten. Because he is protected by the law… by the government. And I am a woman, and I am the victim. But I do not get justice. I get judgement and I lose my time. And I lose my education so I try to put you behind bars. I try to do what I can. I try to stay sane and stop the constant thoughts of dripping blood down my wrists. Carving flesh to carve, to make a memory. Here I am… bleeding because of you. You have taken it all from me. And I hate you. You are an abusive boy. A boy that feels nothing but pain and pain against others.

I can’t stop you. I can’t convict you because our social justice system does not care. No one cares that this BOY has guns and training and anger.. no one understands that  he can find me.  He can find my mom. No one understands how afraid I am of seeing him. He might be calm or he might be angry…. I don’t trust him. It drives me crazy to think about trusting him. He is NOT the man he plays. He is hurtful.

This experience has formed who I am today. People look at me and don’t see much beyond a goofy girl, but I have been through so much that could have been avoided. I didn’t know what abuse was in high school. I didn’t know what “healthy sexuality” and “healthy communication” was in relationships. I was not taught how being manipulated into sex ends up being just as traumatic as rape.

It reminds me of the time when I went to my hometown; I was searching for books on abusive relationships and explained I study Family Violence Prevention. Her response, “Oh, well, that kind of thing doesn’t happen here!” Which is the EXACT reason why it DOES happen. Because no one is paying attention. No one is being taught what they need to know to live safely and healthy.

I’m studying Human Sexuality so I can show people what “healthy” is. What “safe” is. And also, who “you” are, not who “they” think you are. We have to reclaim our sexuality so we can feel safe within our own bodies and relationships. I want to protect future generations from my experiences. At least, I want them to know what it is if it ever does happen – so they can get out of it faster than I could.


One thought on “Extra, Extra! Healthy Sexuality |CAN| Save Lives!

  1. Pingback: Welcome back, sugar! « University of Minnesota Women's Center Blog | Social Justice Advocates

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