Ups and downs.

This is me. This is the face hiding behind these long, emotional posts.

This is me. A 26 year old who has had enough trauma for an entire fucking life time.

This is me. The woman who holds her own and amazes herself by reaching the end of the day, a little easier every time.

This is me. The woman who decided that she wasn’t fucking scared anymore and actually had a date last night, travelling right through where ‘he’ lives. A few minutes between us. I felt sick, but not scared.

This is me. The woman writing this while on a night shift, no one around me knows how weak I’ve been guilty of being, but also how fucking strong I have also been. Its not something I should feel that I need to hide.

Yes. I was raped. I was the victim of partner rape. He hurt me beyond belief and it is an ongoing process – recovery. But I’m not scared now and furthermore; I’m safe.

Its incredible how once you look inside properly and address the hurt and the wrong doing of someone you loved, the only option left is to showcase how you are the good party. That no matter how much a coward tries to break you down or falsely facts; it is me and only me that can strive to be better and to get better. He isn’t even human.

So, this is me. Strong. I may not look it and I sure as hell don’t feel if. But I’m still here and still trying.

Pretty fucking strong if you ask me.

Photography

Do you know how horrible it is, living in a crappy never ending ‘depressive episode’ – stupid fuckwit terminology.

Well, it sucks. But what helps is spending how ever long it takes, and granted, it takes a long while, to find some passion again. Not a relationship, because I’ve learnt that it’s best to just not believe anyone who says they love you, but a hobby, a distraction, more importantly.

I’m always taking pictures, yeah but anyone can armed with an iPhone etc, that doesn’t make you a good photographer does it? I can always be found with a camera in my hand, I love it, I really do.

I like having it in my hands. I like being able to concentrate on something different, beautiful things, capturing nice memories to override the big fucker occupying too much space in my head at the moment.

I enjoy people watching, wondering what is happening in their lives, you know? I’m sure people can look at me and even though I document my struggles, disordered eating, purging, destructive behaviours, PTSD, medication etc, (because it helps), to an outsider looking in, I probably looked alright. Well enough to wash and dress properly, a slick of make up and maybe even a pair of tight jeans. So I observe people, and wonder about their lives. What are they facing? What is torturing them internally? We all have our crosses to bare right?

I try and capture it sometimes. Thoughtful looks etc.

Photographs capture an entirely different picture to the one that is told with words.

Its beautiful, in a fleeting way.

Can I share something with you..?

“I’m terrified of when it’s going to hit you, Catherine. It will, it hasn’t yet but it will”.

That’s what he said to me, about the rape. Those were his exact words. I remember telling him that it had hit me and that it was ok, I was ok, that I loved him huge amounts and it was all ok. That I’d tell no one and keep him safe.

He was right, it hadn’t hit me. Not one bit.

I see now that I was weak. Staying together for five months after that, intimacy, exchanged love yous, experiences, even having to go through the trauma of saying goodbye to our (my) unborn baby. I can see now that I was disgustingly weak.

I hid away from my internal anguish of what he had done to me, I ignored it completely, I thought I was doing the right thing, for him, I didn’t care about me. I would look at him and want to protect him, while on the side being completely ripped apart by what he had done. I would kiss him goodnight at the door and then go to bed and google ‘was it rape?’ / ‘I’m in love with my rapist’ / ‘is it rape if you’re in a relationship?’.

Imagine that. He would message me after leaving saying he was missing me and I would tell him the same, and I would feel guilty about googling about rape at the same time, what a monster I was, I truly believed that I was doing him a massive disservice. I felt guilty.

He walked away from our relationship and yeah even though he was guilty of doing that, I was still absolutely heartbroken. But, I’m so thankful he did do that now, because I’ve had no choice but to confront what he did to me, what I’ve spent so much time and energy hiding from.

And now? Now I’ve finally let it hit me, just like he said it would. He said he was scared of when that would happen, and I can see why now.

You know, people might see pictures of me smiling, but no one sees me waking up crying after yet another flashback of finding myself back there, on the sofa trying to push him off me. No one sees me swallow a tiny white tablet and pray that I’ll be my suitably numb that day. People might read my writing and think it’s eloquent and beautifully written, but they don’t see me having to work myself up for hours to writing it all down and the amount of tears I cry while relieving it all through this blog. People see some of my photography winning peer awards, but they don’t realise that if I didn’t have a camera in my hand distracting me, then I’d probably be busy self harming still.

My family think nothing of sitting in the room where the rape took place, eating dinner and socialising. Well, they don’t see me going and quietly purging out the food and refusing to sit on that sofa, both of which just to feel in control, somehow. Trying to focus on the hunger pains rather than being near that sofa and remembering his fucking smirk when my hands were pushing at his shoulders, grabbing at his white t shirt.

There’s big parts of London that I am too scared to step foot in incase I see him. I did once. By chance. And you know what? Everyday I play the scenario in my head where I get to confront him, tell him exactly what I think of him and what he is, how he will always be a disgusting rapist and no amount of running from it will ever change it. That he’s vermin. In reality I started to shake, anger, fear, that vulnerable feeling again and I had to run. I ran, hid and cried. I stayed where I was for two hours, making sure he was far away from me. I felt pathetic. So, so pathetic. Like a victim which is something I hate. I convince myself that I’m strong enough to confront him and I’d love nothing more, but I was too scared.

And it’s weird you know, I stayed with him, completely ignoring what my gut was telling me, for a long time afterwards I still loved him, I wish that wasn’t true but it is. Once getting over him I’ve just been left with hatred. Not normal ex hatred, but hatred for what he did to my body, ignoring how many times I said no and stop. Hatred for smirking at me when I tried to push him off, and most of all, hatred for cowardly pretending it was all just an accident.

Now I have to medically numb myself to get through the day. I either restrict my calories to 600 a day or purge; purely to feel in control somehow. I wasn’t in control of my body you see, when he entered me, but at least I can be with everything else.

Destructive behaviour makes sense to me, I guess.

And this, all of this is what I struggle with. He gets to rape and hurt someone and carry on acting like a good person and pretending it didn’t happen. Me? I’m guilty of nothing and look at what he’s actions have caused me.

I hate him.

I fucking, fucking hate him and I need justice.

This morning.

I woke up at 2am having had a flashback. I woke up shaken, panicky and already crying. Horrible. Really horrible.

To see myself back in that position, feeling how I did in that moment, weak, pathetic, scared, confused and well, absolutely heartbroken.

I had gone a few days without my antidepressants, and as I got lower I lost more and more interest in taking them again. Its my third day back on them properly, but the chemical changes in the brain are shocking, the highs and then the lows with just a missed dose, how you can so easily plummet back down, it’s easy to see how one can become dependant, isn’t it?

Anyway, that fucked my mood up from the start, so I decided to have a long warm bath, that made it even worse as I stood and fixated on all the disgusting bits of me, the ones that show how little control I have over what goes into my body, still. A rape and now food, weak as hell eh.

I’m writing this while having my breakfast before I head off to work. One slice of toast and I can’t even manage that.

What a joke.

Keep fighting. Keep speaking.

Sometimes I find myself wondering if it’s an accolade of some sort. Like, a triumph having caused such destruction to a person. Something to cherish and be proud of.

Pretty sick, eh.

You know how some idiotic men play ‘pull the pig’ and it’s seen as fun, a game, a merit to their hilarity; their manhood, well I wonder if this destruction he caused is viewed the same way? A job well done. Certainly left your mark.

I repeat, pretty sick.

It wouldn’t surprise me as like I’ve stated before; if he had a smidge of human decency then an apology would have been first and foremost on his agenda, not dismissing his actions and acting like he’s done nothing wrong. Nothing abhorrent. I wonder if he realises what he is yet. I wonder if he’s dropped his pathetic, absolutely pathetic and cowardly justification and idea of: ‘you’re only doing this so no one else will want me’…

I’m doing it because of what you did to me, rapist.

Simple. End of. No further reasoning.

At the beginning I would cry through self hatred and guilt, guilt that I had not spoken up about it and yes, quite frankly I was feeling immensely guilty that it meant he was free to go and do it to someone else. A loving relationship, I honestly don’t care about, but if he was to hurt some other woman who just made the mistake of believing his nice guy routine? If some other woman found herself in the position of struggling underneath him, having shearing (physical as well as mental) internal pain and refusing to speak about it due to misplaced loyalty?

Yeah, I feel guilty for that, believe me.

The simple thing is this. Do I care about him falling in love again? Nope. Do I care about him having some raunchy sex that levelled what we experienced together? Meh nope, as long as it’s consensual eh. Do I care about him experiencing life with someone else? Nope, couldn’t give a shit. What I care about is him believing that he’s gotten away with what he did, rape. Not forgetting physically hurting me in front of my child. Its not on. Here I am having to dampen my soul and spirit with antidepressants daily, just to function, while he gets to pretend he never did anything wrong, nothing immoral. Do you think that’s fair? Because I don’t.

Yeah, I’ve acted entirely mad throughout this, but fuck me, I dare anybody to have a sound mind while finally allowing yourself to realise exactly what has been done to you, AND how you hid it away at the detriment to your own health.  Spoiler alert: it is fucking horrendous and of course you’re not going to be neutral, this immoral waste of flesh didn’t just rape my body, it was also my life, soul, self esteem and positive mentality.

Crazy and fucked up is a total understatement, but Jesus, its the most natural reaction of the entire situation. No one would be able to stay level during this, no one. Some days I want to post him a letter addressed as ‘rapist’. One to his family addressed in a similar fashion. They should all know. He told me that they do, but I hardly think that’s true, he’s a pathetic coward after all. But everybody should know exactly what he did to me, what he’s truly capable of. I feel so stupid now, at the time being so in love with him, feeling so lucky you know? I can see now, abuse. Rape, physically hurting me, it was never that fairytale that he fooled me into thinking it was. I want(ed) to post his confession to his friends, the ones who probably think I’m lying or just made out to be crazy for no reason – there you go. There’s your friend (sorry, the token rapist) admitting what he did to me. Openly stating that he raped me.

I wonder if he allows himself to even feel slightly bad or remorseful. I wonder if he ever has to dream about it like I do. I wonder if he ever thinks about my Daughter who he (pretended, I think) to adore and what a horrendous, horrendous warning he’s become. I wonder if he realises that not apologising for what he did is not ever going to protect him in the long run. Cowardly and pathetic.

Depression.

I used to think I had suffered with depression before; recent times, this part year and a half really, have taught me otherwise. 

I’ve never known anything like this. Its not a sadness, it’s a numbness. Its a devastating sudden apathy to every single thing that you used to love, the things that made you, you. 

I’m in bed currently, feeling my world closing in, quicker than anything. My diabetes care today has been nonexistent and I’ve eaten nothing – might as well self destruct 100%, no half measures here, ha. 

I want to crumble and cry hysterically, but I can’t. I just feel too numb to even cry, super weird right.

I just want to sleep but I’m too exhausted to, my brain is going as fast as anything as well. Nothing is stopping the flashbacks today, I hate it. I feel myself back there, underneath him, the pressure and the smells. Every nerve ending of mine relieving it and I just hate it so much.

Another afternoon spent in bed, crying, shaking and relieving every tiny detail of what he did. 

Its so easy to pretend that I’m not on the way out.

It is so easy to pretend that my life isn’t falling apart.

Its so easy to pretend that everything is ok when no one even bothers to check.

Its so easy to do what I’ve done this morning. To sit on the bed, crying quietly, missed insulin dose, missed breakfast, just wanting everything to fucking stop. I just want it all to stop.
Its just so easy to stay living in a place that you were raped in, that’s what everyone thinks. Apparently I’m hard to talk to, and it’s so way for everyone to not even try.

I just give up. I just give up. 

Hate or indifference..? 

Or just numbness, really.

I was walking home from work late last night and I just wanted to stop and start crying, hysterically out of nowhere. I don’t know how or what to even feel at the moment. People tell me that the best revenge or being strong is to improve, hold my head up high and act like it doesn’t bother me, the rape. That me being depressed is him winning.

Like it’s that fucking easy? Really.

He raped me.

There you go, easy to move past? Someone you love being able to do that? Someone doing that to you, in your home environment, really? Its ok is it?

I struggle every single day. I bet he doesn’t though, he gets to pretend he never did what he did, never having to think about it and gets to be the long distance mate, or the nice guy in the office.

Well that’s not the real him, I saw the real him when he did what he did and that’s something I have to remember daily. When he ignored me trying to push him off. When he ignored me pleading with him to stop, grabbing at his shoulders and trying to push him off me.. And that’s what I struggle with, that.

I’ve most probably been tarnished as a mad ex, and you know what, I would dare any other person to be in that situation and not to act a bit mad, when battling with that. That. 

What he did to me, you’re never going to behave well after finally confronting that serious damage, are you? That’s just human nature after all.

What that piece of vermin did to me, and pretended for months that it was an accident; knowing full well that I was so in love I would buy that excuse and everything would be fine, you know? And I pretended that for a long time, ignoring the pain, depression and anger it caused me. I hid that from everyone because I cared more about him, it’s pathetic and I can see that now.

So, I don’t doubt for a single second that he doesn’t care about what he’s caused, if he did he would be man enough to just say sorry, to ‘his victim’; but he’s a cowardly piece of vermin without a doubt.

So, we’ve been left with bad blood.

Is there a solution? Aside from either a proper and I mean proper face to face admission and apology, or the whole court case. The police already have everything they need to bring him in, it’s me that’s stopping them at the moment, depression and apathy; what a kicker.

I’ve lost another KG as well, the familiar never ending anxiety and apathy is back in full force and I can’t even manage a full meal. Its different from restricting because that makes me feel in control, which I crave; but this? This just fuels the pathetic victim facade that I’ve been hiding behind to stop having to confront how fucked up this all is.

I don’t even have the energy or self belief to make any kind of decision. How can he do what he did and be so inhuman to think he can leave it behind him? The sheer destruction he’s caused by his action(s).

I don’t find that human in the slightest.

Left or right?

Right takes me home. Left takes me to his. To face him outright, the strong me who feels able to bang his door down, grab his collar and with gritted teeth tell him that he’s not beaten me down.

That I don’t love him and I won’t protect him by keeping quiet anymore.

That I wouldn’t spit on him if he was on fire. That he’s a rapist and that is all he will ever be, no matter how much he tries to leave it behind, and I’ll dedicate my soul and will to ensuring that he never does what he did to me to another woman who is stupid enough to fall for him.

Just like me.

I’ve drunk enough. I feel brave; for the first time in months I feel fire in my belly. He should not be allowed to get away with rape, with hitting and burning me while my daughter was present. My beautiful daughter who has had to witness me, her Mother, in such a sorry state.

What lesson is that for her? To fall victim to love? To excuse someone’s downright wrong and abusive behaviour, why?

She should be strong, stronger than me. 

He claimed to love my daughter; that makes me feel sick. She’s as much of a victim of his as me. 

He’ll get his. 

Mark my words, and what’s more, he’s as weak as hell. 

Thinking aloud.

So I know I have put a halt on police proceedings until after I qualify in Jan; until I feel strong enough. But I’ve still been gathering up evidence by myself. Yes, the police have most of it, his long confession where he admits he raped me (doesn’t apologise though), various emails where it’s mentioned and not denied by him etc.

Its still very weird because, I still hold all the cards and all the power against him. I have the power to destroy him just like his actions completely destroyed me. Its just, I don’t know, most of the time I’m not so sure I can be bothered anymore. I’m exhausted, I really am. Even now I’d still accept an apology most likely.. just some justification and understanding of what he’s caused me through what he did to me.  He called my home number back in June, I’ve no idea if it was to apologise, to cry down the phone, whatever.  I just so wish I would get a fucking sorry. His family and friends most likely tell him he’s done nothing wrong, I could not even imagine protecting a rapist, being friends with a rapist, being a sibling, parent or cousin of a rapist either. I couldn’t imagine visiting one in prison, either. Amazing how being so cowardly over an apology can lead to such destruction. I write this while sitting on a pub in Kings Cross. Lots of memories in this pub, most of which are bad, I have been back with other people since him, but it certainly leaves a sour taste in ones mouth. Not really sure why I’ve ended up here, I had plans in Acton, but truthfully I guess it’s almost nice to feel something, yep even sadness after being so medically numb to everything. God. Why the fuck was a simple sorry just too much to ask for? The police, a looming court case, none of which he is even fully aware of.. I just want my fucking life back. He stole my entire being in that fifteen seconds, hard to believe but he did. Staying with him after and all those love yous and still feeling so lucky at being in love with this guy.. It makes me feel sick to my stomach now. I feel nauseous every time I think of his hands on me, his lips, shared I love yous or handholding; I just want to be sick and scrub and erase all those memories out.

I just wish I’d been free to hate him from the off.

I want my mind back.