“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.