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Did My Boyfriend Rape Me?

Published: February 13, 2013
Dear Did My Boyfriend Rape Me?,

I think I was raped by my bf but I'm not even sure this classifies as rape. We were making out, and then he took off his pants and told me to give him a handjob, which I did. Then he proceeds to take out my pants and I try to stop him but he's stronger than me and he takes them out anyway. Then he tries to push his...thing inside of me at which point I'm already crying and telling him stop, i'm not ready to go that far yet. Then he keeps begging me and begging me telling me if I love him I'll have sex with him, he promises I wont get pregnant because it's easy to pull out in time. I kept on resisting anyway to no avail. he forcibly has sex with me anyway and since he's stronger than me there was literally no way out for me as he kept pushing me down when i resisted, and then when he realized that i wasn't into having sex like he was, he gets upset and tells me I don't love him and that I'm a useless gf. But I do love him, I'm just not ready for sex. Now i've lost my virginity long before i was ready to, and not even through my own actions. I know it's a stupid thing to cry about, but this happened 3 days ago and I can't stop crying randomly when remembering it and I'm even crying while writing this. I'm also scared that I may be pregnant because I really don't believe that "pulling out" crap works. I'm only 17 and I wanted to save my virginity till I got married or at least engaged, but now that chance is ruined for me and somehow I feel it's my fault even though it's not. I can't talk to my parents cause they don't even know I have a boyfriend. And nobody else is gonna believe I was "raped" by my own bf, they'll think i willingly had sex too :( What should I do? Would that be classified as rape?


Dear Did My Boyfriend Rape Me?,

There are lots of questions involved in figuring out the answer to Was I Raped? It can also be confusing to know if the correct term to use is “rape,” “sexual assault” or “sexual abuse.” They are similar terms, but different states will use different words to mean the same thing. So the precise legal definition of what occurred to you would depend on what state you live in. RAINN (Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network) gives general definitions to these terms as follows:

  • Rape = forced sexual intercourse, including vaginal, anal, or oral penetration. Penetration may be a by a body part or an object.
  • Sexual assault = unwanted sexual contact that stops short of rape or attempted rape. This includes sexual touching and fondling. Some states will use this term interchangeably with rape.

Just because a person is a spouse or a significant other doesn’t mean that some form of rape or sexual assault cannot occur. According to RAINN, Partner Rape is defined as sexual acts committed without a person’s consent and/or against a person’s will when the perpetrator is the individual’s current partner (married or not), previous partner, or co-habitator. You physically resisted your boyfriend’s advances and you told your boyfriend to stop – but he used physical force as well as manipulation (saying you would do this is you loved him), to force you into a sexual act you did not want to participate in. So, yes, based on this information you provided, this would be considered rape.

According to RAINN, common emotional reactions to partner rape can include things like anxiety, shock, fear, depression, a sense of betrayal, and a loss of trust. That said, TeenHealthFX does not at all think it is “stupid” that you have been crying about this and feeling so upset. FX has compassion for what you went through and we invite you to have compassion for yourself as well. Try not to be so hard on yourself and please understand that your thoughts and feelings are very normal given what you went through.

While FX appreciates that for many reasons it might feel very difficult to share what happened with your parents, we think that it is important that you talk to them about this. It is important that you have their guidance and support, that you not try and deal with this alone right now, and that they help connect you with any resources that might help you to deal with this (such as meeting with a therapist). It is also important that you all come up with a plan about how to best handle this with your boyfriend so that you stay safe and not be raped or harmed by him again.

If it really feels too hard to start with your parents, consider getting some guidance from RAINN’s National Sexual Assault Hotline (1-800-656-HOPE) or RAINN’s National Sexual Assault Online Hotline.  These hotlines provide confidential, free help 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. They give advice, information and can connect you to local counseling centers with professionals who specialize in working with victims of sexual assault.

While FX can appreciate that your hope was to stay a virgin until marriage, and we certainly understand that now you may have some feelings to work through about this, we also want you to know that when you get married and have sex with your husband for this first time, it will not have to be any less special because of what happened with your current boyfriend. You and your husband will be connecting in an intimate way because of your love for one another and you both will be willingly giving yourselves over to one another out of the love and respect you have for each other – and that will be very wonderful and special.  

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