Scared I Will Do Something Drastic

Published: March 22, 2013
Dear TeenHealthFX,
About a month ago, my boyfriend forced me to give him a blowjob,in an empty classroom while school was still going on!(Did I mention that he ALWAYS said he'd NEVER make me do anything I don't wanna do?)Well I kept saying no more than once and he kept pushing my head down and begging me to do it if I loved him until I finally foolishly gave in like an idiot. Needless to say, I felt extremely terrible after that incident. I felt like a slut and I also felt really betrayed by him, I wasn't able to sleep or eat or anything that night because it was bothering me that I actually did such a thing in an empty classroom at school. It made me feel so scandalous and shameful and disgusted at myself. The thing is, a month later I just can't stop thinking about it. I can't stop hating myself. I can't stop beating myself up for being so weak. I can't stop wishing I could go back in time and change things. All these feelings and more have been bottling up inside me for almost a month now and it's killing me. I can't talk to any of my friends about it cause they'll think I'm a slut (although I might as well be) and they'll think I'm too weak to stand up for myself. And I definitely can't talk to my parents cause it'll break their hearts to know that their 16 year old daughter did something like that. So...to cope with all those feelings I've began drinking heavily and overdosing on prescription drugs cause I don't know what else to do or who else I can talk to. And I'm scared I'll end up doing something drastic. What should I do?

Dear Scared I Will Do Something Drastic,

You did not give in, you did not consent and you did nothing for which you should be ashamed. You were sexually assaulted by someone who you trusted and led you to believe that he cared about your feelings. He used force and emotional manipulation to satisfy his sexual urges while ignoring your pleas for him to stop.

Like most traumas, sexual abuse can cause the victim to relive the traumatic experience over and over like a bad dream. It becomes worse when the abuse victim isolates themselves by keeping the incident to herself/himself. They can become plagued with reoccurring thoughts of the sexual trauma and blame themselves for the assault which can lead to overwhelming feelings of guilt and shame. You did nothing wrong. It is easy to go back and second guess yourself and come up with plenty of “should have’s.” It is important for you to understand that when a sexual trauma occurs very often a victim can become so overwhelmed by the ordeal, become emotionally numb, or go into a state of shock so that they cannot think clearly. The person can become detached from the situation. That’s why you hear many victims of sexual assault use phrases like, “It was like a bad dream” or “I couldn’t believe that it was really happening.”

You can decide to stop being so hard on yourself and recognize that you were seriously hurt by someone you close to you. What happened to you is usually defined as Date Rape and is the most common form of sexual assault (78%) with 1 in 4 girls expected to fall victim to rape or attempted rape before they reach 25.

TeenHealthFX is also worried that you may do something drastic because you are trapped with these thoughts and are blaming yourself for something over which you had no control. It is bad enough that now and then our society’s ignorance has fueled such tragic events by blaming the victim.   Don’t do it to yourself.

People have tried unsuccessfully for many years to cope with emotional pain with drugs and alcohol without success. However, people can and do recover from sexual trauma and reclaim their lives in addition to their self-esteem and confidence. It is critical that you reach out for help right away. There is a very strong chance that if your parents have anger it will be towards your assailant and not you. You should give them the chance to be there for you and provide the support that is so important to the healing process. If anything happened to you they would be haunted by the notion that you didn’t let them help you.

If it really feels too hard to start with your parents, consider speaking with a school counselor, the school nurse or an adult that you trust. Another good resource is 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.

If you get to the point that you are seriously considering suicide or are afraid of your impulses then you need to seek help immediately. You can call 911 or go to your nearest hospital emergency room. In northern New Jersey you can also call the crisis hotline from Atlantic Health at 973-540-0100. Outside this area call the Suicide & Crisis Hotline, 1-800-999-9999, 24 hours, 7 days a week

Signed: TeenHealthFX

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