ELISABETH

 

I am always living in fear because rape isn't expected. When it happened to me, I wasn't expecting it. I am always in constant fear of being raped again.

Nearly two years ago, my brother's childhood friend invited me and brother to his Halloween party. The sleeping arrangements meant that we were all to sleep on the couch. 

The evening of the party, I bought 2 bottles and hid them in the refrigerator so that nobody could try and spike my drink. The only person I told about the alcohol was my friend Anthony, since I trusted him. Through the night, I consumed a lot. Around 11 or 11:30 p.m. I felt sick, but not because of the drinking. I felt like something was wrong. I felt drugged.

I decided to call it a night. My brother left the party to be with his girlfriend and the friends I showed up with were nowhere in sight. I went into the bedroom alone to change into my pajamas. The last seconds before my life was forever changed, I fell to the floor foaming at the mouth as the world around me turned black. I thought I was going to die, in all honestly. I blacked out.

At 7 a.m. I woke up to Anthony raping me. I must have been raped the whole night, because there were times I felt I was becoming conscious and I could feel my body being touched, but within seconds I would blackout again. At one point I remember mumbling "no" or "stop". At one point, I pulled away from him and he told me to stop, but I blacked out cold again. It wasn't until I started feeling penetration and my body being grappled that I gave it my all to wake up. He laid beside me and pulled the blanket up. It seemed like he was pulling his pants up. I was naked and my shirt had been risen up above my breasts. It all hit me. These blurry moments of consciousness were real. I was raped. 

I grabbed a small blanket to cover myself, screaming and crying. I noticed my friend in the corner. I was in shock. I started screaming, "He raped me! He raped me!".

That morning, I was in total shock and felt very ill. I packed my stuff and went outside. I texted my cousin and told him what had happened and explained that I couldn't tell my parents because I was embarrassed. One of Anthony's roommates came outside to ask me what had happened. When I told him, he had me go inside and stay away from Anthony. I went into a bathroom and started crying. I asked that he take me to the hospital, but he wouldn't take me seriously. A large group of people had slept over, so while I was crying for help in the bathroom, there were people taking shots and talking about going to the beach downstairs. Nobody was helping me. Nobody was taking me seriously. I was alone.

It was at that point when I prayed for strength to call the cops. And I did.

The cops came and asked me for the full story. Afterwards, as I walked out of the house, I cried looking at the 15 people who were there and didn't care to help me. When I got in the ambulance, I lost myself. The voices of the EMT's were blurry and I just stared out the window thinking of how I wanted to die. Childhood memories of me smiling played in my head and I felt myself slipping away. I kept hoping I would stop breathing.

When I arrived at the hospital everything was loud and my breathing wasn't shallow any longer. I couldn't believe I was there, nor why I was there. I just remembered laying on the stretcher in terrible pain.

At the hospital, I felt like the nurses acted like this was nothing. They acted as if I was just another girl claiming rape. The cop stayed in the room to watch me. He asked if I wanted him to leave, but I said no–for my sake. I didn't want to harm myself. 

Pictures were taken of the bruises on my arms and the finger indented bruises. One particular bruise covered half of my forearm.
After this, I went to the local rape crisis center to get a rape kit done. At that point, I was numb. I still felt like I'd lost myself back in that ambulance.

After I took a shower, I laid on the floor in a ball and cried. I was so disgusted, I didn't even want to look at my own body. I was in so much pain. My whole body hurt. I just wanted to go home, lay in my bed and cry (which I later did that night).

When 2014 came around, I mentally was a mess. I was suicidal, I had night terrors, I was depressed and I developed bad anxiety. I wanted to be alone. Due to this, I didn't work or go out. Self-harm became my remedy.

Now, 2 years later, I still feel insecure around men. I still wonder if my male friends are going to rape me, but I am trying to be normal with them. I got into fitness to help regain self-confidence and feel good about myself and my body. My social anxiety isn't as bad, but is definitely a work in progress. I do still suffer with depression, but this year I wanted a life. I wanted to go out there and be someone. I don't want to be a prisoner to this. I am now trying to better my life and myself. Faith has been a big factor in my healing process. Through this, I am optimistic about a better life and future.

My legal case is still going on, but I feel they are not taking me seriously. They do not keep me updated or get in contact with me. I have to complain to hear from them. My rapist has been fabricating what happened and starting rumors. I try to tell my detective, but nothing is done. All the evidence is there. My story never changes like his has. It's like they are treating him as the victim.