I was just an innocent 17-year-old. Never been kissed. Never had a boyfriend. But I always dreamed of falling in love and having a fairytale ending. I was somewhat awkward around boys, and I never knew how to approach them. I was always around them though, since my dad was a high school coach. I always dreamed of my first kiss being something romantic and sweet, with an amazing boy who I was head over heels for. But that didn't happen.

One night, one of my dad's players texted me. He lived down the street and every now and then we would walk around the neighborhood together and talk. "Hey, it's summer and it's time to have fun," the message read. "Come over." I didn't see the clear red flags here, because of how innocent and oblivious I was, so I went over. When he opened the door it seemed like he was the only one home, but I didn't care, because what was he going to do with a girl like me? He's popular with the pretty girls, and I was a socially awkward kid.

We went to his room, and I noticed his cousin was there. I sat on his bed, and he grabbed his guitar and started playing songs he had written. I listened, we talked for a bit, and suddenly he was right next to me, grabbed my face, and whispered, "Kiss me." Before I could say anything, his tongue was already in my mouth. I could faintly taste drugs. I didn't know what to do. I just froze and let him continue. This is probably how love actually goes. It's fine. Just go with it. Then, he pushed me down on the bed and climbed on top of me. As I started wiggling to get out from under him, his cousin began to hold my arms down. I was completely powerless. He pinned my legs down with his body weight, and with his hands he went under my shirt. Then he proceeded to my shorts. "Just relax," he kept repeating. Twenty minutes later, a miracle happened. My dad called. He freaked out and got off me, his cousin let go, and told me to leave the house and not tell anyone about this. I, still in complete shock, left and went home. I didn't say a word.

A couple days later, I confided in two close friends. I started taking pregnancy tests. This went on for a month. I had no idea what I was to do. Luckily, I never got pregnant. But I was constantly in a state of shock. I jumped at small movements, and I could always feel his lips on mine and I heard "Just relax!" repeating in the back of my mind. A month and a half later, I finally told my parents. I was scared of what they would do and say. I was blessed that they took this well, but it was a very hard thing for them to adjust to. I continued to keep this experience inside—I didn't tell anyone else. I started to question my self-worth and I wondered if life was even worth living. Boys don't like girls like me, they just take advantage of me. Love doesn't exist. I am worthless. I then became suicidal. Every day I thought of ways I could end it all. This scared my parents very much. I had to stay at home for a month without leaving the house, with a parent there at all times to watch me and make sure I didn't do anything. It ate me alive. I finally got out of that slump when a song started playing on the radio. It changed everything. It talked about not being alone and turning to God. So I did. It took me close to a year, but I made it out, happy and free.

It has now been four years since the incident. I came out stronger, more confident, and triumphant. 

I am a survivor.

If you or someone you know is having suicidal ideations, please use the National Suicide Prevention Hotline as a resource to get help. You can use their online chat feature, or call them at 1-800-273-8255.