Dear Friends,

There was once a guy in my life, one that I loved, but he disappeared in the midst of the college world. He and I met at the end of freshman year, and we had a great run together. We fell in love, and although it was short, we always had a good time together. Well, at least up until the end. That’s when it all became real. Once the excitement stopped and real life started to come into play, it was over. We both had jobs, school was about to start again, and I had volleyball practice every day. He started to pull away from me. We saw each other less and less, and when we were together, he was completely checked out. I was no longer his first choice. I was no longer on his priorities list; I was replaced by parties, drugs, & alcohol. But that wasn’t the worst part. The worst part was that he did not think there was anything wrong with that. Fight after fight, I was the “bad guy” for bringing up problems in our relationship and “trying to blame him for everything”.

One day, I reached a conclusion that he was not good for me. He played with my mind, continuously pulling me in and then crushing me. Some days he acted like he cared, and others I wouldn’t even hear from him. We could go a week or more without seeing each other. But for some reason I could not get myself to break it off because there was a small part of me that thought I could save us. I was holding on to the guy he used to be, the guy that I loved, instead of the guy he had turned into. But that didn’t matter because he beat me to it. He came over to my house one day and ended it.

He took it upon himself to terminate our relationship, but then would continuously try to crawl back into my life. I’d try to get away, I’d try to get over him, but time after time he would tell me that he still cared about me, and that we just needed a break. I heard that a million times over the 7 months we were “friends”. He’d barely acknowledge me, but once he felt that I was slipping away, he’d act like he cared again. It continued to go back and forth.

After Christmas break, it got worse. I tried to get a clean break from him, and he did everything he could to stop it. He manipulated me with his words. He told me all these wonderful things, and how much he had changed. He told me that he loved me, and that he wanted us to get back together. But soon after, it fell in a downward spiral. That’s when I realized that actions speak WAY louder than words. I began to think that the only reason he kept me in his life was to use me for his benefit. What truly opened my eyes is when I put everything together…and I feel like an idiot for taking so long to realize it. I was so blinded by my feelings to put everything together. But here were the facts:

  1. He would ONLY invite me over at night before he went to bed. No earlier than midnight, and not once did we spend any time together outside of his bedroom.
  2. He would never give me oral sex but would expect me to do it to him.
  3. At one point, he would just invite me over, get me to have sex with him, and once he was done, he would go to sleep. We barely even talked.
  4. Then, we almost completely stopped having sex. At first, whenever I was invited over at night, he would just vent to me about his life and then go to bed, which I didn’t mind because I like helping people through things because I know how hard it can be. But then, it turned into something else. When I’d come over, he would have already turned the lights off and be lying in bed. He’d have me join him and then try to “start things” with me. But if I went with it and we started kissing, he’d shove medown to his dick to give him a blow job. And if I didn’t want to do anything that night, he would continue to coerce me until I did.

 

I was treated like an object, something for his pleasure and nothing more. To add to all of this, when I was trying to get over him, I met a guy at a bar that made everything 10x worse. When we met, we exchanged snapchats. Soon after, we decided to hang out, and 2 dates in he invited himself over to my house. I was very apprehensive about it as I didn’t want him to get any ‘ideas’ since we were watching tv in my room. So, I came up with a few chores to do to avoid sitting on the bed with him, but eventually I had to sit down. Once I got there he tried to engage in sexual activity, first trying to make out with me. But, that didn’t last long before he tried to progress. He got on top of me and tried to take off my shirt. I said no. I told him that I was not comfortable going any further. He laughed and continued. I repeated myself that I did not want to have sex, that I didn’t want him to take my clothes off. He continued to ignore me, and while still on top of me, ripped off my clothing. I kept saying no, and eventually I just froze. I didn’t know what to do. I was petrified. We had sex, and the whole time it was happening I was miserable. I wanted to die. I didn’t sleep at all that night. This happened about 4 months ago, and up until last week I hadn’t told a single soul. It’s was too hard. I felt like lesser of a person, I felt so disgusting. Whenever anyone asked about him, my defense mechanism was to just act casual and to finish the conversation as soon as possible. Every time anyone said his name, I felt sick to my stomach. That day, I was seen for nothing other than my body. This moment will be with me forever, but what I need to recognize, and what everyone else that has unfortunately had to go through this, is that we survived. We made it through, and we are stronger for it. Remember that this was not at all your fault, and that keeping what happened to you bottled up will not change what happened to you. So, find someone you trust, someone you care about and share what you have experienced. I know how petrifying it is, it took me months to do it, but I promise you that it will make things easier. Getting something like this off of your chest will make you feel like you can finally breath again.

I’m still not over what happened, but I am finally able to see myself with someone else again. I decided that I wanted to give my friend a chance, as I’ve known him for about a year and a half now and I knew that he was a good guy, and he has liked me for some time now. He always treated me respectfully and was extremely kind. Although, I am starting to rethink that decision. One night he asked if I wanted to watch a movie with him and of course I said yes because I thought it would be a good time to get to know him better, as we have never hung out one on one before. Although, 5 minutes into the movie he immediately tried to start things with me. I was okay with a kiss or two, but other than that I didn’t feel it was appropriate considering it was the first time we were hanging out. He tried to take off my shirt and I said that I’d rather watch the movie, but he continued to push me. I said no, and he kept saying “come onnnn” and so on and so forth. It started to feel like deja vu, I felt like I was with the guy from the bar again. I started to give in, I fell into the paradox of helplessness & hopelessness. Something that depression is very good at causing. I should have pushed more, but I didn’t know what to do because last time I was in this position, I tried everything, and it didn’t work. This situation is especially hard, because I really thought that he might be good for me. In the back of my head I know he’s a nice guy, but ever since that happened I’ve felt a little used. Situations like this are especially hard, because with past experience with something similar to this, you feel as if it is unavoidable that you are going to get taken advantage of, but I am here to tell you that is not true. Do not let your past interfere with your future. It is sad that what I’m about to say is true, but bad things do happen. It is unfair, but you should not let that hurt your future self. Don’t be afraid to let people into your life again. Don’t be afraid to love again. I know it is difficult, but I believe in you. You deserve happiness, and the people that have hurt you should not be given the power to ruin your life.

 

You are beautiful. You are loved. I promise you will find happiness, never give up hope.

 

Tattoo says it all

Journal Entry 4/13/17:

“It has been forever since I have written in this journal. I am falling apart. Depression is killing me from the inside out. Not one thing makes me feel happy anymore. It takes all the energy in the world to put a smile on my face. I want to die. I can’t put up with this anymore. It has been going on for what seems like forever, and it just gets progressively worse. Now people hate me for how I have been acting, secluded and unsocial with spells of crying. I don’t know what to do, I feel trapped. I need help.”

IV.XIV.XVII or April 14, 2017:

That was the day my roommates saved my life. That night my three roommates confronted me about everything going on & I broke down and told them everything. They told me that everything was going to be alright. They told me that they were there for me no matter what, but in order to help myself & get better, I had to call my parents and tell them what was going on.

I was terrified. I knew it was best to call out for help, but I didn’t want them to worry. I didn’t want to impact their life in a negative way, I didn’t want them to bare any of the weight I was carrying. It was a lot for them to take on. My first instinct was to call my mom, who has been close to me my entire life. Once I told her what was going on, she expressed how worried she was about me but was unsure of what to do because she was out of town for a business trip. We talked for hours. When we hung up, she called my dad and filled him in. The minute he heard what was going on, he loaded up our 3 dogs and drove 5 hours to my college to see me. He drove through the night. We grabbed breakfast the next morning and he told me that everything would be okay and that he will do everything in his power to help.

April 14th changed my life. I don’t know how much longer I would have made it on my own. I will be forever grateful for that day, my friends and my family. This tattoo is a reminder that I am never alone and that I can overcome anything.

AND SO CAN YOU! Trust me, you can get through this. No matter how hard it is, no matter how much you want to give up, know that you are stronger than you believe.

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