to my rapist...I needed you to hear my words and see my tears. I needed to be strong and tell everyone what you did to me but you took the cowards way out. 3 weeks before we started you court martial you took your own life rather than face the truth of what you had done. Well here is that unread Impact Statement; just because you are gone doesn't mean it didn't happen.
In the time that has passed since my rape my world has been turned upside down. I was a generally happy person before and an outgoing one at that but these days I find myself withdrawn and isolated more and more. I no longer sleep but a couple of hours a night; if it isn't the nightmares that wake me it's the fact that with every noise I hear, every creek in my house I wonder if there is someone there to harm me. The nightmares don't just occur at night though, having to constantly think about, talk about and remember the details of that morning have ensured that nearly all of days are touched by the memories and feelings of that morning. I find myself randomly crying at my desk at work when I should be focused on my job but the thoughts flood my mind and there is no escape. I cry nearly every night now but I suffer alone.
Rape is not something you can just call up a friend and talk through, it's personal and devastatingly deep are the wounds it creates. As a daughter who has always been close with her Father there are times I just want to curl up in his arms and be that little girl again, safe and protected but rape is not the kind of thing a daughter tells her Father about, even at my age. So as my friends and family wonder why I've become distant I dig deeper wounds with the secret I keep.
I looked for ways to help myself, books to read, ways to cope and heal. Those books draw attention and questions I'm not ready or able to field so I purchased an iPad to read my books on to continue to keep my secret but as I sat there in the lunch room at work reading about how to heal after rape I looked around and saw others playing games and looking at social media. More isolation set in, I just want to go back to a normal, carefree life. I wish I could shed the shame, the fear and the hurt.
I've lost my ability to trust and because of that lost a relationship that meant a great deal to me. When someone you care for touches you and you shy away or they ask you why you cry in your sleep but you can't answer you know it's only a matter of time before that is over and you are left alone wishing you could erase time and go back to being who you used to be.
Although I try to turn my pain and torment into strength it becomes a burden too big to bear sometimes and with thoughts running rampant I remind myself at that moment that this is when I need to be strong and fight even harder, this is the moment I get to win and not succumb to the torturous memories and devastating emotions that are my life now.