I’m sharing my first story. It’s not a story about the first time something like this happened to me. But this is the story that made me realise I wanted to talk, to share, and to make people listen.
I was about 18 or 19, and I went for a night out with my best friend. We went to a club and got quite drunk. Drunk enough to be having fun, but not so drunk we didn’t know what we were doing. We met two guys and started talking to them. Looking back now, I think they were older, in their 20s maybe. We spent a lot of the night dancing and drinking with them. I’m sure there was flirting, I know we didn’t kiss them. Not that that matters.
The night was coming to an end and they asked if we wanted to carry on partying with them at their place.
At this point I would usually try and justify and defend myself, we were young, we were naive, we were drinking. But it doesn’t matter, none of that matters. We were having fun so we said yes and went back to their place.
It was a flat in a house with other flats. I remember the flat being so bare, there was hardly any furniture, it looked like nobody lived there, but honestly it didn’t set off alarm bells for me. I just thought it was a bit weird and ugly.
I remember sitting on their sofa with my friend and having a couple of drinks, and quickly I started to feel incredibly drunk, sick and dizzy. I said I needed to lie down and didn’t feel well. One of the men showed me to a bedroom and left me on the bed and I fell asleep. I remember there weren’t even any sheets or covers, I had my coat over me to keep me warm.
The next thing I remember is waking up with one of the men on top of me. I asked him to stop but he tried to convince me to carry on. I remember him kissing me and feeling repulsed by him. I eventually shouted and pushed him off. I think it scared him. I went back into the room where my friend was, fortunately still just sat talking to the other man. I said I wanted to leave. They tried to make us stay.
I remember desperately trying to book a taxi but having no signal or not being able to get through (this was well before Uber). We got out the flat but they still tried to make us come back. We must have been arguing as an older couple came out of their flat, it was around 5 or 6am and they asked if we were okay.
I lied and said we were fine we were just waiting for a taxi. The look on their face told me they knew I was lying, and the men went back into the flat. The couple waited with us until the taxi finally arrived.
I remember feeling relief and so happy to be going home. I have no idea what I said to my friend, but I’m almost certain it was something like ‘god that was close, that could have been really bad’
We didn’t talk about that night again for 11 years. I convinced myself I had made it up and he didn’t do anything. I thought about it very occasionally and felt disgusted and pushed the thought away.
Until recently my friend brought it up, and confirmed what had actually happened to me that night. I felt so ashamed. Not at what had happened, but that I had minimised it so much to being a ‘close call’ and for blaming myself for making a ‘stupid drunken mistake’
Since then more and more similar memories keep coming back, ones I’ve always blamed myself for. It’s time for that to stop. I don’t know why I treated myself that way, but I will never do it again.