People often feel as though certain events are their fault or were avoidable. It can be easy to go back and think, “If only…”
If only I had listened to that little voice inside my head.
If only I had paid attention to that gut retching feeling.
If only I hadn’t answered my phone.
If only I hadn’t gotten in that car.
If only I had listened to everyone’s characterization of him.
You’ll kill yourself with the “if only’s.” And if that doesn’t drive you straight to death it will easily drive you mad, at the very least. Find help and support, that is the only way.
The next morning I woke up, not at home like I had intended and wholeheartedly planned. No, I woke up next to this “friend,” puke beside this bed and a migraine from hell. I was so confused.
“Why am I hungover? I didn’t get drunk. Why the hell is the sun out? What happened to that time? Just a second ago it was 3am. What time is it now? SEVEN A.M.!? What the hell? Where am I and why isn’t this MY room?”
This was just a few of the thoughts that ran through my head as I was being shaken awake and led to a car and driven home, he never said a word. It was then I realized, he never got another bottle. He never had any intention of grabbing another bottle or taking me home that night. And worst of all, he won.
He pulled in the drive way of my house and my parents had both already left for work. I was scared, worried, and hurt. Usually when I leave without telling them, especially in the middle of the night and they see I’m not home the next morning (which was every other time I had slept at a friends house without giving them a heads up), they blow up my phone with text messages, phone calls, and voicemails until they reach me. But I hadn’t even gotten so much as a “have a good day, sweetie” from my dad. Something was wrong with everything, but good god, my head had never been foggier in my life. I needed more sleep. So I dragged myself inside and collapsed on my bed without bothering to change my clothes and slept into the afternoon.
Seven hours later, I woke up. Still with a headache but no migraine. I had more of myself. I got up to go freshen myself up, “maybe it’ll help me feel better,” I thought.
I don’t know if guys get this feeling the day after they’ve had sex, where even if they didn’t remember it they know something happened, but ladies do. Something is just different about your body. Especially when you haven’t been active. After all, Mr. Love and I were trying to work things out; even if we weren’t “official” it would just be rude to be with someone else while he’s fighting for my freedom during our reconciliation. (My family is greatly influenced by the military and has a vast military background, I got respect.)
So as I made my way to my bathroom; again I had this feel that something just WASN’T right. My body felt…used. Then I noticed the shorts I was wearing under my long pants were ripped. “What happened? When I last used the bathroom at ‘friend’s’ house they were in perfect condition.” I stood there in utter bewilderment as I watched the buttons that fastened the shorts fall to the floor. All were there but one, that one is still missing to this day.
I never cried so hard in my life. I felt broken. No, more than broken. I felt trashed and filthy. I felt such a confusion I never faced before. My head was swimming again. There was no way he could have done what I thought he did. He couldn’t. He was my best friend. He would never. I trusted him.
I, then, did a series of things that are not advised. I took the hottest shower in my life and scrubbed my skin raw (not ideal for rape kits to be properly performed). Afterwards, I went to my other best friend’s house. I cried in her living room as I explained the events I could recall. I know that although it was my responsibility to take the proper measures to protect myself and take myself to the hospital, I was just too scared. I thought, like many victims, that it was my fault. That I brought it on myself. But Mrs. Friend didn’t help to convince me otherwise. A month to the day later, we had an explosive argument that would have gotten physical had it not been for two guys grabbing us both and separating us. My therapist helped me later by looking into that situation.
“If a friend had come to you in the state you had gone to her, what would you have done? I believe your outburst was repressed anger towards her for not doing what a friend should have done.” She stated.
Mrs. Friend’s solution to the issue at hand was not to talk me through my pain and help me find help but to hand me a cigarette, a valium, and a joint. That day I couldn’t bring myself to show my face at school. Plus, I didn’t trust myself to handle a knife in a kitchen with gas stoves while I was high as kite so instead I went to a party. Where my life began to find comfort in weed, pills, and alcohol.
Two weeks later, after I had been avoiding Mr. Love’s calls on Skype, I finally confessed to him what happened. Accompanied by my confession, I told him I wanted nothing to do with him. That I wanted him out of my life for good. I wouldn’t say why, just that I didn’t “feel single.” I will regret this day and these words more than anything else that happened. He was the only one that believed me and still believes me. To this day it kills me that I could have done this. Even if we are talking now, because I shattered his heart and now I fight for a love I am not sure I can ever get back.
A couple of weeks after shutting Mr. Love out of my life I continued to spiral. I made poor decisions, one of them being sleeping with a guy I had been partying with, Mr. Flip-Flop. I don’t recall any real desire to be with him. Or anyone else for that matter. But I thought I could gain a piece of myself back. I believed doing this on my terms, I could take back what was stolen from me.
The only thing I gained was pregnancy.
Although, now I can say, it was this baby that saved my life. If it weren’t for him I would have never gone out to seek professional help, I did this for him. I never would have quit smoking or popping pills and probably would have continued to drive drunk with all hopes and intentions that a tree would jump in front of my car. Even though at the time, pregnancy was the very last thing I wanted I wouldn’t change it. He is my everything and without him I probably wouldn’t be sitting here writing this.
This is my conclusion to a story that started with an entirely different intention. But I’m glad I got this out. It hurts to think about it again, yes. But I pray it can help one of you out there that might stumble upon this. Do what I was too afraid to do. Be stronger than I was. And don’t let it ruin the love of your life, instead let that love help you. Don’t shut him out.