cocsa hurt me long term
Being sexual assaulted by another child wasn’t something that I realized was rape until about 10 years later… which was after I had already pushed it to the back of my brain, and how guilty and gross I still felt about it. I am sharing my story here today in hopes of processing as this hasn’t been something I had told anyone up until the last year. This girl was my best friend. When it all started we were about 7 years old and would often have play dates at each others houses. It started with her secretly showing me her moms magazine introducing me to what a thong is, and while this is tame it set her up to progressively get more inappropriate. At another play date she showed me porn for the first time, she would put in topics like “truth or dare” or “funny”… almost like she was trying to make it seem fun and innocent (which hurts to think about because I was so young). We would hide in her closet watching on her iPod for long periods of time, I was too innocent to really know what I was looking at. I do not have a good idea of the entire timeline and how long each step went on for since I had repressed it for so long but one day this became kissing to “practice for boys” (we are both afab for context). I honestly hated doing it but I didn’t want to say no to her, because I was afraid that I was the one in the wrong for thinking I was uncomfortable. I can still feel how gross it felt when I think about it almost like I am there. And then one day this all progressed to her “practicing for boys” even further by touching me and further.. All the elements would mix and eventually whenever I hung out with her I knew watching the porn and being touched were just inevitable so I let it slide even though I never wanted it and felt gross because of it. I don’t really have many memories of the actual offenses just very short snippets. It went on for about 3 years until I was around 10. Eventually it just stopped, I have no memory of the specifics here. But I felt so guilty about it, and at the time I believed the guilt was because it was another girl and that was wrong (I am now gay). I didn’t realize I was guilty because of the consent, because I was taken advantage of. So I vowed to myself I would never tell anyone. And that went on for about 10 years, 7 in which I was still close friends with this girl. I was still close friends with my rapist while I pretended that she never did anything to me. I nearly forgot about it and from what I remembered I convinced myself that I liked it, which is so gross to me now. I definitely think it is a huge cause for my bad mental health now. Holding in a secret for so long and invalidating myself has set me up for so many toxic friendships and my self worth is pretty bad. I have trouble putting myself first and have a people pleasing problem. I also denied to myself that I was gay because I considered this experience as “skewing me”. Being self aware of this is helping me improve these things but it’s so hard to change the things that kept my brain together for 10 years of holding a secret. And at the same time, something in me still isn’t mad at her? It’s been 12 years now and I finally removed her from my instagram following after letting myself process how much she has destroyed me. Of course I wish this never happened to me, it has hurt me so much and I’m still not over it. I really am grateful to come across a platform like this to feel less alone. I felt alone and so shameful about this for so long.