Sometimes you forget the horrors this world is capable of, and you decide to follow your heart or go with the flow. It comes as a rude awakening; all of a sudden, you’re jolted right out of your comfort zone, and things start veering off the safe path!
Women are hardly strangers to sexual harassment; something as mundane as walking in the street leaves you vulnerable to unwanted and inappropriate compliments. What’s shocking is that it’s not always strangers responsible; it’s usually someone you trust!
A simple date turned dark for one woman, and her view of men’s expectations is forever changed. One encounter is all it takes to leave a bad taste in her mouth forever.
As a student going out is ridiculously expensive; when you’re working to help out with expenses, there’s not much room left for romantic dates at restaurants every weekend. So you compromise and start spending time at home together.
But when you’re at home, it opens up a door to possible sexual encounters. Something she’s been wary of because she grew up in a conservative home where sex was saved for marriage, and she fully believed in saving herself until she was married.
She expressed her concerns, set boundaries, and made sure they were never in a bedroom setting; they stayed in the living room and hung out. Sometimes they were with other people; sometimes, they were alone.
Watching a movie together alone one day, they started making out. Things can get hot and heavy really fast, and before she knew it, his hands were under her shirt.
She tried to be okay with it, but being just their third time alone, she pushed him away and said that she was uncomfortable. He backed off and apologized; he seemed to make her comfortable, so she stayed, and they watched the movie and made out some more.
Things went seemingly well till their next encounter, where his unwelcomed touch was roaming under her shirt. Without saying something, she just pushed it away, hoping he’d get the hint and stop.
For a moment, it seemed okay until he forcefully pushed his hand down her pants; she objected and kicked him off her and asked him why he would do that when he knew that it made her uncomfortable.
His anger was visible, and he started yelling words, but what resonated with her were the words “you owe me!” After spending barely 24-hours with a person, they then feel entitled to your body!
It sent shivers down her spine, and she wanted to get out. As she got up to leave, he grabbed her wrist, and in a moment of self-defense and frustration, she punched him in the nose.
She didn’t wait to see his reaction, she got out as fast as she could, and as soon as she got home, she was in tears. Someone had made her so uncomfortable and ignored her wishes, and crossed the boundaries she had made so visibly clear.
Her mind has forever been affected to the point when she has to specifically set boundaries of not going to a date’s home or even having him over to hers. She still doesn’t trust a man’s touch because it reminds her of the incident.
She is trying to heal from the incident that happened just two years ago and process the encounter she had taken a break from dating. After two whole years, she has tried her best never to be alone with a man, and when she is, she starts to panic.
She’s had to go to therapy to overcome her fear of encounters with men. The work she’s had to do still leaves her shaky when she has to spend time with a man alone, even if he’s done nothing to make her wary of him.
Her story might not be the worst of encounters, but even a small interaction like this leaves a woman scarred for a long time. Teach your sons to protect and respect women so that this isn’t a burden another woman has to carry with her forever.
Dr Saadiqah Hajat