I don’t forgive you. I know that everyone feels really inspired by the stories of people that overcome horrible atrocities so that they can show mercy on those who harmed us. But I don’t feel that way. I don’t forgive you and I never will.
You took something from me. It’s the only thing in the world I can never earn back with money or time and it continues to bear interest and deficit on my soul.
You never said you were sorry. And, while I do not need you to say you are sorry to forgive. I do not believe that you are. I do not believe I was the first. And I do not believe I was the last. Wherever you are now. I doubt you even think about it. But I do. Less now than I did before. But I do. And I always will.
You took something from me. And every time another girl comes forward I have to revisit the pain that I had to keep in silence. Silence because society tells us that it is our fault. Because my friends would tell me it was my fault. Because my own family implied it was my fault.
I wasn’t dressed provocatively. I had never flirted with you before. I had never insinuated that there was an implied contract between you and my vagina. You were my friend and you felt that gave you permission. Alcohol was involved. I guess you didn’t force me to drink. And somehow that makes it my fault.
I drank a lot after. The days and years after. I drank and drank. And I drank. I drank because when I tried to talk to people they told me that it was my fault because I drank with a man. Without knowing a single thing about you and everything about me. Everyone took your side. Society is on your side. You are allowed to do whatever you want to me. Says everyone. Without really understanding what they are saying.
My friends still tell me it’s my fault although they don’t know it. Every time a girl comes forward. And my friends doubt her story. When they ask why she drank so much. Why she was at a party. What was she wearing. They don’t know it but they are asking me too. And I have to relive it all over again. And I have to ask myself why. All over again.
I laugh at rape jokes. I have a sense of humor. But I still hate you. Because laughing at them makes me feel less alone. And it takes something painful, and makes me feel a little bit better for the moment.
I hate the phrase “rape culture”. I feel like the person that coined that has never been raped. I hate it because there is no “rape culture”. It’s just culture.
And I hate you for making me a statistic.
It has been five years and I still hate you.
I will never forgive you.
Because what you took from me.
When you took it.
I died a little inside.
I had nightmares for months afterwards.
And I died a little inside.
I will never forgive you.
But I have forgiven myself.