Of naked pictures and recovering from rape

There’s been an article circulating on various social media sites that essentially says girls shouldn’t flaunt their sexuality because it tempts boys. I think one of my friends summed it up quite nicely when she said that boys are going to picture the girls they like naked whether they’re half dressed or not. And girls do the same thing. I know when I was a teenager, I definitely thought about the boys I liked naked. Boys will be boys, but somehow it’s unacceptable for girls to have the same thoughts. That’s ridiculous. And it’s up to my generation who is starting to raise the next generation to change those views. I also don’t think that’s being fair to boys. Not every teenage boy is looking to get laid just like not every teenage girl should cover herself and ignore totally normal feelings. Posting naked or mostly naked pictures of yourself on the internet is a bad idea regardless of age or gender. It *will* come back to bite you. At least until our culture stops viewing nudity as something shameful.

A theme I’ve been noticing in my life lately is recovering from rape trauma. There have been several things that have happened that I know are pointing me in that direction. That’s why I started this blog in the first place. The epilepsy has been front and center lately both on here and in my offline life. But the core of this blog is to be as authentic and genuine as I can about my recovery from the rape trauma. I’d be lying if I said it wasn’t painful or difficult to put things into words some days. Other days, I don’t give it a single thought. When I had my bag stolen, it wasn’t so much about the stuff that I lost. Stuff can be replaced. It was about that sense of violation. You have no right to touch my stuff without my permission and someone went and made off with it. In the end, the joke was on them. I had about $5 in my wallet, my credit card was maxed out, and the epilepsy meds I’m on can’t be used to get high. I filed a police report. I know the odds I get anything back are slim to none. But I did it anyway. If nothing else, it’ll make the crime statistics a little more accurate. There are days where I wish I’d been able to take him to court. I wish I could’ve made him pay. Deep down, I know that if he did it to me, he’ll do it to someone else. That’s not to say that I’m wishing it on someone else. It’s to say that maybe someone else will be able to do what I couldn’t. If he doesn’t get his day in court, I trust that karma will catch up with him. Someday, somehow he’ll get his. I don’t know how or when or if I’ll even know. Until then, I refuse to let his ghost keep me silent. I’m not responsible for what he did to me. I am responsible for how I choose to handle it. I choose to put my experience out there even if it’s not always pleasant or pretty.

I keep this blog in the hopes that someone will read it and be encouraged to speak up, change their opinion, or come forward. Standing in the shadows doesn’t benefit anyone. I don’t have to have sex if I don’t want to. You don’t have to have sex if you don’t want to. I can’t change the world, but if my words inspire one person, I’ve done something positive. One of my favorite quotes is “The journey of 1000 miles begins with a single step”. I’ve got it on a sticky note on my computer at work. It’s a daily reminder that one small act can start something. It’s up to me to change perceptions and preconceived notions. Even if it’s just words on a screen.

XOXO!

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