My therapist told me that I need to not be so compassionate towards others and acknowledge my pain that I’ve been through a lot. I was telling her that even being raped once is too much, that trauma is trauma, that numbers don’t matter. It all hurts. Which is true, it all hurts. She told me yes it does, but I need to acknowledge that I’ve been hurt, a lot, that being raped over 10,000 times is more traumatic than being raped once.
I’ve been on both sides of this equation. When I was ten, I was raped by a “friend”, a girl. I was told by a parent that “it wasn’t real rape”, that has stuck with me, I think it’s why I need so much validation and yet, I never seem to get it, even now. That was very hard on me as a child, to hear. I struggled with it only being one time, thinking I didn’t have a right to hurt, that others had it worse. Did that I mean I didn’t have a right to hurt? NO! Did that mean because it was “just once” that it didn’t traumatize me?? NO! Just because I was told it “wasn’t real rape”, did that make it true? NO! And yes, as a teenager about 14 to 15 I looked up the laws on rape, because if I ever say anything happened to me, I can assure you it is by the legal definition of the word. I spent hours and hours looking up laws trying to prove to myself that it WASN’T rape, but I never found that it wasn’t, it was. Being raped “even just once” is painful and traumatic, and you have a right to heal! Even if it’s “only once”, rape is rape and it hurts! You have a right to healing and to feel however you feel!
That being said, after my trafficking experience, I wish I could say I was raped once, instead of over 10,000 times (and that 10,000 number, was JUST my trafficker, not the people he sold me to). (Also if you’re wondering how I came up with that number, my trafficker did whatever he wanted usually 3 times a day over the course of 10 years). Anyway, being raped that many times, it’s a lot to wrap one’s head around. It’s a lot to process. It’s a big number, it’s a lot! And it hurts like hell!! My trafficker literally told me women aren’t allowed to say no, that he wanted to “break my spirit”. Being raped so many times, I hope it’s something you never know. I was living from one rape to the next. I would pray to whoever would listen, just not today, please not today, or not again, just once today please!, I was never heard. I was raped in my sleep, I know because sometimes I’d wake up in the middle of being raped and go back to sleep because it was better to be unaware or my trafficker would tell me how I was raped in my sleep or show the porn video he posted of me on a site. I was his “sex slave” and he never let me forget it. He used those videos to get buyers. Anyway, I’m getting off topic here. My point is, now I wish I could say the only time I was raped was when I was ten. Being trafficked is an entirely different experience than domestic violence or even rape, because when we normally talk about rape we don’t talk about people being sold, even though when you are sold you are raped, also when your trafficked it is CONSTANT nonstop abuse, it’s not oh he beat me once a week, it’s constant, trafficking, it’s a different experience. Being sold for something is a whole level of trauma in itself, because it shows you that you are completely worthless, you’re only worth what you are being sold for, in my case mainly drugs.
I guess my point is, I’ve been through hell and I’m traumatized by it, but that doesn’t mean that those who’ve been raped once don’t have a right to heal and grow. Trauma effects everyone differently. We all have a right to heal, no matter what we’ve been through.
I really REALLY appreciate comments, they help me know someone is listening. Thank you.
Thank you for reading. Don’t forget to Shine! Never let them win! Always look for the light!