A Brutally Honest Post

I could probably just call it an honest post, but as much as it helps, writing this also tears me apart.

Last week was the 10 year anniversary of the most horrible thing I’ve ever experienced.

On May 18th, 2002, just one week before my senior prom, I was sexually assaulted. I was held at knifepoint and humiliated, degraded, and violated in a way that I can never forget.

To this day, I still can’t use the R word to describe what happened to me. It reminds me of police stations and giving statements and trying so hard to scrub my body clean after what happened.

It makes me think of the emergency room and the tests and the nurses all trying to calm me down and tell me it would be ok. Of two failed suicide attempts because I didn’t think my life was worth living anymore.

It wasn’t ok.

It still isn’t ok.

Ten years later, I’ve moved on with my life, but I can never forget the damage that’s been done to me.

I have flashbacks when I see large knives.

I have nightmares, though not as frequently as I used to.

I know there is evil in the world, and sometimes it cannot be stopped.

But I’m here. It’s been 10 years since it happened and I’m still here. I’ve overcome most of the guilt, most of the self-hate, most of the doubts that I must have done something to deserve what he did to me.

It’s been 10 years, and I’m still taking it one day at a time.


  1. ((huge hugs)) I wish I had the right words to say right now.

  2. Danielle says:

    Thank you for posting something that some people in society today still consider taboo.

    You are a brave woman for writing about your personal experience, and I hope that others(including myself)will be able to see that it’s okay to talk about this as well.

    Take care and {{BIG HUGS}}

  3. Jenn you are a brave and strong woman. What a wonderful milestone to be able to say you accomplished. You survived one of the most horrific things that could happen to a young adult. I think sharing your story is a good healing process and to let others know life does get better.

  4. TheNextMartha says:

    I’m sorry you experienced this. This took a lot of strength to put out there. Big Hugs.

  5. It has been 13 years for me. I want to thank you for this blog entry. When you have had something like this happen to you, you feel completely alone in the world. It helps to know a real person who has gone through the same situation. I too still have nightmares and flashbacks, but they have lessened over the years. I just thank God that I found my husband who is so understanding of the long term effects that I still suffer.

  6. Oh, friend, how glad I am that you won and that you’re standing strong today! <3 you, girl.

  7. I love you.

  8. anonymous says:

    I was assaulted just two or three months before you were. I still have a hard time thinking of it in terms of rape, because I still think it was somehow my fault for not stopping him or convincing him I didn’t want this. Assault makes it somehow seem not as bad. Mine was not as violent or degrading as your experience, but I did have to go thru US Army Basic Training in the same unit as him for the next several weeks – he raped me in our hotel the night before we shipped out.

  9. Betty Baez says:

    ((hugs)) you are so brave. I’ve been through the same thing also in the same year although it was someone that was suppose to be family, I regret not pressing charges and I think you are soo brave for going through with it. I was ashamed and never spoke about it. I still have flashbacks and a few weeks ago I listened to a song called “damaged” by plumb and I broke down in tears.

  10. I can only imagine what you’ve gone through and are still going through. I haven’t experienced anything like this in my personal life although I feel most women, myself included, have suffered some sort of sexual harassment or assault at some point in their life.

    In a situation like this, I feel words are never really enough to express compassion and empathy and that everything I say always comes out wrong but silence is even worse… I just want to say that I’m glad you’ve been able to overcome the guilt and doubts that inevitably plague victims. I think it’s wonderful that you are able to talk about it so eloquently despite the pain that it must revive in you. Even though the topic is not a pleasant or easy one to share, you’ve done it beautifully and I think it shows that there’s hope. The fact that you’ve been able to grow, flourish as a person and do what you do every day shows how resilient we can be even in the worst circumstances. One day at a time like you said.

  11. charlee says:

    Its happened to me twice ……once by a boyfriend so I completely understand. Mine wasn’t that long ago but it’s something you definitely struggle with for a lifetime.

  12. Kelly C says:

    you are so brave and strong. hugs.

  13. You’re braver than I am, not only for sharing your story but making it 10 long years. I thought it would get easier, and sometimes I think it does… but sometimes I think it gets harder.

  14. Maryann says:

    Oh Jen, I’m sorry you had to experience that. But you are very worth it! I’m glad I met you. What an inspiration you are. You are strong! And amazing!

  15. I just want to say thank you for telling your story. I was sexually assaulted starting at age 5 on and off through age 13 by 3 different people that our family was supposed to be able to trust. I finally told about the first one when I was 7. He never went to jail for it, instead the police asked why I didn’t say something sooner. I felt so betrayed and humiliated by the legal system that I never came forward after the other 2 men started abusing me. Those 2 men were eventually caught for abusing some other children, which I still have a hard time trying not to feel responsible for.

    To this day I still have horrible nightmares. I don’t think they’ll ever go away. I did tell my husband about what happened before we were married. He was also sexually assaulted as a child, which he recently has just started to remember after he repressed it when he was little.

    I’ve tried not to let it rule my life, but it has made us very careful of who we allow around our children and has made me more aware of what really to look for in a predator of children. Some days I think that I went through all of that so I could keep my children safe and away from the monsters.

    Thank you for sharing your story. There are sadly way more of us out there than we usually thing. I’ve heard other people tell me the only way I’ll truly get over it is to truly forgive the offenders. I find it amusing that people think it’s something that you can just “get over it”.

  16. So sorry that this happened to you. {hugs}

  17. That’s bullshit that that happened to you, and thank you for writing about it. Ten years is a good place. You are strong and awesome, don’t forget it.

  18. I wish you never had to go through that but the fact that you can share your story shows how far you’ve come. That traumatic experience has hurt you but you haven’t let it be the end of you. That takes enormous strength.

  19. Natasha says:

    Huge hugs to you!

  20. Thank you for sharing this – I know it’s scary, but so many women feel so alone after going through what you experienced. (((hugs)))

  21. Thank you for sharing. This sort of thing is still all too common in our society, and I believe that part of the problem is that it is still easy for people to pretend that the problem is limited. I do not recall the source, but I remember hearing that one third of women will experience sexual assault by the age of 30. I certainly hope that it is not that high. I hope that your courage in sharing will give others the confidence to come forward also – if not to share publicly, at least to seek help for themselves.

  22. Im sorry you had to go through such a horrible experience. Sharing your experience is a great way to heal and I think you shouldn’t be concerned about this post.

    I know I went through a family that has turned my life upside down. It changes you. And no one but you can understand how you feel. I know how you felt afterwards and I dont think anyone should ever have to feel that. Your brave for opening up 🙂

  23. You are both brave and a survivor – you have helped others by sharing this! Bravo and {{hugs}}.

  24. I am so sorry and angry that this happened to you. Love ya, girl. *hugs*

  25. Oh, Jen. HUGE hugs. Thank you for opening up and sharing your story. I wish I could say I don’t know what you’re going through, but I’ve been there as well. This month marks 13 yrs. since I was raped 4 different times by someone I trusted. It’s hard. VERY hard. Esp. when you feel like no one around you really understands what you went through, and what you continue to go through. It took about 10 years until the daily nightmares and flashbacks went away. I still can’t listen to a certain song by a certain artist without being reminded. I can’t stand being home alone at night. So much time has past, yet it still feels surreal that it happened. Life gets better, but the memories don’t completely fade away. I wish they did.

  26. I’m so sorry. As someone who has suffered abuse there are still triggers for me too 17 years later but overall I’ve been blessed with reclaiming my life. I’m praying today is better and tomorrow better still. You are an amazing lady for having the bravery to reveal your battle. Thank you.

  27. 10 years is a great milestone. This is something other survivors need to hear. I’ve worked with so many woman who’ve been traumatized and it’s hard to process and move on. Thankfully my experiences were mild in terms of trauma and violence – no one should live in fear.

  28. I’ll admit to having read this last night, but not knowing if you were going to keep it up, I didn’t comment. I think that this post is an incredibly brave thing for you to do. I’m not going to go through all the comments and read them, but what I am going to do is tell you that this post can and will help so many people who have gone through something similar. I know that I have, but I’m not quite as brave as you. I don’t have scars to show anyone, they’re inside, but they’re real. I’m not sure that there really is any such thing as “closure,” but I hope you find something like it some day. I also know that you’ll never just “get over it,” and I don’t think you should have to! HUGS!

  29. Thank you for sharing your story. You are a strong and brave woman!

  30. Wow! Jen, I think you are awesomely brave. You are putting a face to something terrible and saying I won’t let it control me any longer. I am very proud of you!

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