Everyday Victim Blaming

challenging institutional disbelief around domestic & sexual violence and abuse

My friend sexually assulted me, where do I go from here?

Over the weekend I travelled back to my hometown to visit family and friends. On the Saturday night I met up with some friends and caught up for a few drinks, which then turned into a lot of drinks. After staying out at the local bar until close, we ventured back to one of my friends place to continue the party. This was around 4am.

However once we got back to the couple's house, they decided to go to bed leaving me and another of my male friends, Chris (who was also also visiting from the city I now live in), to figure out what our sleeping arrangements would be. The house was pretty full already, with only one spare bed. The couch was already taken by my friends little brother so we agreed to both sleep in the spare room. I had no issues with this as I'd known Chris more than 10 years and trusted him like family, plus I had a partner whom he knew quite well and liked. To be completely honest, the thought did not even cross my mind.

We chatted for about 5/10 minutes in the bed, just about the evening we'd had and how great it had been to catch up with everyone (some I hadn't seen for four years). Then I said good night, rolled over and shortly after fell asleep.

I woke up on my stomach to find Chris touching me. He was leaned over me, his hand down the back of my pants and had inserted a finger inside my vagina. I immediately froze in panic, then while pretending to still be asleep, grumbled and rolled away from him. He stopped and I continued to pretended I was sleeping until eventually he started to snore. I couldn't believe someone I trusted could take advantage of me like that. I didn't sleep the next few hours, too scared of what would happen if I closed my eyes again. I got up and left around 7am.

Feeling completely violated, I sat there on the Sunday wondering what I was going to do and how I could have avoided this situation. I called my best friend and told her what had happened. She was disgusted and told me I needed to tell my partner no matter how difficult it would be. I was dreading it, but knew it was the right thing to do. Oddly enough, even though I knew I was the victim in all of this, I was still trying to protect Chris from getting into trouble. Worst of all, his recently ex-girlfriend Mel had just moved into the house I shared with a couple of other people, making this situation that much more difficult to handle. It was an amicable split and they were still friends, so I didn't want Chris coming around all the time.

When I got home that night I walked in the door only to be greeted by Chris who had come to see Mel. I was completely shocked, but for the sake of my house mate, acted like everything was cool. I honestly think he came over to see if I had any idea what had happened and what he'd done to me. Maybe wondered if I would tell Mel. When he finally left, I called my boyfriend Jason and asked him to come over. I sat him down and explained it to him. He was furious and demanded we either tell my sisters husband (who is a police detective) or said he would go over to Chris' home and sort him out himself. I don't want to do either of those things because I feel like if I out him, it will cause a lot of unwanted drama.

I have a lot at stake what with living with Mel, and being friends with Chris' friends for so long. He is a part of our friendship circle and the thought that I might ruin that is just a horrible cross to bear. He's really put me in a terrible situation, I cant stand to look at him but I also cant fathom actually charging him with assult because of our long history. I'm so hurt, but I'm also protective of his name and don't want to see it dragged through the mud. I understand even though he may have been drunk it does not give him the right to touch me without my consent but I'm scared of the repercussions. My partner is being so supportive, but he also doesn't want Chris to get away with this and I'm concerned if I don't do something soon Jason will do something stupid and end up getting himself into trouble.

Really I just need some guidance. Has anyone else been in a situation like this before? Or what would you do if it were to happen? Should I just face the music and contact authorities? Please help.

*Names have been changed for anonymity purposes.

 

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6 thoughts on “My friend sexually assulted me, where do I go from here?

  • Redskies says:

    I believe you and I am sorry that Chris did this to you.

    The most important person that you need to think about in all this is you.

    Not Chris and his good name – who cares about his good name when he has sexually assaulted you.

    Not you boyfriend, as much as you care for him. He is being supportive but he is also putting pressure on you to behave in the way he thinks you should. It is completely your choice who you tell and what you do about what has been done to you.

    Not Mel or any of your housemates. You should be able to feel safe in your own home.

    You must do what you want to do. You feel how you feel about it. Because however you feel and whatever you do is the right thing to feel and do, for you.

    I would recommend that you call or chat with your local helpline. They will help you decide what you want to do and they will be familiar with the sort of situation you find yourself in.

    I am so sorry this was done to you. None of this is your fault and no ensuing “drama” is your fault, either.

    • Lola says:

      Thank you so much. I went to the authorities today and made a report. I’m still not sure if I am comfortable making an official statement because I am so afraid. The detective said the most effective way would be for them to wire my phone and for me to make a phone call to him and try to get a confession out of him, but the thought of actually making that call terrifies me. Then there’s the court proceedings.. Thankfully I am going to speak to my local sexual assault services tomorrow and I hope they will be able to guide me in the right direction.

  • HerbsandHags says:

    I agree with Redskies. Your boyfriend’s role now is to support you in whatever you choose to do and he needs to understand that that’s what his role is, not to be putting pressure on you.

    I second the suggestion to speak to a support line and I’m sorry this happened to you.

    • Lola says:

      Thank you for your support. My partner has definitely cooled down since I first told him about this. He is still angry at Chris, but he recognises that it is my decision what I do from here and isn’t pushing me into it any more. Just listening and supporting me.

  • Hecuba says:

    Agree with the two previous commentators – you are the one who decides what action you will take and male sexual predator Chris’s ‘reputation’ is irrelevant. Chris made the choice to subject you to sexual violence. Likewise your boyfriend must not ‘take over’ he was not the one sexually assaulted.

    Hopefully there is a rape crisis centre locally to where you live and if so they can provide non-judgemental support.

    • Lola says:

      Again, thank you for supporting me. Its so nice to come to a safe place where I don’t feel like I am being blamed or forced. Yes the detective I spoke to this afternoon has given me the details of a local sexual assault service and I’m going to speak with them tomorrow. I want to be strong, but I am hopeful I will get through this (regardless of whether or not I press charges) with the help of this service.