Everyday Victim Blaming

challenging institutional disbelief around domestic & sexual violence and abuse

I was assaulted and blamed for what happened.

Just about a month ago my closest guy friend sexually assaulted me. We were watching a movie with several friends on my bed and I was very stressed because it was a hard week so he was giving me a shoulder massage. When the others left for a few minutes he decided to take it further and slipped his hands under my shirt to "give me a good back massage." I froze and panicked and didn't say anything until he started trying to unhook my bra, when I managed to tell him to stop but he laughed it off as if I was joking and did it anyway. I went back to that frozen state, now without hope because even if I could fight back I couldn't physically overpower a guy as big as him. He finally stopped when the others came back in and treated it like a joke. If the others hadn't come in when they did, I don't know how far it would have gone. For me, a person who hasn't even had her first kiss yet, even what did happen was a huge deal because it's way farther than I've ever gone with a guy.

The next day I was terrified to, but I told the guy I was almost dating what happened. We couldn't officially date yet because of other reasons, but we had been hanging out and liked each other a lot, though we had never talked about being exclusive. He never made any indication that another guy giving me a shoulder massage was a problem, but apparently expected it. He blames me for what happened because I got in the situation. He had warned me before that he thought my friend had a thing for me but I trusted him completely and never, ever thought he would do anything like this. He said that I shouldn't have been alone with him on a bed and I shouldn't have let him touch me at all, and because of that this was my fault too. After a month of thinking it over he just decided that he can't date me. Now I've lost him as well after already telling my former friend that he is no longer a part of my life. None of the friends that I have told seem to understand how I feel and I expected the guy I was almost dating to be there for me but he just pushed me away and abandoned me when I needed him. He's never even given me the opportunity to say how I actually feel about what happened. Now I just feel completely alone because the two guys I used to see as most important have both hurt me and it was all out of my control. I know it wasn't my fault but it's hard to believe that when someone so important blames me.+


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5 thoughts on “I was assaulted and blamed for what happened.

  • Nat says:

    I believe you. You are NOT to blame for your ‘friend’s’ decision to ignore your request to stop. You are better off without someone who blames you for someone else’s actions. And we’ll done for cutting the ‘friend’ out of your life. Stay strong.

  • Hecuba says:

    These two male predators have shown their true character and whilst you are feeling the pain of their total disregard for your rights and bodily autonomy, you took immediate action to remove them from your life. You may not feel ‘courageous’ but it is a very brave act and you are absolutely right – you are not to blame. Accountability lies with those two males.

    Sadly males are not to be trusted despite we women constantly being told by males ‘you must trust me because I am not like those other (mythical) males.’

    You value yourself and will not compromise and accept these males’ lies so if you can remember you took swift action to remove those male predators from your life.

  • Paula says:

    You are not to blame for what happened to you, Mara, I believe you. I am sorry that you lost both men, but you are better finding strength from yourself. Do not blame yourself.

  • Ali Wilkin says:

    Your friend did not respect your boundaries. That is *his* responsibility and *his* fault, not yours. I know you liked that other man, but if he cannot see and respect that then that is for *him* to deal with and not you.

    You are not to blame, you have done nothing wrong. This will hurt, because you trusted people you thought were friends. Let yourself grieve for that, let yourself feel the anger at that.

    It is not your fault. It’s theirs.


  • lynda sherlock says:

    Hi Mara, again you have shown much courage and strength of
    letting us hear your story. You have a right to say no to anybody, about who has a right to touch your body. After all it is yours and yours alone. These two young men overstep your boundaries with you and did not respect you the way they should have. They need to take accountability of their behaviour not yours as it was not your fault but theirs. Also your friends around you should respect your boundaries and for sticking up for yourself and saying no. These friends don’t seem to be the friends that you might need or want. The most important thing is you and how this has made you feel you about you. As everybody has a right to say no and be respected for that. Healthy relationships are so important friends that uplift you as you uplift them. Negative relationship can be so soul destroying and not always helpful to you. I think you will hopefully feel better soon and that you found out earlier in your friendship with one guy and the relationship with the other that this was and is a negative relationship and would never be right. You should be proud of who you are and the boundaries that you have set for yourself. Don’t be to hard on yourself. take care Lynda