As I said last time, sex after sexual assault is especially challenging.

I think I was very lucky to have been in a loving relationship when my assault happened.  I cannot imagine how much more difficult it would have been, on so many levels, had I been single.  Right after my attack, and for longer than I would have thought, I was afraid of everyone.  And I do mean every single person I encountered.  Men, women, boys, girls – anyone and everyone scared me.  My rational mind knew this was silly, but the irrational part was in control.  As I also said last week, I know, and knew at the time, that sexual assault of any kind, whether it be rape, attempted rape or any other variation, it not about sex.  It is about power or lack thereof.  Another aspect that a lot of women have to deal with is feeling dirty or ashamed of what happened to them.  I never felt either of those emotions.  I was very clear from the beginning that I had done nothing wrong, that I had nothing to be ashamed of.  That being said, I was still unable to have sex with my boyfriend for some time.

For at least the first few weeks, I am certain I wasn’t even willing to try.  Oh, I was fine with just being held and kissed, but beyond that, I was unable to even contemplate it.   I was never repulsed by him in any way.  And although, I was afraid of men in general, I was not afraid of my boyfriend.  My body and mind instinctively knew he was safe, that I was safe with him.  Still, ‘convincing’ my body that more than just cuddling was okay definitely took time.  Because I was in shock, and stayed there for 15 weeks, I could not cry.  Nor, it turned out, could I have an orgasm.   And when we did attempt to have sex, though my body responded to him, I was still ‘blocked.’  For a long time, every time we did make love, I would ‘leak’ 3 or 4 tears.  I called it leaking because it wasn’t real crying, and all that would ever come out were 2 or 3 or 4 tears.  I may not have been actually crying, but, clearly, it’s what I wanted to do.  It still was upsetting to my boyfriend.  I was not rejecting him, but I think he still felt that way.  I was doing my best to not let it happen, but it always did.  Looking back now, I am not even sure how long this went on.  At some point it stopped, but I do not remember when.  And as for the lack of orgasm, I am happy to say that that eventually came back as well.

What I can say now, too, is that after my attack, our sex life was never the same.  It seemed to never completely recover.  Oh, things worked like they were supposed to, but something fundamental was lost that September morning, and, unfortunately, we were never able to get it back.  It is only with hindsight that I am able to see this now.  I can’t really think too much about how much almost every aspect of my life has changed since my encounter with cockroach boy.  It pisses me off and I don’t want to live my life in a pissed off frame of mind.

So I choose love and joy and happiness.  Is it always easy?  Of course not.  There are times I’d like to go to the prison he is housed in and, well, you can just imagine what I might do.  Thankfully, those days are few and far between now.  I have many more good days than bad.  Though I am still dealing with a lot of physical issues that I attribute to my attack, those, too, are improving.  I have great faith that though my life may never be exactly as it was before, it is better.  I am better.

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