By Stevie Rose

I wanted to share my story because when I was raped, I felt like I was so alone. Like I was the only girl that’s gone through it. It made me feel unclean, dirty. I want to show girls and boys that it’s okay to talk about it. I want to break the standard of “hush hush.” I understand it’s terrifying to report a rape, let alone talk about it. I didn’t tell my mom about the first time I was molested. I felt ashamed. But we need to. We need to stand up and be vocal about it.

I was five and my parents recently divorced. My biological father fell to heavy drugs & drinking. I was taking a bath, like every night before school. He came in to help wash my hair. Now that I’m older, I know he was totally loaded. He reached into the tub, and molested me with his hand. I remember him running out about a minute later. I had no idea what just happened. I was five. The only people I’ve told this to are my two brothers and my husband.

Fast foreword to ten-year-old Stevie. I started my period when I was nine and had the biggest chest in school. At age ten, I was so insecure and felt so weird. My mom married this amazing man I call dad. He had three sons of his own. One of his sons had a friend named Tommy. They were friends since they were babies. My stepdad used to change Tommy’s diapers. Being such a good, close family friend, my parents had him babysit my brothers and I. I remember falling asleep to Charlie’s Angels, but I wasn’t in a deep sleep. I felt something pulling on my denim shorts. I rolled over, and it stopped. I looked around, no one was there. A couple months pass, and I fall asleep in the living room to a movie. Tommy was staying the night to hang with my brothers. He came out to the living room. My pajama bottoms being pulled off me woke me in an instant. He covered my mouth and molested me with his hands. I bit him, and screamed for my stepdad. He punched him while he was on me, threw him outside and called the cops. He was so angry at himself for trusting him. A boy he knew since he was a baby. I decided to not wear skirts or shorts anymore from that day on.

By age 12, I was self harming — cutting, burning myself with my moms cigarettes, anything I could do. I’m 13, and my 14th birthday is in just a few days. I’m dating the perfect guy. Plaid pant wearing, sky high Mohawk, patch vested cutie ever. My mom didn’t care for him much. His name was Zac Ventura. He said his friend was having a house party on the night of my birthday. My mom was iffy, but I snuck out and went anyway. There were a lot of guys and girls there and everyone was drinking, but I wasn’t that dumb. I asked Zac to get me a soda. About an hour passed, and my face and hands were numb, and I fell asleep. I woke up in pain and covered in blood. My blue denim turned a dark red. My friend Dakota threw me in the shower to snap me out of it and drove me home. I swore I was going to die on that ride home. I went to the hospital and got a rape kit done. The results came back. I was raped and drugged with rufilin (Roofies). I stayed in bed all summer long, and my mom thought that was odd, since I was a big extrovert. She made me tell her. She broke. I tried committing suicide nine times. I went to a psych hospital and when I got out I still self harmed and tried to commit suicide once again.

Last year, I talked with a counselor at the Lafayette House. I recommend it. It’s free, and they have amazing support groups. She was so understanding and patient. It was so hard telling her everything. I have PTSD, but I’m getting through it, and am taking back my life. I’m not telling you my story for pity. I don’t want pity. I don’t want comfort. I want my story to help a boy or girl that has gone through it too, and that it’s okay to talk about it. We must stop blaming ourselves, and blame the rapists. It’s not abnormal. You’re not a freak. Break the barrier, and speak out. You never know who you can help. The biggest and best thing you can do is report it. Talk about it. Break the cycle. It is THEIR fault, not yours.

For more information on support groups contact The Lafayette House at 417-782-1772.

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