I haven’t posted a #WhyIDidntReport because… I don’t know, it feels like I have already told these stories at least once each this last year, and there are things that happened that I probably wouldn’t even remember, and the idea of sitting down to list them all is overwhelming. Many things I didn’t even register as problems when they happened because they seemed so distant, because I was distant from my body. Many things happened because of many other things. I don’t really know what I consented to and what I didn’t. Some things are clearly black-and-white regarding my consent but some things I chose under duress. I don’t know where that line is, and I’m tired of trying to figure it out. I just want to see and understand my choices better going forward – to move out of environments that feel dangerous and into spaces that feel safe (even though yes, that is no guarantee as assault can happen anywhere – but it still makes a difference to me how it feels), to stop not knowing how to stop things (even though that is no guarantee either, as assault can happen even when you try to stop it), to feel ok in my body and at least know that I am allowed to only say yes to the things that I really want, to know it immediately if something bad does happen to me and I need to source support, to release and process things instead of swallowing them down and storing them.
Why I didn’t report… because we live in a world that taught me that my internal experience didn’t matter. Because if there were no marks it didn’t happen. Because I couldn’t measure it, couldn’t quantify it. Because there was no way to prove it, and who would believe me? And if all that changed as a result of it were my feelings, what was the big deal anyway?
I want to forgive myself for why I did or didn’t do things in the past, and start doing things more deliberately in the future. I want to know that my internal experience matters.