"My Boyfriend Raped Me"
I first met Jack* at a BBQ dinner during my college's Freshman Orientation. He was cracking jokes and making everyone laugh. He seemed like such a fun guy. He was also a Christian—the perfect package.
Within a month we were dating. I was flattered that Jack wanted to pursue me and excited about the way he showered me with affection. He would send me flowers. He'd also buy me cards and write Scripture mixed with professions of his love for me. I wanted to believe he was really sincere. So I blinded myself to how he was slowly changing.
When we first started dating he loved everything about me—the way I dressed, my laugh, my relationship with God, the way I interacted with my girlfriends. But it wasn't long before he started to pick on small things. One day he decided he didn't like my roommate. So I distanced myself from her. One night he didn't like the outfit I was wearing—so I changed. Another night he claimed I was wearing too much make-up. So I went to the bathroom and washed it off.
We'd go out to eat and Jack would smile at other girls. If I confronted him about it, he blew me off. Not only that, he would tell me what he liked about them, and how I lacked in comparison.
I remember one incident in particular. We were in a restaurant waiting to be seated. A woman was sitting at a table nearby with her legs crossed. Jack commented on how long her legs were, then he looked at mine and didn't say a word. But the point was clear. My legs didn't measure up. How could he say my legs weren't good enough? How could I change them? At that point I realized I couldn't take it anymore. I had tried to change everything about myself to please him, and now with something I couldn't change, insecurity overwhelmed me.
After five long months, I decided to end our relationship. Jack was angry over my decision. He felt God had told him we were to be married. I wanted to go to my girlfriends for support, but I had given them up months ago to please Jack. I suddenly felt very alone.
A few weeks later Jack called and invited me out for dinner—as friends, he said. Our time in the restaurant was awful. He was loud and obnoxious to the waiters and to me. When he asked to drive me back to my dorm after dinner, I didn't object. I was more than ready for the evening to end. Unfortunately he didn't intend to drive me home. He took me to a deserted parking lot and raped me.
I remember very few things about the actual rape—the car windshield covered with fog, the struggle, and the moment I felt too overpowered to resist any longer. In that instant I realized there was nothing I could do to stop what was happening. He was simply too strong.
When it was over, Jack took me back to my dorm, told me he would give me a call, and simply left. I was in shock. All I remember about those following hours is standing in the shower with all my clothes on, sobbing uncontrollably, desperately wanting the water to wash away the evening's events.
The Search for Healing
Eight months later I found myself standing in a crowded court room. I had been told that going through the legal process would feel like being raped a second time, but actually it was worse. Even after sharing every intimate detail of the rape, Jack was still found not guilty—insufficient evidence. Case closed.