Why didn’t I say no?
I lay on my back, staring at the ceiling in the middle of the night. His hand was on me. A hand that I did not know. The hand under which I should have been comfortable and safe, which should have meant much more to me, but it only reminded me of my emptiness.
The hand of a stranger. A human body that shouldn’t have kissed me, shouldn’t have touched mine, shouldn’t have penetrated me.
His breath is near my ear. His skin warms mine. His memories of me, which I cannot get out of his head. He stole a part of me.
No, it’s wrong. Because I myself offered it to him. I let him take me. And when I didn’t like it, when I wanted it to end sooner, when I felt that my body didn’t belong to me, as if someone else was using me, when all this was happening, I didn’t say no. I didn’t stop him.
I let him take that part of me. And I allowed myself to take a part of it, a part that I would rather live with a polite “no, thank you,” a part that will forever remain in my memory until time erases it with a new, brighter experience.
I don’t know if he will ever forget how I moaned and pretended to feel good.
I still haven’t forgotten that he liked my moans. He repeated it over and over again, and for some reason, I felt ashamed. After all, these groans were a lie.
I still have not forgotten how he called me his, how he called me the diminutive form of the name.
He asked many questions. As if it was immediately clear that we would have love. I gave him no reason to think so, but vice versa too. Until the last minute, I was not sure what I wanted, whether I liked him enough, whether I needed it. I was just going with the flow.
I let him touch me, smell my hair, stick his tongue in my mouth. I was very frank in the conversation, but I tried to emphasize that this is talking about love in theory. Apparently a very faint accent. Until recently, I thought it was my fantasy until it was too late.
Lying in the darkroom of his apartment, which I did not know, filled with things that meant nothing to me, where there lived a person whom I barely knew and who also meant nothing to me, I wanted to leave my body.
I had to go. Urgently.
But at the same time, she didn’t want to inconvenience him. Didn’t want to make a drama. I didn’t want him to think I didn’t like it.
But I didn’t like it. I struggled with myself for several minutes, which seemed like hours. And then she finally did it. I collected everything that was left of me and decided to leave.
Leave and never find yourself in a similar situation again.
I knew it was only for one night. But why did I feel even more empty? Why did I feel used? Didn’t I agree to this?
Yes, I didn’t let him touch me or kiss me. But I didn’t stop him, I didn’t tell him to leave, I didn’t say no. I pretended everything was fine.
Fear of being rude? Fear of hurting another’s feelings? Fear of offending? Something more.
So he says: “Come on,” and stay with you on the house. You’re not sure if he’ll listen to you if you say “don’t need to” again. And you’re not sure if you want to know the answer. You’re not sure if you can handle the consequences.
What if I said to stop and he wouldn’t listen? What if I said no, tried to take him off myself, leave … and he wouldn’t let me in?
I could be a victim of rape, right? I would fight for my freedom, body, dignity. I would have experienced an even greater trauma that would leave scars for years, if not for life.
But if you continue to be silent and believe that everything is not so bad, that everything will end and you will go home, what then? You will not be raped. It will just be an unpleasant one night stand It’s okay, right?
It’s scary because, in an attempt to protect yourself from being raped, you force yourself. This is not the same as real rape, but it is also not a normal way to deal with unwanted abuse harassment.
On the way home in the taxi, I knew I was disrespecting myself. It’s not the first time I’ve used it myself. But she swore to herself that it would be the last. And I have kept this word ever since.
The fear of denying love comes from the fear that another person might use force against us. We are afraid that a man will take what he wants, the way he wants because we live in a society that partly allows this.
And this is the crux of the problem. Despite progress and development, women today are still afraid to go out at night. They are still afraid when a company of men walks by, and even whistles, they are afraid to say no, because what if that does not stop the man?