• Rosemary Mac Cabe

#YesAllWomen: 'I Feel Lucky Not Being Raped.'

I invited women to email me their experiences of sexual assault and harassment. This is one of those stories.

The first time I was sexually abused was when I was seven years old. I was staying at my aunt's house, having a sleepover with my two cousins (one girl who was six years old and a 10-year-old boy).

I remember sharing a room with them, our parents were downstairs and we were settling to go asleep. The female cousin was already asleep and I was drifting off when my male cousin, took off his top and laid on top of me. He began to kiss me (open mouth) and started to pull up my PJ top. After a couple of seconds, I was wide awake and knew that this was seriously wrong.

I tried to push him away and asked him to stop but he just told me "to lie down and stop talking". After a couple of minutes, his little sister woke up and asked what we were doing. He quickly got up and I never went back to sleep. Struggling to comprehend to what just happened.

I asked him about it the next day but he just told me to shut up and to never speak about it. I still freeze when I see him (I'm now 22) and try not to be alone in a room with him.

Last year, I got a taxi home after a night out with one of my ex boyfriend's friends (we lived in the same area). He kissed me at my door. I didn't want to kiss him but I just let him. He shoved his hands up my skirt and I politely pushed him away and said no. I began to open my door, got in and tried to close the door. He stopped it with his foot and tried to convince me that he "could make me come harder than ever before". I laughed and told him to go home. He then pushed my door, walked in and grabbed me.

Panic, danger and I instantly thought "oh no, it's happening". I pushed him out and told him to get the fuck out my house before I screamed. After another failed attempt of convincing me, I managed to close the door and locked it. Two minutes later, I got a Facebook message from him asking for my Snapchat name. in the morning, he blocked me from Facebook.

Last Christmas, I was in my local bar, where I used to work, with my mother. It was a quiet night as it was midweek. She was chatting to her friends and I went outside the back to have a cigarette. The owner was outside. I always liked him, a funny guy and a great boss. He was in his thirties, married with lovely children. I knew his wife and his kids went to the same school as my niece.

He was drunk and I was slightly tipsy. It was snowing outside and we arranged a snowball fight with a couple of people inside the bar. When we were outside, he caught me between two cars. He put his hands down my pants and kissed me, trapping me. Someone was running up to us and he stopped. It was only for a couple of seconds but only then, I officially felt violated. I knew this man and couldn't believe what he did to me.

I cried that night and didn't leave the house for two days. I never told my mother as she loves the place and the family and she doesn't understand why I never returned.

I feel lucky not being raped and sometimes forget how bad these things are... even though they seem little to me. That shocks me more, that I've accepted this and done nothing about it.

That's my little rant over! It's actually good to write it down, seeing it makes me realise the seriousness of these incidents and that I shouldn't be casual about them, nor accept them.

Photo by Caleb Woods on Unsplash

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