Shades of Sexual Assault

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It’s like wading through a stream in my bare feet. One moment, I see everything clearly. In the next, it all disappears.

There is the car. The side road. The backseat. There is his body between my legs and his mouth against my skin.

And then—and then he’s inside of me and I can feel the heat rising from between my thighs, the sickness as I realize he’s done the one thing I asked him not to do.

I wasn’t his to take, but he took me anyway.

It was a mark of shame I needed to erase. Write over. Scribble out.

The second—and last—time we are in the backseat, I’m consenting. There is a condom this time—and weed.

One moment, I can feel an electricity coursing through my body. In the next, I can feel every inch of my skin. But never both at the same time.

He finishes.

“You know what you did to me, right?”

He pitifully looks at me with a face full of a million apologies.

He says one of them.

It ends.

There are many dots to connect in the game of “Who Had It Worse?”

Don’t get in the car with drunk friends.

Don’t let them drive you back to your dorm.

Don’t crawl into the backseat.

These are the things I tell myself now.