9.4.05

All She Needs Is Therapy

I feel:: contemplative
What song is on a loop in my head right now:: Tori Amos~Scarlet's Walk

I had a therapy appt at 1:30 pm yesterday. I was supposed to see Ann, who is the therapist I saw last time, but she met me at the door and told me that she had an emergency meeting to go to. She asked me if I would talk to her intern, Cathy. (Ann is the main therapist at the Dorcas House, so there is no telling what kinds of emergencies she has to deal with every day.) I was kind of disappointed that I wasn't going to get to talk to her, but Cathy seemed genuine and nice, so I agreed to talk to her. She told me that she wasn't very far away from having a Master's Degree in Social Work. (I wanted to ask her about her schooling before the session started, but she started asking me questions, so I didn't think to ask her about that until the end of the session.) I don't remember everything we talked about, but she did ask me how old I was when I had my first suicide attempt. I told her that I was 10 at that time. (I remember telling Ann that in my first session, so it must have been in her notes, because Cathy said something about seeing it there.) She asked me if I had ever had any other suicide attempts and I told her that I had tried again in 1997. She wanted to know why and how I did it. I told her there were several things going on at the time.

First of all, I was still dealing with the breakup of the ministry I had been involved with from 1990-1995. Those people became really important to me because they were my family. I had never really felt like I had had a family until then. So, when the building we were in was sold to Dick Van Dyke, I had to find another place to live. The ministry disolved and I moved to Camden to live with my dad. I did not hear from most of the people who had been with me in the ministry after I moved. I was living 2 hours away and I felt very alone, abandoned, and I felt like they had all lied to me when they told me that they loved me. In my world, words don't mean as much as actions. So, when I didn't hear from them, I figured they had all just given me lip-service friendship. that hurt a lot because these were Christian people, I didn't think Christians would act like that. We had spent 5 years working together and suffering together. Even the couple I lived with and who discipled me in the Christian faith stopped talking to me. That hurt the most because I had lived with them and even called them "Mom" and "Pops". They became for me the parents I had always wanted. I loved them with all my heart and I thought they loved me too. (I found out later that Pops was really sick and had to have an exeperimental back surgery. After that, he had to have a TENS unit strapped to him to relieve pain. I think he recovered for about a year. Now, he is disabled and can't work.) I remember many, many days and nights spent with my heart aching and crying out to God,"Why did this happen? I wasn't ready to lose them! I can't do this on my own! Where are You?!" I felt like God was far from me and couldn't hear me.

That December, I was raped by a guy named Coby. I had come to Little Rock to hang out with a girlfriend of mine that I hadn't seen for awhile, Alisha. I was staying the weekend with some other friends of mine, a married couple, Scott and Renita (They had worked with me in the ministry.). I called Alisha on Saturday night to see if she wanted to hang out. She said she wanted to go to a club called Midnight Rodeo. It was a country club and I wasn't too thrilled about going there, but I missed her a lot, so I agreed to go. When I got to her apt., I remembered that I had another friend in Little Rock that I wanted to see, Rebekah. I called her and asked her if she wanted to go with us to Midnight Rodeo. She said she would go and she was all excited about it. Alisha and I left her apt. in my car to go pick up Rebekah. We got to the club and I immediately hated it. It was a total meat market. I can't stand country music either, so mostly what I did the whole night was sip my drink and pretend to be having a good time. While they were line dancing, this guy came over to my table and introduced himself as Coby. He said that he was going to the police academy and that he was there with his roomates who were both cops. We sat and talked for awhile and slow danced a couple of times. I thought he was a pretty nice guy for meeting him in a bar. He stayed with me for the rest of the night. When it came time to leave, I said goodbye to him and Alisha, Rebekah and I started walking to my car. When we were almost there, Coby came running up to me saying that his roomates had left him there with no ride and he wanted to know if I could take him home. I thought about it for aminute and I figured it would be ok since Alisha and Rebekah were with me. Well, we all got into my car and as I was putting on my seatbelt, Alisha looked at her watch and said,"Oh my God! I didn't know it was this late! You have to take me home now! Paul is going to be so mad at me for staying out so late!" I told her that Coby's house was the closest and was on the way to her apt, but she pitched a big fit and insisted that I take her home first. I was irritated that she was acting like such a baby, but I did drop her off first. As Alisha was getting out of my car, it started to rain. I have never seen it rain so hard before or since. Rebekah got in the front seat and started freaking out and telling me that I had to take her home next because it was storming so bad and her daughter, Hailey, was scared of storms. I said,"Your mom is there with her. She'll be ok and besides, his house is closer than yours." Nonetheless, she insisted that I take her home next. Ok, I was highly irritated at this point. I couldn't believe my friends whom I had known for years were acting like this. Sighing loudly, I started to drive to Rebekah's house. I couldn't drive faster than 10 or 15 mph because of the rain, so it took about an hour for me to take her home.(She lived in another town across the river.) When I dropped Rebekah off, it was still raining as hard as it had been. Coby got in the front seat and I started driving to his house, which incidentally, was only about 10 minutes from the club where we started out. About an hour or so later, we got to his house. Before he got out of my car, he asked me where I was staying. I told him I was staying in Benton with some friends of mine. (Benton is 30 miles away from Little Rock.) He told me that I shouldn't try to drive to Benton in that rain because it would be very easy for me to wreck. (Why wasn't he concerned that I might wreck while I was taking Alisha and Rebekah home? That took 2 hours. I should have seen his intentions right here, but I didn't.) He asked me if I wanted to come into his house to wait out the rain. I thought about it and figured it would be ok since his two roomates were there and both of them were cops. We went inside and he offered me a towel to dry myself off and got one for himself. We were both soaked to the bone even though it was a short walk from my car to his front door. At this point everything gets fuzzy. (As I was telling Cathy this, she said that it is very common for victims of sexual abuse to not have the ability to recall all of the things that happened to them. This made me feel better. I had thought my memory was just bad.) I remember being in his room. I remember there was a desk on the left wall and the bed was on the right wall. There were windows, one right after another, along the left and far wall. It was that time of the morning right before the sun comes up and I remember hearing the rain hit the windows and watching the drops fall down on the sills as he was raping me. I kept telling him "No" and to stop, but he wouldn't. I fought him off for a bit, but he was stronger than me and eventually he was on top of me and had me pinned to where I couldn't move. While he was raping me, every so often, he would whisper in my ear things like,"You are so beautiful." or "Stop crying. You know you like it." Other times, he would hum something in my ear. I could never recognize the tune. It's amazing the things you think about while you are being raped. I remember looking at the ceiling and wishing fervently that he would stop and thinking to myself,"What the hell am I doing here?" I don't know how long it lasted, but it seemed like forever. After it was over, he rolled off me and just lay beside me looking satisfied. I was in so much shock that I didn't really know what to do. I got up from the bed, got my clothes and went to the bathroom. I sat down on the toilet and cried and prayed. I remember asking God,"Why did this happen to me? Where ARE You? Do You even love me? Why?! Why?! Why?! Why did this happen to me AGAIN?" (It's been nearly 9 years since it happened and I still ask why, but I have not yet gotten an answer.) I finally came out of the bathroom red faced and tear stained. There was no way he would not have known that I had been crying. I am one of those people that cannot hide when I've been crying. My face gets red as a beet and my eyes swell and get red. My skin is very fair, so it's very easily noticeable. He came up to me as I was getting my purse and kissed me and asked me if I was feeling frisky. I realized with incredulity that he wanted to go again. I think I just stood there and stared at him. I was too much in shock to even be afraid. He gave me a piece of paper with his phone number on it and told me to call him. I didn't say anything and just turned to the door and walked out. ( I don't know why his roomates didn't wake up from all the commotion going on. Maybe they heard it and just didn't care. Maybe they were used to it. Maybe this was a habit for him. I don't know.) I got into my car and started driving to Benton. I was hysterically crying the whole way there and still praying frantically. I thought that somehow this had been my fault and I was begging God for forgiveness. When I got to Scott and Renita's, they were just leaving for early church and they asked me if I planned on going to church that day. I mumbled something about going and went to the room where I had my stuff. (Why didn't Scott and Renita notice that I had been crying? Why didn't they ask me what was wrong?) I took a shower and cried all during it. I got dressed while crying. I managed to stop crying long enough to put some make-up on. As I was driving to church, my eyes kept welling up with tears and it was all I could do not to get hysterical again.I kept having to dab my eyes with Kleenex to keep the tears from streaking my make-up. I figured if I could just get to church that I could find someone to talk to and then I would feel better. Then everything would be ok. ( I realize now that this is irrational thinking, but I figure I was in a state of trauma and that is the reason I was thinking that way.) I went to Sunday school and the teacher pulled me aside when she saw me and asked me what was wrong. I told her that something really bad had happened to me the night before. I couldn't bring myself to tell her the whole story because I was afraid that she would think the whole thing was my fault. I figured she would tell me that I shouldn't have agreed to take Coby home in the first place. She told me when bad things happen to people it's usually because they have unconfessed sin in their lives. She told me to pray to God and ask Him for forgiveness for being in rebellion. I couldn't take being there after that. I went downstairs and out of the church hysterical and in tears again. I got in my car and drove home to Camden. I didn't hear from anyone in the ministry for a long while after that. When I did finally go back to Benton, I went to a bible study and saw Mom and Pops' daughter, Lori. I got up the courage to tell her that he raped me. I don't remember what she said exactly, but I do remember that she changed the subject really quickly and started talking about herself. I felt alone again and betrayed again. I went home to Camden and for months I tried to find a church there where I felt like I fit in. I never did. I just church-hopped. I kept trying to find my comfort in God through prayer and study, but I felt like He just wasn't there. That's when I began to doubt my salvation.

A few months after the rape, things began to get tense with my dad. We were arguing a lot, which means he would say mean things to me, I would cry and retreat to my room for several days. Finally, one night, I decided to talk to him. I found him in the back yard on the patio drinking his nightly Jack Daniel's and smoking a joint. I got right to the point and told him that I felt like he didn't want me there. He said he really didn't because I was too much trouble, too emotional, too churchy (my dad is an Atheist), and it cost too much to feed me. (What's funny about that last comment is that at that time I was having a relapse of anorexia and I was only eating like once a month. After about seven days without food, I just don't have hunger pangs and it's easier not to eat.) When he told me that, I was so hurt and I felt like not only that he didn't love me, but that he had never really loved me. The next day, I called Alisha and asked her if I could move in with her. Within the next two or three days, I had all of my stuff moved out of dad's house and into Alisha's apt. (Paul wasn't living there at that time. They had a weird relationship before they got married. He used to break up with her all the time and then he'd want her back when he started missing her. When I moved in, they were broken up.) After I moved in with her, I got a job cocktail waitressing at a bar called Juanita's. At that time, Alisha told me that she thought Paul was going to ask her to marry him so I had to find another place to live. I didn't know where I was going to go, but I went apt hunting anyway. I found an apt in downtown Little Rock that I absolutely loved. It was a huge two-bedroom with a lot of windows ( I love windows.) and shiny hardwood floors. I couldn't afford it on my own though. I needed a roomate, but I didn't know that many people in Little Rock. It so happened that one night I was at a bar called Slick Willy's hanging out with my friend, Adon, who was the manager. I told him what was going on and he said that knew of a person who also needed a roomate. His name was Jim and he was homeless. He had been living and working at Slick's for a couple of months. I wasn't sure about him, so I told Adon that I would have to think about it. I met Jim and he seemed nice, although he smelled pretty bad. (Reeked is a better word.) Adon said he was a really good employee and that he would vouch for him. (I've known Adon since grade school, so I was inclined to trust him.) Jim and I became roomates and everything was fine for awhile. He didn't have a bank account, so he would give me his half of the rent and utilities in cash. He would also give me money to buy him groceries. Come to think of it, I did everything there. He just occupied his room. He pretty much stayed in there all the time. (He never could completely get rid of that smell though. I went into his room once and was bowled over by it. I never went in there again.) Anyway, he got a second job at another bar called Midtown, which was an after-hours bar open till 5 am. It was only two doors down from Juanita's. Well, I was over there one night after work and was talking to the manager who had become a friend of mine. She asked me if Jim was still my roomate. Confused, I said yes and asked her why. She got really serious and told me in a quiet voice that one night the previous week, Jim had been there drinking when he was off work. She said he got really drunk and was groping this one girl and he wouldn't leave her alone. At one point, she went to the bathroom and Jim followed her. She said he assaulted her while she was in the bathroom. She didn't know if he raped her, but she said the girl was pretty banged up when she finally made it out of the bathroom. (It's not a big bathroom. Only one toilet. I can't believe he assaulted her in there. It's so small.) The police were called and he was arrested for assault. I told her that I remembered him being gone for several days, but I didn't think anything about it. He always stayed with his girlfriend because she had a car and would take him to and from work, so I just assumed he was with her. After she told me all of this, I was pretty freaked out. I thought to myself,"What if he comes home one night shitfaced drunk and assaults me?" I couldn't deal with that. The next time I saw him I asked him about it. He said it was all true, but he didn't rape the girl. He said he was too drunk to do that. I asked him why he did that and he said he didn't know. Then, I asked him why he didn't tell me and he said that he was afraid that I would move out if I knew and that he couldn't afford that apt on his own. He was right. I moved out the next week. I moved into these really crappy apts downtown on Sherman St. I hate the apt, but I was glad to be on my own and away from Jim. I was getting more and more depressed, though. My job at Juanita's wasn't going very well. When I first started working there, I was making up to $500 a week in tips. At the end, I was only making like $100 per week. I couldn't survive on that little money, so I quit.

Unfortunately, I couldn't find another job and I was jobless for two months.
During that time, I ran into this guy that I knew while I was out at a club. His name was David MacDonald. We hung out all night at the club, and when it closed, I agreed to take him home. (What IS it with me and guys with no vehicles?) Well, when we got to his house, he wouldn't get out of my car. He kept insisting that I kiss him. He said that I owed him at least that much for the drinks he bought me. I didn't want to kiss him, but he grabbed me and tried to force me to kiss him. Thank God for consoles. He was having trouble reaching over it to get to me. We fought for the next couple of hours. Sometimes it was physical, sometimes it was me telling him to get out and him telling me what a bitch and a slut I was. What is weird to me is that he finally stopped when I stared crying. He said he couldn't stand bitches who cry. He said that he was disgusted with me and that I was weak. He finally got out of my car and slammed the door so hard that my ears popped. I drove off with him in my rear view mirror screaming obscenities at me. I was crying so hard that I could barely see the road. I stayed in my apt for the next week or two taking pain killers and muscle relaxers (They were left over from a car wreck I had had when I was living with Alisha. I have scoliosis, so any time I have a wreck, my back is screwed up royally.) because I wanted to be numb. Well, eventually, I ran out and I couldn't get anymore. I started to think about things and to see things more clearly. I was remembering everything that has happened in my life and I got so angry. Then I got sad and depressed. Everything seemed hopeless, like no matter what I did, nothing ever changed. I felt like men were some sort of alien species who did nothing but prey on girls and women. I had no money. I had no food and I was being evicted from my apt. I didn't know what I was going to do. So one day I found myself sitting on my bed with a knife repeatedly stabbing my mattress. I had laid out a bunch of Benadryl tablets in rows on my mattress and I kept looking at them while I was stabbing my mattress. I started to cry, knowing what would happen if I took them, but feeling like I had no other choice. So, I took all of them. I put on a cd of a band called Breedlove and laid down on my bed. I eventually fell asleep. I woke up puking. I don't know how much time had gone by. I stumbled to the bathroom and puked/dry heaved in the toilet for awhile. Then, I think I passed out. I woke up again laying in the bathroom floor.

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