(As told to Yasmin)
Why I can shout Me Too often and loudly
The #MeToo story has been going around for a while now, and it is a great way to kick the creeps in the right place and take them to task. I am all for it, having been at the receiving end from a huge battalion of creepy crawlies who did not think anything about treating me like a piece of ass. Here is my story; call me Anike.
Growing up, I met a couple of creeps
In my early years, I was infatuated with the idea of romantic love. My first love was in my early teens, and the boy was in college. We spoke a bit and when we did get to be alone, I was fondled. I did not know what to do, but I believed that this was what was expected of me. My first #MeToo moment. I did not want this to happen – I was just 13, he was 20, but it happened. Today, I realise that I was underage and since he was much older, this was rape. The relationship ultimately fizzled out because of some drama.
Years later in college, I met a boy who I went around with for a while. He ‘introduced’ me to oral sex. I hated the idea – I had never even seen a penis, it was scary. He took me for a bike ride to a faraway place and I was expected to perform, he forced my head down and I had to swallow too. #MeToo again. I was firm about keeping my virginity intact and for that, I suppose I am happy that he did not force me with penetration. The relationship ultimately fizzled out, I started working, he went back home.
Related reading: Why accepting a date is NOT an invitation to rape
When my boss took advantage of me
Work culture was not as great as it should have been, but I was earning and loved it. When I changed jobs, I was the ‘chosen one’ by the boss who had a glad eye for anyone in a skirt. The rape occurred and it was the worst #MeToo experience of my life. My life changed afterward. I shut down emotionally after I found out that I was pregnant. Then I had an abortion. I was lost and did not speak about this to anyone, because I was ashamed and believed that I had brought it on myself.
It took me a while to get back on track with going out with friends and members of the opposite sex. After a few years, I met a nice person and believed that I would settle down. He wooed me, wined and dined me. I was enamoured. One day when he used me, he kept the door open so that another friend could watch. #MeToo I lost the plot by then.
Marriage and me too
Ultimately, I did settle down with a man who was great and understanding. He broke down many barriers and I was finally relaxed. I kept on with the blowjobs, attended to the sexual needs of the spouse, but when it was anal penetration, I howled. It was painful. When I refused, I was kicked and shoved around with mental and physical torture. #MeToo here too. I was pretty broken inside. He was very demanding sexually. I tried to make it work – actually, we both did. I would like to allocate the blame to me, since I was not ready to handle what he wanted. We called it quits pretty ‘amicably’, but I was quite done with men, having had my share of trauma.
I end now, not an embittered woman, but someone who has met through her fair share of #MeToo moments. Some may opine that I had it coming because I was promiscuous. But I never was. I was just a girl. This is me now free. Free from sex and the pain that it brought to the fore for me, free from demanding men, life is better.