This is going to be a continuation to my original post, if you missed it or you want to read it click here. I left off in the back of my parents car, 3 am and on our way to the police station. I was a rape victim now. My new label burned into my head. My parents didn’t really say anything to me and if they did- I don’t remember it now. We got to the police station and I was so ashamed walking in. This is why mommy said don’t go to the bar. And so began my cycle of healing and beginning of self blame.
The police officer was a woman. I remember she was blonde with kind eyes. She questioned me in a room and my parents sat there. I didn’t want to ask them to leave, but I didn’t want to talk about what had just happened either. I wanted to go home so badly and be alone. The police officer pressed for details and I just remember lying and saying I didn’t remember. First huge mistake. Again, I just wanted to go home. Plus the added fact my father, the last person I wanted to discuss this with, was in the room. The police officer recommended that my parents take me to the hospital to be examined. So that’s where we went next at around 4 am.
When I arrived at the hospital, I saw a girl I knew waiting in the ER herself. She had also been to the bar. She jumped up and wanted to say ‘hi’ to me. My mom grabbed my hand and shook her head and we kept walking. I guess the police phoned over to the hospital because I didn’t have to wait. My mom and I were shown to a room and I laid on the bed. This time by choice. My mom kept asking questions to which I kept saying I don’t remember. Some ladies from the local sexual assault centre came into the room and told me what was going to happen next. Rape kit examine, they were going to have to take my underwear, STD testing, pregnancy precautions etc.. They rambled on about charges and the legal steps and in my mind, I was curling up into a ball alone. Before tonight, these were things I knew nothing about. Now it was reality under the harsh ER lights. The doctor came in and my mom waited outside. One of the sexual assault centre ladies held my hand. I cried while I received my rape examination and they took my underwear. When we left the hospital, I remember it was morning outside. I went home and fell asleep in my bed for a long time.
I keep having to take a pause from writing this. It is so hard to go back. It is important for me to get this all out once and for all and put it somewhere. But PTSD is a crazy thing. It blocks a lot of stuff and you have to dig deep to get it.
The next day, the police station phoned our house and informed me that because the crime didn’t take place in our township- I was going to have to retell my story to another police officer from a different station.. TODAY. I sat and waitied outside for the police officer to come. My mom waited with me pushing me to press charges right away. When the police officer arrived, I told the exact same thing I did to the woman officer. I was too drunk, I don’t remember. I also said I didn’t want to press charges right away. The police officer said I had 5 years to change my mind before my rape kit was thrown out. My parents were mad at me for not pressing charges but I had just lived through this. I did not want to go any further.
PSTD is a scary thing. You start to become depressed, nightmares, flashbacks.. it’s awful. I tried medication, counselling and nothing made it better. Eventually, I put it in a box in my mind and moved on. My family didn’t either. I broke up with the boy I was dating, changed jobs and lived a normal life. But inside, I couldn’t sleep without going back to his bedroom. I couldn’t go out with my friends without a flashback or feeling terrified. I dated other people and started to get, for lack of a better word, slutty. I went back to the bar where it had happened and smiled for the cameras for the Facebook albums. I ended up working at the bar for a short time in attempt to reclaim something. When Mr. B ended up coming in one night, not even quitting- I just ran out of the bar and cried all the way home.
From the outside, I didn’t look how people think rape victims ‘should’ look. Only those close to me knew what had happened. I had no self worth. I didn’t think anyone would want someone who had been raped. I let boyfriends control me because of the box in my head containing September 12th 2009 memories. Every year or so, I would call the police officer who had my case. I kept his name and number on a card in my wallet; Jason Brant. Each time I phoned I asked the same hypothetical questions. “What if he comes after me?” .. “I can’t testify!”. He was always so kind and answered all my questions over and over without making me feel stupid. He said ”If you want to press charges, I will come to you and we can take your statement.” I declined each time and said goodbye. After a while, the box containing those horrible memories started to fall apart in my head. Anger, regret, frustration begins seeping out of the box and escapes through actions you normally wouldn’t do.
September 12th 2012. Three years to the day. My shaky hand picked up my cellphone in my tiny Etobicoke apartment. I was taking funeral direction at Humber College. I dialled the number for Jason Brant for the last time and when he pickled up I said “It’s Jenny Cox..” and before I finished he said “What’s your address, I will come get a statement’.” He just knew! Jason came to my apartment and he video taped my full statement. He also asked me why my story had changed and why I hadn’t told the truth the night it happened. I explained myself on tape and when we were done- he asked if I wanted to watch it. I said ‘no.’ He then asked me to describe the knife, Mr B’s bedroom, what I was wearing and all the minor details. I drew pictures of the knife and drew a map of his bedroom and what I had remembered of his house. I signed all the proper papers to cease medical records and my rape kit and Jason left saying he would call me when he knew more.
A couple months passed and I moved home. I didn’t enjoy living alone where I knew no one and wanted to be with my family again. Jason called and told me Mr B had been charged and had attended a couple hearings. Mr. B had firmly denied and explained it was consensual. Which meant court was coming.
Again, I am going to stop for now. It’s hard writing about this topic and I only have the trial left to explain. From the sexual assault I was left with PTSD, anxiety, depression. I ended up spending time in the psych ward of the hospital for severe depression. I am not cured. I won’t ever get over it but I can learn how to heal. I am a stronger, smarter person because of this situation. I should have dealt with it sooner emotionally, but I couldn’t. That’s okay I know now. This topic doesn’t bother me half as bad as it used to and it should be something to talk about. Once again, if you know me in real life and didn’t know this about me – that shows how someone can live with something like this inside them.