April is the month set aside for sexual assault awareness. I have looked forward to writing this post from the beginning of the year when I had the idea to write about SA but I have created this draft and found myself double guessing if I should really publish this or not? If this is going to be TMI (Too Much Information)? If this is going to be opening up healed wounds? If people will now look at me differently? If this is the right thing to do?
Sexual assault is an act in which a person sexually touches another person without that person’s consent, or coerces or physically forces a person to engage in a sexual act against their will. It takes many forms including attacks such as rape or attempted rape, as well as any unwanted sexual contact or threats. SA swings both ways towards both sexes but it is more prevalent amongst the females. Statistics show that “One in four girls and one in six boys will be sexually abused before they turn 18 years old”, just imagine.
I was a young, naive and smart girl child. I remember my mum giving me instructions about my body parts while bathing me, she said and I quote: “Don’t allow anyone touch your private part, it is yours; that is why it is private”. I went about living life to the fullest as a young child but that stuck somewhere in my brain. My parents shielded me from a lot of things as I didn’t understand why I couldn’t play with the child next door except they come to our home, why I couldn’t play outside of our fenced home, why I couldn’t be playing on the street, why I couldn’t watch the TV by myself, why I couldn’t spend the night at a friends house and a whole lot.
Fast forward to age 8 or so in primary school (elementary school), I found my self in a relatives house for the summer break and I was so much excited, I mean freedom at last; a new environment and someone extra/new to play with. On this fateful day, my relative left I and their child in the care of a supposed adult while they went about their business. Let’s call this supposed adult Uncle X. Uncle X kept playing with us and we were having fun up until he laid down with is private part erect and he told me to touch it, I didn’t know what that was so I touched and kept moving up and down with my hands until I remembered what my mum used to say “Don’t allow anyone touch your private part, it is yours, that is why it is private”, I then figured this should go both ways then I stopped. Uncle X asked me why I stopped, I told him I was going to report to my relative when they come back, he threatened me and said all sorts like: I will deal with you, you will die etc if you tell anyone. I then held on to my relatives baby and told her not to go close to him.
In all this incident, I didn’t know what this was but I knew it wasn’t right, I couldn’t tell my relative and Uncle X didn’t try it again till I left neither did I tell my mum when I got home from the break but Uncle X took my innocence that day. School resumed and I was taught sex education, it then registered to me what exactly he did and how I miraculously escaped being raped.
Years later in secondary school (high school) I belonged to a clique of 9 girls and whilst having one of our numerous chat-chats, I realized 2 out of 9 of us had been sexually assaulted as a child. I later told my mum and was thankful for those words she told me way back that saved me from the mess which could have been something else entirely. I have also seen Uncle X twice or so and the images kept flashing in my head but I have found peace and I do wish him well and hope that karma doesn’t pay him back.
Let me start with this if you belong to the school of thought that what the victim wore in an assault/rape case is what instigated the abuser to commit the act then…. How indecent could a little child dress for you to be attracted to him/her? Even though I don’t support indecent dressing, I 100% respect whichever way someone chooses to clothe themselves. Again whatever anyone wears shouldn’t instigate anyone to assault them.
1. Train your child right: Let’s face the root of the problem, be it male/female train them well.
2. Stay away from people making unnecessary sexual advances towards you, protect yourself.
3. Please don’t walk away from a suspected assault incident, please help, if you cant call the law enforcing authorities
4. Take self-defense classes if need be.
This incident made me an uptight teenager who saw the opposite sex as a potential threat and didn’t give room for anyone to make an innocent joke or jokes about my body. Growing up has made me heal, be a lot better and be more social but I still do not loosen my guards with the opposite sex except you are trusted.
We can stop or reduce to the barest minimum the incessant increase in assault cases if we do things right.
Thanks once again for stopping by, you are the real MVPs
Which other way do you think we can prevent sexual assault? Do you think what a person wears can instigate sexual assault? And do you think sharing my story is right? Let me know in the comment section below?