Common feelings associated with rape

Did you know rape is the most second horrific thing that can happen to a person other than murder? You and your loved ones will most likely go through the same emotions as grieving the loss of a loved one. They are shock and disbelief, anger, bargaining, depression and then acceptance. All of these emotions might not be felt or in the order listed above, but the majority of them are. Not only do most experience these emotions, but the victim also has the initial “shock” or “numbness” to get through, which typically comes first before other emotions. Other common feelings that might occur right after the rape are shame, scared, guilty, dirty and powerless. All of these are understandable to have but doesn’t mean they are warranted. A lot of survivors feel shame, guilt and dirty but it doesn’t mean they are. What it means is you are taking on the assaulter’s dirty shameful guilt because that is what he is trying to do to you through rape and control. DON’T LET HIM! Survivors also deal with the fear of rejection through friends and family. This sometimes means there is a communication problem because the friends or family just don’t know how to handle it or what to say. Refer to my page “Advice for loved ones of survivors”. They may also have problems with their sleep or eating patterns. Most survivors encounter many of these feelings and it is all part of the healing process. I like to say, “You need to feel in order to heal”. You can not mask the pain with drugs and alcohol because the less you feel the longer it takes to heal. The more you keep it inside the bigger the issue will get and come out when you least expect it. And depending on how long you keep your feelings regressed the bigger it’s ugly head is when it does surface. I always say if you feel like crying, no matter where you are or how long ago it was, let it out. Eventually, you may even want to talk about it. If you can’t talk about it, write it down. The more you let your feelings out, the more room you have to heal. The most important reason for this is because THE ASSUALTER DOESN’T DESERVE TO CONTROL YOUR LIFE ANYMORE! As long as you are regressing, the longer they have control over your life.

109 Responses to “Common feelings associated with rape”

  1. Lynn says:

    K. First and foremost if you work at a restaurant I would change jobs immediately. If you don’t feel you can confront him or tell anyone else then change jobs. Another reason to do this is for your relationship. If one day this comes out and you stayed working with this man it will be difficult for your boyfriend to believe. At this point I would not tell your boyfriend but instead go to counseling and ask for guidance on whether to tell him or not and how to go about telling him BUT after you change jobs. You never know what this asshole will try and do again with you if you stay. From flirting to possibly something else. And when you change jobs you don’t need to worry about anyone that works there you have a fresh start. But the counseling is not only going to help you deal with these feelings but also help with your relationship. Stay strong! Lynn

  2. Lynn says:

    NC, so sorry for the delay in getting back to you I just became a grandmother for the first time and have been helping my daughter and my site has suffered a little. If you get this I want you to know how PROUD I am of you!!!! Very few go to the lengths that you are and I know you feel weak but YOU HAVE AMAZING STRENGTH to do this. I know you were probably put through the ringer but you need to know that you are STANDING UP FOR YOURSELF!!! And that is AMAZING! I hope it went in your favor but if for some reason it didn’t just know it doesn’t really matter what anyone else thinks about you as long as you know you did the right thing! And that goes for your bf too. Going forward if he can not give you the support you need then he is NOT the one for you. Because you will need this support for the rest of your life and if he can’t give it to you now it won’t be there later. Stay strong! Lynn

  3. K says:

    Oh and I would like to mention,
    recently people at work having been acting a little different towards me, so I think the asshole told at least one person anyway. My response to this rejection that it ever happened and I (try) to act as normal as I can. I work at a restaurant and have to work a shift with him every week and to keep up this charade is becoming harder and harder.

    No one has asked me about it. Which is good, considering I am mortified to actually talk about it with anyone but bad because everyone knows I have a boyfriend and now probably consider me a cheater and the one to blame. Which I resent so much. Lately, I have been picturing myself finally letting it all out and punching my co-worker in the face for what he did and letting everyone know what actually happened–but I am too meek to do this. So, I just hope karma get’s him back–which I know is a terrible way to deal with this.

    He also tries to act “friendly” around me, even to the point of flirting and touching–which disgusts me inside but on the outside I try to act like nothing is wrong and just walk away or just play along and tell him to “get a life” or something.

    I must seem insane for just doing nothing–and I feel insane but I just feel like I can’t. I feel stuck and I want to run away. I am literally petrified to speak out about this and don’t know what to do :(

  4. K says:

    Hi, I need to get this off my chest; I don’t know who to turn to and I feel like it’s eating me up inside.
    A few months ago, right after all my exams, I was invited to go out for a drink with a friend from work. We soon later joined other people from work and proceeded to drink quite a bit but I felt like I trusted everyone in attendance, so I felt alright about it–also, I had just gone through a week of extreme stress, so it was nice to let a load off.

    Anyways, one co-worker in particular, who happens to be very outgoing and flirty with everyone, kept buying round after round of shots. I refused after a couple because I have a lower tolerance these days and I stated this. Soon enough the bar was closing but I was having such a good time with my co-workers that I decided to bring the party to my house close by–their were 5 of us(including me).

    From here on in things start to get a little hazy but I remember all of getting in a cab back to my place and then having a dance party and proceeding to drink more. I believe I had two more drinks but I felt safe because I was in my own house with “friends”.

    There was one other female in our group and at some point her and the “outgoing/flirty” co-worker disappeared and I didn’t notice until I had to go downstairs to my bedroom for something and they were literally having sex on mine and my boyfriend’s bed. I freaked out for obvious reasons. But they didn’t stop and when they did, my male co-worker for some reason decided he could walk around naked for awhile in full view of everyone and I had to basically make him put on something. After this point I remember very little, but I do remember providing a blanket and pillow for another co-worker sleeping on the couch and then I went to bed in my bedroom.

    I don’t remember having sex with said flirty co-worker but apparently it happened and I am pretty sure I was passed out. I have confronted him about it and he said I came on to him but admitted I did say no to doing anything–I do not believe I came on to him considering I am in a loving 4 year relationship. My boyfriend would normally be home but he was out of town with some friends.

    This tore me apart when I found out and didn’t want to believe it, so when I confronted him I also told him to “pretend like this never happened” because that’s what I was going to do out of fear that I would be blamed if anyone ever knew. Also, I was terrified this would get out at work and I wouldn’t know how to deal with it.

    I am mortified to tell my boyfriend, considering this happened in OUR bed and I feel like he would be angry at me for “putting myself in that position.” I honestly feel like he would, at the very least, see me in a different view and it would put a stigma in our relationship–which I feel like ultimately end. I feel like if I keep this secret, I will carry the burden and he won’t have to be upset over it.

    I haven’t told anyone else because I’m worried they will see me different and think I’m lying and a cheater. I am typically a shy person, who is nice to everyone and very angry and upset this could happen in my own house and by someone who I know and have worked with for about a year.

    Sorry for the long post, I just needed to get this out somewhere.

  5. NC says:

    I was raped in last year by my ex husband. The trial started yesterday. Today I testify, in 4 hours. I know I can get through reliving it, im more concerned about his defense lawyer, he is a bulldog. I have read the horror stories from other rape victims about getting blamed, or you were asking for it… the list goes on.so, im pretty freaked out by all of this.

    From the start of all of this my bf of 11 months has not been supportive.but, I took a chance to talk to him, hoping he would have some kind words and a you can do this attitude instead I got….suck it up, to stop letting him win. Im crazy for being ashamed. Im making it harder on myself. I swear I feel mentally raped after talking to him. How can someone be so uncaring about this. Alot of it is him blaming himself, he sent me flowers,
    ex husband saw them and he went into a rage.

    Im just so lost, scared and I dont want to go today. I dont want to face my exhusband, I dont want to tell all of those people what he did.

  6. Lynn says:

    H. The only person you need to be giving details to is a counselor. It’s ok that you told your boyfriend about the rape because you were looking for support and obviously needed a lot of that, which he didn’t give. The only thing that proves is that he is NOT the one for you. I understand he would be upset however the way he handled it means he didn’t care about your well being which in turn means he is and can not handle this the way you need in handled. My advice, no matter how much it hurts, leave them both behind and start concentrating on yourself. I wouldn’t even consider a relationship going forward until you can appropriately deal with what you have been put through from your abuse at home and your rape. And trust me if you want a happy future for yourself, and a relationship as well as a family you must take the proper steps in healing yourself first. Once you get your mind, body and soul straight then and only then will you be able to deal with the situations in your future and be able to hold your head high no matter what the outcome. You deserve nothing but happiness and to live for the future not dwell in the past because that just means those that hurt you are still in control. You need to be in control of your life, not them! Stay strong! Lynn

  7. H says:

    I had a breakup with my boyfriend and went back to my ex for comfort because at the time I was also dealing with physical abuse at home and I felt he was the only one I could connect to. I was hurt because of my breakup,but I was also numb. My ex took advantage of that and raped me. At first I didn’t know if it was rape or gray rape because I wasn’t drunk, but I never gave him consent. I got back with my boyfriend and told him 6 months later. I understand why he’s upset and broke up with me, but he doesn’t understand what I was dealing with. What a woman has to deal with and how hard it is to come in terms with something like that and accept being labeled as someone who’s been raped. I feel even more horrible because we’re not together anymore and I’m trying to deal with this on my own. He asked me a lot of things in detail which hurt me because I had to replay it in my head, but none if that helped. I regret telling him because I don’t want anyone to know. This is two weeks fresh tht I’ve come into terms with it. I just feel broken about everything

  8. Lynn says:

    K. I need you to understand 2 things. First, finding this person is not going to help a thing, it will only stir up more issues to deal with, I promise. Secondly, rape is about control, not you. And if you are still dealing with it 8 years later then this guy is still controlling you. If you want to stop his control then you have to move forward and stop living in the past where he has control. Counseling is where your future is. You made several steps already that tell me you are looking for help.Telling some friends you trust and coming here. So get it the right way through professional counseling. Someone that can truly help you get control back of your life. Doesn’t that sound good. I’m not gonna sugar coat it ans tell you it’s easy because it’s not BUT it damn sure isn’t as hard as what you are going through now. This person doesn’t deserve one more second of control over your life so take the necessary steps to take back your life and look towards and work for what you want your future to be like. Stay strong! Lynn

  9. K says:

    When I was 6 years old, I was raped by a neighbor who wasn’t much older than me. It wasn’t until recently until I connected with what happened. Thankfully I moved away from there years ago, but I want to know where that guy ended up. I want to question him. I don’t sleep at night because I’m afraid he will find me again. I barely ever really want to get up as a result of not sleeping. I didn’t tell anybody until this July, about 8 years later. my parents still don’t know. For a while, I didn’t feel. I sat in my room and I would cry until sometimes 3 or 4 in the morning because I felt so helpless, and that’s still 8 years later… some of my friends started questioning me why I wasn’t myself and I don’t know what to tell them because only 3 people know and I certainly don’t need the whole school knowing. I also went through a time where I would only eat rainbow sprinkles and sometimes nutter butters. I guess they seemed like something I missed out on as a child. idk. It just really frustrates me because he took my innocence and now I relive it in my head so many times in a day I couldn’t count it with my fingers, toes, and any other limbs I have. I don’t know what to do anymore.

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