I'm 25 And As Old As My Rapist Today: This Is How It Feels To Be A Strong Independent Woman

Anonymous Anonymous in Single Women Bad Women on 13 June, 2017

There's a juvenile accused in Nirbhaya's case and his age was a big matter of debate. "If you're old enough to rape, then, how can you be not old enough to…"

Isn't one capable of raping or being raped at any age? Did you know how old I was when I was raped? Not old enough- that's the answer. I had my entire life ahead of me. I still do, but it's not the same. 

Speaking of "old enough", now I'm old enough to marry. I can tell you that my uterus screams every day for some attention. There's a countdown set to my next birthday. I have never celebrated a birthday like my peers usually do. My Facebook friends don't get a notification, I don't throw a party, I just stay home with my family. But this time, I want to do something different. It's going to be a long weekend and everything, so I thought why not?

After all, I'm turning 25. And that reminds me, I'm going to be just as old as one of my rapists was all those years ago. Soon, I'm going to be as old as my two other rapists as well. 

When I turn 25, which I nearly have, will I suddenly have a blip in my judgement and inflict violence on the next unsuspecting person? God, I hope not. Because if age and maturity are mere excuses, I should behave just like everyone else. But here I am, only focusing on my career and doing what I'm told to do. So, what makes me different? Is it that I've been subjected to a non-fatal episode of sexual violence that changed my life? Perhaps. 

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I survived it, guys! Let's celebrate that I fought through and became the best version of myself! Yes, please glorify that for me while I continue to be an emotional mess and have random panic attacks at meetings. How would you live if you were raped by the man you loved and his two best friends whom you lovingly called "bhaiyya"? What would happen to your ability to trust human beings after you were forced to question the truth of everything you held dear? 

Unfortunately, nobody notices these things because it's easy to slip behind the "commitment-phobia" mask. The world thinks I can't keep a man because I'm commitment-phobic and enjoy being promiscuous. 

Having had sex with all those men since that day is a penance. It's not a joke. Each time I'm undressing in front of a man whom I barely know, I’m forced to see the truth or hypocrisy behind my exercise of consent; I claim the right over who does exactly what to my body. It's my way of coming to terms with my life, and maybe I'm nearly done.

It took me years, but I finally found a man I could love. Today, he's married to someone else because I realized I was still incapable of receiving love.
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After all that, I still can't accept the love I deserve- not even a little. It's no wonder that men like me so much. I'm highly undemanding and very easy to be with (not just easy to have sex with). 

Even today, I don't believe that I deserve to be loved. I'm starved and dying on the inside, but the minute I let my vulnerability show and ask for love, I only get a blank stare in return. Maybe it takes time to find someone to love you back, but I don't even know if I can handle it, should it come my way. 

Yes, I'm going to be 25. The stilettos on my career path don't wobble, and I glow on the outside. I'm constantly told by my seniors and mentors that I'm far too mature for my age, very capable, and decidedly ahead of the curve.

The world is mine only until I come to my empty home at night. I have nobody to love and no one loves me back. I spend my nights in crippling self-doubt and the fear to accept what should be mine. 
Author's Note:

What does an average 25-year-old do? Quit their first job and work on a startup? Find a soulmate? Go out partying with friends? Rape someone who still doesn't know what 25 should be like? 

I'm as old as my rapist was. He thought he deserved my body. In fact, he called me back to score a booty call not long after he raped me. What do I deserve then? And whatever it is, why am I still too broken to accept it? And is this what surviving rape is about?

Editor's Note:

If you have a heart and you read this story, I'm not sure why you won't share it