My high school girlfriend’s little sister from Iowa told me this on Facebook Messenger yesterday. Because I had come out about my rape, she wanted to tell me about her date rape at age fifteen. This is verbatim and hard to read, but the world needs to know that this happens.
“I really need to get this off of my heart, and right now, this is the only place I can do it. I feel that I can only do it here because 1) my brother says the Kavanaugh issue is like McCarthyism, and 2) I can’t bring myself to telling my grown son right now.
When I was 15, I worked at a pizza place and was invited on a date by the friend of a co-worker. I had only met the co-worker’s friend a couple of times, but he seemed nice. The co-worker and his friend went to a different high school than I did. I didn’t go on many “traditional” dates because, well, it was 1975 and everything was mostly group partying.
“By this age, I was fairly well into pot and beer and smoking cigarettes. But that was it. I was not a virgin — I had lost my virginity to my ex bf the previous year, and had maybe one or two other partners since. So this boy invited me to go to a movie the following Saturday. I agreed, and he picked me up in his car. (This would have made him at least 16 since he could drive and had his own car.)
“When we got in his car, he suggested we go back to his place to smoke a little pot before we went to the movie, and I agreed. Now he was a high school student, so he still lived with his parents. We arrived at his house. I have no idea if his parents were home…we just headed straight downstairs to the family room. His younger brother was down there, whom I had also met once or twice previously along with this boy. They got the bong out, turned the lights down a little (maybe a black light was on, but I’m not sure). And they asked me if I wanted a beer. I said sure. Little Brother handed me a beer that turned out to be a malt liquor. I’d never had one, but I knew it had a higher alcohol content. I believe it was open when he handed it to me. We smoked a little, and I remember drinking some of the malt liquor, but not much because I didn’t want to get completely tanked before we left for the movie.
“Slowly I started to slide down into the chair and got very sleepy. I recall going completely to sleep, and then something kind of woke me up. The two brothers were arguing, but not loudly. Finally, Little Brother left, and I went back to sleep, still in the chair. I remember feeling very mellow and relaxed. The chair was very comfortable. The next thing I remember, my “date” was pulling my pants down and I was still in the chair. I remember thinking, “Oh, we’re going to have sex now? But we haven’t gone to the movie yet.”
“The next thing I remember is being in his car. It was around dawn, and we were approaching my house. There was a police car in my driveway, so he dropped me off and I walked the rest of the way. I barely remember having a conversation with my mom and the police officer, and I slept the rest of the day. Honestly, I don’t even remember the rest of that weekend. For the next week or so, I wondered why he didn’t call me for another “date.” And I never saw him again.
“I didn’t report because we had no concept of date rape in 1975. I didn’t tell my mom because she would have blamed me for doing drugs. In retrospect it was clear that the whole thing was planned, and that something had been slipped into my drink. I’m certain I didn’t drink more than about 1/3 of that tallboy can of malt liquor. It didn’t dawn on my until twenty years later, in my mid 30’s that this was date rape. I told a couple of people and thought I had worked through it. I’ve never been triggered. The Ford/Kavanaugh testimonies have become a triggering event for me and I have struggled with a bewildering mixture of emotions. Shame. Guilt. Anger at my mother for knowing she would have blamed me. Anger at myself for allowing myself to get in that kind of situation in the first place. I am grateful that I didn’t get pregnant (did he use a condom? doubtful…). I am grateful that I didn’t get an STD from him. Thank you for letting me put my story here.
“Here’s the really creepy part, though…
“About the same time that I recalled what happened, and had a name for it, I actually SAW the guy! I was at the local Subway, near my office, getting lunch. HE WAS IN THERE. WITH HIS WIFE & DAUGHTER. I’d been in that Subway about 100 times for lunch & never saw him in there before. I don’t remember his name. I think it was Mike something. He went to Hoover High School.
“I thought my mom would be proud of me for going on a regular date. She didn’t like my hippie friends. But I was always safe with my friends from my own high school.
“Yeah, if my mom were still alive, I wouldn’t tell her now.”