I used to wonder what about me made me “rape-able,” if I have an invisible sign that marks me. I know that’s the rape culture talking, but your mind can’t help but go to some pretty dark places. Sometimes the dark places are all you have.
After a friend of mine was assaulted, she used to fantasize about her rapist, dreaming that he was a minotaur or a Zeus-like god, her way to cope with what happened. She wanted a version in which what they had was beautiful. In my case, I just wanted him gone, and in the two years since, I had all but forgotten about it. It seems like the type of thing you would remember, but I’ve never been good at journaling, let alone starting a mental rape diary.
But then I saw his message sitting there, as simply as if he were catching up with an old friend. I looked at his easy words—“how are you?” he wrote, without even bothering to capitalize—and I hadn’t the slightest clue what etiquette was in this case. Emily Post never covered “Responding to Your Thwarted Sexual Assailant.”
I can’t believe we haven’t made out either. Thanks for the call, you lush.