For the purpose of this blog, we will be going with the International Criminal Tribunal of Rwanda’s definition of rape. It defines rape as a physical invasion of a sexual nature committed on a person under circumstances which are coercive. So rape as far this blog is concerned is not only about forced sexual intercourse but about sexual abuse whether penetration is involved or not. It also takes into account the fact that rape may not always be violent.
Dear Raped yet Unashamed and Dignified (RUD), one truth you should realise is that getting raped wasn’t your fault! I hear a lot of people say things like “What if the lady dressed provocatively?” Do animals wear clothes? Aren’t all their ‘goodies’ hanging out for the whole world to see? I am yet to see any animal rape another animal in all my years of existence. A comparison between man and animal may not be the best but I’m just saying: “Can we take a cue from them?” Some others will ask why was the lady where she was at that time. Some others say the lady must have given a sort of come-on to the man. If all these reasons/excuses were valid, then little children or ladies who are well covered up and don’t go to ‘dangerous’ places will never get raped. But that isn’t the case, is it?
It galls me when I hear comments of how a scantily dressed lady deserved the rape she got. Even if the lady was walking about naked, were the person’s feet nailed to the floor that he couldn’t just walk away? Or did his penis just develop a mind (as well as limbs) of its own?
Every action is as a result of a choice, that depraved person who rapes another human being made that choice to do so, there was the option of choosing otherwise.
There’s this young lady who was raped by her uncle when she was 8 years old. (True story, she came forward with the story after she viewed this blog) Would you say it was her fault? This was a lot of years ago and this uncle of hers still abuses other girls up till now. Is it their fault too?
So it wasn’t your fault! Don’t let yourself be deluded into thinking it was your fault. You have the right to do whatever you like with your life. Its yours after all. In life you make mistakes and you learn from it and get on with life.
Please note however that I’m not supporting or advocating for provocative dressing or waywardness. I’m just saying that it isn’t and shouldn’t be a justification for rape. And ladies, you should be a tad more careful in your ways as well. Some men have sunk so much into depravity that showing a little skin or just some other irrelevant and negligible act is to them an unspoken invitation. A friend of mine says “If I wear clothes to titillate men’s senses, I shouldn’t be surprised when a lesser man jumps me”
So in conclusion, it wasn’t your fault. Quit beating yourself over it! Forgive yourself. Tell yourself you forgive yourself.
Thank you for sharing this with us Simi Olusola.