Sexual Assault Why did it happen so many times?

Samantha_38

Confident
I was sexually assaulted by a previous pyschologist. I was 17, he was, well 'old'. I was admitted for a suicide attempt and he was the psych. It's kind of a complicated trauma that happened in the middle of other complicated traumas. I've been working on it in my current therapy however and my last session some things finally clicked.

I always felt at fault as I 'agreed' to go along with the sexual act. My T is now helping me realize that there was a moment much earlier where that psych could have and should have stopped everything in It's tracks, and he didn't. I'm feeling a little less at fault, but I am struggling badly with the 'why me'?

Why did everyone who was like that end up in my life? There was a hyper-sexual state in my life where sometimes I tried to draw their attention and maybe "started it", and if I didn't start it I probably still encouraged it, but if they were supposed to stop it, how is it I ended up in so many situations with people who didn't?

I've been told and kind of understand how people who are abused keep finding bad people, and I definitely see how I maybe did that, but what about the people I didn't 'pick'? I was unlucky to get the parents that I did, I then found an abusive 'boyfriend' quite young because in some confusing way, I needed him. Later, after that boyfriend was out of my life, I found guys willing give me the things I need for sexual favors because everything that abusive boyfriend provided was then gone, and I didn't have another way.

I didn't look for this psych though. There were at least 2 male psychiatrists there during that time. How did I end up with the one I did? How was it that a cop whom hurt me came to the school that day, when there was probably 5 others working? How did my team get the athletic coach that hurt me when the other was deployed for a year? Why was an abusive teacher at my school?

I also kind of get that "those" people also look for people like me, but are there so many that I was just bound to have them keep finding me? Am I that insanely unlucky or is something wrong with me?
 

Friday

Moderator
Am I that insanely unlucky or is something wrong with me?
I’d say neither.

All 3 of those positions? Psych, cops, coaches... Deal with vulnerable populations. Positions of power attract a lot of amazing people who want to help others. They ALSO attract predators who use the desperate people in their care to shoot fish in a barrel. That’s not about you. That’s about them. Because there were not only undoubtedly other predators hunting, that were after different prey... but the same people who hurt you? Will usually have a victims list of hundreds over the course of their lives. The last numbers I read is apx 400 victims.

To use American numbers for a moment? Let’s say 1% of the population are sexual predators, which is a bit low, but I’m going to keep rounding doooooooown and the scope is still startling. 3 million sexual predators in a country of 330 million. With an average of 400 victims each? That’s over a billion victims. 1% of the population has a victim pool of 3 times the entire population of the country. How can that be accurate if it’s “only” 1:4 people are sexually assaulted? A whole helluva lot of people are assaulted many times, by many different people. Sure. We could just say that 75 or 100 million people are unlucky. In a very common way to be unlucky. Not in any kind of freak accident struck by lightning whilst being attacked by a shark (which is the statistical eqivlent of dying in a plane crash... and my fasaavorite statistic of all time / made my entire stupid stats class worth having taken. I love that stat.) Struck by lightning whilst being attacked by a shark? Or dying in a plane crash? Would be insanely unlucky. Being sexually assaulted is super common. 1 in 4 people are sexually assaulted, but only 1 in 10 get speeding tickets. 1 in 24,900,00 will even be in a plane crash, and 90% of those crashes are survivable, to die, it’s an even bigger number.

Really. You’re not some kind of freakish bad luck magnet.

***

So let’s discuss what’s wrong with YOU, now... although I touched on it briefly up above.

Ever meet someone who only dates redheads, or blondes? What the f*ck is wrong with those people? How dare they be redheads, or blonde??? <<< 😉 >>> Nothing is wrong with them. The color of their hair -and literally everything else about them; physically, intellectually, emotionally, personality- has nothing to do with someone else’s preferences.

You fit the victim-profile of the people who assaulted you.

You didn’t fit the victim-profile of the people who chose to pass you over to assault others.

That’s not about you. That’s about the predators and what THEY liked. I’m pretty scrappy, or I usually am, which means that most of the time? The people who target me like it when their victims fight back. Not always. When I was dragging around an oxygen tank a couple years ago? Snort. No one expected me to be scrappy. And 2 people got hit with the tank as a result ((and because they preferred weak/helpless victims, the bastards went ruuuuuuuuunning! Whee! 🥳That’s not the result I expect, as I’m used to people who want to be fought, and the more you fight the more it turns them on. So I’m left standing there like, WTF? That’s IT??? Whoa. Weird.)) But When I was held prisoner, for a different example? The only reason most of those blokes raped me was because it was their job. I wasn’t targeted. I was simply there. And their job was to rape prisoners to soften them up. Female, male, old, young, whomever. Their numbers are probably significantly north of 400 each. Whether they personally chose young and pretty, or enjoyed breaking big and strong, or liked meek and scared, or wanted to be told you liked it, or wanted you begging them to stop? Didn’t enter into it. For most rapists? That enters into it very strongly. They have their type. And they target that type. Sometimes it’s a really narrow type, sometimes it’s really broad. Sometimes their “type” is simply opportunity (in both directions, like people who target the elderly they deliver food to, or who like hard targets... But regardless of who they target? What THEY like is not about you, or about me, or about anyone else who gets assaulted. It’s about what’s wrong with them, not about what’s wrong with their victims.

Nothing is wrong with you.

Just like nothing is wrong with the blokes a girlfriend of mine dates... who are all tall, blonde, cocky, and amazing with kids & pets. It’s her type. And nothing is wrong with the Indian blokes another friend of mine dates. And nothing is wrong with the bald black men my sister brings home. And nothing is wrong with the kid just trying to go to school, or play sports, or the person in the hospital, or the person who’s dialed 911 for help, or the granny getting groceries delivered, or the 100 pound soaking wet pixie walking on the sidewalk next to the 6 foot tall amazon (which is me & my bestie, by the by, we’re Mutt & Jeff) and nothing is wrong with... pick any possible collection of age, appearance, sex, personality, occupation, etc. descriptions. No matter who you are, or what you’re like? Other people are going to find you delicious (or totally uninteresting). Both amazingly good people & predatory assholes. Their tastes? Are about them.

You be you. The person YOU want to be. Because there is zip zero zilch nada nothing wrong with that.
 
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ruborcoraxxx

MyPTSD Pro
"Why me?"

Besides the statistics…

There might also be the feeling of lagging behind. While other people (presumably) happily resume with their lives, here you are all embroiled in the aftermaths of trauma, dealing with the darkness and this form of underworld that once you learned how to see it, you can’t "unsee" it.

While it isn’t a good news that many many many people have statistically suffered from abuse and that also in these there are also perpetrators (yay another loop to dive in!), the only "good" thing about knowing it’s so widespread is that actually you aren’t lagging behind as much as you’d think. This shit is actually shared, and I guess… has to be spoken about as to drive some solidarity and make it more difficult to happen, in prevention and also in repression.

"Why me?"

There are finite reasons why you. If you had the opportunity to quizz your perpetrators, actually there is a finite set of answers to explain why you, at that time, at that moment. Like Friday said.

I recently read an article about how cases of assault and abuse were linguistically expressed. In passive forms. Headlines write: "X has been raped." Not "Y has raped X." Not even "Y presumably raped X." She’s fallen pregnant. Not She got impregnated. "Because of corona, women face more housework." In cases of interpersonal or domestic violence, people ask "Why did she stay?" instead of "Why was he violent?" As if it deliberate inflicted harm was something impersonal like weather. Being assaulted, which depends on someone’s will, isn’t the same as being in the way of a lightning.

In this sense, there isn’t much an answer of why me. But there are reasons of why them.

Our why me’s are also the reflect of the great lack of accountability these people face. Because they get away with it most of the time, they become a sort of natural plague like an invasion of locusts, something not much can be done about apart trying to protect yourself.

And then we fall into the victim-blaming.

You’ve been sexually assaulted by the guy you were flirting with? Cause is the flirting, not the guy assaulting you. I’ve heard that so, so many times. But more than rape culture, there is a sort of collective reflex to blame victims that seems to act as a form of psychic self-protection. Like, "This isn’t going to happen to me."

Until it does.

Never I would have thought I’d end up being raped after a dinner at 28. I don’t have a victim profile, whatever that means. I did flirt. Then I did say no, not today. And then I’ve been told that I should have known it better and not flirt and not drink. However, there isn’t anything wrong with flirting. And I don’t think bottles of wine sexually assault anyone as animated by a life of their own.

Never would I have thought I’d spend one year and a half of my life wrestling someone who would always win because bigger and crazier, being beaten and insulted, fearing micro whims, and end up being so overwhelmed by it I’d completely collapse. You’d told me that one year before, even one month before? I’d would have laughed on your face.

There is no "victim profile".

But there are elements that may make you sit in discomfort and accept the harm longer than other people would have. And, by instinct or premeditation, people who do harm obviously do it so when they are in the conditions to do it so. That is, when they are in a position of power. Domestic violence occurs massively in cops’ families. Ha!

So, why you? You were just vulnerable enough at some point for that person be able to overpower you. And it’s not your fault. It’s their responsibility.

And making you think that somewhere, somehow you were responsible for it is the method all oppressors have to maintain their grip on the people/groups they abuse. And the most alienating thing that happens is making you think you’re wrong and you have to correct yourself, replace yourself, shrink yourself, shut the f*ck up and eat it and don’t bother them. Then to stay in that state you must introject their reasons and not yours. And alienate your person, refuse parts of you that are perfectly normal or even unhealthy, but harmless.

I often thought that the "be yourself" was a bit silly, but in truth, it’s massively important. Be yourself means do not cut yourself from a future to which you DO belong and in which you belong without paying the price of your own erasure. It doesn’t mean that you have to control everything and others around you, it just means that you deserve to have a space where you can operate without fear and have enough buffer to make mistakes. While also taking accountability for the objective hurt or harm you cause to others.

And that that accountability, your accountability, has exactly NOTHING to do with their accountability.

If I’ve been a crazy bitch with my ex who smashed my face? It’s possible. That being a crazy bitch does deserve such a response? HELL NO. I wasn’t even a crazy bitch though. But even in that eventuality, responding violently to annoyances is not proportionate or okay. If I were a "crazy bitch" (I’m taking this term because it’s such an easy and widespread characterisation and invalidating, gaslighting depiction), my responsibility in being pushy and annoying has exactly nothing to do with his responsibility of having beaten someone down.

"Why me?"

Even if I were wrong, it doesn’t mean he’s right.

It’s not a zero-sum game.

What you do is your responsibility. What others do is theirs.

"Why me?" ends up being so depersonalising and existential that at times it feels why aren’t we a cat or a rock. Why every day we wake up in the same body? There isn’t a clear answer to this. We don’t know why things. Or very partially. But we can do. We can act. We can think. And that’s something!
 

DharmaGirl

MyPTSD Pro
Wow! These were two of the best answers to questions like that I've ever read, and encompassed what I wanted to say. All I have left to say is I understand where you are coming from, and I hope you recover well from this.
 

AngelBb

New Here
I’d say neither.

All 3 of those positions? Psych, cops, coaches... Deal with vulnerable populations. Positions of power attract a lot of amazing people who want to help others. They ALSO attract predators who use the desperate people in their care to shoot fish in a barrel. That’s not about you. That’s about them. Because there were not only undoubtedly other predators hunting, that were after different prey... but the same people who hurt you? Will usually have a victims list of hundreds over the course of their lives. The last numbers I read is apx 400 victims.

To use American numbers for a moment? Let’s say 1% of the population are sexual predators, which is a bit low, but I’m going to keep rounding doooooooown and the scope is still startling. 3 million sexual predators in a country of 330 million. With an average of 400 victims each? That’s over a billion victims. 1% of the population has a victim pool of 3 times the entire population of the country. How can that be accurate if it’s “only” 1:4 people are sexually assaulted? A whole helluva lot of people are assaulted many times, by many different people. Sure. We could just say that 75 or 100 million people are unlucky. In a very common way to be unlucky. Not in any kind of freak accident struck by lightning whilst being attacked by a shark (which is the statistical eqivlent of dying in a plane crash... and my fasaavorite statistic of all time / made my entire stupid stats class worth having taken. I love that stat.) Struck by lightning whilst being attacked by a shark? Or dying in a plane crash? Would be insanely unlucky. Being sexually assaulted is super common. 1 in 4 people are sexually assaulted, but only 1 in 10 get speeding tickets. 1 in 24,900,00 will even be in a plane crash, and 90% of those crashes are survivable, to die, it’s an even bigger number.

Really. You’re not some kind of freakish bad luck magnet.

***

So let’s discuss what’s wrong with YOU, now... although I touched on it briefly up above.

Ever meet someone who only dates redheads, or blondes? What the f*ck is wrong with those people? How dare they be redheads, or blonde??? <<< 😉 >>> Nothing is wrong with them. The color of their hair -and literally everything else about them; physically, intellectually, emotionally, personality- has nothing to do with someone else’s preferences.

You fit the victim-profile of the people who assaulted you.

You didn’t fit the victim-profile of the people who chose to pass you over to assault others.

That’s not about you. That’s about the predators and what THEY liked. I’m pretty scrappy, or I usually am, which means that most of the time? The people who target me like it when their victims fight back. Not always. When I was dragging around an oxygen tank a couple years ago? Snort. No one expected me to be scrappy. And 2 people got hit with the tank as a result ((and because they preferred weak/helpless victims, the bastards went ruuuuuuuuunning! Whee! 🥳That’s not the result I expect, as I’m used to people who want to be fought, and the more you fight the more it turns them on. So I’m left standing there like, WTF? That’s IT??? Whoa. Weird.)) But When I was held prisoner, for a different example? The only reason most of those blokes raped me was because it was their job. I wasn’t targeted. I was simply there. And their job was to rape prisoners to soften them up. Female, male, old, young, whomever. Their numbers are probably significantly north of 400 each. Whether they personally chose young and pretty, or enjoyed breaking big and strong, or liked meek and scared, or wanted to be told you liked it, or wanted you begging them to stop? Didn’t enter into it. For most rapists? That enters into it very strongly. They have their type. And they target that type. Sometimes it’s a really narrow type, sometimes it’s really broad. Sometimes their “type” is simply opportunity (in both directions, like people who target the elderly they deliver food to, or who like hard targets... But regardless of who they target? What THEY like is not about you, or about me, or about anyone else who gets assaulted. It’s about what’s wrong with them, not about what’s wrong with their victims.

Nothing is wrong with you.

Just like nothing is wrong with the blokes a girlfriend of mine dates... who are all tall, blonde, cocky, and amazing with kids & pets. It’s her type. And nothing is wrong with the Indian blokes another friend of mine dates. And nothing is wrong with the bald black men my sister brings home. And nothing is wrong with the kid just trying to go to school, or play sports, or the person in the hospital, or the person who’s dialed 911 for help, or the granny getting groceries delivered, or the 100 pound soaking wet pixie walking on the sidewalk next to the 6 foot tall amazon (which is me & my bestie, by the by, we’re Mutt & Jeff) and nothing is wrong with... pick any possible collection of age, appearance, sex, personality, occupation, etc. descriptions. No matter who you are, or what you’re like? Other people are going to find you delicious (or totally uninteresting). Both amazingly good people & predatory assholes. Their tastes? Are about them.

You be you. The person YOU want to be. Because there is zip zero zilch nada nothing wrong with that.
Yes thank you so much for this post. It has made me feel so much better about myself.
 
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