The following was sent to me by a brave community member, and I asked if I could share. Be sure to read to the very end! My intuition is that there is a great deal of pain which is deeply hidden within our broken world. Pain that lives and breeds in darkness. In sharing Grace’s story, in her name I hope to shine light into those hidden corners, which is the start of healing… to be heard, to be validated that what happened (be it neglect,hatred,bullying, domestic abuse, sexual assault) is wrong and undeserved. By offering understanding, compassion and open communication instead of ignoring uncomfortable discussions or worse, judgment, we help lift the burden and share it…. And the world slowly becomes better. I am sure that there are more of these accounts than we can imagine, and if we turn a blind eye to things like underage substance abuse, and don’t talk about/teach kindness and respecting the human dignity inherent in each person, they sadly continue. Thank you to the person who shared this. It surely will help to heal someone else, teach someone else or best yet, prevent future pain or tragedy. Bravo to you and your sweet husband and the honorable son you have raised. It gives me hope….

“When I was 15 years old, I was attending Glenelg High School and living in Woodbine, MD. Fast-forward to the day after my 21st birthday: I suffered a drug-assisted rape. I never told anyone, except for the guy I had just started to date. He told me it was my fault for putting myself in that situation.

For the longest time, I felt like I had only myself to blame, as though I had “asked for it” because I went with the boy, and I had drinks with him. i had just turned 21, and he was a year or two younger, so I thought it would make me impressive if I bought some beers for us to drink, and, I truly thought, just hang out. His sister was dating my brother, but I didn’t find him the least bit attractive, and had no intention of doing anything remotely intimate with him. After drinking the beers, he went into the kitchen to mix us some drinks, he said. It was at this time, I believe, that he slipped something into my drink. I remember feeling woozy, then everything went black. I have only one sliver of a memory of the night, and that was opening my eyes and seeing him on top of me. He was angry because I was not in any state of arousal. He said, “You’re ruining this, damn it!” I blacked out again. When he drove me home the next day, I was so sick, and couldn’t remember what happened. But was shocked to discover that the zipper from my jeans was completely ripped out. It had to have taken a great deal of force to do that. That was my first inkling that what had happened was not consensual. I threw away every stitch of clothing I had on that night.

The weekend following the rape, my rapist returned to my front door with a friend, asking me if I wanted to go on another “ride” with him and his buddy. After I refused, I never saw him again. I stuffed that whole experience inside and began to heavily self-medicate, for many years. I suffered in silence. To this day, I am on medication for depression and anxiety. I experienced PTSD for years after the rape, horrible flashbacks that I would chase away with alcohol. I stopped caring about myself. My self-esteem plummeted and I gave myself to pretty much whatever young man came along.

When I met my husband, I confided in him about what had happened to me. He was so angry. At my rapist, and, at the boyfriend who blamed me. He has been my rock, and we have two beautiful sons.”

(** My favorite part!  Her son knows nothing yet about her experiences  **  ):

“Now, here I am, 44 years old. I have a 15 year old son who attends Glenelg High School as well. Recently he confided in me that when he is at social functions with other kids from school, and the alcohol is flowing, he, and a couple of his guy friends follow the girls around to make sure they are safe. He’s done this on numerous occasions, and I had no idea. I never told him to do this. He worries about the girls who may have had something to drink, or who seem to be the target of too much attention. He told me this summer that he wanted to stay later at the fair one night. When I asked why, he said that there was a group of girls from school that had sneaked some alcohol into the fair and were quite intoxicated. He didn’t want to leave the fair until he made sure they got a safe ride home.”

❤ God bless him, and you.  If anyone else would like to share, I am happy to listen.

~ Chris McComas

Grace and Truth: “And you will know the truth, and that truth will set you free.”  John 8:32

Grace and Truth:
“And you will know the truth, and that truth will set you free.” John 8:32