Hours after my rape.

Walter De La Mare in the Return said; “God has mercifully ordered that the brain works slowly; first the blow, hours afterwards the bruise.”[1]

Hours after my rape[2], my brain was not only bruised but haemorrhaging from the massive trauma it had incurred. I was experiencing paranoia, hysteria, and confusion. I couldn’t wrap my head around the fact that I had just been violated in my dorm room, by someone I had thought of as a friend. I know now, that I was suffering from acute stress disorder (ACD), but at the time I thought I was losing my mind.

ACD is a medical condition that develops during or shortly after a trauma. ACD manifests itself through behavioural changes that affect you for at least a month, after which, it develops into post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). [3]


I spent the better part of the evening in Vuyo’s room trying to calm down and process what had just happened. As soon as I could, I dimmed down my hysteria and tried to explain to her what had happened. You would think repeating a traumatic event that had just occurred a few hours before would be a simple task, but it wasn’t. My memory was full of gaps, thus I could only recollect bits and pieces. How was it possible to remember some parts of my rape and at the same time forget others? I thought to myself.  As soon as I was done talking, Vuyo gave me her two cents. She was certain that the short EASOC boy had taken advantage of me and I had done nothing to warrant his sexual advances. A part of me agreed with her but, another part refused to believe that a guy I had trusted could have raped me. I slowly drifted into my own train of thought and decided to piece together what had taken place.

I remember letting him into my room. I was rather emotional and my state of mind was not the best. I told him about my day and what had been upsetting me, this immediately triggered a wave of emotions and tears. He offered to cheer me up and downloaded a movie called Amelie. I hated the movie as it made me rather uncomfortable but I chose to remain silent about my discomfort. The next thing I remember was him on top of me and this initiated an out of body experience. I watched him violated me but couldn’t do anything to stop him. I replayed the assault over and over in my mind but I couldn’t fill in the gaps; and the harder I tried, the more frustrated I became and the more unanswered questions I got. For instance, How did he get on top of me? I thought.

Did he push me down or was I already lying down and then he decided to take advantage of me?

Does lying down next to the opposite sex constitute non-verbal consent?

Is cheering up a synonym for sex?

Did he really penetrate my vagina and break my hymen?

If he did, wouldn’t I have felt it?

Shouldn’t I have felt excruciating pain?

I’m I going to get pregnant now?

Did he infect me with an STD?

Why the fuck couldn’t he have used a condom?

Better yet, why the fuck couldn’t he have paid someone to have sex with him if he was so desperate?

In the midst of my inquisition, I realised I had left my airtime in his car. I jolted back into cognitive consciousness and yelled out; “He has my airtime.” I imagine if you were an outsider watching this, it must have looked like I had gone into V-fib and some unseen spirited had compressed life back into me, all in the while alarming my friend with my erratic behaviour. I watched Vuyo for a few minutes then repeated my earlier allegation.

“He has my airtime, he has my fucking airtime”.

“Airtime? What are you talking about?” Vuyo said.

“I bought airtime together with the morning after pill. I didn’t want to look like a whore in front of everyone so I decided to buy two twelve Rand vouchers, to conceal the real reason I was at that shop. ”

In hindsight, I can see how erratic and illogical I was behaving but at the time the only thing I wanted was not to be judged as a whore and a worthless being.

trauma and aftermath






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