He was found 'not guilty'

I don’t know how begin this. I don’t know how much detail to go into (I can’t remember what I’m allowed to go into.) But I’ll give a trigger warning because this contains themes of sexual abuse and so on.

I was involved in a sexual assault/attempted rape case, me being the victim. After waiting 2 and a half years for the trial to take place, it finally happened two days ago. I was cross examined yesterday. It was one of the most awful things I’ve gone through.

In some weird way, it was more difficult than the experience that led me to taking the person to court. Because you’re sat there and asked all these questions. I was asked about details I couldn’t possibly remember anymore, and pushed to the limit. Everything was blurry, and confusing.

My case wasn’t convincing enough for the jury to rule in my favour. Or there wasn’t enough evidence.

I am… my stomach feels weird, I feel all numb and anxious at the same time. Gutted. The officer called me an hour ago to let me know. I couldn’t react immediately because with me everything is a delayed reaction so I just said “oh, okay, well we knew it could have gone either way…” etc.

Now it’s all sinking in… I know I did the right thing by standing up for myself. And as the officer said, he’s had this hanging over his head for 2.5 years. But it still makes me feel like a fraud. Like I wasn’t believed. He did something very wrong that night.

To any man reading this: taking protection off without letting your partner know when you’ve both consented to having sex with protection on and attempting to have sex with them without them knowing that you’ve taken it off is illegal, and you should never pressure anyone into having sex without protection, or in any way they’ve expressed they’re not uncomfortable with.

My intent was to write about this somewhere. To send a story somewhere. But with this verdict… does the verdict matter? I can’t name him but I can still try and educate. Raise awareness? How would I even go about doing that? Who would be willing to listen? Men who do this don’t go and read about it. And they certainly don’t want to change their behaviour. Women? Women who have been through this? Where would they go? Are there women who have experienced this and didn’t know it was a crime, or they do but don’t have anyone to talk to? I haven’t been offered any consolation, not been pointed to any support groups… Who do I know who would have gone through something like this?

I think right now… I’m feeling very lonely. Like no one would be able to relate to the experience. I wish there was someone I could talk to about it. I think that’s what I want right now… a woman to talk to who’s been through something similar, with the court experience and so on. I’ll leave it there. Nothing more to say.

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Hi @Aqua95 ,

Thank you so much for sharing. I think you are very strong to share this story and for going to court and standing up for yourself. I am sorry the verdict wasn’t in your favor, but I am very happy that you dtood up for yourself and didn’t let it drop.

I can’t imagine how you feel. I have never been in your position and I certainly didn’t know that it was illegal for your partner to take off protection without your knowledge, so you educated this woman, and I thank you for that. I think I would feel so betrayed and not safe with my partner if that happened to me.

I can totally understand why you feel lonely. I don’t think many women talk about this kind of thing happening. And then when the verdict didn’t come back in your favor, I would just feel even more lonely and like no one believes me. I am so sorry that happened, but know that I believe you and that I am so happy that you stood up for yourself.

Thank you again for sharing your story. I hope ypu will continue to let us know how you are doing and to continue to share with us. I am sorry that this happened to you. I hope that other women will speak up like you did and that other who have had other experiences will share them with you.

Thank you again for sharing,
Megs

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Hey @Aqua95 here is the video from stream and the song @taylorpalmby sang for you.
You can message her on our discord https://discord.gg/heartsupport or throw her an email (which is probably the best choice) at [email protected]

Hold fast.

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Dear @Aqua95,

I’m so very sorry that you had to go through this. I’ve been through a similar experience at the beginning of the year, the difference being that there was no prosecution. Part of me is glad that, in the end, I didn’t had to go through a trial for nothing. But the disappointment, the pain and the grief is still here and deep. It’s not fair. I litterally screamed that out of pain when I’ve learned what was the result of my report. I felt worthless and invisible. There was too many tears.

I feel for you, so much. I feel all the words you shared here. And I don’t have much to say as I’m still trying to figure out what to do with this grief that was added in my life while I didn’t ask anything. But at least I wanted to reach out to you today and let you know that you are not alone. You are heard. You are understood, truly. If you can, please allow yourself to be supported by your loved ones. You can also count on this community. You’re not alone. You did something incredibly brave. I am so, so proud of you for standing up for yourself and sharing your voice. That’s something you own, and it will ALWAYS be yours.

I believe in your voice. I believe in your strength.

I believe you.
I believe you.
I believe you.

Regardless of what this jury said.

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You are absolutely in the right here. Stealthing, the action of removing any protection during intercourse without your partner knowing, is rape. It is straight-up sexual assault and I’m appalled with how things ended in the courtroom. I believe you.

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Thanks @Megs Meg, so happy to have passed the lesson onto at least one person. That means a lot. xx

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Thank you for believing x

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This brought tears to my eyes. Seeing those words ‘I believe you’. Thank you so much.

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@Kayla I appreciate you being so quick to respond and noticing. @taylorpalmby’s song was very sweet, she definitely helped me feel less alone. xxx

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And I’m so sorry something similar happened to you, fucking awful. So glad we have this forum to support each other.

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Thank you friend. This community will always be here to support you. I’m glad you’re on this forum as well. You’re not alone. :hrtlegolove:

Just letting you know, if you want to connect with the rest of the community on different platforms, there’s also a Discord server and a Twitch channel (where there are live streamings):

You’re more than welcome there as well. Take care, Aqua. If you’re comfortable with it, give us some updates sometimes. :hrtlegolove:

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