Tag Archives: sexual harrassment

The Best and the Worst (Sexual Assault TW)

I’ve taken a break from blogging on this site for the semester– I’ve been blogging about math (my major at college) instead for a bit of a change.

What have I been doing? I’ve had both some of the best and some of the worst times of my life in the past six months.

The Worst:

It seems almost comical to have to add this to my list of problems. I was sexually harassed this summer by my boss at work. It took me over a month to realise what was happening, and to realise that my being so uncomfortable with what was going on was not okay. I’ve spent every bi-weekly counselling session this semester dealing with the emotional consequences of my summer “relationship.”

I wrote a poem in August when I was just starting to get out of the mess. At the time I felt SO GUILTY about what had happened– there was so much hurt existing between me and my boss, and between my friends and family who I’d been lying to. I felt completely responsible. The poem includes the line:

I wish I could erase
me
from your memory
I had thought closing my world off from you
was to protect me
but really
it was to protect you.

It makes me sick to read that I ever felt that way. It was to protect me. If I could go back to the beginning of the summer I would change everything.

I have the loving support of friends and family now, it’s not a secret anymore, and I’m okay. I’m so grateful for that. I need the support, as even though I changed my phone number and have blocked numerous people from my facebook, the memories still come up at random times and take over. I still have nightmares. I still think about how things were left with me being emailed “I knew you were an unstable crazy girl, but now I see you’re a pathological liar too.” No. Just no.

There is so much I want to share about this sexual harassment experience. I’m still processing, and I think it will continue to be a long journey for me. I’m finally able to see myself as a victim and not as the problem, but that took months of therapy. There’s still a ways to go.

The Best

Maybe because of my experience with depression, I was able to do a really good job of compartmentalising the bad summer during this semester. Thoughts pop up out of my control and I discuss the problems during therapy, but I’m so lucky I’ve been able to have a normal life in between that.

I’ve been living and studying abroad in Budapest, Hungary for the past four months. I love it here so much. It feels like home. I love my friends, I love my professors, I love my apartment, I love this city and all the things in it. I fell in love with a new boyfriend. I’ve been having the best semester of my life.

And not because the semester was easy and full of partying. Not at all. I’m taking four math classes in addition to Hungarian. I worked on a bioinformatics research project about neural networks in the brain. We had three days off the entire semester, of which I made up every single class! It was a lot. But it was fantastic.

I’m getting ready to go home now, and I’m not really looking forward to it. I’m excited about seeing my family and friends from my home school, but I am going to miss all the people and things here, and I’m afraid to return to my hometown where I know I will be overwhelmed by memories of my harassment. It’s going to be a tough readjustment.

Hopefully with Christmas and the business of the holidays there will be enough to distract me and keep me feeling happy.

All my love,
–gb

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