Afraid to tell him I was raped
I AM 22 years old and my wonderful boyfriend is 24. We are both at university and we have a lot in common. We have known each other for a long time.
He knows everything about me and my family except for one secret that I have never told anyone. When I was 15, I was raped at a party. I believe someone spiked my drink because I was not drinking alcohol, but I lost consciousness. When I woke up, I realised that I had been raped.
I was too scared to tell anyone because my parents had forbidden me to go to the party and I sneaked out. I didn't even tell my best friend because I thought she would be angry with me and that she might tell other people.
It was so difficult to cope with this on my own. I was scared that I would fall pregnant. It was the worst time of my life.
My boyfriend and I have never discussed our sexual pasts and I don't know whether to tell him.
I have told him that I am a virgin and not ready to have sex yet and he has respected this.
I am too scared to tell anyone because I might be judged.
This makes me so depressed because I feel as if I have to carry this with me for the rest of my life. I start to question why I am being punished. What have I done in my life that was so bad?
I love my boyfriend so much and I don't want to lose him.
But I also feel that if I told him, I would be able to put this behind me once and for all.
Should I tell him the truth? Sad and Scared, Braamfontein
I am so sorry that you have suffered on your own.
Only you can make the decision whether to tell your boyfriend or not. I think you should consider telling him the truth because you are already telling him lies and this is not a foundation for a successful relationship.
I understand your concerns that he might leave you, but there is the possibility that he cares about you enough not to leave you.
If you decide to tell him, then you need to listen to each other's concerns and respect each other's feelings.
You have never discussed the rape with anyone and in spite of the fact that it happened a couple of years ago, you must consider speaking to a counsellor.
If you discuss it with your boyfriend, it might bring up a lot of feelings and emotions that you might have suppressed because of the trauma.
You are right, it is time to put the past behind you and it will be easier if this is done with the assistance of a counsellor.
I am sure there is help at the university or you can contact People Opposing Woman Abuse (Powa) on 011-642-4345.
You have been on your own with this burden for long enough.
Take the power into your own hands so that you can look forward to the future.