Content warning: this post deals with sexual assault and might be triggering for some readers. If you or someone you know is impacted by sexual assault, domestic or family violence and abuse, you can call 1800RESPECT (1800 737 732) at any time.
We sat in my room facing one another, perched cross-legged on pink velvet cushions.
His eyes looking clearly into mine, his hands tenderly holding mine, his heart gently cradling mine. We had been crying together after spending months crying apart, finally touching on the things we had avoided talking about most.
I wondered if I had been wrong, had the depression following the quitting of my addiction to alcohol caused a rift?
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Was I to blame? Had I just been blind to the selfish ways I had acted? I started to cry. A hot tear ran down my cheek, and with it came the stinging guilt that suddenly washed over me in my moment of uncertainty.
He watched me with a tenderness I was unfamiliar with. He felt soft for the first time since I had known him. He squeezed my hand, as if to let me know he was here, as if to tell me I wasn’t alone — but I was.
“Why did you say that I raped you?” he asked.
My stomach felt like he had punched me in the gut. I had forgotten about that.
How could I have forgotten about that? More proof of his master manipulator capabilities — maybe that's why I had allowed him space in my life again.
I looked up at him trying not to let my discomfort show. I could see the scepticism and uncertainty in his eyes. He didn’t understand.
I was so taken aback by his question I had almost lost any capacity to respond and ended up bursting into tears and blurting out the only three words I could think of.