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Nov 13

Anonymous Story: Shipmates.

Stressed, overworked, and so ready to move on with my life. I was stationed overseas in Yokosuka, Japan for three years. The end of my military contract was around the corner, and I was spending my last week packing my belongings and hanging out with friends for the last time. Although I was happy to transition back into the civilian world, I was sad to leave my military brothers and sisters.

At the time, I was living with a friend from bootcamp and her wife. They invited me out for some drinks. They convinced me when they said they would pay since it was my last weekend. I had a few Chu-his (equivalent to four lokos in America) and was feeling pretty buzzed. We moved to another bar, where I run into my friend [J]. I have known [J] since the first day I arrived in Japan. We’ve remained good friends over the years, even hanging out in foreign ports. He was also good friends with my boyfriend.

After a few hours, my roommates told me they were going to head home, and asked if I were to join them. I told them no thank you, and that I was going to stay with [J] and have a few more drinks. “I’ll see you tonight so we could watch the last season of the Office. No later than midnight,” I remember telling them.

[J] and I were playing beer pong at the same bar my roommates left me at, which was typical. There has been countless times where [J] and I have drank together. Granted, our other mutual friends were always with us; but whats the difference, right? I remember him offering me a shot. I declined– he insisted. I take it, and I remember almost throwing it back up. He laughed, and ordered another. I declined again and he said “oh, stop being a pussy. It’s your last weekend.” I took it, and I don’t remember anything after that moment.

My head is throbbing and my ears are ringing. I hear someone shuffling things. “Where are you going,” was, for some strange reason, the question that poured out of my mouth. I don’t know if it was because I was still drunk, or half asleep, or both, but for a brief moment I thought I was with my boyfriend. Oddly enough, he has been stateside for months. I realized how ridiculous it was to assume I was with him. I open my eyes and the walls are spinning. The clock on the night stand reads 6:23 AM. I look around my surroundings and instantly recognize where I am. Yokosuka Inn, a hotel that my boyfriend and I have stayed in before.

The door closes shut and I’m now alone. I’m naked, my breasts are red and sore. My vagina feels like it’s torn. My knuckles are cut. I look to the left on the floor and noticed my clothes in a pile. What surprised me most, right there next to my clothes, lied my tampon that I was wearing that night. I have never felt so dirty, so vulnerable, so weak, and so alone in my entire life.

I went to the bathroom and threw up from nervousness. I cried and hyperventilated until I threw up again. I washed my face and put on my clothes. They reeked of cigarettes and alcohol. I check my phone and of course, it’s dead. I leave the hotel, get on the next bus home, and cry some more to myself.

Once I got home, I quickly rushed to the shower. It was the longest shower I have ever taken; as if I was trying to wash that whole night away. I lie in bed and wait for my phone to turn on. Once it does, I check all of my social media sources. I had multiple texts from my boyfriend asking where I was and why I was seen sitting so close to [J] in his snapchat story. I shivered at the thought. I quickly check [J]’s story, and there I was. My eyes as glossy as water and another drink in my hand, sitting right next to [J]. I wish I could remember taking that picture. Just as I’m about to delete my snapchat entirely, I get a message, “I had a lot of fun last night. Did you check out of the hotel for me?” It was [J]. I cried myself to sleep and didn’t wake up until 2 in the afternoon.

To this day, 10 months later, I haven’t told anyone. Theres this voice in my head that reminds me that I was the one drinking that night, that I must have led him on in some way. The voice tells me that no one will believe me, everyone will take his side. And the worst part of it all, I’m too afraid to tell my boyfriend. He knows something in me changed in Japan; I just wish I had the strength to tell him.

About the author

WYR

When You’re Ready.org is a community for survivors of sexual violence to share their stories.

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