Trisha’s Story: When I Was 10

Trisha’s Story: When I Was 10

When I was 10 years old I was raped. I have not told anyone about it for 24 years. It happened near my home across the street. There is a drainage ditch next to my childhood home. The ditch is lined with concrete and there is a concrete pipe. The pipe is big. At 10 years old I could walk through the tunnel standing up. It went for 2 blocks to a creek down the street. Kids that lived in the area would play in the ditch, tunnel, and creek. Trees grew on both sides of the ditch. The trees were all the same. Big broad leaves and when the stems of the leaves were broken a milky sap would drip from them. Some people talk of playing in woods near there home when they were young. This was my patch of woods. A place where I could play without being watched or judged. Where I could walk to the creek in the cool air that blew through the tunnel. Being underground, the tunnel was cool in the summer and warm in the winter.

Like any other time I went down into the ditch to play in the trees and tunnel. However, this time there was a teenager walking up the block. I did not think much about this but he followed me down into the ditch. He had to be 16 or 17. He was huge. Almost as big as an adult. I asked him, “What are you doing down here?” He answered by punching me in the face. The punch was so hard it knocked me down onto the concrete. I thought, “Why did he hit me for? What did I do?” As I was picking my self up from the ground I got my answer. That is when he said, “You are going to suck my dick!” At 10 years old I did not fully understand what that was. I knew I did not want to do it. I knew that just 5 or 6 feet up the bank was the street and across that street was my back yard. My home. He would not dare follow me there. I tried to run past him but I was knocked back to the ground again. I decided I would fight. Home was so close. I would like to say I fought the good fight but it did not take me long to figure out that I was no match for him. My face was stinging from the punches, there were tears running down my face and he had knocked the air out of me. I still remember the sound I made as I was gasping for air. Every time I tried to get air in, it hurt. Until that day I never had the air knocked out of me like that. I knew I had to get away. So I tried a different direction. I turned around and tried to run through the tunnel. That was a mistake. That was right where he wanted me. I thought, “He will never follow me in there, into the darkness.” I was wrong. I made it 10 feet when he grabbed the back of my shirt and threw me down. He said it again, “You are going to suck my dick!!”

I was so scared and terrified I froze. I did not know what to do or how to escape. It felt like my whole body was shaking. He had his pants unzipped and was pushing my head towards his crotch. I tried to resist but all that got me was a punch in the face. He told me, “Open your mouth!!!” I did not want to be hit any more so I did what he said, I opened my mouth. I was determined to resist so I opened my mouth as wide as it would go and kept it like that. I was not about to suck on anything. He hit the back of my throat and it made me gag. I wanted to throw up. I wish I would of but I was afraid that if I did he would beat me up even more. He got so mad he threw me back and my head hit the concrete wall. Now my face was stinging, the back of my head was throbbing, tears were streaming down my face, my whole body was shaking and I wanted to throw up. I was on the ground holding the back of my head when he pulled my pants down. He pulled so hard it tore the button off my pants. I did not have any fight left in me. I just wanted it to end. He tried to stick it in me but it would not go in. He cursed and spit trying to make it go in. After what seemed like forever he pushed me over and kicked me in my tummy. He knocked the air out of me again. Mad and frustrated he left. Finally it was over. I laid on the cold concrete for a time and gathered my self together. I still remember how cold the concrete felt. It made my whole body feel cold. I climbed out of the ditch and looked up and down the street. He was gone. I ran across the street holding my pants where the button was broken off and went home. I went through the back door of my house so my mother would not see me. I had not had time to process what had just happened and did not even know how to begin to tell her. I went to a back bedroom of the house and cried. I fell asleep.

The pain in my body went away but inside I had no idea how to deal with what had happened. I decided that if I did not talk about it, it did not happen. I was mad at my self for not being able to fight him off. Boys were not supposed to do that to other boys. This was made all the more confusing by the fact that I am transgender. I knew before kindergarten that I was supposed to be a girl but no one else knew that. At 10 years old I did not know the word transgender, only that I wished I was a girl. I even prayed to god to change me into a girl. He did not answer. It was a year before I was able to work up the courage to play in that ditch again. I pushed the memory of that day to the furthest part of my mind. I refused to think about it. Now as an adult I am able to look back on that day and realize things that I did not understand. I know now why he was so mad and frustrated. He was not able to get off. I did not know it then but i had resisted him until the end. I see it now as a bitter victory. He did not get what he wanted. I now know what it means to be transgender. I am absolutely sure of one thing, that day did not make me transgender. I knew I was different when I was 4.

Since that day I have served in the military, married, fathered children and divorced. The love i felt for my ex, I had never felt that before or since. I know what love and intimacy feels like from the male perspective. I have worked up the courage to transition from male to female. Inside I am a woman, my body is just wrong. Six years have passed since the last time I was intimate with my ex. Part of me wants to know. After I transition and I am living as a woman. Could I be attracted to men? If not, would that mean i am a lesbian? So many questions i just do not have answers for. To find answers to these questions I must work through the feelings and memories of that day. I have tried for my whole life to be a man. I am tired of trying to be a strong tuff man who holds his feelings in. I want to feel, to be free to express my feelings, to not have to hold anything back.

My whole life I have felt ashamed. Afraid to tell anyone that I am transgender. I felt ashamed that I was raped. I felt guilty that I was not strong enough to defend my self. Growing up, bullies would call me gay, a sissy or a faggot. They did not even know what happened to me or how i felt. I hated those words. I am not any of those words. I was raped. I am a veteran and honorably served my country. I am transgender. I do not have to feel ashamed or afraid any more. The only thing I did wrong was not telling anyone.

It is time for that to change.

Author

WYR

WYR

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

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