Rape is a despicable act in every way possible, but what should you do if it happens to you?
Celine got dressed up to attend an office party, the founder was celebrating his 70th birthday.
It was a big deal, and everyone looked gorgeous. Celine wore a formfitting number that hugged all her curves, it made her look pretty good. She felt good, she was happy.
Everyone had an amazing time, socializing, and drinking. Then it was time to leave. It was quite late, and a colleague offered to walk her home since she lived close to the venue of the party. She accepted because, why not, she would be safer with him anyway.
They got to her place, she was very grateful and invited him in for a cup of tea before he continued to his house. It was a cold night, and it was the least she could do.
As soon as they entered, he dragged her to her bedroom and raped her right there on the floor. She shouted and screamed several times for him to stop, he didn’t. He said, she invited him in, there was no reason for her to say no, then he left.
She sat there on the floor, dazed and shocked at what just happened to her. Her fancy dress all dirty and torn, hurting all over. She couldn’t even cry anymore, she wanted to jump off her balcony.
… what should Celine do next?
1. Celine Should Get Somewhere Safe
At that moment, her house is probably not feeling very safe for her, it might never feel safe again. Celine should call a taxi or a trusted female friend to come and pick her up. She needs a change of environment and someone she trusts to be with her.
2. Celine Should Tell Someone What Happened
The person needs to be someone she trusts completely. Someone that will offer unconditional support. This can be the person she called to pick her or someone else.
3. Celine Should Preserve Evidence of The Rape
It is important that Celine should not have her bath or clean up, no matter how much she wants to do that. It is normal for her to want to get his smell and touch off of her person as soon as she can. But everything is potential evidence at this point.
4. Celine Should Go To A Hospital
Celine should go to a hospital, preferably with her confidant. At the hospital, the doctors can take care of her injuries, give her drugs to calm her down, and also examine her. They can also take samples of evidence and keep in case Celine decides to report the rape to the police.
But most importantly, they can provide her with emergency contraceptives (so she does not get pregnant). She can get tested for STIs (chlamydia, gonorrhea, trichomoniasis, HIV, and Hepatitis B, syphilis). And if STI prophylactic treatment is necessary, it can be administered. She may also need counseling and can be referred for that.
5. Celine Should Get The Support She needs
Whatever she decides to do after she visits the hospital, Celine needs to heal. To do that, she requires a lot of non-judgmental support. Whether from a professional, or friends, or family. Celine should not be left alone, she should be loved, and taken care of.
Nowadays in this country, there seem to be a lot of Celines walking around, hiding their scars. Celines that have gone through one form of sexual abuse or harassment or the other. Some do not even realize that they have been sexually assaulted until years later.
The Inspector General of police declared earlier this year that there is 1 rape reported every hour in the country. This is an ongoing menace that requires urgent attention. If you are Celine, if Celine is you, there is help for you. You can contact the Mirabel Centre, they can help.
Hopefully, a Celine sees this and knows she matters, knows she can overcome this. Against all odds, Celine is strong, Celine is invincible.