“If we can share our story with someone who responds with empathy and understanding, shame can’t survive.” ~Brené Brown


He’d heard her, she was sure of it; his face was so close to hers, she could feel his whiskers on her cheek as he moved, like the stab of needles tattooing her skin with unwanted ink. 

“No,” she said, again, a little more forcefully this time, the word scraping the inside of her throat, which was beginning to feel constricted, pure panic coiling itself around and around, from the inside out.

All she saw was his eyes. Blank, as if he was looking through her, his eyes spoke for him, they gave his response.

Pinning her down, one arm crossed her chest as the other pulled down his own pants and ripped her black panties aside. His full weight upon her, he pushed her back further into the couch. She tried to push back at him, to wriggle beneath him to get away, but her own muscles weren’t working like they should. 

Her body went cold. She could taste his scent in the air, a toxic, slur of smoke invading her lungs, fighting for what little air her lungs would allow. Absorbing his vile presence, it was black sludge melting into every pore, her stomach twisting and wretching. She could feel her body’s resistance in the rigid freeze between them. 

But, she didn’t scream, even though her friend was just upstairs with the other guy. She didn’t struggle. Fear kept her quiet, and not just fear of him. She was immobilized by her own voice. 

Fear of her own voice.

Jerking his head upward, he looked into her eyes again, and she felt his muscles tighten even further. 

No,” she whispered again, reminding herself. 

He invaded her. His hips worked ferociously, grinding and impaling, his elbow digging into her chest.

He took without apology. He took and took and took. 

Behind her eyes, it all slowed, each slam into her, every recoil, in slow motion, his elbows becoming knives, his arms boulders, and his incessant body the evil, leaded blanket reminding her of her own silence, of her smallness. 

He took what he wanted.

When he finished, she stood and quietly adjusted her clothes, never looking at him or speaking a word.

Walking up the 18 stairs, her feet made a shuffle-scraping sound, and she knocked on the blackness of the wooden door until her friend answered. Thank God, the look on her face must have spoken for her, because her friend followed without her ever needing to speak.

She walked back down the 18 stairs and out the front door. Automation took her feet toward home, still in silence. She was halfway home before she realized she was only wearing one shoe. 

Along with her shoe, she’d left behind the last of her voice, the one which spoke up for her. 

It would be years and years before she began to find it again…..but she did.

~image credit; #metoo 

“Vulnerability sounds like truth and feels like courage. Truth and courage aren’t always comfortable, but they’re never weakness.”

“Courage starts with showing up and letting ourselves be seen.”

Quotes by Brené Brown. Let’s kick shame’s ass, Warriors.


44 thoughts on “Silence

  1. This post in particular really resonated with me because this happened to my best friend last week. There are no words to adequately describe the rage and wrath I feel for her, and the powerlessness to change what happened. Would it be all right to repost this on to my Facebook?

    Liked by 1 person

      • Your kindness runs deeper than most. Do you have any advice on how to cope? She also happens to be the love of my life, but having something I cannot fix drives me crazy.

        Liked by 1 person

        • I only know what I wish I’d had, and that is a safe place where she can feel all the feelings, because there is and will be so many. A place of acceptance, where shame has no space. Sounds like she has that with you. I’m so happy she does.

          Liked by 1 person

          • I can only hope she has that in me, but she has taken the other road of denial and is more intent on blocking it out and pretending to be happy as if it never happened that allowing herself to feel it. I know she has to heal in her own way, but I think blocking it out is only going to make it harder for her to deal with it when it finally resurfaces. I just don’t know what to do.

            Liked by 1 person

  2. Oh My God!! This is so Astonishing, powerful, raw and fierce that I am really at a loss for words to do your work justice, not even close! Your words drag us into the scene and feel what no woman should ever have too feel. Thank you for sharing this! You should send this to every woman’s organization in the World! I am so humbled that you have visited my blog and consider it worth your time to follow! Thank you so much!!!

    Liked by 1 person

        • I very much appreciate your enthusiasm and support. It means so much to me.

          I wrote this piece from my heart and from my experience. I put it out here into the blogosphere to share, in hopes it may reach those it’s meant to reach. To help heal myself and hopefully help others along the process, as well as provide an insight for those who may wish to gain such. I’m open to conversation, relation, and the offering of love and support. I suppose that’s what feels comfortable for me.

          Liked by 2 people

          • Hi Angela, It is so wonderful to be in connection with you! I was so moved by your work. It is so brave and bold of you to expose this to the world for the precise purpose to “help heal others and give an insight”!

            I too, would really like to be in conversation, connection and a relation that is supportive and inspirational. I have been so blessed to have been inspired by others and maybe to inspire a few with some “seeds of inspiration” myself.

            I like to find out about other writer’s process of writing and interests. I would love to converse with you. My email is


  3. Wow. Raw and powerful. A perfect description of rape and its aftermath. As a counselor, I see women like this one, and try to help them find that voice; help them not to be defined by what some evil person has done to them.

    Liked by 1 person

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