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Femme Writes: A victim. A survivor. A sufferer. August 5, 2010

Posted by jeneypeney in femme writes, life, the 'f' word, women's writes.

On the 5th of every month, bloggers from around the world are open to write about rights and issues concerning women. First started by Shine and Marie, we’re hoping to bring a variety of women’s issues to the forefront to make people aware of what’s going on. For the month of July, we’ve chosen to write about Physical and Mental Abuse. Please join us in telling us your stories, thoughts, and ideas on a monthly basis. To read previous installments, click here.

***WARNING*** This post will probably shock 99.9% of you who read it. I have decided to be brutally honest in this post and I am holding nothing back. I haven’t spoken of these things very often or very recently to anyone  – some of them I have never mentioned until now – so read ahead at your own risk.


I would bet that most of those who know me would never guess that I was a victim of sexual abuse from the time I was a small child through my years as an undergraduate. Upon first impressions, I probably come by as a well-adjusted, happy, and relatively normal twenty something girl trying to make her way in the world.

You’d never guess that inside I am constantly fighting feelings of guilt, shame, worthlessness, pain… the list goes on.

I wrote about one of the instances of the abuse I suffered as a child before for Violence Unsilenced* – and at the time it was the most difficult thing I had ever done.

I was wrong.

Writing about it a second time, now, for Femme Writes is the hardest thing I have ever done. Why? Because for some reason memories I had suppressed and completely forgotten about are coming back and I’m not sure how to handle it all.

I suddenly remembered it all started in the first grade when the boy I was assigned to sit next to in class would expose himself to me on the playground. Because he thought it was funny.

Then in third grade another boy talked me into taking all my clothes off for him. Because “that’s what boyfriends and girlfriends do together.”

Then when I was 12, the mailman molested me right outside my home – along with several other young girls on our route. Because he was sick in the head.

Exactly a year later, a very close family friend molested and penetrated me with his fingers while he thought I was sleeping. Because he was drunk.

When I was a junior in college, I was forced to go down on a guy at a house party. Because he was pissed that I wouldn’t sleep with him.

The one that finally broke me? When I “blacked in” after a long night of drinking and the boy I had been flirting with all night was on top of me… and inside of me. Because I wasn’t coherent enough to stop him.

After all of this, I went though a long, awful phase where I would get absurdly drunk and sleep with inappropriate people. I didn’t know how to handle all the pain and unwanted guilt I had in my heart and mind. I felt so worthless, unwanted, and broken. Acting out as I did was the only way I could just not feel… even if it was for only a few hours.

It didn’t help that by best friend only judged me for my behavior. She wrote me off as a reckless slut and turned against me. I know I probably deserved it, but I think deep down I wanted her to ask me what was wrong and why I was being so stupid. I just wanted someone to care about me.

I am still learning to get over my feelings of guilt and broken-ness. It’s a process though, and I’m not sure if I ever will truly be fixed.

I was a victim. I am a survivor. But I am still suffering… and I fear I may always be.

* My post has not yet been published as the waiting list is about eleventy billion months long… but as soon as it is posted I well let you all know.



1. Femme Writes – Abuse « Femme Writes - August 5, 2010

[…] Jeney Peney’s A Victim. A Survivor. A sufferer. […]

2. Just A Girl - August 5, 2010

I'm so proud of you Jen. Seriously.

3. Heather - August 5, 2010

This hits really close to home. Know that you are strong. You have people that love and care about you. Keep your head up, lady.

4. verybadcat - August 5, 2010

i hope you find the peace you so richly deserve. ❤

5. Marie - August 5, 2010

Well I’m sorry for saying this but your friend is not a real friend for calling you a “slut.” Being molested, sexually assaulted and raped does not make you a slut by any means.

I’m sorry those things happened because you definitely didn’t deserve that. Nor does anyone. I hope you keep staying strong.

6. carissa - August 5, 2010

Wowsa lady, thank you for posting this. I have gone through a cycle that is very similar to yours, and I wasn’t brave enough to write about it just yet, but props to you. I may go ahead and post what I want now thanks to your inspiration. I am sorry that you’ve had to go through so much.. Hopefully the fact that you are able to write about this means that you now know how special you are, regardless to the abuse you’ve seen. I know I SEE IT!

7. shine - August 6, 2010

Jeney, I’m so glad you posted this month. I know this must have been hard. And that boy you had been flirting with was on top of you when you passed out NOT because you couldn’t fight him off, but because HE is messed up and took advantage of you.

Believe me, I know none of this is ever easy. I think being able to face it and talk about it are the first steps. And I’m always around if you need to talk. I’ve been there.

8. cari - August 6, 2010

i don’t even know what to say. my heart goes out to you, girl.

9. Dawn Lovitt - August 9, 2010

no words…except…I still love you!

10. Eureka - August 12, 2010

I’m sorry to hear of your trauma. I know how difficult the emotions stemming from trauma can be. I’m glad that you have fought the battles and continue moving forward, showing the world your strength. I hope that in time more internal peace comes to you and that life gets a little easier.

11. Meg - August 12, 2010

Sometimes, sharing helps ease the pain.

12. clairemontgomerymd - August 21, 2010

cyber hugs to you. you are much braver than i will ever be and stand a hero in my book.

jeneypeney - August 23, 2010

Thank you, Claire!

I never realized how much sharing my stories would help the healing process. The support I have gotten is honestly overwhelming… thank you!


13. Forgiving Myself « Just a Lost Soul Swimmin' in a Fish Bowl - November 24, 2010

[…] most of you will remember, I went through a severely self-destructive point in my life where I made awful, terrible life choices that still haunt me to this very moment. […]

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