Monday, 18 January 2016

I'm Nothing but His Toy

I've been doing a lot of writing on this blog about why the past few months were so difficult for me. But this is, by far, the most significant thing that happened to me. While I'd like to say this is something that is 'over and done with,', I can't: This is still something I'm dealing with. I'm actually nervous to share this post so publicly because I'm scared of the responses I'll receive. Please try  to understand.

Fall semester was supposed to be amazing. I was going to hang out in all my favorite places with all my favorite people. But instead, it ended with me afraid to leave my room and almost completely isolated. My perfect semester was interrupted by him.

I don't know if he likes me or is obsessed with me, but regardless, I find he likes to be in my company. Often, without my knowledge. He's walked behind me and followed me home. Sometimes, he sees me approaching my apartment building, sprints to the entrance and waits for me to enter. Once, from the window of my apartment, I saw him waiting outside the building, waiting for me at 8 pm: the time I usually came home that day. Thank God I was already safely inside. He learns my habits very quickly, and suddenly appears in places I never use to see him, watching me like a hawk. He stares at me, keeping an eye on me even in crowded situations. He copies my movements. He hangs around my friends so instead of being with them, I sit alone. He embarrasses me in front of friends, suggesting that I'm in love with him and should go on a date him. One time, he mentioned the color hair clip I wore each day of the week, despite the fact I only saw him twice during that week. He walks around the halls of my university. He has successfully isolated me from many people I once hung out with.

On one of the last days of the semester, I broke down while studying at the library. I found an empty women's bathroom on a deserted floor and locked myself in, sobbing in fear that any minute he would come and find me in the library. I had left my apartment early that morning, praying he wouldn't be up yet. I didn't even eat at all because I was afraid to go to the school cafeteria, where he had watched me eat breakfast just days earlier. This man drove me to be hysterically crying in a public bathroom. 

I've asked for help from people I thought I could count on. I didn't ask for miracles, but just to watch out for me, but got mixed responses. Mostly 'Elizabeth, you're over reacting.' Sometimes, people even laughed and said it was cute that 'he has a crush on [me].' Some people told me to stop coming around all together, because he can't bother me if I stay home. I got a lot of suggestions that it is my fault- despite the fact I've never been friendly to this man, let alone seduce him. The only solution I saw last year was to isolate myself, and even that stopped working when he began to hang out around my school more often. Even the police, who were called by my mother that day I broke, told me there's not much help they can give because he hasn't threatened me.

I don't want him to get in trouble. I just want him to stop.

I'm anxious. I'm scared. I'm embarrassed. I feel totally abandoned. I'm ashamed. I feel guilty, like it's my fault. I cannot visit my old favorite places without feeling sad and alone; I'm lost. I've lost hope. My confidence is completely shattered.

I'm nothing

I'm nothing but a toy for some man to play with. People I thought I could trust told me this. And I have no right to be upset by this, because obviously, it is my fault. It's always my fault.


6 comments:

  1. Does your university have a policy about stalking? My alma mater's policy states " The university will not tolerate sexual harassment, sexual violence, domestic violence, dating violence, or stalking ...The university will take immediate and appropriate steps to stop Sexual Misconduct, prevent its recurrence, and address its effects. Any person who violates this policy may be subject to discipline up to and including termination of employment, suspension, dismissal, and a ban from campus, depending on the circumstances and the severity of the violation and the violator’s status as an employee, student, or visitor"
    YOU aren't getting him in trouble; he's getting himself in trouble. Good luck with this awful situation and stay safe!

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    1. She does not have a stalker, she has arthritis.

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    2. Sounds to me like she has both a stalker and arthritis. Which makes the stalker more threatening because he has targeted someone that is more vulnerable.

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    3. Thankfully the university police have been a great help! Unfortunately, I either have to have solid proof of the situation (like a phone record or constant emails), or I have to feel threatened.

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  2. That is absolutely not okay, and you should not feel like it's your fault whatsoever. I agree with the comment above- there must be some sort of school policy, and I wouldn't hesitate to get them involved. He is the one making you feel threatened, and better he get in trouble than you feeling isolated, scared and alone! This is such a special time in your life, and you've worked so hard to be at that school. We love you!

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  3. Absolutely NOT your fault! Even if you had "seduced" him, it is not ok for him to follow you around like this. And you are far too kind to say you don't want him to get into trouble. He should be talked to about this, and your school should have a policy in place for stalkers. Collage campuses are very aware of the risks involved for women and they should take action. He is not going to get kicked out or arrested since he hasn't hurt you yet. And a talking to could make him realize his behavior is not ok, which he may just not understand. Maybe you can request if they are going to punish him in any way, that it be counseling? You obviously have felt threatened, why else are you staying in your room or changing your schedule to avoid him? That is not ok! Of course be situationally aware at all times, and don't allow yourself to be caught in a bad situation (alone at night, stairwells, etc.). But you shouldn't have to hide out! Do you carry mace? Would a self defense course make you feel safer? Many collages and community centers offer them to women for free. A instructor should be able to work with you to adapt what you can do and how to modify as needed. It's a good thing to know anyways, along with being aware and carrying mace. I doubt he will take this any further then being creepy, but you never know. As for your friends, I like the saying "When someone shows you who they are, believe them.". They have shown they won't back you up. And honestly, what girl doesn't immediately back her friend up when she tells them there is a creepy guy following her around? Not a friend at all! It may seem cute or funny....right up until you tell them it's scaring you. Then it's no longer fun and games. I'm sorry your going through this!

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