“It wasn’t rape, it was assault. The alcohol was the drug and I finally saw your face. That was sexual predation, Dantrell.” ~B.G.
*TW: Sexual Assault*
That one person is not in full-functioning judgement to decide whether or not they want to partake in any sex. And if they do decide they would like to, their judgement is still impaired so how genuine & intentional is that decision? It’s not. It simply is not.
I wasn’t forced to drink in the way one shoves liquid down your throat. But I was given one and I took it, not with the anticipation of getting drunk. There was no chaser, and it was one drink. I didn’t know it would make me drunk enough to make decisions that I didn’t feel comfortable with several hours later. But that’s what can happen when your judgement is impaired. You make decisions with a clouded mind. Mine was clouded by Ciroc VS.
I’ve never had or even heard of that drink before that night. It was brown and I’m used to clear colored-fruit flavored versions of Ciroc. But I gave it a try without thinking twice. Apparently it’s a Brandy with a 40% alcohol level/80 proof. The regular ciroc I know is 35% alcohol. I didn’t think to look any this up until 2 weeks later. He knew what he was doing. When I think of it now, he never asked what I drink. He just brought it.
I think the most nauseating fact about all of this is that we both knew I liked him because I told him that on that same night. So if it was sex that he only wanted or felt, it would have been possible and better to make that decision sober. But because alcohol was involved and it slowed my responses and my judgement, the complete freedom of my clear conscious to make that choice was taken. That‘s where it hurts the most.
The only saving grace in those moments would have been if both parties were drunk. So at least the night would have been questionable for everyone involved. But that wasn’t the case. I didn’t realize I was the only one drunk in the situation until he said he wasn’t drunk off of one cup in a string of text messages Friday night when I called him. He was furious and refused to rehash what happened that night when I calmly asked if he might have put anything in my drink. I told him I was concerned and wanted his perspective of the night.
Initially, he lied about the physical things that happened. Then he backtracked when I told him the details I remembered. He said he remembered from the things I said. But then refused to tell me the rest of that night from his perspective before calling me a “bitch” and “retard” then hanging up in my face.
After I begged him (crazy to beg someone to communicate that laid with your naked body) to get back on the phone so I could figure some things out. We got back on the phone and as I continued to calmly ask him to tell me what his Tuesday night was like, he constantly refused, cursed, and said something that I will never forget that took my head off it’s swivel inside the bathroom while my PB’s laid in the bedroom down the hall. He said, “and what if I did [do it], then what? What’s the bottom line, Bianca?”
He talked about how he wanted to “prepare” himself for anything that would happen next. I was even more confused because I didn’t mention any retaliation. That is when it clicked & I broke down.
I kept saying, “why would you say that? why would you say that?” because it started to ring in my head that I may have been date-raped and no rational person that didn’t do this would even think of the possibilities of what might happen when caught.
I even mentioned the words “date-rape” on FaceTime and he didn’t even flinch. I started to break down a bit asking him “why would you say that? and why did you do it?” Then he laughed. Such an odd response to a situation like this where someone is audibly and visibly hurting. So odd.
I just didn’t understand. I couldn’t understand. So many things were said that spun my head on that FT call that made me question even further. If he did or didn’t put anything in my drink, why was I so compliant to do whatever? I’m usually not. We usually don’t even agree on anything so why would I suddenly be so easily swayed to do whatever that night. My usual sharp, detailed, & analytical mindset would have done differently based on the conversations we had. Or, may have disagreed with some things later that night like I usually do where alcohol is not present in my body. The next morning we were going back & forth in disagreement. Again, because that is usual when I’m in my fully conscious & active state of mind.
I said it to him, and I’ll say it again: Dantrell, you lied when I asked you multiple times about your recollection of that night. The strangest part of that entire conversation was him calling me crazy to invalidate my concerns & memory. But also agreeing that he remembered what I described that took place. That may have been the only thing “crazy” throughout that entire dialogue. It most certainly wasn’t the fact that I had concerns about that night.
I’ll never know if he did or did not put anything in my drink. But I know he brought a cup for each of us filled with that Ciroc Brandy (I didn’t even know it was Brandy, never had it) with no chaser and I became intoxicated. I’ll never know his version of what happened because he refused to tell me when I asked. But said enough to me that explicitly indicated I was the only person drunk that night.
My greatest take away from all of this:
–responsibility: The fact I accepted the drink & drank it all.
–attention: I didn’t watch him pour the drinks so I can’t confirm with myself that nothing was added. So I will always pay attention when drinks are poured regardless of familiarity or relations.
–alcohol: Only drink in groups or alone. The only exception is with someone I completely trust with my life and can depend on in an emergency.
But wait, there’s more:
Men: It needs to be taught & required to communicate with anyone that engages in any form of sex with you. It’s only a fair call to be able to discuss things that happened because health risks are involved: physical & mental. That’s why people go to prison for knowingly spreading HIV without disclosing that information. It’s a health concern in all aspects. So at least communicate about it when everything is done.
Rape culture: I’m coming to find rape cannot be seen as the Brock Turners or stranger that pulls you away and forces sex upon you while you lay helpless & defeated. That is the most common and straightforward version of it. But there are nuances. I believe this was a nuanced case of it. Details make things slippery sometimes, but communication can help clear that up. Unfortunately, I was not able to clear it up with the other person involved and had to piece things together by myself.
Intent: Intention matters and can be seen through actions. Ironically, I read something today about rape on the first chapter of Amanda Seales’ book Potent Truths, it said: “the bottom line is, if you have to ask [if it was rape], at the very least it wasn’t right.”
That’s how I felt the next morning and days after that. Something wasn’t right.
Lesson learned. But I won’t abuse my mind by ruminating through this memory so I will leave it here.
peace & lots & lots of self-love ✌🏾
**Update: 12/5/2020 – I’m still traumatized by this and it’s so difficult to cope…some days I’m good, plenty of days I’m not. It’s almost 2am and this is what’s been penetrating my mind for the past 3 days.
Initially, all I wanted to know is why did he do it? Why did he do it to me? Then I finally accepted that someone like that has no conscious, “cold-hearted” like he said to describe himself. It was never about me, personally. It was about him, to feel power over a young woman’s intoxicated body that he couldn’t have had if I were sober. There is no remorse, no apology, and no accountability from a person like that. Because I finally came to realize, after so much confusion, he’s a sexual predator.