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These true stories are printed with permission to help anyone who may have gone through a similar situation. The names are change to protect the person.

The Anniversary by Joanna

As the clock struck midnight my heart felt joy and peace. The anniversary I dreaded had come and gone. I was here alive and as sane as one person can be after such a tragedy. Reflecting over the years pain, and triumph, I revelled in the thought that I had succeeded. I will never be truly free but I will survive and move onward.
I look back remembering leaving and driving the long distance home. Crying uncontrollably at what had happened. Almost two hours later I arrived home but, unlike most a shower was the last thing on my mind. I curled up in my bed and cried my self to sleep. The next day I arose quite a bit after noon. My mind felt as if the night before was a trick. Some sort of sick hallucination. Sadly it was real and quickly became my secret.
The dark night a year ago was but a mere memory now. It still remained however a nightmare that will haunt me quietly the rest of my life. Creeping around, hiding until the wrong moment when it resurfaces again. For now though the fear that had raced through me for that mere ten minutes has now diminished into a faint memory. Eleven months ago it's hard to believe I was fearing the worst. The pain and agony of the moment had subsided and was now replaced with a new fear. A fear so great that it forced my secret to become reality. To fear that from this horrible tragedy a child would have to know it's true identity.
Two months later after the fear had diminished a little I let my secret live. Telling my family one by one. Life slowly breathed into me once again. I feared the worst but joyfully they were all behind me. Supporting all my decisions and choices. Without judging me for keeping it a secret and not prosecuting. They were just happy that they knew.
Tonight I reflected on this my anniversary. I turned to the man who now lays beside me. The one I love and freely give myself too. He was there, not to help me overcome my tragedy. That I did proudly on my own. But he was there when I was ready to move on. To be my friend and lover. I thank God for letting me live. For not allowing my rapist to take my life. So many others are hurt physically. Or even lose there lives.
I survived with no bruises or scars. At least none that are visible. And a child was not conceived to suffer the anguish of knowing how it was created. The horror of that night will be with me forever. But my greatest fears have been overcome. Not to love someone again. That is easy for me because I have a compassionate heart. But to make love to a man again. Freely of my own will. Now my life can move on and this chapter can for once be closed forever.

Joanna suffered rape but has survived. You can.

My Best Friend By: Terry

I was raped by a guy that I had known since we were small children growing up together. We had reached a point in our relationship to where we were trying the dating thing. I went to watch the Superbowl with him at his house in January of 1996. He got drunk and very angry. I tried to calm him down and had thought I had done a good job. We sat back down in the living room and talked for a while.
I am a big Nascar fan and he said he wanted to show me his collection of cars in the bedroom. I trusted him with my heart and soul and never expected anything more than that. When we got to his room he proceeded to undress me and I told him several times to stop. He would not stop and would not let me out of his room. I guess I should also mention that I was a virgin until this awful night. Well, he held me down and forced himself on me no matter how many times I told him to stop.
I eventually did get out of his house and get home about a hour later. I went home took a shower and went to bed. I was so ashamed as to what had happened to me and I never told anyone, until I met the man I was eventually to marry in 1997. He has been so great helping me through this. He is the only one who knows about what happened to me. I still have nightmares of my "friend" coming after me, and of that night.
It has really affected my husband's and mines sex life. I just don't know what is wrong, he keeps thinking it is him but it's not him I just feel totally violated after what had happened to me. I wish a thousand times that I had told someone and put that rapist where he needs to be, but I was scared of what people would have thought of me. It has really been tough for me over the past few years, but my husband and my little 10 month old daughter make things a lot easier these days.
I still have problems, but I am working through them and I just take it one day at a time. I wanted to share my story with you maybe someone else that has had a similar rape experience will find the strength to step forward and tell someone instead of trying to go through the past years like I have. Please, it only takes a few minutes to pick up the phone and call and tell someone before to much time goes by and I am sure you wouldn't want any one else to go through the same experience. I know I wouldn't. Thank you for the opportunity to tell my story. I really appreciate it.

My Step Father By: Peppy

I just want to say that I was raped too. I was raped but a man who I thought liked me and was supposed to be a father figure to me. He was my step dad. He had his way with me for over 8 years from when I was five till I finally moved away when I was 12. My mother never knew. I'd always let something slip like in our sex classes or those Dare classes you take when you are really young. My step mom would sometimes ask me about it but I'd always lie. I knew my real mom would get really mad if she ever knew that her husband liked me more than her, that's what I thought at least. I ended up going to a shrink and cracking. I told her everything not in detail but what I had been through and she said it would be best if I told my parents. My mom flipped they got divorced and so did my real dad and my step mom. I don't know if it's all related but I fell a little to blame. My dad does not talk to me about it because he can't stand the thought of it. I still fell really uncomfortable around older men, even my dad sometimes. This was all about 4 years ago when I moved away but the impact is still very heavy on me. I get flashbacks sometimes and it's really scary. I don't really know how I got in this web site but I just found my way here. I guess I just wanted to share and may-be this will help other kids. My message to them is that tell someone, if this is happening to you. Don't let the guy or girl get away with it, you don't deserve that!! 

I was raped by my best friend's boyfriend

I was raped January 2001.
I'm only 17 years old and it was the most terrifying time in my life! He is one of my best friend's boyfriend. Well she was my friend but I have lost her now after what has happened. He came round like he has done before and we chatted a little and then he suddenly tried to kiss me, but he forced me back and put himself on top of me. I constantly told him to stop, I told him "No," I told him he was hurting me but he would not stop. I tried to get him off me, I struggled and struggled but I could not get him off me, no matter what I did I was trapped. All he kept saying was "Stop struggling I'm going to do it anyway". I cried and cried while trying to stop him. I tried to reach my phone to get help but I could not get enough freedom to get it. I kicked him, hit him, slapped him, scratched him, at one point I even had my hands round his throat trying to push him off but there was no way I could stop what he did. He forced himself in me and did it. He then let me go and I got up and went to go to my door, he pushed me out of the way so he could go first and I pushed him out of the door and locked it as soon as I could. I then fell to the floor crying, I just did not know what to do - I then suddenly got up grabbed the phone and called my dad at work and asked him to come home straight away. I didn't know how long he was going to be so I tried phoning somebody who lives nearby but no one was answering, then I saw my dad pull up, I ran outside crying hysterically trying to tell him what had happened but I was so upset it took me ages to get the words out.
My dad calmed me down and I got changed and put all my clothes in a bag we then went to the police and I had to tell them what had happened. They were very very nice to me, they then took me to see a doctor, it was a male doctor but he was also nice. My body was covered in scratches and bruises and I could barely move my arm - by the time they had finished the examination they had picked the person up who had done this to me. Of course he is denying everything, he even says he has not been to my house.
I now have a long struggle ahead of me, and although I am showing everybody that I am OK and I can get through this - I can't,- I am terrified -
I can not stay home alone anymore, I will not go out alone when it is dark, on top of all this I will have to go to court and go through the whole thing again. He could even get away with what he has done to me.
I know I have done the right thing though, I took my clothes to the police, they came round and took fingerprints etc. from my house - I made sure I had not got washed before they examined me and hopefully all the right things I have done will get him what he deserves but that will never take away what I will have to live with for the rest of my life and when I am only 17 that is a long time.
I would like to say to anyone who has been through anything like this, tell someone, it does not have to be the police but if you don't tell someone it will haunt you even more.
Remember the police are on your side 

I was raped when I was 12

My name is Stephen and I'm 30 years old. I was raped when I was 12 by a stranger. The whole ordeal only lasted about an hour or so, yet it felt like more.
I went to the Police and was questioned, then taken for an examination.
The questioning was awful, but the examination was much much worse. Why do these people want to hurt me too, I kept thinking to myself. I'd just went through the most horrible experience in my life. yet here I was being hurt again by a doctor I thought. And the police seem to think I'm telling lies to them about it.
Anyway eventually I went home. I couldn't sleep for days and days, I was in so much pain. Some people around my area found out what happened and they made jokes to me about it. They said some very hurtful things. Soon I hated going out. I felt everyone was laughing at me for something I had no control over. People in school made jokes too, soon I was in trouble for fighting with people for it. I've felt like killing myself so often, even now I still feel like it.
Anyway the police caught the man who did it, and he got 4 years in prison.
4 years for ruining my life I thought.
Now this whole ordeal happened to me almost 18 years ago, yet it still haunts me. I was never ever offered any help to deal with it. My parents acted like it hadn't happened. So I've never spoken about it until now. I feel like the people who should have helped me did nothing.
The only good thing is that I hope by me going to the police I saved some other kid going through what I went through. No kid should ever ever have to deal with those things.
I'd like to see information made available to parents everywhere. So if a paedophile lives in your area, you would know about it.
It's too late when some kids life has been ruined, or worse still ended, when I could have been prevented. 

You are the victim, yoare the one who has been hurt.

I was Raped by my Boss.

In nursing school I worked for the Dir. of Financial Aid. I was 18 and "R.." was 26 years old. I asked for help completing my financial aid papers when I saw him one evening as I left the library on campus. He asked if we could grab a bite to eat and he would see if he could help. Afterwards he stated that he had an apartment where he kept his information and that if I went with him he could help me fill out the forms. In the apartment there was no furniture, only a mattress in his bedroom. The next thing I knew he was trying to kiss me and forced me to the floor. He ripped my dress and raped me. He weighed twice as much as I did and I could not do anything to stop him. The sad thing is that I was in such shock that I did not fight him and did not scream. It was as if I was paralyzed by fear. When he was finished I ran to his bathroom, locked myself in, and sat naked on the floor not knowing what to do. The events afterwards are a haze to me because he acted as if nothing had happened and when I demanded to be taken to my dorm he calmly drove me. I ran inside and curled up on the floor and sobbed. That is how my friends found me saying over & over "He was too heavy, He was too heavy". They suggested that I go to the hospital but I was so ashamed and did not want anyone to find out that I had been "tainted". I felt dirty and made them swear that they would not tell anyone what had happened. I took the hottest shower I have ever taken and scrubbed until I was raw. I went to the school psychiatrist the next day and asked her if it is considered rape if someone I knew had done this to me. She suggested that I confront him. I went to his office & told him that I was angry that he had violated me. He acted as if I was crazy & said he had an important meeting to attend. I did not tell anyone else and lived in constant fear that it would happen again. 6 months later I found out that a friend's girlfriend had also been raped by this evil man.
I blamed myself and felt that I lived in constant fear of being hurt again. I carried pepper spray and a knife with me wherever I went for protection. I even kept them in my lab coat in the hospital where I was studying Dietetics and Nutrition. I could not sleep in my apartment by myself. I had to have a roomate or a friend there at night. I slept with the light on and kept a gun in my night stand.
I am married now to a wonderfully supportive person who loves me unconditionally. I realize that the incident was not my fault and that this person may have gotten away with what he did to me, but I cannot let the past affect how I live my life today if I want to be a healthy person and live a happy life.
People who hurt you have been hurt themselves in the past for them to want to cause you pain. You have to reach a point where you say that this person is sick and I will pray for them. At that point you have to do whatever you need to do to move forward toward healing your pain so that you can be whole again. Report the incident to the police, go to the hospital immediately afterwards to get evidence if you want to go to the authorities. Seek therapy, confide in a friend, read as many self-help books about rape, anger, staying positive, how to love again, relationships, etc.. Go to church, praying to God can be a great source of strength and comfort. Find a rape crisis center or any organization that can help you deal with your emotions after an attack. If you bury you anger like I did and keep it a secret then it will definitely affect your relationships later on. You are beautiful and everyone deserves the best out of life. No one deserves to be a victim or deserves to be punished. If you blame yourself like I did this eventually tears you apart because you think, "What did I do to cause this?" or "Why didn't I fight harder?" etc. No one can go back and change the past. What you have to do is decide that you deserve to be happy in the future by helping yourself learn to cope with what happened to you. It is OK to be angry and to feel ashamed. Any normal person would react the same way. Keeping your feelings bottled up inside you are what cause you harm. You have to actively seek help. This is not something that you can just forget about and ignore. I have found that several of my friends have been raped or assaulted. One in every 4 girls have been assaulted. I realized that I was not alone and that this did not happen to me because of something I had done wrong.     
If you have been raped, it is important to get professional help immediately. Look in your phone book for organizations such as rape crisis lines, or if you are under 18, child help-lines. Check this article:
Being raped at 12 has dominated my life

Get Help

You can also get help at Women Today Magazine, and email their support address.
Rape Crisis aims to provide the basic information that survivors of sexual violence, friends and family need to access the services they need.
Samaritans and Befrienders offices around the world, offer a telephone advice service. Look in your phone book under 'Crisis'. You can also contact them by email at Samaritans.org in UK, and Befrienders in many countries around the world. They are completely confidential - they will never tell anyone else what you have shared with them They say, "Whatever you are going through, we will go through it with you."