I Wish I Knew my Valentine Wasn’t Entitled to my Body

TW: Sexual Assault 

To whoever needs this, I’m going to tell you what I wish I knew: your valentine is not entitled to your body. YOU get to decide what happens to it. YOU get to say no. The only one entitled to your body is yourself.  I wish I knew that it would’ve been okay to leave my relationship before it got to where it did. I wish I knew that my body was mine and that my boyfriend at the time wasn’t entitled to my body just because we were together.

We were fifteen when my boyfriend at the time started asking me about sex, he was ready. I was not. It was something that had I hadn’t really thought about until he brought it up, but when I did think about it, it was coming from a place of fear. I told him I wasn’t ready yet, and for a while, he respected that. As time went on, I still wasn’t ready and he was getting even more upset every time I told him. Guilt took me over.  I felt like I had to sleep with him to make him happy. I was sick of the arguments, sick of him spending two hours telling me why I should just try it. I found myself sick to my stomach and crying on the floor that night trying to convince myself that I needed to sleep with him to save my relationship. I couldn’t, there was still something missing and I didn’t see him sexually as he saw me.

 I went to his house the day after that breakdown and told I simply wasn’t ready. I asked him if we could wait a little bit. This turned into another argument. He made me feel so small. I felt like I wasn’t allowed to control what would happen to my body, and that turned out to be true. We ignored this argument for a few weeks, but then valentine’s day came around. We had a perfect night planned out, we made pink heart-shaped waffles, exchanged gifts, and watched stupid love movies. There was something he neglected to tell me; his parents were going to be gone that night.  I knew something was up, and I should have left, but I decided to stay.  The night was going alright; we started watching silly rom-coms. Halfway through the movie, he asked me if I was ready, to which I replied that I was not. This didn’t stop him, he proceeded to take my shirt off, I tried to resist while shaking uncontrollably. On the verge of tears I told him, “Okay but this is as far as you’re going, I told you I wasn’t ready yet.” So there was catty-cornered on the couch, his hands fondled my body, overwhelmed with shaking and cold sweats. After a few minutes of this, he began to unbutton his pants and to pull mine down, at this point I was begging him to stop, to which he replied, “It’s Valentine’s Day, don’t you love me?”.  I felt guilty.  I didn’t tell him to go ahead, I just felt powerless, and I didn’t have the ability to tell him no. So it happened. The whole time he was yelling at me, he was telling me that I was too tense and he was getting upset that I wasn’t turned on by him.  I remember being in excruciating pain the entire time, but I thought I had to suppress it to make him happy. In hindsight, I shouldn’t have made him happy, but rather should have kept myself happy.

That was the day everything changed, where my body and everything that had to do with it hit rock bottom. Four years later and I’m still picking up the pieces. I still find myself feeling as if I’m spiraling out of control… but then I remember that this body is MINE no matter who or what has violated it. So this year, I’m my own valentine, and no one is entitled to my body but myself.