I was 17 and lived with my Mum and sister. My mum had a boyfriend who had dodgy friends. One particular dodgy friend (Dave* name changed) seemed to be around a lot, spent Christmas Day with us, would come over for a beer a few times a week. He always seemed to pay special attention to me. Dave* was 22, a bit of a thug, had been in and out of mental health services all his life and liked a drink and a few drugs. He wasn’t a nice guy, though he seemed harmless enough in the beginning. A couple of months after Christmas my mum and sister had gone to bed and he asked me if I wanted a beer, I accepted a Bud. We chatted for a bit, him drunk, and me waiting for it to be polite to excuse myself to bed. He came and squashed himself next to me on the armchair I was sat in, I didn’t feel I could move, wasn’t confident enough to tell him to move away. Then he kissed me - I had a boyfriend but still, I wasn’t confident enough to stop him. A few minutes later I feigned tiredness and went to bed. Keane’s first album was playing on my stereo - I used to like to listen to them to help me relax and fall asleep. He knocked on the door and came in to my room, got into my bed, started chatting about how he’d been to see Keane, how good they were. Then he kissed me again and started touching me. I found the courage to tell him this time that I didn’t want to, I was tired, and I had school in the morning. He ignored me. The next thing I know he’s on top of me, pushing himself inside me. I tried to say no, he ignored me again, I froze and waited for it to be over. When he finished he made me catch his ejaculate in my hands. He moved off of me, I made an excuse and went to the bathroom to wash. I was in shock. In the morning he told my Mum’s boyfriend that we had slept together and he wanted to be with me. I was too stunned to correct him, I just went to school. My Mum said I had to tell my boyfriend what I’d done. I didn’t tell anyone that I hadn’t wanted to do it. For a long time I wasn’t even sure that what he had done to me was rape, I thought because I didn’t scream, cry, and fight him off that that meant on some level I had agreed to it. My own mother, when I finally did tell her what had happened, didn’t believe me because she was in the next room and said she hadn’t heard a thing. For months afterwards he acted like we were going to get together, made me go to the pub with him, made me go to his haircuts, and walked part of the way to school with me. And I was terrified of him. No one believed me when I told them what had happened so I felt I just had to do whatever he said, there was no escape. Eventually I left and went to live in another town with my best friend and her parents. A few years later Dave* died suddenly. I didn’t feel anything other than relief. Now it’s 13 years later, I’m married with two daughters, I’ve had counselling and finally feel that I’m as close to coming to terms with it as I’ll ever be. My mum has apologized and finally believes me. But the scars remain. I’ll never forget and I’ll never be the same as I was before.