What We Don't Tell Our Boys
Get ready with her.
“This skirt is cute” she thinks as she puts it on. It would go really well with that top she bought last week. And maybe those boot heels. Slicking back her hair, she thinks of what a great night this will be. She applies bold eyeliner, red lipstick and some blush. She looks pretty. She’s ready. Let’s go.
Go to the party with her.
She arrives with a friend. They have decided to split a bottle of wine tonight. They aren’t getting too drunk, they have school tomorrow. They are amongst friends. And friends of friends. They forget that last part. Glass number two is poured and she needs the toilet. Leaving her glass on the side, out of harms way, she makes her way there. Her friend comes with her. When she is finished, she goes back to the kitchen to get her glass. It looks untouched. She sips. The last thing she remembers is sitting in a room with a boy. She doesn’t know why or how or who. She doesn’t remember what happened. All she knows is that she got a feeling, a bad one, and got up and left. She didn’t tell anyone she had left. Her phone had died. No one knew where she was. Something must have happened in that room to make her leave. But she doesn’t remember. She can’t. She somehow got home. Somehow.
Get ready with her.
Tonight, she thinks, she’ll wear a mini skirt. No, says the voice in her head. No? Maybe a longer skirt? Better not, just in case. She decides she will just wear her trousers. She was going to wear her cami top but it might be too much skin. She is only going out for a bit, she thinks, so she. Will just wear her hoodie. Should she wear lipstick? Not red, she knows that, but maybe just a pop of colour. No? Okay. She’ll leave her hair down this time. “Could you walk me to my car?” No? Don’t worry about it. She can just carry her keys between her fingers. Where’s her rape alarm, she thinks. She’ll just go grab it. She won’t need her earphones, she thinks as she takes them out of her pocket. Which route did she take yesterday again? She had better change it up a bit tonight. Why is that man looking at her? Maybe she should cross the road. Head up, look confident, walk with purpose, unlock her car quickly. Lock. Phew.
Go to the club with her.
She got to the club with her friend, where a bubbly, kind man greeted them. They went inside, thrilled by the lights and music. Sitting down at the table their first drink was poured as they watched. The kind man gave them their drink, the two of them cheers and their night begins. This is the first drink, but not the last. Drink numbers two and three fly by but by drink number four she notices something. The kind man is pouring another girl a drink and, while he pours, he slips some white powder in. Her heart sinks. Shots are served and she throws them over her shoulder. Drinks are served and she pours little bits out while no one is watching. She doesn’t want to look like she’s not drinking, it might make the kind man angry. She doesn’t want to see the kind man angry. As she does this, she starts to feel ‘weird’. She somehow got home. Somehow. She sits by the toilet, throwing up and crying. She can’t remember the rest of the night. She can only remember the man.
She did everything right. She is exhausted.
These are real stories, from real women. Ask around and you will find many more.
The feeling of gaps in the memory is not a comfortable one. Trying your hardest to remember what happened in that room with that boy, what made you leave, is not comfortable. Trying to forget the kind man’s face is not comfortable. You, as the reader, should not be comfortable.
Leave a Reply.
We are a community of writers looking to discuss issues surrounding nightclub safety, women's rights, and the opportunities for WYA.