Process after a rape is reported (historical)(20 Posts)
Previous thread in which I wrote "It's no skin off my nose to report". Ha de bloody ha. I had no idea.
I didn't realise I would go bonkers, be waking screaming, keep weeping and feel utterly physically exhausted. I also had no idea of the process. I feel such a twit.
To recap a bit - was raped in my sleep by then boyfriend. Had zero/crappy boundaries and also just could not deal with thinking this man I was "in love" with had done something wrong so just didn't think about it. Stayed with him another 3 yrs. He was emotionally and later physically abusive. Nothing requiring medical intervention, and not frequently physical as I was a good little cowed woman for him.
I figured it would be my word against his and they couldn't do anything. I thought they'd take a statement and then perhaps go forward with it if there were other reports about him (I assume(d) there would be, for various reasons).
Am making video statement soon and not sure if this is normal or an indication they want to take it forward due to other allegations against him. I am wondering what is going on with the process now. And I am terrified because I don't want this to go to court if it is just me because I would get torn to shreds. MH issues, for example. So I googled, of course, and ended up with horror stories of women getting jailed for retracting rape claims or being convicted of an offence if the rapist (alleged rapist, I suppose) is found not guilty. If anyone can shed any light on where I'm at in the process/what will happen next or any info. about this exploding on me, I'd appreciate it.
Also, I can't remember precisely but I think I my have told someone at the time (during a converstaion about rape, I think due to a case in the news). I have already told police this but didn't elaborate as was uncertain. This was when I found out it was rape btw. I'm just not sure how specific I was... won't go into it here, but there were several people present and I know one for certain but the others were colleagues and I can't say exactly who was there (only about 4 people who it may have been though). The one I know for certain, I can't remember her name! It would be possible to trace her though. And the other staff did seem very protective of me and vaguely concerned about my boyfriend. I don't know how much that is worth though.
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Optional reading, needed to get this out:
Also, it is raking up two groping incidents. One in particualr the guy was just so manipulative and taking advantage to get me to let him into my house and just the whole situation, he also repeatedly kept grabbing me despite me saying no and guilted me into not kicking him out. (Yes I was a fool, can't believe it now). Unfortunately he is rather popular in these parts, and works in the local, so I have to see him around (I blank him, won't go to bar if he's serving). But also a few people know what he did - or at least I told them. Plus there were load of witnesses to him walking home with me, people aware he'd been there overnight, and I can date it precisely. Much more to go on than the rape incident. But you know what? People wouldn't make a statement against him. Mutual friends - mainly male of course - were happy to have him around (in a way fair enough as nothing proven but ugh). One female friend raved on abot how lovely to meet him for lunch, he was one of those special people, blah blah, then saw my face and said "Yeh, I know you don't get on with him". FFS!! So no way would I ever be able to report him (not that I'd want to now and what's the point anyway...) because there's a whole community that would come togther to defend him and demonise me (presumably, in order to defend him). I just feel so outrgaed, trapped and violated. This incident actually bothers me more than the rape (as a single incident). I'm not sure why I'm writing this I just needed to get it out.
Oh also it's raked up, in my mind, violence from my most recent ex. I'm still in the "slowly seeing the light and getting outraged at it" stage. (Actually we split over a year ago but stayed "friends". Twas weird though. Violent incidents since splitting). Again, I feel outraged but also trapped and humiliated. I also feel horribly guilty at the thought of telling anyone (although I have) and find myself making excuses for him in my head, even as I feel disgusted. The thing is, I actually called the police right after it happened. But then chickened out and woudn't tell them who it was. It just feels like justice is always just out of reach because there isn't enough evidence and I feel so sick at the thought of wrecking anyone's life with a conviction, no matter what they've done. Ughhhh.
Does anyone know if you can have counselling specifically for this sort of thing whilst being bonkes in other ways, without needing to go into the other stuff? Simply because the whole picture is very complex and requires probably years with an experienced therapist, whereas tis is the pressing issue right now, iyswim.
Im so sorry for being so OTT about all this, I know many of you have been through much worse. Im just a bit overwhelmed with it right now.
I cannot help you with the rape thing, I have no idea how this is handled in the UK and sadly suspect that you will treated badly.
However, I am sure you can get therapy for this specific issue without having to go into the other stuff. My experience with psychotherapists is that they are very nice and helpful and if you tell them that you need to tackle this, they will let you prioritize it. Just try - and perhaps look for a therapist who is an expert on this.
You are very brave for reporting this and I wish you all the best.
As for the information you are looking for, have you considered asking on the feminist boards here? Reporting rape is a feminist issue, and perhaps someone there will be able to help you with that.
I remember your last thread, OnTheTurningAway. Sorry to hear how you're struggling. I wish I had some useful answers to your questions, but I'm afraid I don't know about the procedure after a rape is reported.
My sensible head would say that Googling is probably not helping your anxiety, but I know it would also be something I'd do too.
Could you still contact Rape Crisis or your local SARC? They might be able to arrange counselling for you, or there may be other charities local to you that deal with sexual assault. If you're paying for a private counsellor then I would imagine they'd let you concentrate on whatever particular issue you want to (depending on the approach used, obviously).
P.S. VestalVirgin's suggestion of moving this to the Feminist Chat section is good. They're very supportive there, and it's not as fast-moving as Chat.
We're just moving this over to Feminism at the OP's request.
Do you have access to an ISVA? Rape crisis might be able to put you in touch with on, who can hold your hand through it all and probably tell you what to expect.
Unless the funding for this has been cut in your area
What's an ISVA?
The police have been really good actually, explained everything. I hope it's not a false sense of security but they explained the various points at which I could decide not to go ahead. TBH I doubt the CPS will go ahead with it or use it unless there are/have been other reports.
Have done interview now. Feel weird and knackered. But much less ARGHHHH. Just quite angry at opportunistic men who view women as their property.
Well done on getting through the interview. Keeping this bumped for others to comment.
Well done. Whatever the outcome you are saying No. It is good the police are being helpful too.
I know exactly what you mean about the friends who will stand by 'one of those special people'. That's why so many popular young men in schools and universities flourish with their assaults and rapes.
I would suggest you speak to a counsellor who specialises in rape, not a general psychologist as some other posters have suggested. I think a general psychologist could be more mentally dangerous for you.
"not a general psychologist as some other posters have suggested"
Sorry I rushed and wasn't clear. Most other posters have suggested a specialist rape counsellor and I agree that would be best.
Sorry, an ISVA is an independent sexual violence advocate.
And yes, specialist counselling is a must, rape crisis might be able to help you access this help too.
I am so rooting for you, whatever the outcome is, you are braver than I was.
I'm not sure about a specialist rape counsellor. The rape is far from the worst thing. There was some violence too. But the thing that really affected me is the emotional control and so on. I also seem to have absorbed the "compliant woman" social conditioning to an extreme degree. So a feminist counsellor would be good, or covering those sorts of issues. But the rape itself is a tiny part of a massive load of crap so from that persepctive I don't need specialist counselling.
For the above reasons I don't think I am brave, I feel kind of guilty about reporting this as if I'm making a fuss about nothing.
Weirdly I remembered the worst violent incidents after the interview, so now I look like I'm making it up. Also remembering other violent or controlling men, and lots of stuff in my head I can't write here that hurts a lot and doesn't add up.
I think it is impossible to remember everything on cue and it is not at all surprising you remembered more after the interview, so you should not feel guilty. You are not making a fuss about nothing. What he did was part and parcel of the rest of the abuse and can't be separated in my view.
It seems more and more is rising to the surface of your mind now and it must be very difficult for you. I hope you will find someone who can help.
Maybe someone else knows here knows if a rape counsellor could help with the abuse in general, but if not, maybe if you started with a rape counsellor they could direct you on.
Kind I know exactly what you mean about the friends who will stand by 'one of those special people'.
What I don't understand is that they apparently believe me. It's more than they somehow think it's not a big deal or something.
What really surprised me was that one person who knows AND is the one who was vaguely supportive/condemned him for doing it, is actually his ex, so I assumed she know what a horrible man he was. But it turned out they were still friends .
I think a general psychologist could be more mentally dangerous for you.
Please could you elaborate?
Sorry, I am not an expert on psychologists. But i think if you got just any psychologist, whose expertise might not include abuse (and rape?), for all one knows they might condone the perpetrator in some way, or not truly understand how someone like them operates. Psychologists are just ordinary people with all the normal faults. If you got the wrong person, I imagined it could be awful for you.
What you describe about a person knowing what an abuser is like but still continuing to be friends with them, I think that happens, for example in families - say one is violent but the other family members are still somehow bonded to them. I do not have an explanation, however and I am very sorry as you must feel betrayed.
I agree, a counsellor is what you need. Have a look at the BACP website and see what you find in your area. They usually list their specialities.
Some do a free consultation too, though I still think your local Rape Crisis would be a good place to start. A decent counsellor specialising in rape, will have some understanding of related relationship and attachment issues too, I should think.
I'm glad you've found the police good so far - you've given me hope for when I finally find the courage to report my abuser.
I am sorry for the abuse that happened to you too Aristotles.
Thank you, KindDogsTail. I have a plan to deal with it when the schools go back in September (for various reasons can't do anything until then).
How are you doing, OnTheTurningAway?
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