Work colleague raped me 5 years ago and I've finally snapped

(349 Posts)
Twentypasttwelve Wed 12-Feb-20 18:46:33

Just that really.

I can't take being near him a moment longer. I've been signed off with stress and anxiety for 2 weeks.

I have no idea what to do. If I tell my manager why I'm off, is it confidential? Would he have to follow it up? I don't think I can bear reporting it to the police. I am not sure I can bear telling anyone at work tbh.

Could I look for work elsewhere while I'm off? I don't feel up to it tbh. I've asked the GP for therapy, so I am on the waiting list for that.

Any thoughts or advice would be welcome. I'm feeling okay atm but have felt like I was having a nervous breakdown, and am sure I will again soon.

Please help.

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Hillocrew Wed 12-Feb-20 20:20:23


I'm so sorry I've no advice!
But I'm sooooo angry on your behalf! That fucked raped you and then had the nerve to go about his business and see you at work for years. Bastard . Fucking bastarding bastard

PolloDePrimavera Wed 12-Feb-20 20:23:39

Were the police involved at the time? Or are you going to inform them now? That sounds an impossible situation! Has he ever acknowledged what he did?!

I honestly have no idea if your manager would be obliged to keep it confidential.

ihatethecold Wed 12-Feb-20 20:28:52

Can you contact Rape crisis for support Op?

TheQueef Wed 12-Feb-20 20:31:16

I'm sorry he did this to you Twenty it must be hell flowers

mynameiscalypso Wed 12-Feb-20 20:41:18

I was in a similar situation although luckily in my case, the rapist quit after a few years so I didn't have to. A few years later I did tell the police although nothing came of it. I'm so sorry it's happened to you and I absolutely get where you're coming from. You don't need to tell anyone why you're off; I ended up being off for two months with PTSD and none of my colleagues knew the reason (a few do now because the police ended up speaking to some of them but that's a separate matter really). Take all the time you need. Can you look at private therapy at all? I had a very good psychologist who helped with the worst of it.

Apologies if this is a bit muddled - am v sleep deprived and feeding baby - but I'm sending good thoughts your way. If you have any specific questions, let me know.

Look after yourself thanks

NoSharon Wed 12-Feb-20 20:47:59

You don't have to name the person while talking to HR if you don't wish to. They won't be able to do anything as it's simply an allegation of criminal behaviour. He hasn't been charged/convicted.
If it happened at work however, they may get involved in investigating.
Nobody can force you to do anything in relation to going to the police.
I'm sorry you're going through this.

Twentypasttwelve Thu 13-Feb-20 07:10:34

Thank you all.

No I haven't reported it to the police nor have I told a soul (apart from my mum and husband, very recently)

I just wonder if it wouldn't be a safeguarding issue because he has access to students. If I tell my manager he has a duty of care to the students, right?

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Weenurse Thu 13-Feb-20 07:13:20

So sorry💐

TheOnlyLivingBoyInNewCross Thu 13-Feb-20 07:23:08

It sounds a horrific situation to be in. I am so sorry.

I work in a school, and I have no idea what the process would be in your situation. From their perspective, you are making an allegation but not reporting it to the police (so no "suspended pending investigation" sort of outcome is possible) so I just don't know what they then do. In terms of what they can do in relation to employment law, I mean. Hopefully someone with more knowledge will be able to help out.

PolloDePrimavera Thu 13-Feb-20 07:27:48

OP you poor thing, what a horrific burden.
You might have a point re students. I would look for a new job and yes, I'm sure that's fine whilst you're off. You'll never feel better knowing you have to return there. thanksthanksthanks

Onceuponatimethen Thu 13-Feb-20 07:29:38

I would call your union for advice as well as rape crisis

NoSharon Thu 13-Feb-20 07:44:30

I reported something similar and unless there's a conviction, no, they won't do anything.

NoSharon Thu 13-Feb-20 07:45:28

Some charges, would leave you suspended pending investigation. But since he hasn't even be charged yet, then I'm sorry - No.

Luckypoppy Thu 13-Feb-20 07:48:09

Definitely a safeguarding issue. Protect yourself and your students. XxxX

NoSharon Thu 13-Feb-20 07:50:44

Lucyypoppy - they are not going to suspend someone who has not even been investigated, let alone charged with a crime.
It's an allegation. If found to be untrue and he lost his job, he could sue the OP for defamation. And the school.

EvaHarknessRose Thu 13-Feb-20 07:50:51

I am so sorry your colleague did this. Start by telling someone, it will help you process what to do next. If you report to the police, you will still have the option to not press charges (they may need to take safeguarding actions but will inform you what these are). You could look for a rape crisis helpline.

toothfairy73 Thu 13-Feb-20 08:01:30

I agree it is a safeguarding issue. I know how hard it is to report to the police; I was raped and abused as a child and only finally felt I could report it in 2015 (30+ years later). No one can tell you what you should do, you have to do what you feel comfortable doing,

We (I and the other survivors) set up a website for those thinking about reporting. It includes a blog of what it felt like to report and what the process was

I also really recommend calling the rape crisis helpline. They are amazing. Open every day of the year. You get 40 mins with someone who really understands. The don't ever put pressure on to report.

Did you tell your GP why you needed tome off? I promise you that as hard as it is to tell people it can really help. I feel like I am walking taller. My work have been amazing in supporting me once they knew what was going on.

Sending big hugs xxxx. You need to remember the guilt and the shame isn't yours, it's his and he can have it back.

NoSharon Thu 13-Feb-20 08:06:50

Eva - you don't really have an option to 'not press charges'.

What happens is, you're interviewed. That recorded video will then be shown to the sergeant along with the defence statement interview. The sergeant then has to put his weight behind it when he sends it to the CPS (Crown Prosecultion Service) - if indeed SHE/HE thinks there's a chance of a conviction. The CPS is essentially a team of lawyers and look at a case and say 'Yes, we've a chance of getting a prosecution here' or 'Nope - not a cat in hell's chance here'. The CPS then report back to the police on whether to charge or not.

GCAcademic Thu 13-Feb-20 08:11:26

I am really sorry to hear this. Is it a university you work in? If so, please be very careful. The usual response from management to reports of sexual assault and rape is to try to shut you up to avoid bad publicity. Non-disclosure agreements are often used. There is a culture not only of protecting the institution’s image but also of shielding men.

NoSharon Thu 13-Feb-20 08:12:02

excuse the typos

similarminimer Thu 13-Feb-20 08:22:06

I'm sorry. It's good that you have taken time off and asked for counselling. Rape crisis will be able to help you.

Can you think through what you would realistically like to happen?

Would you like to move to another department?

Would you like him to be moved or sacked? This would obviously be a big deal and require intervention from the highest levels of management - your bosses bosses boss etc. And a degree of certainty that would probably be difficult with a he said/she said scenario. I don't think your manager could be expected to keep it confidential whilst moving or sacking this person.

Could you talk to someone in HR in hypothetical terms to get an idea of what you might expect if you made a formal request?

namechanger0989 Thu 13-Feb-20 08:25:18

I'm not sure a lot can be done to be honest as it's just an allegation. Without any proof or a police investigation I don't think your employer will be able to do anything realistically.
I would still speak to them though, if you feel comfortable and feel they are trustworthy, they could maybe redirect your work or his to help you avoid him?
Obviously, you run the risk of not being believed and/or gossip if you manager is not trustworthy.

ClownsandCowboys Thu 13-Feb-20 08:47:15

@NoSharon actually they do for safeguarding. Suspension is a neutral act so that they can investigate. It is normal practice in situations where the allegation is of a serious safeguarding nature.

I work for a teaching union. Pm if you want.

Twentypasttwelve Thu 13-Feb-20 08:47:39

Thanks all for replying

Part of me just never wants to go back, never to face it again. Find a new job and move on and never have to think about it again. Perhaps as I'm leaving I would then disclose what happened.

Another part of me would like to stay in the university and just move departments. In this instance I would like to tell the managers exactly why. But I don't want the rapist to know I've reported him.

Another part if me thinks I should just go back to work, pretend it's all okay, search for jobs and just leave.

I honestly don't know what to do. Today I start my voluntary role within women's aid. I've been waiting to do this for so so long. I want to eventually train within the organisation and work there full time. The irony is, today my training is about safeguarding. I feel like such a fucking hypocrite right now. The bastard has spoiled my excitement and positivity about my role within this amazing charity,

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