BDSM helped me get over my rape

TW: rape, sexual harrassment, body dysmorphia

 

I used to think I could control every aspect of my life. I was a typical Oxbridge applicant – dedicated, intense, and passionate. I played on all the sports teams. I did every extra-curricular possible. I got great GCSEs and A-Levels. And then I went on the prerequisite gap year.

And then I was raped. I don’t want to discuss the actual rape itself, as it was obviously fairly traumatic, but I do want to discuss how I dealt with it. I was raped in Oxford, in an Oxford college, by an Oxford student. It was horrible. My tutors handled it admirably and my friends were great, but for obvious reasons, I was pretty fucked up by the experience, and despite my previous view that I could control every aspect of my life, I soon felt that everything had decided to control me.

For a while afterwards, I wore the most un-flattering and/or covering clothing I possibly could. No leg, no arms, and certainly no cleavage. I wanted to exist behind a kind of screen. I stopped going out. I got kind of fat. I just wanted to be invisible so that I didn’t constantly feel like people were grabbing at me, either physically or mentally. I just wanted to be alone, and since I had such horrible feelings of being outside my body, I definitely didn’t want to have sex for a long time.

The complicated thing was that I was still really horny but physical contact was too much. I am a fairly short person so pretty much anyone who wants to have sex with me is taller than I am. And at that particular moment I really didn’t like the thought of anyone overpowering me in any way.

Everyone has that one friend who does themost extreme things. My version of that friend was at that point working in a really famous sex shop which is known for its more unusual BDSM gear. She taught me all about the  merchandise but I still wasn’t particularly interested, until I met a boy.

Related  Review: Burlesque Night at Cafe Coco

I have never met someone like this boy. We had a connection that was instantaneous but it wasn’t at all romantic and it wasn’t quite the usual sexual connection I had with people. We got drunk together once and he told me he was a submissive and had fantasies of being tied up and whipped. Unusually, I had no idea what to say in response. I was initially hesitant, but then I thought about it, and he explained to me what safe words were, and how I could back out at any time, and I thought, “Why not?” We were set.

At first I would just give him a light spanking and be on my way but then  spankings became more and more intense, and I liked beating him up. I think that due to phenomena like 50 Shades of Grey, people think that BDSM just means beating someone up but actually it’s more like a dance – you have to warm up first and then start whipping them really hard. At a certain point, I, who had always thought of myself as fairly submissive sexually, became a domme.

For me, becoming more dominant sexually has meant that I was able to deal with being raped and feeling like I didn’t belong in my body. The freedom I feel when I step on someone’s back or gag someone is extreme and strange. It’s not that I’m trying to enact revenge, it’s that I’m just feeling powerful, and powerful within my own body. I understand that some people would find this bizarre – or even offensive – but being a domme has helped me not only come to terms with raped, but also to feel like myself again