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A Silent Woman, Frozen on White Pages

‘Being so caught up,
So mastered by the brute blood of the air,
Did she put on his knowledge with his power
Before the indifferent beak could let her drop?’

I have no right to write this.
This is a silent cry.

The memory is a blur. But I remember his few sickening words.

I can’t write them.

The buzz that night set me alight and I was loving it. I set the part. I looked the part. I played my part – to perfection.

I recall just two brief snapshots of it - but I can’t write them. I can’t put those two moments into words. They are just two images, engraved in the forefront of my mind, and every waking moment they haunt me. There I was, there’s my picture, there I am. Somebody help her, somebody get her out, somebody, please, anybody! Why didn’t you tuck me into bed and kiss me goodnight. Like a father would. Don’t you know that’s all I want.

Perhaps I hope that if I don’t write it, it won’t be true. Perhaps I’ll forget. The spaces of blackness make me terrified. Sick. Horrified. Find me the words…
I can’t write what I woke up to.

Numbness overcame me completely like an overpowering haze in the days afterwards. I curled up in a ball underneath my duvet, shutting my eyes against the world. I wanted to understand, but my head wouldn’t let the thoughts in. There were no memories to make sense of and no words to question with.

The doctor traced the bruises with a warm, affectionate hand. I could feel her sorrow in the soft touch of her fingers. She had no words to say. I lay, being examined. Humiliated.

I imagine what it would be like to be a boy: Not caring who I slept with. Not caring what she thought. Not caring about tomorrow. Not caring about her.
But I’m too weak, and I don’t have it in me. I care too much.

The guys cheat on their girlfriends without thinking twice- there are very few exceptions that I know. However close a friend you are to me, it still makes me sick. There is NO excuse. How dare you use that place like it’s a fucking free brothel, four walls that keep your secret safe, where you just get a random fuck and nothing more. IT DOES NOT MEAN “NOTHING”.
I remember overhearing a conversation once between two boys. ‘You don’t need a rubix cube party for the girls there to get naked,’ said one with a proudly sick smile. Well fuck you. Fuck you. Do you think any decent girl has time for some perverted little boy who’s just come out of high school? Grow up.

This is all I have to say.
I now fear the place I once went to for refuge. I fear it and I hate it. Or perhaps I just hate you, and all the others like you. The two things are almost inseparable. That place is full of the brute blood of the air that you all breathe. I was choking when I first arrived, but now it suffocates me; and I’m numb.
I know I am not as strong as other girls. I never learnt to stand up for myself, and that is completely my flaw. I know I’m running away. I know I’m letting him walk all over me. I know I’m letting him get away with it.
But the truth is, under the rules of that institution, I know I have no right to feel the way I do. I have no rights at all.
I have no voice.

I will always just be an object to them; an object judged on how I look and an object made for one thing. Living in that world for so long made me long to live up to that perfection of physicality. And now, I’ve worn the mask for so long that I cannot find the courage to take it off.
I’ve heard the way other girls are spoken about.

I will write the truth as I feel it for the first time: I am far more beautiful on the inside than I am on the outside. My external self is a creation, and I had to create it to survive: that’s how I get my respect and that’s how I am judged. My inner self means nothing: it means nothing in that place, and it’s irrelevant to its voyeurs.
I spent so long painting my mask that I forgot about my inner beauty. No one saw it, and no one cared about it, so I too abandoned it.
Every sip of alcohol was another cut and every kiss left another bruise. Every time I fell it was just another mistake. I can count all my mistakes with the fingers on one hand.
There will not be any more.
I was a mistake. I was the wrong girl, living the wrong life, acting the wrong way.
When I see the face across the room, it’s a struggle to hold back the tears and the rage. But I know I have to, because it is my mistake.

My mother is the strongest person I know. A cliché saying perhaps, but completely true. I owe her everything. I owe her absolutely everything; and above all, I owe her a daughter to be proud of. I wish I could be half as brave as she is.
My father is the missing part of me. I will never really know what I am missing and I will never know if he could have saved me. I like to think he could. Or would he be too ashamed?

One day, I hope someone will see me, as I am, naturally, ugly, fat and full of physical flaws. And they won’t see anything but the person that I am and the real beauty that I have.

Young girl don’t cry. I’d give anything to stop you knowing pain like I have. Don’t trust anyone who has breathed that air.

This is my silent prayer. Please, let me be the last.


  1. How old were you when this happened?
    Did a boyfriend do this to you?

    No matter what you did, no matter what happened, you didn't deserve it.
    Don't ever think it's your fault.


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What words do I use to write about the last few weeks? Crippling, torturous anxiety, studying for finance exams, exercising and exercising, bingeing and vomiting, seeing Gareth, fucking Gareth, hating Gareth, exercising and exercising, bingeing and vomiting. Overcome by the fear and confusion and heartache. Studying for finance exams, but really just exercising and bingeing and vomiting.

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We both knew what we wanted - of that there is absolutely no doubt.
We didn't have to say anything, from the start of the week, right up until the point where I was naked in his bed; we both knew.
About two weeks ago Gareth and a few of our colleagues had arranged to have a night out this Friday. We had a pretty tight knit group of 6 who often lunched together at work, but this was one of the few times we were actually going out together. From Monday Gareth was pestering me like he had before:  "Are you coming out on Friday, are we going out out, are we gonna have a big one..."  "Yes", I had replied, "of course." And I booked my waxing appointment and blowdry for Friday lunch, my mind made up about what I wanted.  I had been thinking what would I regret more; sleeping with him or not sleeping with him. I decided on the latter. I'd not been with anyone since Joe left in January and more than that, thoughts of Gareth were continually running through…