I don’t know if this is the place to share my story, but with so many sexual assault happenings being opened up and spoken about, I feel like I should say something.

They go to Imperial. They were a friend, someone who provided comfort and companionship. I never wanted anything sexual to occur between us, and I had told them on multiple occasions, and every time the subject arose I would refuse.

As with many of these stories, my sexual assault happened when I was drunk. I was drunk, and as I often did, I went over to theirs because it was a safe place, or so I believed, and I didn’t want to wake my roommate at the time. I was drunk enough that I drifted in and out of the realisation that my trousers were no longer on me, they were inside me, and then it was over. I woke up, half naked with them beside me. Unlike other stories, I didn’t leave straight away. I asked them what happened, my heart in my mouth, shaking. They told me we had sex. Then I left. I was so scared. My friend, my companion – were they entitled to these things of me? People I turned to and asked all told me things that didn’t help: “You were drunk and went over, what did you expect?”, “You’ve been seeing them for a while, it was bound to happen at some point”, “Just…don’t go over again”, “They did nothing wrong”, “It wasn’t rape”, “It’s a grey area.”

No one helped. No one understood. Even now, six months down the line, my heart races and my head pounds when they’re bought up in conversation.

It’s hard to forgive your closest friends for not understanding. I still don’t think I have. What’s even harder is how I now see that others feel they can treat my body as just that – a body. Now it’s been violated and used, I can see just how out of control of it I am. Even to the point where a friend of mine held me too close for too long and didn’t stop when I told him to let go. It’s MY body. It’s MY choice. Not anyone else’s. Never anyone else’s.