Saturday, August 14, 2010

The Vacation Part 2

So we left off with my spirits lifted and hope in my heart. I was going to make this vacation enjoyable, and offer up all my suffering to God. As the week progressed, my brother and I would take our daily walks and beach trips when we had "time off", but they were short lived. The girl also had older siblings who I was never close to. Suddenly, one of the brothers wanted to tag along with us and take us places (he had a car), so we did...being polite and all.

I'm such a shy person, so this sudden addition was a rough adjustment. When I am nervous, I tend to just smile and give short answers/partake in bouts of small talk. When taking to this guy, it was obvious quick how little my brother and I had in common with him. He was fiercely sarcastic, a trait I tend to find rude when it becomes someone's entire personality. He also liked to brag about the bad stuff he does while at college and how he dated a girl, moved on to her younger sister, and then moved on to her youngest sister! I was not impressed by any of this and I frankly said "wow that's awful" on multiple occasions, as none of his shenanigans were amusing.

I then noticed him trying to spend time with us when we were unwinding for the night. He was around way too much. I already had to spend hours with the younger siblings, entertaining them, and now I felt like I had an obligation to spend time with him (and I enjoyed his company the least of everyone!) He started brushing the hair out of my face which I was not comfortable with and this progressed to "accidentally" touching my thigh. I would move away and he would do it again...and again. By this point I had enough. My brother and I tried leaving the property without telling anyone where we were going and yet this guy would catch up to us. We made a coffee run, and to my displeasure, he asked me if I had a boyfriend.

This was truly surreal, I was beyond discomfort at this point and on the verge of disgust. I disclosed this information to my mom, trying to seek out advice. She knows how conservative I am and how these things were not acceptable boy-girl interactions for me. Still we wanted to give him the benefit of the doubt. My standards are not the world's standards and this could be simply innocent to him...maybe this is how he treats all his friends...who happen to be female.

So I decided to avoid him. I prayed a lot, I was so confused, why would God make this already difficult vacation worse for me? I shut my door for bed one night and was reading & highlighting my Bible (as it was my quiet time with God) and I heard him enter our house. He asked my brother where I was and he told him I was already in bed. Phew! I was so grateful to my brother. Then I heard a knock at my door and the guy walks in! All I could think of was WHAT PLANET AM I ON RIGHT NOW?! How was this ok!? He then proceeded to SHUT MY DOOR, us alone in a room. I started to get nervous, so I told him I was going to bed, yet he kept trying to make conversation. He looked through my books, spotted my Bible, and then sat on my bed.

I flung my covers off, jumped out of bed and left the room. I told everyone in the house who wasn't my family to leave. I had had it! I didn't care what the trials were, if God was trying to teach me something through this, etc. I was done and I wanted to go home.

Last night we said our goodbyes (I was relieved they were leaving a day before us). This guy still wasn't giving up, he tried to pull me aside to talk, which I did not indulge him with, and then he hugged me...and his hands slipped down to touch my rear end. I was just so sad at this point, I felt so violated-physically and emotionally. I'm upset just writing this. How could someone be so dense? Despite all the troubles I had at his family's camp, I never had a problem with the family directly. All that is shattered now. I have no desire to return to the camp or to go on this vacation with them next year. I want to cut off all ties with them, which I know isn't right or the proper solution.


The only positive thing I have to say about this part of the segment is that I have made an official promise to myself now that I will only date (hopefully court!!) Catholic/Christian men. Perhaps God saw my temptations to leave the flock in finding I admit I strayed a bit mentally. I met some awesome guys at school who had no real religious affiliation and I toyed with the idea of making exceptions in my love life because a part of me still liked to get attention from boys-something good Christian men don't show you. I have been praying all summer for God to cleanse me of this inner sin before college started up again so that I didn't slip up when faced with challenging temptations-especially in the lust/dating department! Needless to say, I received a lot of attention this vacation-none of it wanted or appreciated. The more I got, the more I was filled with an unquenchable disgust for not only him, but the sinful nature of this world and how people my age conduct themselves.

Please pray for me. I'm still trying to cope with this experience and I am actively trying to forgive this guy in my heart. I don't think he realizes that I am even angry or that he crossed a line when it comes to my convictions (heck, he may not even understand how seriously I take my Catholic identity!). Since I work at his camp, we are friends on facebook, should I delete him? And should I avoid working at this camp or going on this vacation from now on? I really want to...I just don't want to cause any drama between the families, as they won't understand my p.o.v and convictions like you all do.
(wow this was long, thanks for reading it!!)

Peace be with you all,
your sister in Christ.

Ps- Vacation Part 3 is going to be happy and deals with religious dialogue between Protestant (a lady I met) and Catholic (me!) believers!


Stacy aka Fahiima said...

I can see why you feel violated. I've had a couple experiences sort of similar, where I let guys kind of have their way before i just began to avoid the situation. You will be able to get past it and eventually be more assertive with guys like this, but in the meantime stay strong and don't blame yourself!

Deltaflute said...

I agree with Stacy. It sounds like he was interested in getting you to join his version of "having a good time" because he was bored or something. I wouldn't let it get to you. If you confronted him now, he'd only deny that he was ever interested in you. Guys who are really interested in dating you on a serious level don't behave that way. They talk to you about it and take you places and are respectful of your space. Stuff that happens on vacations doesn't mean anything to a guy like him.

This is what I would do. Tell him that his behavior was unacceptable and you felt violated. Then delete him from facebook, but don't go out of your way to avoid him. He's the one at fault not you. If you try to stay away from him, then that is like letting him win or condoning the action. He should be avoiding you.

But that's how I would handle it. You should do what feels most comfortable to you.

caraboska said...

I think you are absolutely right to avoid him. You cannot force him to live according to your standards. Which means it is up to you to take the preventive action if you don't want anything to happen.

That having been said, I think you should have had him arrested for sexual assault. It is very naive of you to think that he didn't know what he was doing. I probably would have even used physical force on him if I'd been in your shoes. His behavior is UNACCEPTABLE. It is immoral and you DO NOT HAVE TO AND SHOULD NOT PUT UP WITH IT.

Charisms on Campus said...

thank you ladies for the advice, I know I should've asserted myself more, but I'm such a shy person and don't like to stand up to people...I guess I'm a little passive. This is another character trait I'm trying to work on, but in the meantime I am going to take the appropriate measures in dealing with him, and boys like him.

I have a no tolerance policy now, which will be hard for some people to get accustomed to...but I need to do this for myself, my relationship with God, and for my purity & future relationship with my spouse.

MissFifi said...

I am actually surprised he had the audacity to enter your room after your brother told him you were in bed. he should have been tossed out on his ear! Religious and Faithful or not, when you are raised right, you do not impede on a person as he did.
I am so sorry you had an awful experience and may you have the strength to understand you did not do anything wrong, he did.

caraboska said...

Yeah... I remember an old friend of mine recounted to me a situation where someone attempted to rape her (unsuccessfully thank God) when she was walking home late one night. And she had all kinds of recriminations, blaming herself, etc. And I told her the following: What he did was objectively, morally wrong even if you had begged him to do it - which you did not. So the fault is with him - not you.

Anonymous said...

Wow. His behavior was NOT OKAY. Way over the line. He was sexually harassing you, invading your personal space (going into your bedroom without your permission? and sitting on your bed???!!). You are absolutely not to blame for his behavior, so don't feel guilty. He's scum, pure and simple. I think every woman should take self defense lessons. If you ever meet him again and he attempts to touch you sexually like he did on this vacation, you'll be able to teach him a lesson.

I spent a semester in Egypt, a country known for its appalling levels of sexual harassment, so I completely sympathize with you shame and confusion. I think you should delete him from your Facebook, and block him too. No guy who treats you like that deserves to be your friend, either online or in real life.