Growing up in fear of men – sister-hood magazine. A Fuuse production by Deeyah Khan.

I was 14 the first time a boy kissed me. It was during a Math class. I needed to use the washroom, and he came out a minute after I did. I didn’t want it. He wasn’t gentle about it. I still remember his nails digging into my arms. I remember how long it took. I remember his hand grabbing my waist, his grip in my hair, his tongue in my mouth, and his teeth scraping my lips. I remember how hard his grip was when he was grabbing my breasts.This was the same boy who became the face of my nightmares for two years. Sebastian made jokes about it in class: about my body, about what he wanted to do to me. The boys laughed; the girls rolled their eyes. The Math teacher ignored it all. I smiled along with the girls who insisted that he liked me. I cried when I was alone. I cried a lot over those two years. Fourteen-year-old me didn’t even know that I had the ability to cry so much.The first boy I was ever infatuated with was in the same Math class. I liked him. He was nice to me. He made me laugh. I was happy when he was around. Sebastian didn’t like that. He made it his mission to become friends with the boy I liked. I never knew in detail what it was that Sebastian said to him; what it was that made him ashamed to be around me. I didn’t know if Sebastian even told him about the kiss, or if he made it sound consensual. My crush started avoiding me, making me feel like I wasn’t good enough. After a while, I didn’t think I was good enough for anyone either.Looking back, I’m not disappointed in myself anymore. After a while I told people. I told teachers, and I told other girls who had been through similar experiences. The teachers were the biggest disappointments. It isn’t reasonable to expect children to protect other children.  Teachers are supposed to have a duty towards the children they teach. The adult figures in my life failed me. It shouldn’t have taken me screaming and crying in class one day for a teacher to actually remove him from the class. That same male teacher shouldn’t have told me, when I raised my voice because Sebastian wouldn’t stop, that ‘it took two to tango.’

Source: Growing up in fear of men – sister-hood magazine. A Fuuse production by Deeyah Khan.