Rape vic­tim says her kids keep her alive!

The Star (St. Lucia) - - LOCAL - By

AToni Ni­cholas bout 8 pm on Sun­day 1 March 2015, as she made her way home from a friend’s house along a Las­tic Hill path­way, she was bru­tally raped. This week she re­called her or­deal, one that she may not eas­ily for­get, but one she is try­ing to put be­hind her.

“I have spo­ken to so many peo­ple and gone over this so many times. It is very dif­fi­cult.” She con­tin­ues to re­ceive coun­sel­ing but says; “I don’t know how much it has helped. Most of the time, when I am alone, stuff goes through my head.”

She lives with her daugh­ter who is too young to un­der­stand what hap­pened to her mom, and her son who re­fuses to even dis­cuss the mat­ter with her.

The last time she con­tacted her in­ves­ti­gat­ing of­fi­cer she learned that no one had been ready to make a state­ment, even af­ter a sus­pect had turned him­self in.

“Peo­ple were talk­ing in the area, say­ing they knew who raped me, but never to the po­lice,” she says. More­over, although DNA sam­ples were taken from the vic­tim and a male, they were never tested. A faulty ma­chine at the lab, yet to be fixed or re­placed, was blamed.

The night of the or­deal the vic­tim says she was not able to iden­tify her vic­tim although, as she was walk­ing along the track, she did no­tice some­one at the end of the route stand­ing in the shad­ows. In the blink of an eye she was seized from be­hind and a strug­gle en­sued. “What re­ally gets me is that I could not do any­thing about it although I fought back and ev­ery time I think about it that’s what pisses me off,” she said fight­ing the tears. “I got a hold of the weapon he had but the way he strug­gled with me on to the ground, I fell on the weapon, which was a pair of scis­sors, and ended up ly­ing there on it and that was when I was raped. At that point all I was think­ing about is get­ting home.”

When it was all over the panic-stricken vic­tim screamed for help and by the time some­one came to her res­cue she had blacked out.

“Right now, most of the time all I want is be alone, although the com­pany of my chil­dren helps,” she says. “I go to town some­times but I am con­stantly look­ing over my shoul­ders in fear. I am no longer com­fort­able in crowds.”

She is un­em­ployed, des­per­ately try­ing to cope with be­ing a sin­gle mom and the bur­den of be­ing a rape vic­tim. And while she ad­vises other vic­tims to seek help and coun­sel­ing, she knows how dif­fi­cult it is to be in a rape vic­tim’s shoes.

“I know it is not easy but you have to con­vince your­self that you will over­come,” she sighed. “Most im­por­tantly, that it was not your fault, you did not cause this to hap­pen to you. I know that I did noth­ing wrong and that is the source of my strength, as well as my two chil­dren. If I did not have them maybe I would think about things like sui­cide, but I have to be strong, as hard as it is for my­self and my two chil­dren. I pray and I pray.”

A vic­tim of rape re­counts her or­deal as she tries to move on with

her life.

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