Asking For It

Poetry, PTSD and Awareness, Updates

“Before you point that accusatory finger
in my direction, remember this:
I never asked for it.”

The sun is setting and I feel the cold seeping into my bones. I feel the life bleeding out of my feet, leeching into the ground. And I stand here, breathing smoke into the sky. Because that’s all I have left to give — pieces of my broken spirit. And that’s all that remains after the vultures picked me apart. So before you point that accusatory finger in my direction, remember this: I never asked for it. I never gave the wrong signals. I didn’t deserve all you forced upon me.

And how could I have known better? I was barely old enough to walk, let alone understand what vile things you wanted from me. If you wouldn’t blame a child, then why blame the teenager for going to a party? Why blame the woman that was followed home from work? It’s time everyone takes a hard look at the patterns. Those men saw something they wanted, and they took it. With complete disregard for their victim. And I suppose that’s part of the point. They have the power. They need it. So they take it wherever they can get it.

So, if you are a victim, and you’ve ever felt that finger pointing in your direction, know that no matter what anyone tells you — You. Are. Not. To. Blame.

© Sarah Doughty

Illustration via @harumi_hironaka.

I am sharing this again today, not because I feel the need to repost it, but because I feel it’s necessary to reiterate to the world that there is, in fact, a culture. It exists and there is a reason that women (for the majority) do not come forward until sometimes decades later, if at all. Society immediately rejects them.

She shouldn’t have been at that party.
She shouldn’t have been wearing those clothes.
She shouldn’t have given him 
Where’s the evidence to prove this happened?
Why didn’t she come forward immediately?
… and the list goes on.

So, this is for all the survivors out there — both the ones that have used their voices (and especially for Dr. Ford, for having the bravery to speak out in a public, televised inquiry, despite having been harassed and given multiple death threats by even considering doing so) and those that have survived in silence — know that it was not your fault. My thoughts are always with the people that have suffered at the hands of monsters and I hope that at the very least, someone will find comfort with these words. Just knowing that you aren’t alone might be enough.

I also want to state that I am not claiming that Kavanaugh is guilty, because I believe in the “innocent until proven guilty” principles this country is based upon. However, this does not mean that I believe that Dr. Ford is not telling her truth. Something happened to her, and I believe her. After thirty-some years, you wouldn’t remember something in such vivid detail if it wasn’t a major event in your life. I know this from experience. There are many things I wish I could erase from my mind, but alas, they are burned there like a brand and they will never go away as long as I live. These are not the accounts and emotional responses of a person that is fabricating a story.

42 thoughts on “Asking For It

  1. So true. I keep on repeating this to all ignorant people out there. Hopefully one day we will live in a world full of understanding for the victims. Hopefully one day we will live in a world without victims.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Sarah, thank you so much for sharing this powerful post!!! We all need to hear and understand this truth! So appreciated your footnote – No one is guilty of anything on an allegation without a chance to have the evidence investigated! I think, my opinion, is that those who are afraid of the light have something to hide. If someone in Kavanaugh’s position isn’t asking for and willing to personally request an investigation it is a strong indication that he might be afraid of the truth that might be revealed!! That would be a common and natural reaction of an innocent person. Awesome post!!!! Thanks for speaking up!!!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes, exactly, I noticed the same thing. I remember a few months back and senator stepped down after a few (relatively minor) allegations were brought up against him. He apologized and, by the outcries, willingly resigned his position and welcomed any form of investigation. It was a bold statement, especially since other people that have been accused of misconduct are not exactly pleased when investigations start happening.


  3. This so needs saying over and over because people are still not getting it. It’s outrageous the way men and even women who should stand up for each other treat the victim. It’s got to stop. Thank you for the great post Sarah.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. My brain knows I’m not to blame, but I just can’t seem to scrub that feeling from my heart. I scrub and scrub and scrub but I just can’t seem to feel clean.
    It hurts.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Thank you, Sarah. I was feeling rather overwrought when I posted my comment, your kind and thoughtful response is very much appreciated. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  5. “They have the power” – and it is now the time to take this power from them.
    If the repugnants had already decided on voting before even hearing Dr. Ford and Judge Kavanaugh, why go through the charade?
    A very timely post.
    November is not very far.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I couldn’t agree more. But I do applaud the individuals that listened with respect to Dr. Ford and took other women into consideration for what this could mean for our futures. I found it quite interesting how angry, defensive, and often evasive Judge Kavanaugh was during his questioning. That was definitely something worth noting.


  6. I feel you Sarah and I feel the same anger every single time I read this. I also wrote a poem today based on this case in the senate. After knowing that the Senate might swing a vote in his favor, I was so enraged I couldn’t keep the anger inside and pour out on paper.

    Liked by 2 people

  7. An extremely powerful post you’ve shared here, Sarah. I too have been following the Brett Kavanaugh hearings and I don’t even the words to describe how in awe I am of Dr. Ford’s strength and courage, coming forward amidst all this scrutiny. Your post says it plain and simple. She never asks for it. It’s never about the clothes she’s wearing, it’s never about whether or not she’s drunk, and it’s never about boys just being boys. I truly hope this hearing results in the right outcome.

    Liked by 2 people

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