After my marriage broke up, I went back on the dating scene. Not for long though, because my third date ended with my rape. I don’t remember much; after I told him I wasn’t that interested, between the starter and the main course, the next thing I knew was coming to with him on top of me, in my bed, in my flat. The whole night after is a blur of flashes or what happened, or what might have happened, I’m not that clear on anything. It was violent, and I remember the moment I thought I would die. I know at some point I froze and was paralysed, unable to move. I know that I did what was necessary to survive.
Afterwards, I did report to the police (after a month), and eventually the CPS decide not to prosecute. I thought that life was only ever going to be a struggle, that I would never be me again. I got some help from the Women’s & Girls Network, counselling, then group therapy, I took my medicine and told everyone I was fine. I wasn’t. It took a breakdown, more help, including the psychiatric kind, before six years later I was able to put the panic attacks, flashbacks and nightmares behind me. But I didn’t trust my recovery. After all, I had fallen down into that deep abyss so many times already.
It was through training to be a coach for my first business that I found that I was actually learning how to put the pieces of me back together. When I realised that recovery after rape needs to be about more than just controlling our symptoms, that we also need to learn who we are again, then I realised that I had to share this formula for recovery with others. Because living a narrow and small life in fear, one day at a time, is no way to live. And so my purpose now is to share the message to other survivors that rape is not a life sentence, and it is possible to live a full and reconnected life again.
Emily is a survivor, a coach and NLP master practitioner using her skills, knowledge and experience to pioneer a new approach to recovery after rape.
Emily is to launch a book in February which is called To Report Or Not To Report, Survivor Testimony of the (In)Justice System which is written by the ReConnected Life Community, for all survivors everywhere.
You can find out more about Emily’s work here.