I write about alcoholism and rape in my young adult fiction.
I have experience with both.
These things are part of what shape me and my world view.
Today I was asked about a fictional character in another book, and how she may react to being taken advantage of. I shared my real-life story.
I think it’s worth sharing here, too.
by Holly Raychelle Hughes
15 years old.
On my parents bed.
While I lay still and thinking
“This is it? This is sex?”
Staring at the blue fern patterned wallpaper
Bleeding in the middle of the bed.
How do I keep this secret?
What did I do to cause this?
How old is he, 20?
My parents aren’t home.
My friend (?) Tina playing pool downstairs
in the living room with this guy’s friends.
15 years old and confused.
My voice is small and coming from a transistor radio across the room,
“No, stop.” the signal consumed by white noise.
He gets up . He’s wearing a condom, where did it
come from? When did he put it on?
He walks away and down the stairs.
Raped and sitting in my blood.
Raped and standing next to my parents bed,
looking at the bright red blood in the middle of the bed.
In the afternoon.
and cleaning up the mess on my parent’s bed.
The dog jumps up and begins licking the bloody sheets.
and not understanding sex or why
he wanted to have sex with me.
15 years old
I stand at the top of the stairs leaning over the black banister
and call him back upstairs.
Everyone in the pool room cheers.
He walks upstairs and I lead him to my bedroom.
Four purple walls covered in Duran Duran posters.
Stuffed animals bear witness to my platform bed.
I lay down again,
there’s another condom.
I try to learn what he is doing.
I try to pretend it’s my choice.
It’s over again.
He goes back downstairs,
I clean myself off.
I put all the sheets in the wash.
I bleed for one week from the wound.
He said he couldn’t believe it was my first time