Childhood Memoir


When I was a kid,
I had this amazing friend,
We hung out all the time 
He and I, 
We were invincible.

And what was wrong with that?
From a young age the rumors of "cooties" flowed through the air like pollen in the summer 
Trying to shape our friendship out of a cork board that said, "no boys allowed" 
I was fine with back handing that stereotype as I was with him as much as I humanely could. 
I loved him.
He loved me. 

We used to have this game, me and him, every time he would come over to my house or me to his
We would "wrestle," play around. Act like the innocent 10 years old that we were. 
And it was every time that I was held down with laughter in my throat and tears in my eyes that I screamed for, "uncle" "mercy" anything to get him off of me. 
It was a game. 

Reflecting on it now I see the horrors of that innocent little game that we used to play
Every time my hands would be held over my head with stronger hands mimicking those of chains
Every time he would lay on top of me and try to get me to stop moving 
Every time he would poke and prod at me to make me react hysterically, all in the name of submission. 
I realized what our little game mimicked.
And I don't want it to. 

I cherished the moments that I spent with my best friend, but I wonder now what he was thinking during those episodes. 
When I was held down on the bed or floor, crying my eyes out with laughter. 
That innocent game that we both loved because it gave us the opportunity to laugh...
Now my mind is wandering with the possibility of power
Did he feel in control?
Did he know what he was doing?
Could he be stopped?

I hardly speak with my best friend anymore. 
I never see him as much as I did
Or as much as I would like to 
I know he is doing well 
But I want to know,
Does his mind ever journey back to the innocent days of our youth?
When we could be kids and not adults,
The days when I would let him win his silly little game, because seeing him smile was worth so much more than my tears of laughter. 

Because I pray for him now 
The statistics of rape on college campuses is unacceptable 
The threats to women to keep quiet about being victims is unbearable 
Colleges would rather protect their reputation than assist the millions of victims worldwide 
But the pressure exists for men as well 
The pressure for guys to fit into societal norms by raping women is more prevalent than most are aware of or are willing to be made aware
Pressure makes people do stupid, stupid up things 
So I pray for my best guy friend 
The day he chooses to rape a woman  
The day he woos her and brings her to his room 
The day he pushes her to the bed and watches her struggle under him 
The day he holds her hands above her head and looks down upon her
The day she screams "no", "mercy", "uncle......."
Will he remember us?
Will he remember the game we once played? 
Will he remember ME screaming mercy? 
Will he remember? 

I sure will. 


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