Should I charge the guy who sexually assaulted me on Venmo?


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this picture came up when I googled “girl money”

Y’ALL: Please note from the title, this post is about a sexual assault. If that is triggering to you, reminder to be kind to yourself bbs.

One particular Thursday evening last year, after several hours of drinking and merriment, I brought a guy home. I met him that night at a bar and we made out there. He was tall so he seemed like a worthy person to bring home.

We walked to my apartment, made some small talk with my roommates, and moved onto my bedroom. We started to kiss and gradually became undressed. It was at this point I declared “I don’t think we should have sex.” I said this to avoid any confusion. I can do whatever I want with my body and that night, I chose not to have sex. 

I had been wearing cargo pants and a bodysuit with snaps at the bottom. The danger in wearing a bodysuit (and I think this should be listed on the tag) is that once that thing is unsnapped, you’re vulnerable. If there is one thing you, the reader, take away from this let it be the fact that hooking up in a bodysuit is a high risk situation.

In this case, the guy saw the vulnerability as an opportunity. About 10 minutes after stating that I did not think we should have sex, he began having non-consensual sex with me without a condom. Just in case Liam Neeson is reading this, the guy was and still is WHITE.

I want to point out here that putting aside the lack of consent (which men do frequently), having sex without a condom is an extremely intimate act and should follow a conversation between both people involved where they agree to do it. I definitely used to be more careless but now I just don’t trust anyone for shit and I want a physical layer of protection. I could have voiced that if I had been asked, but I wasn’t. Unprotected sex was happening to me in my own bed.

There are a few things I could have done in this moment. 

I could have pushed him off of me. 
I could have told him I was uncomfortable. 
I could have asked him to leave. 

Unfortunately, succumbing to what was happening seemed like the easiest option so that’s what I did. I remember thinking ugh, I said I didn’t want to do this. And I remember being annoyed. 

(For those who have followed my posts on here previously (maybe 3 people), you know that this is the second time this has happened to me, the first time being when I was 20 years old. I guess whenever my Saturn returns I’m gonna get assaulted? Unsubscribe. If Liam Neeson is still reading this, that guy was also white.)

After the sex, he told me he had an early meeting or something and had to head home (classic). That was honestly F I N E with me because I didn’t really want to wake up next to him. The thought of exchanging niceties with this person in the morning light made me feel sick. I also hadn’t fully processed what the events that occurred and it would be easier to do that by myself.

Friday

I woke up early. I hadn’t slept well. It was that hot, restless, drunk sleep. More than anything else I felt that morning, I was angry that my wishes had not been respected. I wasn’t even upset yet. I did not mention the details of what happened to anyone because I wanted to brush it off. Thank u, next as Shakespeare once said!

In the evening, the guy texted me to see how my day was. Fine I guess??

Saturday

I had therapy and briefly mentioned it. My therapist asked me how I was feeling and I said “It sucks but it is what it is.” True!

Monday

I had some irritation over the weekend. VAGINAL irritation that is! On Monday, I began to experience the symptoms of a bacterial infection. If you’ve never had a vaginal bacterial infection, I’ll tell you right now It’s both convenient and awesome!

I called my doctor’s office and told them my symptoms. The woman on the phone said “We can either give you a gel or an oral antibiotic. With the oral antibiotic, you can’t drink and with the gel you can’t have sex.” Choose between no sex or no drinking? My initial thought was Can I take both? 

I opted for gel, breezing right past the fact that I got BV because I had non-consensual sex without a condom. I used the gel as directed (insert daily 💕) and waited for it work.

Over the next few days, I told my sister and some close friends what really happened. It was weighing on me all week, as I grappled with whether or not I should say something to this dude and explain that what he did was wrong. He had texted me asking to hang out, so I knew that he didn’t think it was wrong. I definitely did not want to see him again but as far as turning this into a learning moment for him, I was still weighing my options.

Saturday

I’ve had bacterial vaginosis before so I know the symptoms and generally how long it takes to go away. Except this time, after using the gel for a few days, I began bleeding, which has never happened before. 

I completely freaked out. 
I felt a pit in my stomach. 
I called my doctor’s answering service. 

My doctor is the shit and she texted me right away.

I teared up, explaining my symptoms and the situation. I have an IUD so pregnancy wasn’t really a concern but what if he gave me something? I have no idea who he’s slept with or what he might have exposed me to. My doctor told me that everything was going to be OK and that I should come in on Wednesday to get some tests done.

Sunday

At this point, the entire thing was weighing on me heavily. I wasn’t sleeping. I was so disappointed in myself for letting this happen. I’m 27 years old!

I had to drive from my parents’ house back to the city. Before I left, my mom asked me what was going on. I started crying. I told her I was just tired because I wasn’t sleeping well.

When I got to my apartment, I wrote my mom a very long-winded text explaining everything. I almost didn’t tell her because I was scared of how she would react. I knew she wouldn’t be mad at me. I knew she would be worried. That’s somehow worse. She called me right away. She was worried. I cried a lot.

I also had to call my boss in tears to tell her that I had to take a half day on Wednesday to get tests done. She was understanding, compassionate, and empathetic. 

Wednesday

My doctor gave me a big hug when I went to get checked out. I cried a little more. She did whatever it is doctors do when you have a sheet on your lap and your feet in those stirrup things. Do they take samples? Do they swab? Do they wave a magic wand? IDK.

I got tested for a buncha stuff and a few days later, the tests came back negative. Some of the major infections aren’t detectable until 6 months after exposure so I get to go back and do that. Something to look forward to ;)

2 months later

This brings us to the present. As time passes, the stings from these experiences grow a little less intense. I think if the physical remnants hadn’t been there, I could’ve repressed it on Friday. It would resurface in a couple years or whenever we nominate the next Supreme Court justice. I could’ve dealt with it then!

I decided not to text him about it. I’ve gone through the possible reactions and the correct one, which would be for him to say, “I’m so sorry I did that. I had no idea you felt that way about it and I’ll be better” seems highly unlikely. 

Some people reading this will probably wonder if the guy was a comedian. He is not a comedian he’s a normie. So I can’t even blackmail him for a writing job!

I never really considered pressing charges. I was drunk, I chose to bring him home, and in my stand-up, I talk about being promiscuous. I’ve seen enough SVU to know that my case would never hold up in court. I’m also not interested in ruining anyone’s life. I fear it would ruin mine instead of his, anyway.

I get angry when I think about the fact that he got to close my apartment door on Thursday night, immediately after it happened, and never give it a second thought. I had to and will continue to deal with the physical and emotional damage.

In the midst of the #MeToo movement, I’m led to believe that men are cautious, apprehensive, and scared. I don’t know where those men are but I have yet to meet any of them. You would think that in 2019, when men allegedly have everything to lose, they would be more careful as the tweets, headlines, and quotes suggest. In my experience, they’re not.

I had mostly blocked it from my mind until last week, when a bill from the lab arrived. The total cost was over $1,810.55. NEARLY TWO THOUSAND DOLLARS to test a swab (?) from my vagina. I can only imagine that it cost this much because my vagina is perfect, sacred, and holy so they sent it to the best, fanciest lab tech at the best, fanciest lab in the country. 

insurance paid $1388.72, leaving me with $421.83 to pay. If Republicans don’t want women to speak out about sexual assault, give us better healthcare so we can suffer in silence.

Now I’m left with a decision. I’ve been held physically responsible for his actions. Should I also be fiscally responsible for them? There’s still a sizable balance to be paid and we live in a time where there is often open, digital access to those who have wronged us. 

Do I pay the bill and move on? Or do I find the bastard and charge him $422 on Venmo? 

I’ve chosen the former. I’m just going to pay the stupid fucking thing myself. 

So now, I want to speak directly to all of the “scared men” who have made it this far. Take your fear and put it into action. Stop assaulting people. 

If you are a victim of sexual assault, you are not alone. Call the National Sexual Assault Hotline at 1-800-656-4673.

How Our Company is Completely Redefining an Industry and Disrupting the Disruptors

by Mary Beth Barone and Greg Barone

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Thank you so much for having us here today, to explain how our company is disrupting an entire industry and how we can help you also become disruptors as well. As you’ll notice, the company name is a word with the vowels removed and that’s exactly how we work. We work out of a WeWork and we work lean. We reduce inefficiencies and we eliminate waste. We are a full-stack, data-mining organization.

What we do is organize and analyze your data so your company can be more data-driven. We are omni-channel–yes, that’s multiple channels, all of them, in fact. We will take all of your company’s information from web, ecommerce, retail, social, in-person, and direct mail and we don’t just compile it, we also compute it. We literally turn your data into data. We’ve created a communication loop between you and the numbers that’s constantly circling back. It’s a continuous circle!

We will streamline the backend so you know exactly where your consumers are coming from and which touchpoints are driving revenue. We call these Revenue Drivers, but you won’t find these guys behind the wheel of a car haha. If you did, you better believe they would be driving Teslas. We will re-org your marketing funnel to make it more effective while we decrease user acquisition cost and increase customer retention and lifetime value. That’s a decrease in UAC and an increase in CLV. Big becomes small and small becomes big. We optimize your audience to broaden market share. You just won’t get this anywhere else! With the latest customer segmentation technology, we don’t help you reach your consumer, we help your consumer reach you. They’ll be begging you to give them what they want, what they never even knew they needed. And they will be paying you for it. They don’t need it, but they think they do. And that’s what we’re going to do for you.

Now you might be asking How? That’s simple. We take all of your softwares and we channel them into a dashboard. This dashboard is highly digestible and actionable. Transparency. It will keep the health of your business top of mind through the monitoring of Key Performance Indicators (KPIs). Your entire executive team is going to be able to see under the hood and make quick decisions based on the findings. Decisions that drive your business, decisions that drive you. That’s right–it’s a comprehensive data funnel. This is different than the marketing funnel because one is data and one is marketing. Six? Try Twelve. 2X? Try 3X. You might be thinking Is that users or dollars? and the answer is YES.

Right now we're just a logo, a decal on window. We have stickers. Designed by the soon-to-be-famous street artist FLÖRG. Here, take a few. Actually a bunch. Please. We have a lot. But we're GOING to be huge. We’re going to be working with fortune 500 hundred companies. That’s right: fortune five hundred-hundred. It’s completely new frontier built on patented technology and you’ll be at the forefront. We are an energized team made up of rockstars, self-starters, ninjas, and evangelists. Our office at the co-working space has beers on tap. We have unlimited vacation days, which no one uses. No one has to worry about job security because we don’t even have an HR department. Sexual harassment claims? Not an issue. Our entire company is men. And we don’t have internal issues with discrimination based on race because we are all white. Happy employees equals happy customers! Your employees are your biggest advocates. But you already knew that!

We don’t have HAVE the product yet, per se, haha. It’s in beta. Well, it’s in pre-beta. That’s where you come in. You tell us what you need, layout the requirements, and then you design it! From there, it’s simple: you build it. We just need you to clearly articulate to US what you need. We provide the roadmap, and we go from there. We'll take notes and SEND THEM DIRECTLY TO YOU. Once you have the minimum viable product (MVP), you continue to iterate until the you reach that final product. It’s so close you can taste it!

We accomplish this on our current operating budget because we have really big servers. They can handle anything you throw at them. Not in terms of full stack code, tech debt or volume, more like if you throw objects at them. Haha. These servers are sturdy as hell! It's like hitting the broadside of a barn. These are computers from 1960! They fill up a whole room! One computer, one room. That’s one to one. And that’s exactly what we do here at our company.

So what are you waiting for? We spent a bunch of money rebranding–new name, new logo, same room-sized computers. We are in our series B round of raising capital. Capital we can put into the business, and better serve you. Our website is still in the process of being built but our engineers are working around the clock. For now, we have a landing page that has all the info you need, plus specs on the umbrella company, which we use to maximize exposure and minimize liability. Look us up on TechCrunch. Now that you’ve heard all the amazing things we can do for your company, the only question is: any questions?

To all the boys I've texted before

At the end of each year, people love to take time to reflect on the experiences of the past 12 months. I’m not sure how much it accomplishes, but I’ll be damned if I don’t partake in some way. 

I decided to make a year-end list involving two topics I care deeply about: texting and boys. I’ve done my fair share of texting boys this year but there were a few instances that really stuck out and each one taught me something. I’m going to share them with you below. If you’re a guy I’ve texted this year reading this and you’re scared you made the list, you probably didn’t but maybe set aside a few moments to reflect on your actions!! Here are the top 8 texts I received from guys in 2018.

08. What does this have to do with anything?

This text was from my brother’s friend who is very defensive of men in regards to the #metoo movement. I’m really confused by where he falls politically but I don’t dare open that dialogue. Not now, not ever. He texted me this headline (???) unprompted about the Asia Argento story, which I ignored. Seven days later he texted again just to see what I was up to!!

LESSON: Guys are weird.

07. A bold ask

I feel like there’s two types of guys: those who aggressively ask for butt pictures and those who don’t. This is a guy from Hinge who brought it up out of the blue. See I fell asleep (I do that sometimes at night) while we were texting about nonsense but we had not previously discussed butt pictures. The twist? He then sent me a picture of his own butt.

LESSON: Butt pics should be earned.

06. That’s gonna be a no from me, dog :)

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You know when you’ve been on a flight and you’re excited to turn off airplane mode and get that influx of texts you received while flying through the sky? I got that feeling back in July when I landed in NYC coming back from LA... until I got this text. I had Bumble for about 3 days in 2017 and I met this guy. We went on a few dates and then he would text me some weird shit every few months. This was the last straw!

LESSON: Don’t hesitate to block someone at the first sign of trouble.

05. Nooooo

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in June, I got a text out of the blue from someone who had ghosted me 6 months earlier. Zero contact in 6 months. I called that out (as any person would) and he said “don’t read into it too much" which is extremely condescending?? Then I made a very clever callback to a convo from before the ghosting and he used that as an opportunity to tell me he “copped a new pair [of jeans] from wardrobe” and if you’re not in show biz, you might not realize this is a total B R A G. You should know that following this exchange, I did go to his apartment and he did pull the same shit he pulled in December of the previous year.

LESSON: Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice... still shame on you stop try to fool me you fucking jerk. 

04. That’s a bit weird but OK go off sis :)

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I text the super in my building when I need to retrieve packages after my doorman has gone home for the day. My super only speaks Spanish so I use Google Translate to text him (bc I am an ally). All was seemingly well until I got this text that read “OK.. I care about you a lot... I go to the church I always ask GOD to protect you.” I assumed he was just being sweet (?)! Things got progressively more inappropriate over time but those messages were sent over WhatsApp so they are disqualified from this list for aesthetic purposes.

LESSON: Ser amable me v a matar. Being nice is going to get me killed.

03. Lol what?!

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Things with my super have escalated to a point where I should probably tell the management company but I don’t want to get him fired. There was a guy I was seeing for most of this year (non-exclusively) and I had explained the whole situation to him previously and he told me to text him if I ever felt unsafe so I did :) and this was his response :)))))) A tempting offer!!!! I think he thought I was trying to trick him into coming over for sex? Weird flex. On a positive note, I got a very good bit out of this exchange.

LESSON: Sleeping with someone for 8 months does not mean we're friends.

02. No worries, feel free to text anytime

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Around 4PM on a Thursday in January, I was sitting at work and I got a text from someone I hadn’t spoken to in a while. The guy who sexually assaulted me seven years ago! I had seen him since (because we have a mutual friend) but we definitely hadn’t texted in years. He started the convo asking how comedy is going and then transitioned into essentially asking me if he raped me. As a general rule for any guys who made it this far, if you have to ask, the answer is probably yes. Despite texting me in the middle of a workday about a devastating trauma, I was really nice to him about it!!!! Like... I’m embarrassed about how nice I was.

LESSON: If this comes up again, be a bitch.

01. 🥇

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Honestly, the other seven texts could be shuffled around oh the list depending on where Mercury is in its orbit–this was the clear winner for me. I think about it most days. In October, I was having a particularly bad day at work. I had a date to look forward to that evening and I was *excited* about it. I took a SoulCycle class on my lunch break and when I got out, I had this text waiting for me, which I found out three hours later was definitely not a joke. Fortunately, the hot dog party was rescheduled so we did go out for ice cream that night and he did use that as opportunity to put me in the friend zone. (This was after we slept together so I was like “Totally! Of course we can be friends.”)

LESSON: Stop sleeping with guys.

Well there you have it! Lots of great moments I wish I could relive again and again. I hope everyone sent and received some amazing texts this year! Don’t forget that any upsetting text can be used later for comedic purposes. CHEERS TO 2019!!

haikus :)

haiku #1
I’m sorry all my 
friends are hot wait no I’m not 
I love my hot friends

haiku #2
he told me that I 
am part robot, part human
and he is correct ✨

haiku #3
you should see me cry 
my face hardly moves at all
the tears–they just fall ✨

haiku #4
my heart is broken 
not over any one thing 
over many things 💘

haiku #5
I forgot what it’s 
like to feel good after I
hope someday I will

Please don't go

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Our last conversation was a relatively mundane one. It was Thursday afternoon. He had texted me asking if I was free to film something that night. We decided to push it back. I asked him about a problematic friend of his, who he was beginning to distance himself from. Seven days later, we were at his funeral.

Mike had struggled with addiction, and though he didn’t talk about it much in explicit detail, he never shied away from the subject either. In one of the sketches we shot, he labeled a character’s death as an opioid overdose without skipping a beat. 

He was writing, creating, performing–all of the things you associate with a comedian who is doing well and has his shit together. Now we talk about him in the past tense.

I saw him the week prior to film a couple of sketches and he did seem a little off. Mike always had respect for the work and took it seriously. For this shoot, he showed up late and was visibly frazzled. I didn’t think too much of it and obviously I should have. I wish I had said something instead of just assuming he was fine. I was shocked to hear that 5 days later, he had overdosed on heroine and fentanyl. He has been gone almost a year. I often think about the things he’d be doing if he were still alive. The things we’d be making. I get a little angry and then very sad.

I started writing this yesterday, in the wake of Mac Miller’s overdose and death. I saw the outpouring of love and support on social media. By all accounts, he was an amazingly talented artist, collaborator, and friend. All things I would use to describe my friend Mike.

I stopped writing because I didn’t really have a thesis and maybe I still don’t. But about an hour ago, I received word that one of the best guys I ever met ended his own life last night.

Ryan was so fucking funny. We met in an improv class and I was genuinely excited whenever I would get to do scenes with him. It was a privilege. His comedy was different and it was fun to participate in–an honor to be let into his own world he created. We auditioned for house teams together the following winter and when I asked if he could help me with sound engineering on a project, he said yes, no questions asked.

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In all the time we spent together, I had not even one inkling that he struggled with mental health. This may be something he shared with closer friends but outwardly on a social level, he was a funny, jovial guy who wrote music and did comedy. Anyone who follows him on social media knows that he performed on great shows this summer with his long, shaggy hair and warm smile. 

I used to hear about addiction, depression, suicide–things that used to be so far away. Now it feels like they’re getting closer to me and to everyone. They are taking young lives and devastating communities. You can talk to someone, even really know someone, and be completely oblivious to the pain they are grappling with. Tell your friends you love them and then, even more than that, really love them. Be there. Listen. And make sure they know they aren’t alone.