For many campuses, the weekends are always days to look forward to. This is because it is an opportunity to take a break from the busy weeks of exams, Class presentations and mountains of assignments.
Most students choose to take the weekends to stay home and watch movies while others choose to go out and dance their pressures away. Some, on the other hand, choose to meet up with friends and catch up with their campus lives.
Like many students in institutions of higher learning, Janes Owuor chose to meet up with friends to talk the night away.
After confirming the meeting with her friends she left her house and went to the meeting place all excited and in high moods.
The night faded away at the background of long laughers and chronicle of stories from the friends who seemed to enjoy each other’s company. Unknown to her the night would end differently from the way she had expected it
When she woke up in the morning she realized that she had been raped. Confused about what had happened to her she went home took a shower and went silent about the whole incident, she did not mention the incident to her parents because she was afraid that she would be reprimanded for going out without permission.
She kept the story to herself until she got to a point she could not hide it anymore. far from even her Slowly by slowly she had gotten disinterested in things happening in her life, she no longer enjoyed the company of her friends anymore. Most of the time she would sit in her room and stare blankly at the white ceiling board.
From time to time she would stand on her window and admire the sight of some of her friend go about their daily business while she died inside. Due to the incident interacting with men and boys became a no-go zone for her because every time she did the memories of the fateful day would flood her mind.
Things got even worse for her when she discovered that she was pregnant. She was now standing face to face with the reality of discontinuing her education for a moment or end it all together. The whole issue caused her sleepless nights because she was still a campus student who still enjoyed the comfort of her parents’ house.
Before she knew it she sank into depression. At this point, her parents became concerned about what was going on in her life. She was stuck between telling her parents what had happened and keeping quiet about the ordeal
“I had to tell my parents what had happened to me if I was to get any form of assistance”
Her parent’s reaction to the whole incident was totally the opposite of what she had expected. Her parents accepted to help take care of the child as she continued pursuing her campus education.
“Opening up about the whole issue helped me to positively deal with the incident,” The ever bubbly Janes told me.
Through the support of her family and friends Janes was able to seek counselling assistance from a professional a move that has helped her deal with her rape incident.
Janes story is a reflection of many rape cases that happen to girls all over the country. According to statistics from Crime Scene investigation“most rape cases occur more than the average on Saturdays at a staggering 23.7% particularly between 7 pm and 1 am.”
Despite the steps taken by the government and anti-Rape activists in the country to counter rape cases many victims still choose to keep quiet about the rape. The study from Crime Scene Investigation further estimates that only 1 out of 20 women in Kenya will report a rape and only 1 in 6 will seek medical assistance.
For many rape victims, the imminent challenge is to healing from the incident, especially if the person involved is not a stranger. This is because feelings of bitterness and anger come up whenever they see the perpetrator walking scot free without any punitive action taken against them.
“Forgiving yourself is the first step to recovery try as much as possible forgive yourself for what happened to you then you are able to forgive the person who raped you.”
She is however quick to mention that getting over the whole incident is a continuing process this is because there are days when memories of the incident come to mind but what helps is a strong support system that understands that help you deal with it.