Phillip continued his routine of work during the week, bar
on the weekends, and sleeping with me. Things should have
changed. Either I or his wife should have come to our senses
(I should've acknowledged mine), and told him that he needed
to get himself together and stop spending so much money on
beer at the bar. How he had so much money to spend I'll never
know. The school system already doesn't pay the teachers the
money they should be getting, but clerical staff makes to
next to nothing. Nonetheless, Phillip was buying beer and
other drinks, and others' drinks.
One particular weekend, probably a Friday night, I was over
Phillip's as usual, waiting for him to come in from the bar.
I had taken a shower, and lay down on the floor, as usual.
I waited and waited, as usual. Then just as I was about to
give in to sleep, Phillip comes in. He didn't say a word,
very usual. He began taking off his clothes until he was naked
and he got down beside me. He then began to position himself
in his usual sexual position. I turned over to protest his
advance. We had no kind of lubrication at all. No lotion,
no Vaseline, no KY, no nothing, and he thought he was going
to enter me. He said nothing even though my protest was starting
to get above whispers. He did put one hand over my mouth,
and position himself on me so that I could do no more than
wiggle. It's amazing how much control he exerted. Even when
I tried to bite his hand, he said nothing. Then it happened.
He had forced his way in. I immediately tightened up, like
anyone would at such an intrusion. It was like rubbing two
pieces of rubber against each other. He made a few lunges,
stopping only when I said,"We have no kind of lubrication.
It would be easier." He then proceeded to spit onto his
hand and wipe it on me. It was of no use. He then forced himself
in again. I wiggled, turned, twisted, and moved as much as
I could to get him out of me. He took both of my arms and
stretched them out so that I couldn't use them to move, and
I was caught. With my legs pinned down by his weight, and
my arms stretched out, I could do nothing. I finally got to
the place where women who have been raped sometimes get to,
like Celie in "The Color Purple". I stopped wrestling,
wiggling, twisting and turning. It would be easier to just
lay there and let him finish than to fight anymore. Here I
am in this situation I watched women in movies go through.
I was always like, "She coulda done this, " or "She
should've done that," to get out of the situation and
now here I am.
This violation of my person, my body, my love, my trust,
ME probably lasted about 20 minutes altogether start to finish.
When he was done, he probably went to sleep within a minute,
literally. I lay there for a while. I was in disbelief that
it had happened. He had never used any force with me before
- he didn't have to. I was willing up until this particular
night. And he lay there drunk and sleep. He had to have had
more than beer that night. My mind said that he probably tried
to get with somebody else they refused him, and he was taking
it out on me. I'll never know. I lay there, not having moved
from how he left me when he finished until I was sure he was
asleep. After about 10 minutes or so, I quietly crept into
the bathroom to clean myself up. I sat on the toilet to expel
what he put in me. As I sat, I could feel where my skin had
been torn. When I began to wipe myself, I saw blood. In the
toilet there was blood. I was horrified. I cannot begin to
tell you how much more and more tissue, and how much more
and more blood I saw as I tried to clean myself up. I never
imagined such a thing could happen to me. Returning to lay
down beside him, my mind was frozen in a state of shock. I
thought maybe I should go to the hospital (it was only a few
blocks away), but how would I explain this? Maybe I could
go to the police station, but what would I say? A man raped
me? In prison it would be believable, but this is Waterloo.
IOWA. A married black man. A minister. Who could I trust enough
to tell? My relationship with my folks was too strained. I
lay thinking these things until I fell asleep.
The next morning, I told him what he had done. There was
no apology, no remorse, no nothing, and later that evening
he would ask me if he could have some sex. I had enough sense
to tell him he couldn't. I wouldn't even use the bathroom
for over two weeks, too afraid to re-open the wound. During
that time, he had the nerve to ask me, "Is your 'doonkhole'
healed up yet?" I couldn't believe his insensitivity,
and still, I stayed with him.
In retrospect and fairness to Phillip I should take into
account what I know of his background for what it's worth.
Phillip was part of a mid-sized family. The children were
raised in the church of God in Christ. For some that may be
explanation enough. For me, it is the only source from which
I can draw any conclusions about the way he treated me during
the time that I was with him.
Being raised in the church can have a person more dysfunctional
than had they not been raised in church at all. The doctrines
and the way they are executed more often than not are highly
repressive and oppressive, very much to the contrary to the
liberty Christ came to give. I firmly believe Phillip only
married out of pressure to prove manhood and masculinity.
It covered the fact that he had been quick to be on his back,
legs wide open. It was an attempt to make up for having been
caught in the bed with another man. (I heard about this when
I was in middle school.)
There were a number of incidences in his upbringing that
made him feel inadequate and getting married to Lulu, who
was much smaller, would be dependent on him, and who looked
to him as a knight in shining armor, was a way to lord himself
and compensate in manhood. Lulu, however, was not a man. To
dominate a man would prove more sufficient in establishing
the power he desired along with a stronger sense of masculinity.
To lord himself over another black man, that being where the
attacks on his manhood took place, would validate him as a
real black man.
The relationships he had with black men were the most challenging.
The black men he dated would not stand for his behavior. When
it came to me, I believe, I was an easy target, and yet a
conquest. I had just enough attitude to challenge him, but
not the experience, nor the strength (at that time) to resist
him. This is my theory on the dynamics that played part in
the relationship, the forced sex (or rape), and ultimately
his demise. I have been kinder in my words to Phillip and
Lulu in life and his death than many would be. I must show
compassion and forgive him. Though you?ll never gear these
words from me, I forgive you. You did not know what or why
you did what you did.