She told me to stop. I ignored her. It took me years to realize how wrong I was.
Last week, I read the Babe.net article describing an encounter between comedian Aziz Ansari and a woman identified only as “Grace.” I read about how Ansari allegedly pushed past several verbal and nonverbal cues suggesting that Grace was not comfortable with their sexual encounter. I had a sickening moment of truth: I’ve done that.
It was just over four years ago. I was 22, newly single, and in college. I had just broken up with my long-distance girlfriend of five years and had spent the past few years hearing all about my friends’ and roommates’ hookups. I was excited to be single and date around. I kept a mental list of several women around school whom I wanted to sleep with.
I had an acquaintance, “Julie,” who was on that list. I’m not using her real name here, and I’m writing this piece anonymously, to protect both of our privacy. We had been to parties together, laughed together, and on a couple of occasions, I had walked her home. We liked each other enough to flirt, which eventually turned into the occasional texting conversation or phone call. I got the sense she was attracted to me.
After a couple of weeks of texting, Julie invited me on a trip to her home a few hours away from campus. I felt a little weird about going, as we didn’t know each other very well. But I said yes — to me, the invite felt like a pretty big sign that she wanted to hook up, and I was eager to have sex.
We arranged our travel plans. She would drive her car, and I would Read More Here