I dragged myself across the road weeping, my clothes were torn from all his aggressiveness. I still felt pains down there. It was horrific. I considered just standing on the road and getting run over by a vehicle.
As soon as I got home, I went in through the backdoor and straight to the girls’ room. I was careful not to be seen by my parents. I was glad my sister wasn’t there. I laid on my bed and cried my eyes out.
“Lord I’m sorry, it’s all my fault,” I cried.
All of a sudden, I sat up abruptly. I grabbed my towel and went into our bathroom. I scrubbed myself, washing out dried blood. I scrubbed myself till it hurt and my skin turned red. I came out of the bathroom and took the clothes I had been wearing and threw it in the trash can outside the house.
My phone was ringing and I was tempted to just ignore it, but I picked it up anyways. It was my friend Idara.
“I just felt led to call you Titi. I hope you are okay.” Idara said. I rolled my eyes. Idara was always like that, she believed that the Holy Spirit could lead her to do anything. Her motto was “Prompt obedience to the Spirit.’ I wondered why she hadn’t felt led to call and warn me before the incident happened. “Are you okay?” I heard concern in Idara’s voice.
“No Idara, I’m not.” I responded harshly.
“Thank you Jesus.” I heard her say. That angered me.
“Really? You don’t even know what happened.” I said angrily.
“I’m sorry Titi. I’m just thanking God for causing me to call you. What happened?” she asked still sounding concerned.
“The worst happened Id. I was raped!” I said. I couldn’t help the tears that flowed down my face.
“Oh Lord!” Idara responded. I could hear the pain in her voice. “You have to come over to my house. You can sleepover since tomorrow is weekend.”
I gave it a thought and grabbed my purse. I snuck out of the house, grateful that my mom didn’t hear me come in.
I took a cab to Idara’s house. Unlike me, she lived alone in a one bedroom flat. I still lived with my parents, even though I already had a job. Idara’s parents lived in Calabar, but she worked in an investment firm in Abuja and she made more than enough cash to live on her own.
I sent my mom a message that I was going to be sleeping over at Idara’s that night. I knew she wouldn’t mind and she would tell my dad about it.
Idara was standing in front of her gate waiting for me. She hugged me as soon as I alighted from the cab.
“Do you want to talk about it?” she asked as soon as we stepped into the house. I nodded. I didn’t just want to talk about it. I needed to talk about it. I was already feeling suicidal. If I didn’t talk to someone, I knew I would entertain the suicidal thoughts.
“What happened?” She asked.
“He raped me Id. I never expected it from him, but he did.” I said crying.
“Who did?” She asked holding my hand in comfort.
“Jeff did.” I watched her eyes widen in surprise. I knew she would be surprised. Jeff was an executive member of the ushering unit in our church. He was very reputable in church. Although he had issues submitting to the head of the department he was still consistent in going to church.
“Why am I not too surprised.” Idara said. She seemed angry. She had had issues with Jeff one particular time when Jeff had gone against the HOD’s orders and taken the offering bowls to a different location. She had asked him about it and he had angrily insulted her.
Idara turned to me and looked at me with concern. “What happened?” She asked.
“It was all my fault Id. It was my fault.” I said weeping. She shook her head.
“You were raped Titi. It cannot be your fault.” She replied patting my back as I cried uncontrollably.
“What happened?” Idara asked me after I had been able to calm down.
“So do you remember that Jeff had promised me that he will get me a birthday gift? He told me that instead he will give me a cash gift and he had asked me to come to his house after work today. Although I had considered asking him to just transfer it to my account I made up an excuse for him that he might only have cash.
After work, I took a cab to his house. Though I didn’t feel too comfortable with it, I was greedy for the money. I went into his house and I saw him lock the door and turn up his stereo. My heart began to thump when he did that but I still didn’t want to care I just really wanted the cash. He told me to sit down and feel free. He gave me a drink and I told him that I wasn’t thirsty and I had to go home and help my mom prepare dinner. It was then that he gave me a look that was very disgusting.
He told me that it was alright for me to leave and asked me to come and collect the cash. He led me to his room…. Though, at that point, I had no idea that it was his room. All of a sudden, he grabbed me and forcefully had his way with me.
Id, I could almost swear that it took him two minutes. I screamed and screamed, but the loud sound from his stereo drowned his voice.
Whilst he had his way, all I could do was stare at his alarm clock at the side of his bed. I counted the time and I assure you he was done in two minutes Id. It took him two minutes to ruin my life. I can’t count the number of times I considered suicide since I left his house. I lost my pride and I can never get it back all because of greed.
I even tried praying when I got home but I was just too ashamed to even say anything to God. Id…. Id, it’s all my fault. I caused it for myself.” I said and cried till I ran out of tears. Idara also got to a point where she began to cry with me.
All of a sudden she stood up and said.. “Thank you Jesus.”
I stared ate her, almost angrily…. What was there to give thanks for?
As if she read my mind, she explained, “The bible said, in everything we should give thanks. Things could have been worse. You could have been drugged with that drug that makes women infertile, or you could have died. A large percentage of ladies die from rape yearly. Thank God for spearing your life.” She said calmly.
It didn’t make sense to me. At that moment, I wouldn’t have minded if I had died. It was better than the physical and emotional pain I was feeling.
I began to cry and murmur to myself. “If only I had just asked him to do a transfer…. If only I had not gone to his house… if only I had not been greedy… if only…”
“That’s enough Titi!” Idara said. “It is not your fault. You didn’t do anything wrong. Yes you went to his house…but that doesn’t give him the right to rape you.” Idara held my hands and pulled me up. “The only issue you had was that you were not attentive to the Holy Spirit. But He is your ever present help in time of need. He is here right now to heal you of the pains. He is your comforter. He can comfort you for what you lost.”
I burst into tears at her words and fell on my knees in hopeless surrender as I cried to God for help in my distress. I asked for forgiveness, healing and comfort. Idara and I prayed, worshiped and sought God through the night and by the next morning I had joy in my heart and peace I couldn’t explain. I was able to let go of the pain and forgive Jeff for what he had done.
“We have to report Jeff to the authorities.” Idara said to me as we ate breakfast the next day.
“No! I can’t.” I responded quickly. She looked at me in with surprise. “Look Id, I led myself into his net and you are the only one I have told this. Please I’m not willing to tell anyone else about it. It’s too embarrassing. I can’t do it.” I said shaking my head.
Idara looked at me and nodded. “I understand Titi. But you should know, if Jeff did it to you, you might not be his first victim, and you certainly won’t be the last. Look its fine to forgive him, but the authorities at church would know what to do better.” I looked at her and understood what she was saying. It began to come to my realization that, it might have happened to me, so that I could stop it from happening to others. I needed to ensure that Jeff never did what he did to me to another person. I nodded to Idara, gesturing that she could go on.
“We can begin by telling your head of department, thank God she’s a lady, she will understand better. She could take it to the church authorities who could also take the case to the government authorities.” Titi said and we began to devise a plan to stop Jeff for good.
When we called up my HOD, we discovered that I wasn’t the first person with this kind of complain. My HOD assured me that she had the perfect plan to stop Jeff and make him a scape goat to others like him and put an end to the wolves in sheep clothing in church.


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