Aunt Vadge: I was finger-raped

Hi there Aunt Vadge,

So I was with a guy a few days ago, and he was fingering me. It was my first time. I’ve been raped before. It was the first time a guy ever fingered me, and I kept telling him to stop and that it was my first time. The day after, it hurt to sit and walk, then I started  to feel really sick and it been a few days and I’ve been feeling  sick and throwing  up and I don’t know what’s happening.

Help!

Sick

______

Hi there Sick,

Thanks for your email. Sorry to hear you feel so sick, and that your experiences have been so crappy.

Before anything more gets said, it is important to note that consent means only one thing – yes please – and if you are asking someone to stop, and they don’t, that is immediately rape. Straight away, no questions asked. If you are withdrawing consent to being fingered, your wishes must be honoured, and the person touching you must stop what they are doing. Here is the cup of tea analogy video that everyone loves.

If the guy poking around at your vagina, causing you damage and upset, does not only not understand consent, but what is sexy and pleasurable, don’t let him near you. He needs lessons in understanding what “stop” and “sexy” mean.

He has completely overridden your wishes and requests, and acted like you didn’t say anything, which is simple lunacy. Why would anyone want to be sticking their fingers into someone’s body when they didn’t want it and were explicitly asked to stop? It’s like you fingering his butt, and then when he says stop, you just keep going, harder and faster. It doesn’t even make any sense.

In terms of understanding what is happening to you, there are several reasons why you could be sick. One is that you simply have a tummy bug, which is completely unrelated to the fingering, and is a coincidence.

The second is that the guy has – after you asked him to stop – kept on going, which is essentially another rape scenario,which would no doubt bring up a lot of deep emotions for you.

We feel our emotions in our gut, so throwing up after another idiot abused you seems like a reasonable response to me. It is also possible that you have picked up an infection from his fingernails that has entered your blood stream and is making you very sick, though this is unlikely – if you continue to be sick, please go to a doctor.

Otherwise, your sickness will resolve itself one way or another as it is wont to do – take care of yourself as you normally would, but add in some extras. Without examining you, it would be very difficult to tell which of the three it is, but what seems obvious is that the wrong thing has happened here no matter what.

Let’s say for a moment that you are sick because someone hurt you again, and then this can be dealt with and acknowledged for what it is, instead of us just saying maybe you have a tummy bug, which leaves the greater problem lurking.

This needs to be better next time, and what that means is arming yourself with a someone to talk it through with so you understand your own feelings a bit better to avoid A) getting finger raped in future and B) puking about it at any time.

You need practical tools to stop any overzealous finger-rapist in his tracks. That takes courage to execute since asking for what you need can feel pretty embarrassing when you know it’s not what the other person wants to hear,or worse, they won’t listen to you – what do you do then?

With the right tools, you will be rewarded with greater experiences with the opposite sex, and be able to reclaim your body and sexuality as you grow up into a badass babe.

What I would heavily encourage you to do is to regularly visit a counsellor, maybe at school, a sexual health clinic, community centre or rape crisis centre, and talk through your feelings and experiences – it doesn’t matter how recent or distant the events were.

You are worth treating with care and kindness, and being loved, and part of that is sticking up for yourself when it counts, which means when it’s awkward, when it feels horribly uncomfortable to do so.

If you have a parent or relative you can talk to who will be kind and helpful to you, it will be useful to ask them for help as well – the more people on your side, the better. You seem like you need help right now, so seek it out.

Steer clear of sexual experiences until you feel ready, and your partner is loving, kind, and generous of spirit, and only wants you to feel good – which is what sex is supposed to be like. Finger-rape is not sexy, it is not sexual, and it goes against everything sex is supposed to be.

It is like punching someone in the arm repeatedly, but in the vagina. Not cool, doesn’t feel good, and nobody likes it. Learning about another person’s body takes time and effort, and just like you have to learn what they like, they must learn what you like by asking, talking and practising.

It is important to address trauma for what it is, understanding that your rape – until you address it – will colour everything in your life, particularly sex. Don’t let it, and don’t let any more guys touch your beautiful body unless it feels good, and you are comfortable and happy. Save it for someone who thinks you’re awesome and only wants the best for you.

They exist! If that means waiting, then wait. Just being finger banged because a guy wants it is not good enough. You must be enjoying every minute of it, or there is zero point. If you say stop and they don’t stop, pull your pants on and get the hell out of there.

Don’t suffer through it. It’s better to have a small amount of awkward then, than to be puking your guts out now. You are worth sticking up for, and you have legs – use them. If that doesn’t work, punch them in the balls, then run. Being sexually molested feels gross.

If being touched doesn’t feel good, you’re doing it wrong. Here is an article about fingering that you should read so you know what you should be looking for in future. Sexiness! Fun! Pleasure! Not pain and suffering. Whoever this guy is, he needs to read the fingering basics for men article too, since he clearly doesn’t understand the female anatomy and sexuality.

If you are still feeling sick, see a doctor to be checked out, but no matter what, find yourself a counsellor who you like and trust with your secrets, who can offer you practical tools for navigating feelings, sex and life in general.

There is no doubt more stuff than just this going on, and we could all use a bit of help navigating life. Read our article on healing vaginal and vulvar cuts and tears if you get stuck.

If you need anything else, please write back anytime. We’d love to hear from you. Get well soon.

Warmest regards,
Aunt Vadge

Jessica Lloyd - Naturopathic Practitioner, BHSc(N)

Jessica Lloyd - Naturopathic Practitioner, BHSc(N)

Jessica is a degree-qualified naturopath (BHSc) specialising in vulvovaginal health and disease, based in Melbourne, Australia.

Jessica is the owner and lead naturopath of My Vagina, and is a member of the:

  • International Society for the Study of Vulvovaginal Disease (ISSVD)
  • International Society for the Study of Women's Sexual Health (ISSWSH)
  • National Vulvodynia Association (NVA) Australia
  • New Zealand Vulvovaginal Society (ANZVS)
  • Australian Traditional Medicine Society (ATMS)
Read more about Jessica and My Vagina's origin story.