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  • Dear Big Sis,

    another inappropriate event happened. and i feel stupid. so fuckin stupid.I should have said no. But I wanted to be wrong. I didn't want to think that every Bedouin man would put me in this situation. But they have. I can't trust them anymore alone. I hate it. I hate what I know. I hate feeling like this.

    I don't know who to tell anymore. Third time... gah i feel like an idiot. How? It makes more sense now that I look back. He complimented my jacket at dinner. He asked how old I was in the car. He has always been friendly and I enjoyed his company. Intelligent, speaks great English, it's nice to have people of similar intellectual backgrounds to talk with here.

    He drove me home, because at night it's not safe for women. I hate saying it, but the men in the dark whistle. They feel safe in the darkness, able to say whatever they feel. They only care about what people see. As though, God can't see through the blackness.

    As he was driving me home, with his son in the car on the way to karate, he invited me to Beersheva. i thought he meant to drop me off after he dropped off his son. So i said yes, and he said are you sure? a few times and i said yes, it's no big deal to drop me off later. and he said it will be like 930.

    Then i understood: it would be us together. alone. and i was nervous b/c of all the other guys. but i wanted to trust him. i wanted him to prove me wrong. he's a doctor, his wife is a psychologist, he had never been overly friendly with me. and if i went back, it would just be sitrting in front of the tv. and i didn't want to go back. I needed a vacation.

    so i said yes. I knew my gut was right five minutes later. he told me to lie to his son. I wasn't sitting with his father but "friends". I wanted to get out, to yell but it was too late. it would look suspicious.

    so we dropped off his son at karate. immediately, put him on the spot, why did you invite me? he couldn't say anything. he was like a girl all embarrassed and shit. and i told him that i had been in uncomfortable situations with bedouin men before. i didn't want a repeat of that. i came that evening because i wanted a night out. because i wanted to give him the benefit of the doubt.

    and i'm glad i said that first. because it gave me control. i set the limits.

    he still made me uncomfortable. he said "don't say anything, but you are beautiful". He talked about how I was dangerous, like I had somehow opened this can of worms. As any experienced sorority girl can do, I moved the conversation to neutral topics. I talked about literature and poetry, and family, and anything else. trying to pretend that this was normal. Trying to pretend he was reaching out in a friendly way.

    still, he looked at me like a drowning man looks at a lifeboat. When he called me beautiful, it sounded like a knife in his heart. He couldn't bring himself to say that he wanted me, but he couldn't stop himself either. He tried so hard not to be like the others, but they're all the same.

    None of these men that have come onto me saw me as a person, complex and dynamic. I am just an idea to them. With my fair skin and golden hair, I become an exotic escape . this little piece of possibility. and that's what i hate. It doesn't matter if I have lived with them for three months. It doesn't matter if I tutor their kids twice a week. They foist their ideas, their issues onto me. they don't understand what this knowledge does to me, and how i then view them.

    And now, I have to face his wife and pretend that he doesn't think about me. I have to pretend that I believe he is happy. I pretend to be comfortable with him driving me, that I'm just a tutor. and it's terrible terrible knowledge, because i can do nothing about it. Who would believe my word over his? Why sacrifice your marriage, your family, and everything you know because of what I told you? It is easier to believe the fantasy instead.

    i told him that this wouldn't happen again, that it was a terrible idea. I pretended not to care, to forget about it. Because i don't want this responsibility. I don't want to care that he did this. because it's his life that he nearly fucked up. not mine. He was feeling terrible, and I was happy with that. call it what you will, but he should feel guilty.

    And yet, a 3rd time. I had my doubts but I said yes. The feminist in me didn't want to decided along gender lines. I don't want to say all men here are cads behind closed doors. but i can't trust them anymore. at all. and i'm upset about that. i really am, but i feel like i'm starting to blame myself now. and i'm afraid to tell others in case they do too.god.

    I'm sorry. this is not the message you are going to want to read. but hell, i needed to tell someone. most importantly, i feel like you won't judge me because of this. i really hope you don't. Because i did know that this was a possibility. maybe too late. maybe i was too naive. maybe i do share some of the responsibility, but i wanted to believe he was better than that. i really truly did.

    I wanted to be wrong. I wanted to be able to sit and talk and feel like a human being instead of a vagina. And i don't want to believe that this is my fault. I really don't think it is, but i can't help but wonder. and i pray to god you'll tell me it's not, that my brain is victim blaming etc. gah. i'm so sorry about this. but thanks for reading. i hope we can chat soon about happier things.

    xoxo,
    Lil K
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