I’m sure you all know by now that my confidence isn’t exactly sky high so to keep on the subject and maybe explain myself a little bit I’ve decided to tell you a story.
When I was a teenager, and continuously, I had suffered from depression. Being in Highschool where you unfortunately hear about your friends sexual endeavors I started feeling extremely depressed, lacking in confidence and unwanted. After my Junior year there was a plan set by my Mom to move back to our old house in town.
Upon learning that I developed a mindset of jealousy and decided then when going to this new school and having no one to talk to I atleast wanted someone I knew I could turn to.
I proceeded to download MyYearbook, now known as MeetMe. At 17 I started talking to a 27 year old man that we’ll call “Tom.” Tom and I talked for the entire summer and he expressed interest in me that I wasn’t used to even though I knew I wasn’t entirely interested in him in that way. Being totally inexperienced in any kind of “romantic” relationship I instead came up with the worst motto in History.
I definetly won’t be with anyone else so I myswell take what I can get.
Anyways, after school started he and I started talking about meeting. We both knew that we were only about 10 minutes, walking distance, away from one another so I explained that it would have to be after school and I needed to be back before 5:00pm. He agreed.
A month or two into the school year we met for the first time and it immediately was off to an uncomfortable start. The very first thing he initiated was sex and being innocent in this subject and having the motto that I had, “no” really didn’t come easily. Including when it came to him coming to my house with no intentions on my part to do anything sexual.
For reasons that I really can’t validate even 6 years later, this “relationship” continued although red flags weren’t scarce. First red flag being that he was violent. I never left with any bruises but I can recall multiple times when I was unable to breathe and verbally and physically expressed that I was in pain.
Even then it continued until he requested one last thing, which I will not mention here because of disgust, to which I promptly and loudly denied.
I spent a lot of time trying to figure out why exactly he was attracted to me and didn’t figure it out until about a month later when I received a text from him claiming to be a friend of his, requesting pictures of any of my “pregnant friends.”
So yeah, I’ll be honest. I’m a bit overweight. Apparently that was close enough for him and his “fetish.” Red. Flag.
I, of course, told him no then attempted to message him the next day explaining the situation to which he played off in a joking manner saying, “Ya, he’s like that. Ha ha.”
Now I can’t say I was positive at that point that he was pretending to be other people until his “friend” texted a few more times requesting the same thing then receiving a message on Facebook from a girl I had never heard of saying that she saw us together and would call the cops.
That of course scared the shit out of me because at the time my Mom worked at the Court House and knew every cop in the area. Scared or not I decided to do some research. I looked at her page which had zero pictures of her, zero posts but she was friends with over 200 people including some of my friends, all of which either were pregnant or had kids.
I ignored the texts I got from “Tom” and messaged some of my friends asking if they knew who she was. They all said no and that they had just gotten a request from her and accepted it.
I decided at this point to message Tom and not only explain the situation but also to call him out for trying to fuck with me because not only were these 2 situations highly unlikely but the main thing I noticed was that Tom, his “friend” and this girl all typed EXACTLY the same. Right down to the punctuation and spelling of different words.
That was when I told him that I was done speaking to him and that he needed to erase my number and forget me NOW.
For atleast 2 months afterwards he continued to text me pretending to be other people, begging for forgiveness and even went as far as to write my phone number in a local stores mens bathroom.
I finally convinced my Mom to let me change my number, explaining that apparently someone from school had gotten my number and wrote it in the bathroom which was causing me to be harassed.
Unfortunately I had somewhat forgotten that he knew were I lived and I had faith that he wouldn’t go as far as to show up at my house.
As I’m sure you suspect, I was wrong to put faith in Tom because one night when my Mom picked me up from work she handed me an unsealed letter in an envelope that was just marked “To Emily.” Then explained that she found it laying on the front porch.
I ignored the letter and spent the entire drive home trying to talk about anything except for that.
Once we got there I called a friend of mine that lived down the block, whom I had shared this ordeal with earlier in the year, and asked her to come up and read the letter because I couldnt. Once she got to my house she read the letter and reassured me that if my Mom had read it there wasn’t anything incriminating in there. I gave it a once over and immediately was pissed because this guy refused to take no as an answer.
He had written his number on the bottom so my friend and I called him and explained that I was done, he was harassing me and that I was .5 seconds away from calling the police on him. We then hung up before he could respond and waited.
He never sent a text, letter or called me again and I didnt see him for about 3 years until he casually came into the gas station where I was working at the time. Which was the most terrifying moment I had experienced in quite awhile but fortunately that was the last time I saw him.
That was my story. If you ever fear that you are in an abusive, stalking or uncomfortable position like this, don’t be like me and handle it yourself. Talk to someone, call the police if you need to. People will help you.
Main photo from LitHub which includes a book review of Caroline Kepnes books which touch on “Love VS. Stalking.”