A few years ago I moved abroad for university. At the start, I didn’t know anyone, but soon after I arrived I managed to find some friends who at the time I believed to be honest and truthful. Among these friends, there was a guy, who I will call D. He was one of my closest friends and, I’ll be honest, at some point I thought he could be more than that. He was kind and polite. He had helped me fit in at uni, when I was new in town. Hehad introduced me to a group of people in our class. He had opened up to me and had told me things about his past, even things that had clearly been difficult for him. I thought he was a real friend.

We spent a lot of time together both at uni and outside. I started to feel like ours could be one of those friendships that would last- if not forever,at least beyond university. I was wrong. 

As I said before, I started to like him as more than a friend. A few times on nights out we kissed, but nothing more than that. He never forced me to do anything and he always showed me respect. After some time I realized that I did not want a relationship. I told him in the nicest way possible, knowing that we probably wouldn’t be able to stay friends. He didn’t take it well. From that day onwards we stopped hanging out and we lost touch. However,I thought was normal,he had behaved like a mature and understanding person. 

After some time he messaged me to ask me out. I told him that I’d love to but only as friends, and he seemed to understand. We met one afternoon in a park to drink a beer ( a very common thing to do in my town). He brought a bottle of wine and pressured me to drink, “If I drink you should too” he repeatedly said. I didn’t think much about it since we had drank together multiple times before. It got late, we ate a kebab and kept on talking, I felt very relaxed. The last bus to go home was at 11, but I could have very easily walked back. I was quite drunk and he convinced me to stay and talk some more. He invited me to his place (which was near the park where we were hanging out) so that I didn’t have to walk back on my own. I agreed without thinking much about it. I had been to his house multiple times to study, so I more or less knew the place. 

As soon as we got there we started watching a film and he tried to kiss me. I know it could sound like an excuse, but I was definitely drunk, and in that moment I went along with it. He tried to go further and when I finally understood what was going on and that I didn’t want it at all, I asked him to stop. He didn’t stop. Maybe because he was too drunk. I tried to move away but I couldn’t move. He held my wrists above my head so that I couldn’t use my arms. He tried to penetrate me without a condom. At that moment I was really scared, I had never experienced anything like this. Just as he was about to put it in, I managed to push him away and I quickly got dressed. I was shocked. It was 4 am and I didn’t know where to go, so I turned to the other side of the couch and without saying a word I went to sleep. I don’t think he said anything or at least nothing that I would remember. In the morning I left as soon as I got up. 

I don’t think that D. really understood what had happened the night before. I don’t think he felt guilt or anything like that. When I left his place so quickly he acted as if he was surprised. I never talked to him again. We are still in the same class and we often happen to see each other, but after that night I lost any respect I had for him.He was supposed to be one of my greatest friends. The worst thing is that he had taken advantage of my trust to get what he wanted. This kind of behaviour disgusts me. 

Last year we met at a party and he had the courage to greet me by giving me a pat on the back. It bothered me and scared me a bit. As if that wasn’t enough he “invited” me to dance with him by pulling me by my arm towards the middle of the dancefloor. I didn’t want to dance and I moved away. He came closer and I was once again scared, I tried to tell him to back off but I didn’t manage to be as confident as I wanted to be. One of my friends had to intervene and push him away. 

What I hate about this situation is that often men think they have the right to control you and push you around even in the most ordinary situations. Because of him I was constantly scared. For a long time I walked away every time I saw him and I avoided talking to my friends if I noticed him among them.What I learned from this experience is that I will never allow a man to have such power over me. Sadly, very often psychological violence is worse than physical violence and it should never be underestimated.