There I was seated all alone in the corner of my room. All my hopes and dreams shattered, my dignity and pride taken away and abused by my own family. And then they say blood is thicker than water.

Growing up, my parents used to tell me to stay away from males. They also encouraged me to turn down men and boys who made advances towards me. At 15, I was glowing with beauty and I looked like an 18-year-old, maybe that is why men of different ages were after me. I was popular at school for being intelligent and that is why I took my parents’ advice seriously against men. My mom told me boys were selfish and that they were only interested in me because they just wanted to show off that they were with the prettiest girl at school. While men on the other hand would just use me and dump me. So I believed her.

Granted, my parents taught me how to say no to boys and men who stopped me on the road but they never told me what to do when it was my own relative. It never crossed my mind that a person so close to me could have bad intentions towards me.

I used to visit my uncle who lived alone during holidays as all his children were all grown-ups and his wife had just died. He would tell me how beautiful I was and shower me with many gifts and presents. I saw all this as a good gesture coming from a parent, not knowing he had ulterior motives me.

Everything was going well until the next school term was about to begin. That was when I saw the dark cloud over me. It was obvious he knew I was about to leave his house so I heard a knock on my bedroom door. I opened the door and it was him. I allowed him to enter since he asked and I saw nothing wrong with that.

So there we were, seated beside each other on the bed but this time instead of advising me about something he started talking about love and his feelings for me. I thought everything was normal until I realised he was serious. Something was wrong; he started touching me. I felt uncomfortable and confused at the same time because I did not know what to do. I was dumbfounded by what I heard and saw him do to me; nobody equipped me for that moment. I tried to escape but he overpowered me, I tried to shout on top of my voice but the music he turned on before coming to my room was louder than my voice. My own kind abused me, just like that.

I sat there ashamed of myself after what had just happened and was trapped in my own world, which was coming crushing down on me. I had questions in my mind that have no answers to this day. Even after going back home it was hard for me to move on, who would I talk to? Who would listen to me? Would they believe me over my uncle? What about my pride, my ego, where is it now? I learned the hard way!

My uncle still went on with his daily life as if nothing wrong happened. I was crippled by fear. I failed to open up about what happened but the most important question I still ask myself today is: is blood really thicker than water?


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