Wellbeing

Megan's taking back control

Growing stronger and healthier day by day.

Megan, 27, Lost 5 lb*

 

*People following the WW program can expect to lose 1-2 pounds/week.

“I’m in control again—of my emotions, my eating, my job. I’m in control of my happiness.”

In 2009, I was a college sophomore, living on campus with three girlfriends. One night we had a small party with friends at our apart­ment. I had a boyfriend, but I ended up talking to a very popular, attractive guy I was acquainted with in my bedroom, and he came on to me. When I said no, he asked, “Do you know who you’re saying no to?” I said, “Yes, but get off me.” He refused and kept going.

Everyone knew what happened, but no one believed that I’d said no: my boyfriend, campus police, one of my roommates. I went to a sexual assault center to get a rape kit in case I wanted to press charges (in the end, I didn’t). I had one counseling session, but I didn’t go back. I wanted to forget about it, so I focused on my studies and got through college successfully.

I never dealt with my issues — my lack of trust in men, disappointment in my friends, fear that this would happen again. So when I was physically and sexually attacked in a hotel elevator late last year, the feelings rushed back, and now the trauma was twofold.

For the next two months, I was a recluse. I was an overnight nurse, and I couldn’t deal with male patients anymore, so management and I mutually agreed that it was best that I not work in that environment anymore. I’d watch TV all day and eat whatever I wanted and I gained weight. My best friend, Anna, started a GoFundMe page since I was unemployed.

I began getting supportive messages and calls, and because I was receiving generous donations, I decided to do something with my time. I opened an Etsy shop, Megz Marbles, selling handmade bracelets made of dyed hemp cording and tiny metal elephants, and I tell my story on my page. In less than 90 days, I sold 52 bracelets! People have told me that receiving one was a powerful experience. I’ve started making key chains, too, which are more appealing to men. I know that assault can happen to men as well.

People’s support made all the difference. I started feeling stronger. After weeks and weeks of panic attacks, flashbacks, and nightmares, the confidence I was gaining made me realize that I wanted to take back control of my body and my health.

I had been a WW member in the past, and I knew how good it made me feel, so I joined WW in January. The very first day, I shared my story on Connect. Reading so many supportive comments built me up. I started my job search in the New Year, and I landed another nursing position. I had my first day of work in March!

I don’t feel like myself just yet, but I’m getting there. There’s still a part of me that blames myself for what happened in both situations. But I’m continuing to take back control, which is my motto for 2018. I want peace. I want to love myself again.

If you or someone you know is a victim of sexual assault, click here for resources.