Dee's Journal



Entry #14: This girl can take care of herself.


I went to talk to Ms. Harden during study hall. Becca was right, she was cool. She's kinda young and has very long very curly reddish brown hair. Oh, and she's part black or something, because she definitely doesn't look white. I never talked to her before but she knew my name and I liked her right away.

I told her what happened with Juan and while I was telling her I started crying. I'm not sure why. I didn't cry when it happened. Or afterwards. And I didn't cry when I told Becca about it. But there was something about looking into Ms. Harden's brown eyes and feeling her concern. I don't know, it just made the whole thing more real and I felt like I was right back in the car with Juan grabbing at my breast and holding me down. I felt like I was suffocating and I was really scared.

When I was done, Ms Harden handed be a tissue and she put her hand on my shoulder. She asked me what I was feeling.

I told her that I felt kinda yucky and guilty. And that even though I knew I hadn't done anything wrong, I felt like I had. She told me that she didn't believe that I had done anything wrong. That Juan was the guilty person and that he needed to know that people must be treated with respect. That "no" means "no" and just because he may be bigger and stronger he has no right to force himself on me or any other girl. She said that she was going to talk to him. Then she asked me if there was anything that I'd like to say to Juan.

"Yeah! I'd like to tell him that I think he's a loser and a creep and that if he ever touches me or ever talks to me again, I will charge him with sexual harassment!"

It felt good to say that, even though Juan obviously couldn't hear me.

Then Ms. Harden asked if she set up a meeting with me and Juan, would I tell him how I felt?

I said yeah, but I wanted her to talk to him first.

She said that she would and that she'd get back to me.

I walked out of Ms. Harden's office and I felt better than I had in about a week. Miguel was getting some stuff out of his locker. It was the first time since this whole thing happened that I was happy to see him. You know, not scared or hiding anything.

I told him what happened. He got really mad. At first I thought he was mad at me because he didn't believe my story. But he said that wasn't it. He said he totally believed me and that he was pissed at Juan and felt like busting him in the face. He had such a wild look in his eyes I thought he was about to take off, right then, and go looking for Juan. But I told him that I didn't want him to fight with Juan.

I told him, "If you go beat up Juan then it becomes a guy thing. You know, these two guys fighting over their property or something. This isn't about you, Miguel. This is about me. It's a girl thing... and this girl can take care of herself."

Then I told him that I had already taken care of the first part of it and I was very proud of myself. Then Miguel said he was very proud of me too.




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