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Upon arrival, I was handed paperwork to complete, which asked questions such as “Do you have any sexually transmitted diseases? ” I knew I could definitely check no for the latter.As for the former, my last visit to the gynecologist had resulted in a clean bill of health and I had not had intercourse since. As I anxiously awaited the results of my tests, I went over my actions that night in an attempt to reorganise my fragmentary memories into a coherent series of events.But, try as I might, I could not persuade myself that this was a good faith account of what had actually happened. Not only personal disgrace, but justifiable accusations that I had appropriated and devalued the ordeals of those who had been drugged, overpowered, molested, or otherwise unambiguously sexually assaulted.Self-examination forced me to acknowledge that both my partner and I shared responsibility for the events of that night, and that martyrdom would be a cowardly and dishonest excuse for my own poor judgment. I could not in good conscience adopt a narrative of convenience that might make it harder for authentic victims of sexual violence to be believed were my duplicity to be exposed.But in the end, such excuses were just an abdication of the autonomy in which I had previously taken such pride.
As the day progressed, I grew more nauseous not less, and developed what felt like a fever. I vaguely recalled that our sex two nights previously had been unprotected.
Then she asked if the intercourse had been consensual. For a moment, I found myself tempted by an escape into victimhood.
Certainly, the emotional burden would be easier to bear if the fault could be projected elsewhere.
Supposing that it was either a case of alcohol poisoning or some garden variety illness or other, I tried not to think about it. On the blithe assumption that my birth control would take care of any concerns, I had not insisted on it.
But now I had a feeling that a visit to my gynecologist would be a prudent move.
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By chance, I ran into an old friend from college and he and I spent the rest of the evening drinking together, reminiscing about old times on Greek Row, and exchanging stories of our adventures since.