Trigger Warning: Child Rape

“As a child, I’d often go to my neighbour’s house to play computer games. One day, finding me alone in their house, their grown-up son started undressing me and touching me inappropriately. Before I knew it, he started to rub himself on my body – I was 9. After finishing off, he instructed me to get dressed and warned me against telling anyone. I knew what happened was not right. But I could never tell anyone. I never visited his house again and tried my best to hide from him.
At school, being a feminine boy, I dreaded going to the male washroom. Other children would wait at the entrance and tease me. They said that I did not belong there. More than insult and humiliation, I felt disgusted for who I was.

I tried with all my energy to act differently; I’d walk a certain way, and make sure my hands weren’t moving much. Somehow, when other kids insulted me for my soft voice, I’d try to defend myself. But when the teachers also followed suit, I dug for faults within me. In school, I had no friends. At 14, I went on a date with someone I met online – he was 20. In truth, all I wanted was a friend. While walking together, he made an excuse to go to his house and made me accompany him. While in his room alone, he started groping me. I remember saying No repeatedly, but he forced himself on me. I was stunned and left bleeding profusely.
Back at home, I was in denial of what happened. I could never make myself share it with anyone, not even my parents.
At school, the bullying and teasing never stopped. Everyone called me names. People would use it so lightly to call and refer to me, not knowing how it made me feel.

At 17, I again met a man online. While on a drive on the weekend, he took me to his office on the pretext of showing me the new Shakespeare book. The man was a senior government official in a ministry. In the office, he forced himself on me. Thinking about it now, by then I’d normalized sex even if it was non-consensual.

I’m 22 now and a college student. For the longest time, I never knew that I’d need help. As an adult, through sharing about my experiences I found the courage to heal. Bullying and sexual violence against children, now I know, are preventable. If only my parents and teachers had taught us about good and bad touch. If an adult told me that I could talk to them without any shame and judgement, I wouldn’t have chosen to hide all these years.”

Humans of Thimphu with the National Commission for Women and Children – NCWC, BhutanUNICEF Bhutan and Partners calls for action to empower and educate children and young adults against Violence.

Call 📞
Woman and Child Helpline: 1098
Royal Bhutan Police: 113
Nazhoen Lamtoen: 1257
RENEW: 17126353

#EndVACinBhutan #EveryChildMatters

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