Child Sexual Abuse, Ep 3: ‘I Was Molested By My Badminton Coach’

“There were times when I used to feel very dirty,” 31-year-old Reshmi recounts the time she was sexually abused.

Updated18 Dec 2019, 08:35 AM IST
Gender
3 min read

Video Editors: Kunal Mehra, Prashant Chauhan

Thirty-one-year-old Reshmi still recalls the sexual abuse she faced at the hands of a man she trusted since she was a child – her badminton teacher. Today, she claims she has changed as a person “altogether”. This is her story.

Sometimes, it’s an isolated incident. A single day, night, memory that sticks out like a sore spot on the skin, where you were touched. Sometimes, it’s many incidents – recurring over many days and many nights – that stick out, the same way, like sore spots on the skin, where you were touched.

The sore spots turn into blank spaces in many child sexual abuse survivors’ memories – who bury the abuse and often return to confront it, as adults. They return, either with determination to find some semblance of justice, or with the hope that speaking about their stories will help someone today, to speak about theirs.

The Quint spoke to a few adult survivors of child sexual abuse and these are their stories.

This is Episode 3 and this is the story of Reshmi, 31, who lives in Mumbai.

You can read Episode 1 here and Episode 2 here.

Transcript of the Audio:

Hi, my name is Reshmi
And I’m here to speak a little bit about my experience.
I just want to speak about something traumatic that happened...back when I was naive?
I don’t know.

I’m 31 years old now.
When I was 17 years old, I still remember that it was when I was playing badminton
And it happened during…
I was trying to workout after my badminton game
And there was nobody, I guess,
Only a very trusted coach who had taught me, who was teaching me since I was in standard 5
And at 17, you can imagine, I had just got into Class 12.
And yeah, he came and he said, “Ok, I’m going to help you work out.”
You know, the trust that was there…and I think I allowed it.
Yeah, it was my badminton teacher and he was saying,
“Okay, I’m going to help you do back crunches.”
You’re on your front and you put your body back up.
So, he had his hands up and inside my top
And he was fondling my stomach and he had his hands around my shoulders and….

I don’t think I can speak about it.

It was years later that I fathomed or grasped the reality of it.
I guess a part of me just blocked the memory out so I never thought I should (speak).
I spoke to my mother.
I think it was only last to last year, or maybe last year, when I spoke to my mother about it.
And mothers being mothers, she just guessed who he was.
Even now, you know, if I’m getting physical
Yeah, if I’m getting physical, that memory just haunts.
I become crabby and I lose my temper
And I become a whole different person altogether.
I just shrivel up.

Later, you know, when people started talking and when media got very vocal about such incidents, I remembered.
And it was then that I, I used to feel this kind of
You know, my heart just clogging up, or I used to feel this kind of shivers.
I don’t know.
There were times when I used to feel very dirty, scared, fear.
Yeah.
I guess now I get very... I’m just very angry as a person.

(The Quint will be publishing these audio stories of real individuals over the next week – who narrate to us their trauma of child sexual abuse and how they’ve chosen to heal. If YOU have a story that you’re comfortable sharing with The Quint, please write to us at myreport@thequint.com. Your identity will be kept anonymous, should you choose to do so.)

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Published: 18 Dec 2019, 06:24 AM IST
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