Have you ever experienced inappropriate advances, any unwanted attention? Were you aware when it was happening to you, or maybe you only realized it later on in your life? Just like an insidious memory at the back of your mind. Have you ever assumed that the person giving you such attention was innocuous or just plain friendly? What made you realize there was something wrong in the kind of relationship you had with them?
When I was in Grade 6, I was given a PC and had access to the internet. This was back in the dial up era, uso ang YM, Yahoo Groups, Multiply, Friendster. Met a lot of strangers through YM chat groups and Yahoo Groups of bands I was a fan of. And then this guy randomly chats with me, a college senior from a Big Four university already working on his thesis. We exchanged ASL, a few pics, and he added me to the yahoo group of his band. He asked for my phone number and I freely gave it. He called me on the phone, asked for my pics, and complimented my looks – I was only 12. One time, I went to see his band play, it was a public space in Manila, and he gave me a copy of their EP… and a tall glass of vodka. He didn’t touch me or anything.
Several years passed, he became a friend on FB, but we didn’t keep in contact. Then one time he posted a sexually-charged joke which I found offensive, so I unfriended him. Then around 1 or 2 hours after I unfriended him, he sends me a PM asking why I did that. How did he even know I unfriended him unless he checks my profile regularly? That freaked me out, and made me realize how inappropriate his behavior was towards me when I was 12. Upon checking, he is now a professor.