I called him back and no answer. At this point, I felt panicked. So many thoughts were running through my head. He for sure had gotten into trouble with the honor code I thought, which only meant one thing… I was next. Completely sick to my stomach, the only two things going through my mind at the time were A.) my parents are going to kill me and B.) BYU is going to suspend me.
Two hours later Arik finally called me back. He told me his parents were super mad at him because they found out we had slept over at their house while they were out of town. Oddly enough, I was relieved. “It’s fine his parents will get over it so no big deal” at least that’s what I was thinking. But that wasn’t everything…he dropped another, even bigger bomb…
“My ex-girlfriend called me and said she’s late on her period, she thinks she might be pregnant.” As horrible as this may sound, with everything I had been through and had thought about up to this point I was just happy I wasn’t the one in trouble or pregnant for that matter. It might sound selfish but what can you expect from a 19-year-old college girl?
After Arik shared the news with me, we met up and talked about EVERYTHING. He said that he thought she was just saying she was pregnant to get his attention. With everything that had happened that day we were understandably in very low spirits, so what did we end up doing? Bowling! After all…it is one of the most entertaining things to do in Provo, Utah.
Before I knew it, my Freshman year came to an end and Arik and I reluctantly said goodbye to each other for the summer. I lived in California, Arik lived in Utah. We talked for the first couple of weeks after I left school and over time things with Arik dwindled down.
Arik never confirmed whether or not his ex-was actually pregnant…so I bet it was probably weighing deeply on him. He started posting Snapchats on his story at 3 a.m that he “couldn’t sleep”. At that point, I KNEW his ex-had to be pregnant.
This realization triggered me. I felt lonely again. Just when I thought I had finally found someone that made me happy after 15 months of hell with my crazy ex I couldn’t help but think, “of course this would happen to me”.
Right before I left on my European tour with my tennis team at the end of May, I texted him. I remember saying something along the lines of, “hey I know your ex is pregnant…just know I am here for you as a friend if you want to talk or hang out.” He responded right away saying that he was so scared to tell me because he really liked me and felt like I may not want to talk to him anymore.
We ultimately had a great conversation and I was really trying to be a friend to him because I felt like he needed it at the time. There was definitely something still there between us and no matter how hard I tried to be friendly, we ultimately got back to texting and Facetiming non-stop.
I didn’t want to date him. I knew my parents would not approve…especially because his ex-girlfriend was pregnant. How would I explain it? How could they understand? Those questions didn’t matter as fate would have its own path mapped out for us.
I came back to Utah in July (2014) to work BYU tennis camps. Before I got to Utah one of my girlfriends started texting me about Arik. She mentioned that the gossip going around was that Arik’s baby on the way, wasn’t actually his. When I saw Arik he told me the same.
Disclaimer: This story is told from my point of view- from what I heard from friends and Arik. So this all could have been a complete rumor, but this is what happened as far as I knew it at the time.
Arik and I saw each other almost every day during the two weeks I was in Utah (July 2014). The chemistry was there, everything seemed perfect, but I was scared to commit.
“What if it was his baby?”
“I can’t just date a guy with a baby at 19”
“My parents would never allow it and it would just call for a highly complicated relationship”
These thoughts, these reasons weighed heavily on my heart and in my mind. But because there were rumors and it wasn’t 100% certain that the baby was his (at the time) I was able to justify giving the relationship a shot.
My mind kept telling me “NO NO NO!” but my heart just cried yes. I am pretty sure my theme song was, “The Heart Wants What it Wants” by Selena Gomez at this time haha…#relatable. So we started dating… officially and naturally I decided to hide the entire relationship from my parents.
School started in September and I was heading into my sophomore year. Arik was no longer attending BYU and transferred to Salt Lake Community College (SLCC) because of his situation with his ex. Since he played baseball and SLCC had a good baseball program, his decision to transfer made sense.
On September 2, 2014, he told me he loved me. I remember leaving his apartment that night with the butterflies. Ah, young love. It felt so good to be loved by someone, someone good. When we were together everything was amazing. I never stopped laughing with him. He was such a smart ass, but so was I and it was perfect. I could tell him his hair looked horrible and his doppelganger was Albert Einstein and he would reply with witty banter. So that’s what I called him, his nickname became Albert (short for Albert Einstein) and I became William (short for William Shakespeare) because apparently I always wore strappy shoes that resembled the famous poet’s kicks.
We were so young, a little dumb but completely in love….so no surprise when things turned physical. I wasn’t a virgin anymore but was still so hesitant to be sexually active. Not only do I think it can cloud your judgment in a relationship, but also because it involved having very deep feelings, feelings I wasn’t ready for. As a Mormon (who honestly, at this point in time wasn’t really active) it wasn’t in line with the standards and moral compass I had been raised with.
When my virginity was taken from me, I had a really hard time connecting positive feelings to sex. Sex to me had a different definition after what I experienced with my crazy ex. To protect myself from the trauma I had experienced I didn’t want the attachment and feelings that sex typically brings to a relationship. In order to forget my rape and the severity of it, I did everything I could to downplay sex altogether. If there’s no love, there’s no loss…right? So, the first month Arik and I were sexually active, I was NEVER sober and that was my intention every time. Sex triggered my trauma and I turned to alcohol to help me cope.
Everything seemed to be great, but deep down I always felt a pit in my stomach. The thought that Arik possibly had a child on the way freaked me out. Although, he told me time again that it wasn’t his. Now that Arik and I were sexually active, I was even more freaked out. I was constantly paranoid about getting pregnant. I always told Arik, “the worst possible thing that could ever happen to me right now, is if I got pregnant.”
NEXT WEEK: TALKING ABOUT THE DRAMA AND DETAILS LEADING INTO 2015
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