I shifted in my seat. I was very nervous and was already starting to sweat. I tried to conceal the fact that I was scared from the doctor but I wasn’t sure I was making a success of it.
“Sure, sure, sir, you can…you can ask me anything you want to ask,” I replied, stuttering.
“How old are you?” he fired the first question.
“I am sixteen, sir, but will be seventeen in a few months,” I answered, wondering why he was asking to know my age. It was his second question that jolted me the most.
“I need you to tell me honestly, I need you to be truthful with me, are you still a virgin?”
I was stunned. I was certainly not expecting to get such very private and intimate question from him. I looked away from him, I couldn’t meet his gaze.
“I’m waiting for an answer, Rosemary,’ he pressured me.
Slowly, I shook my head. “No, no, sir, I’m not.”
He sighed heavily. He was quiet for a moment and then he went on to ask me the most embarrassing question ever. “When was the last time you had sex?”
At that point, I just wanted the ground to open so it can swallow me up never to be seen on the face of the earth again….
I had never felt that uncomfortable, that embarrassed in my life. The question the doctor was asking me was ordinarily not the sort of question he should be asking me considering my age at the time. Back then, it was considered almost like an abomination for a sixteen year old girl going seventeen to be talking about having had sex. You were expected to remain a virgin, not just throughout your secondary school, but also through the university. The expectation of most parents was for their daughter to remain a virgin till her wedding night. And here I was, fresh pout of secondary school, already being asked the last time I had sex. Now, if I told this old school looking doctor that the last time a guy slept with me was actually a rape situation? Would he believe me if I told him I only had sex once before that incident? Looking into his eyes, I doubted it very much if he would believe me.
“I am waiting for an answer, Rosemary, I said when was the last time you had sex?” the doctor’s voice barged hard into my thoughts.
“It was…it was some weeks ago, sir.” I stuttered as I answered.
“Can you remember precisely when it was?” he probed further.
“I think it was…it was some six weeks ago, sir.” By now, tears had welled up in my eyes and before I could stop myself, I started to sob and weep silently.
“Why are you crying? Did you not know you shouldn’t have had sex at your age? You were enjoying yourself back then, weren’t you?” the man taunted me the more. It was at that point that I broke down inconsolably.
“I was raped! I was raped, doctor!!” I let the words out of my mouth. Since Bobby took advantage of me, I had never spoken a word of it to anyone. But today, I just let my biggest secret out.
“Raped? How? By whom?” the man asked me, apparently shocked at what he’d heard. But still, I noticed there was still a look on his face that told me he still wasn’t entirely sure whether he should believe me or not.
“I was raped by a friend who invited me to his house,” I explained all the same. “He drugged the drink he gave to me knowing I would not let him have sex with me.”
The man let out a heavy sigh. “So, who did you report this incident to when it happened?” he asked, his eyes probing into mine, as though he was searching for the truth inside my eyes.
I was quiet. I could not say anything.
“You mean you did not tell anyone, not even your mother?” he’d shot at me, his voice slightly louder this time. “But, if indeed you were truly raped, why didn’t you report the boy who did this to you? “
“I couldn’t, sir, because my parents would ask me what I went to do at his place! They will kill me if they found out that I actually went to see a boy,” I sobbed as I answered him.
“But before then, you were not a virgin either, right? The guy who raped you didn’t disvirgin you, did he?”
I was quiet for a few seconds. Then, I shook my head slowly. “No, he didn’t, I had sex once before he raped me,” I told him.
The man obviously didn’t know what to make of the situation. He just shook his head, looked at me disapprovingly and said, “Anyway, the results of your test shows that you’re already five weeks pregnant!”