All new college freshmen move into their dorms think they are safe and are protected by a good school environment. However, a few students may not share the same experience. Violence often strikes at the most unexpected timing when we often don't know how to react.
In six short hours of moving into the new upperclassmen dorm room, I was followed to the restroom by a guy on my hall. After a mostly positive freshman dorm experience on an all girl hall, this came as very frightening considering not many people had moved in yet.
He was quiet, swift, and by his actions, seemed as if he had done it before. I went into the stall and locked the large wooden door that separated me from the hallway. Then, I heard distant footsteps and an abrupt turn of a door handle, thinking someone was trying to come in or use the stall next to me. The dorm floor was unusually quiet, which made this event somewhat unusual.
As I opened the stall door, the guy that followed me pointed a gun-like hand gesture and said boo. I screamed in horror processing that a guy had followed me to the bathroom. In the mere seconds I had to gather my thoughts, I said to him following me to the bathroom was a bit stalkerish. He was embarrassed that I corrected his wrongdoing and introduced himself. He went back in his dorm room and I went back in mine.
What was supposed to be a nice first night moving back to school for my sophomore year became very frightening and fearful. I was terrified and didn't know what to do. I felt trapped and was scared that he would do something similar like knocking on my door, or try to break into my room and harm me.
I've experienced relationship violence before but the difference in this situation was being alone. I didn't know anyone on my hall that I could tell what happened. I didn't think the guy would bother me again but I couldn't know for sure. I had to make sure I was safe for good. The next morning, I knew my only option was to file a police report.
Within fifteen minutes I heard a police officer knocking on the guy's door. I heard him deny to the police officer that he had followed me into the bathroom(a clear sign that he is a troubled guy). The police officer then came to my room to confirm the incident. He believed my report and wanted me to let him know if anything else happened.
I'm still traumatized by being followed and haven't used that bathroom since. Incidents like these are another reason why dorm safety is so important including locking your door and reporting unusual behavior on your hall. It's unfortunate that I was followed, but is another example of why you should take care of your community so it doesn't happen to the next girl.
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