SURVIVING THE TRAUMA

SURVIVING THE TRAUMA

Sometime in June 2018, I had a terrible kito experience which made me withdraw from life, also causing me to suffer post traumatic stress so severe, I had to go for therapy.

This is what happened.

I’d lost a gay friend’s contact details. We became friends via 2go, so I decided to recover it from the app, because I remembered he posted his details on his 2go status. I downloaded app again, searched him out and found his number. I didn’t uninstall the app thereafter, because I’d stumbled on a gay room; I didn’t know that 2go had one. I joined the room, and some guy called Moses added me up. We started communicating, and then we exchanged numbers and moved over to WhatsApp. We didn’t talk about anything sexual or discuss hooking up; our conversations were more about educating each other on a wide variety of subjects, and I liked that.

Then I got really sick and was hospitalized. Moses called me while I was in the hospital to know why I’d suddenly stopped chatting with him, that he was worried and that was why he called. I told him I was unwell and he expressed his sympathy. He called me regularly until I was discharged. Even so, I needed to keep going back to the hospital for my drips and injections.

The day I was discharged, I called Moses and thanked him for caring. I also expressed the desire to visit him on that same day. He was excited as he agreed to that. I took a Taxify to the place he directed me to, which is Amani, behind Port Harcourt Zoo Slaughter. I got there and called him, and he asked me what I was wearing. Not long after that, three guys materialized out of nowhere and surrounded me, saying things like “So na you wan fuck our guy.” They took me to an uncompleted building, where they started beating me so badly, the needle in the cannula attached to my body broke inside my vein and I was bleeding out. They were vicious and heartless in their attack of me. They took my inhaler and smashed it, saying, “We go kill you so we go fit comot the homo from your body.”

They went on to use my small phone (I was thankfully not with my smartphone) to transfer out the 17 thousand naira I had in my account. They took my wrist watch, my belt, my foot wear and my phone. And then bloodied and bruised, they threw me out.

When I got home, Moses dropped a message on my WhatsApp saying, “I needed money. That’s why I had my friends do what they did to you.” Then he had the audacity to go on to ask me if I had more friends like me, that I should join them in setting those friends up and they’d give me my share.

I was devastated. I was as psychologically damaged as I was physically distraught. And like I said, I needed therapy to help me through the worst of the trauma I found myself going through.

But I got through it.

Or so I thought.

On Friday, September 17 2021, at around 3 PM, somebody walked into the bank where I work, up to the customer service desk where I was seated, to request for a new ATM card. He’d been seated across from the customer service station, waiting for me to finish attending to the customer that was there before him. When I was done with that customer and he approached and started speaking, I froze.

I first recognised his voice. Then I recognised his face. He was one of the thugs who beat me up in June three years ago. As I watched him speak ever-so-solicitously to me, clearly not recognizing me, I felt a surge of emotions push through me. The room was air-conditioned and yet, I was breaking out in intense perspiration. And then, my head began to fill up with terrible flashbacks to that horrific day that I was kitoed. The flashbacks led to echoes of pain that surged through me, as though my body was also remembering what it endured on that day.

I tried to keep working, to attend to him, but I had started to tremble with terror. I was feeling numb, and my mind couldn’t grasp the simplest tasks involved in the service I was supposed to render to this guy. I couldn’t type anything on my computer and I was going blank on the things I was supposed to say to him regarding the request he’d made.

Finally, I asked my colleague, who I noticed was free, to help me attend to him. And I fled from the customer service station to the restroom to breathe. For the rest of that day, I couldn’t function. My encounter with that guy triggered my anxiety so intensely, that even my colleagues noticed that I’d gotten out of sorts, which made it easy for the permission I asked for to leave work early to be granted. I needed to take the day to myself, and hopefully get better for the next day.

I thought I’d gotten over what happened, but just a chance encounter with one of my assaulters set me off back into the past in the worst possible way. I don’t know if I’ll ever recover from what happened to me that day, but I know I can only survive this trauma one day at a time.

Written by Kendrick

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16 Comments

  1. Lopez
    September 22, 09:29 Reply

    Kito should never have happened in this country. The law enabled it. Sorry Kendrick, be strong, you’ll be fine eventually.

  2. Mandy
    September 22, 09:39 Reply

    This was really heartbreaking to read. We focus a lot on the kito stories and sometimes forget that these experiences leave lasting damage on some victims. The heartlessness of these guys to carry on beating you even when you were so obviously in no shape to endure the pain. The wickedness of that so-called Moses to make this happen, when he knew you’d just been to the hospital. These scum are worse than kito. They are murderers and thieves and kidnappers. They are the worst, and yet, their crimes are overlooked simply because the victims are gay people. This just makes me want to scream.

    Dear Kendrick, I can’t even begin to imagine what you went through or how you are obviously still grappling with the pain three years later. But just know that you will be fine. This too will pass. And you will be stronger for it. I’m sure that during therapy, your mind didn’t process the fact that you’d ever run into your attackers. And that was why the reaction to the guy’s presence in the bank was so bad. But go back to therapy and try working through what your reaction should be, how you should be now that you know that life could throw you into a circumstance with your attackers.

    All the best to you. I am praying for you.

  3. Yusuf
    September 22, 10:01 Reply

    I know how you feel Kendrick… it’s a gut wrenching experience. You feel like your innards are about to drop. I’ve faced your kind of aggressors, only mine’s a family friend who I’m forced to get along with for the sake of the family. So I have to face him every so often, and though I no longer have that sinking fear, I still get shit scared the first few moments of encountering them. Wish I could say it’ll eventually go, it might, I’m still struggling. But at least, you know you’re not alone and hope you can take a little comfort in that. You’ve beat em, twas just a minor setback. Hold your head up boo.

  4. Mac
    September 22, 10:05 Reply

    Hello Kendrick, if you get this just know that we love you and we’re here for you. I pray you heal soon, see reasons to smile and be happy again. If you want to talk, do well to reply this.

    Love and Light

  5. Wizdiamond
    September 22, 10:35 Reply

    My dear Kendrick I understand the pain you’re passing through but I plead with you to be strong, the presence of the nightmares (the kitorist) really weakens the body but all this comes from fear, what happened to you is just as a result of fear, not just the pain that was inflicted on you but fear of why it happened and fear of it repeating itself, so you have to confront that fear, it’s not easy but you have to, cus this is our life now, maybe we can’t change it actually but we can take control of it

  6. trystham
    September 22, 11:09 Reply

    I’m sorry about tour experience. It is the height of wickedness, especially after telling them you were ill, that they would still go on to beat you like that. After all this time, I loathe myself to think I can still think of them as human with feelings.
    Did you think to get their name?

  7. Delle
    September 22, 13:15 Reply

    Did you say you have gone for therapy? Because from what I just read, it doesn’t look like you have. Please, speak to someone. I do not know where you stay but if you stay in Lagos, I could recommend someone to you.

    If I were the one, I would have alerted the security personnel to take him out of the branch.

    • Pink Panther
      September 22, 15:33 Reply

      Lol. Alerted the security personnel to take him out bases on what allegation?

      • Delle
        September 23, 08:08 Reply

        So, I just realised that I have no cogent reason to do that but…

  8. Lopez
    September 22, 13:29 Reply

    Can’t you take a little revenge. Disclose his account details to someone that will wipe him clean. I mean of course the it will not be traced back to you if it is possible.

    • Kendrick
      September 23, 08:21 Reply

      If I stay long on a customer account without any transactions done, I’ll be summoned. Please this shouldn’t be up for discussion please 🤧🤧

  9. Fred
    September 22, 14:23 Reply

    Hello Kendrick
    I am so sorry for the pain you’re reliving. I don’t know if going for another therapy will help you seeing that the first didn’t do much for you. Maybe you need to find something to redirect that nerve-racking fear into, so that you can slowly but certainly find inner peace.

  10. Iremide
    September 22, 18:41 Reply

    Hi Kendrick
    I’m so sorry for going through such experience, all you need to do is to move on and forget about the situation because I see those kito guys as a situation that need to be curb (take serious action against) so sugar don’t let them to affect your life not to talk of your job. Try to talk to someone (a friend) about it cos that can help too.

    ❤❤❤
    Iremide.

  11. Ken
    September 22, 19:12 Reply

    What u need is revenge. Stop feeling sorry for yourself and exact revenge on d morafokas. Revenge soothes the soul.

    • bamidele
      September 23, 10:19 Reply

      Dear Kendrick,
      While I feel sorry for you, I agree with Ken that revenge will do, if your can.
      Also, as I said before, I think we members of this community need to rise up and start doing something about these scums, before they took over Nigeria from us.
      We have lawyers, police, soldiers, bankers, in our community, and I wish we could strategies with them and pull these scums down, be it front or back doors. I know some have taken some measures to discipline these scums, but we can do more. If it requires contributing some little money, some of us should be able to put something day.
      Worldwide, The history of our community has continued to be plagued with dehumanizing, even bloodshedding. But we have remained resilience and have have refused to be overpowered. We can overcome this. I really wish we can do something to cripple kites once and for all

  12. Rudy
    September 24, 10:00 Reply

    Just take each day one step at a time.
    I recommend you go back to your therapist again to go through a form of “post exposure trauma therapy” you’ve experienced with your abusers.
    You would be given constructive ways of managing and dealing with your emotions JUST IN CASE you chance in on them again.
    They need not have any power over you Kendrick.
    They can never be as strong and as defiant as you have been, moving on from such a horrific experience.
    So top up this beautiful cake that you are with a cherry of a “post exposure therapy” and take back your life devoid of anxiety be it pre or post exposure of your abusers.
    Through all of this allow time to be your friend.
    I send you love and light wherever you are this morning.
    Cheers To You My Strong Warrior!

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