I joined at a young age but was sure the Coast Guard was where I wanted to be. They shipped me across the country away from family to a remote area with no support. I began to receive sexual harassment from my co-workers at my unit. After filing a harassment complaint about rumors spreading about my sexual life, I was retaliated against and was sent to another unit where my issues followed. I was continually harassed.
I was raped in 2012 by a civilian but was terrified to tell anyone. I did not want to get in trouble for drinking. My performance dropped as I tried to push my depression and nightmares down. I began to drink very heavily and did not care about my career. I saw my assailant at bars around town. I finally broke down and told a supervisor what happened a year later. I thought he understood and actually cared. It turned out to be a lie.
During my CGIS investigation, I was told I was lying and was in the wrong because I could not remember specific details. I was told by my command that I was in no danger and I had to stay in the area even though my rapist had broken into my house and robbed me afterward. I was not able to sleep thinking he was waiting for me. Finally, they moved me, and things seemed to get better.
The treatment began to work, but I was placed in an area where a lot of accused offenders came to await processing. I had to stay in the same barracks where they stayed during duty, and they even placed a person who was convicted of sexual assault to work in the barracks where he had access to make keys to every room. I transferred again and continued to receive harassment from higher ups and was eventually kicked out and was forced to sit in a room with my harassers after having suicidal ideations.
I am lost because I am still in and don’t know what to do now. I am tired of having this over my head and never moving forward. I continually talk down to myself and make myself feel as if I am not good enough to be in the coast guard. How can these people who are just horrible continue to stay in and advance and victims who genuinely could do good for the Coast Guard are pushed out?