And what good did that knowing do me? If anything, it freaked me out.
Sunday evening, I had the most random thought. “I wonder what ever became of Daniel Rogers?” I even thought momentarily to Google him, thinking I’d find a mugshot. I dismissed the thought as quickly as I had it, though, because how many Daniel Rogers must there be? And, honestly, I don’t think I’d recognize him.
Daniel Rogers began stalking me in 8th grade. He sat behind me in Shop class, and poked and stared at me. Then he began cornering me in the halls and telling me things he shouldn’t know about me. I took piano lessons from my neighbor at 6:30 in the morning on Mondays, for example. I began to see him sitting outside the glass doors of the dance studio where I studied ballet. I asked my teacher to make him leave.
“Oh, stop being dramatic. He just has a crush.”
Why didn’t anyone EVER LISTEN TO ME!?!
We were in the same Stake. Mormon neighborhoods are divided into Wards. Your Ward is the congregation you worship with on Sundays. Several Wards make up a Stake, and from time to time there will be a big meeting or activity for the entire Stake. At one such youth activity, a group of kids my age was congregated, laughing. I approached to find that Daniel Rogers had written, “I love Christie [Fullname]” on the baptismal font! In permanent marker! I was horrified. I hurried away, but Daniel was there to block a quick exit.
“If you don’t… stop… leaving me alone…!!!” I screamed, flustered.
Everyone laughed at my mistake. I ran away and cried in the restroom.
He toilet-papered our house. The next day he left a note and $20 for clean-up.
He started leaving me religious tapes. Every Tuesday, BYU has some big ecclesiastical leader give a talk. It’s called Devotional. Daniel Rogers would record those and leave them in an envelope, TAPED TO MY BEDROOM WINDOW.
By now, my parents had spoken to his Bishop. He didn’t stop.
He brought his parents to our house to sing Christmas Carols. Are they insane, too? They knew my parents had complained. Did they think we’d invite them in for warm apple cider and holiday cheer? It was frightening. Seriously, were they all sick?
By now we were in 9th grade. In the New Year, the letters took a turn. He gave me yet another Devotional tape, but this time he chastised my wickedness and described how he, Dr. Dan, would purge me of it. He detailed, minutely, my rape.
I hadn’t even had my period, had never been kissed, and this is how I meet my femininity, my worth. This is who I am, how I’m seen, the danger I’m in. This a world of men, and you’re a plaything to be laughed at and terrorized. I was never the same.
I imagine the police were involved then, because Daniel Rogers was never seen again. After a number of those letters, he disappeared, to graduate from high school in juvy (if he graduated). I put him away with all the other trauma I would “forget.”
I did run into him at Ricks College, now BYU-Idaho. My friend threw a party. I made the rounds in the kitchen, then moved to the living room, where a movie was playing. I watched for a bit, then said hello to the guy on the couch. “Hi! I’m Christie.”
“Hi,” he answered, flat and stunned. “I’m Dan.”
I nearly fainted on the spot and left the party.
I’ve thought of him maybe 5 times since. Why yesterday?
This morning I opened my Facebook to a friend request from Daniel Rogers!
He’s as gross as I imagined him to be, his face just as stony and socio as ever it was. I mean, my god, smile. It’s a camera. Absolutely expressionless. There’s a part of me that wishes I’d saved his profile pic before blocking him, just so you could truly appreciate how psychotic and glassy he looks. The one other pic? Abs, and a banana hammock.
SO FUCKING GROSS.
I feel like crying. I hate men. And I don’t hate men! But right now I feel so angry that women have to be frightened, all the time! Have you read that statistic, that men’s biggest fears are being cheated on and/or humiliated, any assault to their ego, while women’s biggest fear is physical harm from men, as in actual assault?
Daniel Rogers scared the shit out of me. It was so long ago that I’d forgotten it. Well, that’s not true. I blocked it, and I know it. In fact, I left him out of my history above, “How I Got Here.” If you got through that thing you know I’m not averse to a long, wordy narrative. I didn’t leave him out for the sake of brevity. I left him out because he makes me sick.
I’m not kidding about his eyes. Dead.
What did the thought of him do for me before being found on Facebook? I don’t understand the role of my intuition, or what I’m supposed to do with that. Right now, it makes me feel vulnerable that I was connected to his energy. I believe we’re all one. Energetic resonance is real. The more people who meditate and send positive thoughts out of themselves into the world, the greater the healing and comfort we send to the planet and one another. I picture the world being enveloped in a pulsing, transparent bubble of swirling colors. The more of us who send our intention and love into the bubble, the better we all are for it. Today, I feel like I shared energetic space with a person who has no right to come near me. Shouldn’t I be able to keep those kinds of psychic intrusions out?
He’s so gross. And sick. A sane person would be too embarrassed to “friend” the girl who sent him to the mental hospital. Does he actually think I’d accept? Yes! He’s crazy!
No. He doesn’t think I’d friend him. He just wanted me to see his abs. Pathetic. There is little I hate more that “that guy,” the loser who posts selfies of his body. GROSS!
I guess it’s good to know he’s not in Salt Lake. A lot of Idahoans end up here.
I’m fine. He can’t hurt me. I did consider reducing my online presence, but no one dictates my freedom. Nothing’s changed. Just a weird morning.
Why this precognition? How did that serve me? I’d appreciate your feedback. Thanks!