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"I'm feeling better today," he replied. "It's been some time since... since I was forced," explained Jake, trying to choose his words very carefully in front of her. "I'm sorry I scared you so badly, yesterday. Try not to be too concerned about me, Abby. I've been in prison before. After a while, you learn to live with it."

"How can you possibly learn to live with abuse?" she cried, incredulously. As soon as the words were out of her mouth, however, Abby knew she had made a mistake. "I wasn't blaming you, Jake," she quickly tried to assure him.

"You know," he said," his voice sounding much less confident than a minute before, "I can forgive myself for surviving, but I don't know if I can live with the fact that I don't always fight them tooth and nail every time I'm approached. I've been in situations like this all my life-- nine years of them at this very prison-- but, ever since I've returned to the pen, it's been weighing more heavily on my mind than usual. Abby, I've come to a decision that you may not like to hear."

"What decision?" she bravely asked.

"The next time an inmate comes to me for sex," replied Jake, in a determined voice, "I'm going to fight him all the way."

"Jake," she hesitated, not liking the desperate way his voice had sounded, "I can't tell you what to do. This is your decision, but I don't want you to get killed! There are levels of resistance, and it's up to you to determine, in good conscience, what you're willing to allow in order to survive."

"I can't face you again, knowing that I gave in," he explained in a wavering voice.

"Jake," declared Abby, "unless you've told them point blank that you're doing it with your consent, then it's ALL rape-- no matter how much or how little you think it's safe to resist! Do you remember Deuteronomy twenty-two? Wait a minute, let me get my Bible." Jake waited for a few seconds, and then Abby returned. "'If a man find a betrothed damsel in the field,'" she read, "'and the man force her, and lie with her: then the man only that lay with her shall die: But unto the damsel thou shalt do nothing; there is in the damsel no sin worthy of death: for as when a man riseth against his neighbour, and slayeth him, even so is this matter: For he found her in the field, and the betrothed damsel cried, and there was none to save her.'"

"I remember," replied Jake.

"She cried for help," said Abby, trying to steady her own voice, "but there wasn't anyone to save her. God didn't blame her for surviving the attack, or for not being able to defend herself. I know you're thinking that it's different because you're a man, but when someone is overpowered, there's nothing you can do about it. God didn't blame the girl, and all she did to save herself was to cry for help."

"I think I see what you're getting at," said Jake, thoughtfully.

"For every person who's assaulted," continued Abby, who had heard enough from Dr. Jacoby to talk for hours on the subject, "there are different situations and circumstances. You must be the one to decide what's best for your situation. I need you to know, that's there's no shame in yielding without a fight, in order to survive. Remember, all the Bible mentions about the girl, is that she cried for help. If you've done your best to get help, and it hasn't come, then I don't believe God will blame you for trying to protect yourself by not getting into a fistfight with your attackers."

"Do you know what you're saying, Abby?" he asked.

"Yes, I realize what I'm saying," she slowly answered. "I'm praying that you won't be abused again, but if for some reason God allows it..." she paused, "I won't blame you for walking away without a bunch of scars and bruises."

"Thank you, Abby," said Jake in an extremely grateful voice. "Thank you for understanding. Whenever I think about stuff like this to myself, I easily get confused. But, when I hear you reason it through, especially using God's word like that, it makes a lot of sense. No one has ever taken the time to explain it to me like that, before."
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