When I was 23 I was a recent BYU grad, still living in BYU housing (thus in a BYU ward), and in graduate school (not BYU). I also had a boyfriend—my first really serious boyfriend. One time we were making out and he pulled down my underwear and penetrated me with his finger. I didn’t want him to do it. I pulled on his hand and was saying “No!” and “Stop!” But he didn’t.
Wracked with guilt and shame as I was, I made an appointment with my Bishop. (My boyfriend was in a different ward than me so he didn’t have the same Bishop.) When I told my Bishop what had happened, he asked me all kinds of awful questions. He asked me what kind of underwear I was wearing—was it sexy? Were my bra and panties coordinated? (I wore garments at the time.) He wanted to know if I had purposely aroused my boyfriend to the point that he couldn’t stop himself. He instructed me to read parts of the scriptures that talked specifically about whores and the major sin of sex before marriage. He recommended disfellowshipment. Never were there any questions about my boyfriend—it was all about me and how I had brought this on myself. I walked out of that meeting feeling worse than when I entered. I felt like a worthless whore. Everything was my fault. It sent me into a deep depression that I am still battling 15 years later.
It actually took me more than 10 years to realize that I was actually the victim in this situation. That fact had never dawned on me in all that time. Looking back on that experience, I was MUCH more harmed by that one Bishop’s meeting than by what my boyfriend did to me.
I should add that shortly after that Bishop’s meeting I moved, and my new Bishop was wonderful. He was warm, loving, and never implied that it was my fault. He didn’t disfellowship me like the first Bishop had suggested. Unfortunately the wonderful new Bishop couldn’t undo the damage wrought by the awful first one. There are some things you can’t un-hear.