Irish woman’s brave recount of rape goes worldwide

Hazel Behan spoke on The Ryan Tubridy Show on 2FM yesterday where she recounted her rape experience, and now her story is making headlines worldwide.

The brave woman told Ryan how she was raped in Portugal back in 2004 when she was working at a resort as a rep. Telling the presenter how she had always felt a ‘presence’ in her small apartment where she lived alone, she was awoken one night by a man in a black mask calling her name.

What Hazel endured next was very hard for both for her to recall and for Ryan and listeners to hear. She was tied up and raped for four hours: “It feels so surreal, like I’m talking about something from Law and Order Special Victims Unit. I shut off. My thing was to figure him out, I’m going to get out of this, I won’t let him beat me.”

Her rapist was never found, with Hazel saying that the police didn’t take it as seriously as they should: “I think they wanted to protect the holiday industry, they didn’t want it to be known that this happened in a holiday resort.”

Hazel’s story has left a huge imprint on the Irish people, and now beyond that as people took to Twitter to applaud her bravery for bringing her story to the forefront: “I want to do this for other girls, I want to tell people not to give rape victims the pity eyes, it does happen, it’s not something that you just see in the movies, but at the same time people must be sensitive to what other have gone through.”

To listen to Hazel's story in full, click here

If you're affected by any of the issues in this article, please contact The Rape Crisis Centre National 24 Hours Helpline on 1800 77 88 88