The following article contains discussion of sexual assault.
Emmerdale spoilers follow.
Emmerdale has aired devastating scenes of Lydia Dingle being sexually assaulted by her childhood friend Craig Reed.
The issue-based storyline unfolded after Lydia and Craig reconnected to mourn the son they'd lost together, leading to a charged moment between them.
In Tuesday's episode (September 5), Lydia remained conflicted over her romantic moment with Craig the previous day and decided it best to hand in her resignation.
Craig tried to talk her out of resigning by explaining how much it had meant for them to share a solemn moment together in honour of their late child, since his own life has been largely disappointing.
"I don't think you realise how much yesterday meant to me. Being with you, mourning our son. I'll never forget it," he insisted. "You made a lonely man very happy."
His words moved Lydia enough to withdraw her resignation, though she was instantly unsure over whether she'd done the right thing.
Craig then turned aggressive, telling Lydia he'd never stopped loving her and then forcibly kissed her. Lydia begged Craig to stop as he began assaulting her.
"I don't want to," she told him.
The soap cut back in the aftermath of Craig's attack, as he continued trying to suggest it had been a consensual moment. Lydia frantically asked to go home, but Craig insisted on driving her.
"It's rough at this end of town. You don't want to be out on your own. Anything could happen," he told Lydia.
Lydia kept her emotions in check on the drive home, and once they got back to Emmerdale, Craig told Lydia to keep what happened strictly between the two of them. Once Lydia got home, she made an excuse to go up to her bedroom and broke down in tears in the shower.
In the coming weeks, viewers will follow as Lydia's friends and family grow concerned with her withdrawn behaviour because she chooses not to tell any of them what she's been through. Will Lydia eventually let her loved ones in?
Emmerdale airs on weeknights at 7.30pm on ITV1, and streams on ITVX.
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