Why The Stanford Rape Survivor Is Still My Hero

We’ve all heard about it.
We’ve all vented our anger through social media, to our friends, screamed it into pillows (just me?)

I like to think that everyone’s blood was boiling from yet another proof that rape culture is alive and well.

But it’s been a while hasn’t it,
And you may be tempted to think that this was just a passing trend. 
You know like how a few weeks ago you couldn’t go anywhere without hearing about gorillas.

And how now the world is completely consumed with Pokémon.
But let me tell you why this is not a passing trend.
Let me explain to you why this is everything…
At least to me.

We don’t speak about these things.
We as a society, we as a world, we the human race.
We try and avoid the topic of de-humanization, or stolen innocence,

because it makes us uncomfortable,
because “oh that doesn’t happen here”
Because it triggers us.

Meanwhile there are people walking amongst us as shells.

People who feel like a piece of them was stolen,

people who have tried and failed and then tried again,
to find their voice.
Only to be silenced.

we don’t speak about these things.

So let’s talk.
The first time I was sexually abused I was around 5 years old.
He was a close family friend and it went on for years.

I don’t remember details.

I never got help.

[sc name="ad-300x600"]

I never exposed him for the ugly monster that he was.
I didn’t say a word.
It became normal circumstance.
Just, circumstance.

Like making coffee or putting on socks.
And I shut down and I became numb.

And somehow the vibrant fearless child that I had always been, disappeared,

and somehow no one noticed. 
And yes, I did say “the first time”,
Because throughout the period of around 10 years I was abused by at least 3 more men,

too many times to count.

Too many scars to count. 
And I never said a word.
And I still haven’t,
Not loud enough for anyone to hear anyway.

So why is this case crucial? 
Why is it everything? To me at least.
Because that woman (screw your victim label),

that woman is a lioness.
She is a force to be reckoned with. And she will not allow herself to be wrecked.
She is a voice.
A loud one,
a scream, but a beautiful one,
She is a thundering song of strength and hope.
She is my voice,
She is all of our voices.

For every one of us who never spoke,

for every one of us who still cannot find the words.
Because we don’t speak about these things.
And it’s true, we don’t.
But we will now.
At least, I sure as hell will. 
And if we don’t speak about these things then we will yell about them,
We will thunder them into the light and out of the darkness and the shame.

We will turn our rage into a song of hope,
into a cradle for those who cannot sing.
I will read her breathtaking roar of a letter over and over again,
and I will cry and I will scream into my pillow,
and I will find my voice.

And you will find yours too.