Survivors of Sexual Assault Shouldn’t *Have* to Speak Out


We should respect a persons’s choice on when and how to speak out.

I learned this the hard way not only as a survivor, but also as a journalist. It took me years to realize I had to apply the same rules I use facilitating poetry workshops and teaching creative writing classes to interviews I conduct. When anyone discloses to me, especially around trauma, I ask how I can support them. I ask if I can continue to check in. I remind them that they don’t owe me anything—not even their story. That they owe only to themselves. The least I can do is honor their humanity. Make sure they’re okay. Still, I’m not perfect. I mess up and fail people—I know for a fact I have. And yet, as a first responder, I know I have a job.

The complete article

Caroline Rothstein — Marie Claire

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This is why I did not report


After Trump’s video leak, many women have come out on sexual assaults by Trump in past. People wonder why these women did not report when the assault happened. Today’s needull has been written by a woman trying to explain why women don’t report assault.

It is of course clear now that these were all cases of sexual assault and attempted sexual assault, likely perpetrated by many different people and reaching epidemic levels on our campus, but that is not what we thought then.

Every time it happened, every time we got an email about this type of burglary, it reignited the campus-wide joke about the sad, lonely man who just wanted to cuddle and how, if only a woman would love him, he’d be saved.

And I participated. I laughed along, made jokes about male friends secretly being The Cuddler or how female friends were going to “get cuddled,” even dubbed a house I lived in one summer “Club Cuddler.” It did not even occur to me at the time that this was not a joke. I just kept laughing.

Then I was raped. And it was not a joke anymore.

The complete article

ksawyers — Student Voices

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