I’m a Two Time Rape Survivor: A survivor’s story!

I’m a Two Time Rape Survivor: A survivor’s story!

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Last December, I was raped at a party over Christmas break. What you don’t know, but will in a few

words, is that I was raped again a month after starting school at Indiana University at a frat party.

Because of the pending investigations, I am (unfortunately) not allowed to reveal the circumstances of

this. I can tell you this: I immediately told the brothers and they sent me to the hospital and called the

police. Three separate reports were filed and the school and IUPD are investigating my rape. I did know

the guy as I had met him earlier that evening. He, of course, is claiming it was consensual. I, however,

can tell you that I was intoxicated (I am in college and I am not sorry for underage drinking. I was having

fun, not expecting to have my pride taken from me again) and could not even walk straight enough- so

how could I consent to a sex act?

I also know countless girls who were assaulted and raped at parties and frats but nobody blinked an eye.

Why? Because parties and frats are breeding grounds for perpetrators of violence. No. Those frat

brothers helped me in a way that I will forever be thankful for. This shit shouldn’t happen so it shouldn’t

have to make headlines.

Teach your sons to respect women, men, and all genders. Teach your daughters

to respect men, women, and all genders. Stop the idea that women are weak. Stop the idea that we

have to walk together at night. Stop the idea that I should spend my life in fear.

 

We need to revise our justice system. It will mostly likely be over a year before I face my rapist in court,

if not closer to two or three years. For two or three years, this individual will be free to possibly hurt

other women. He will continue to walk as if he has done nothing wrong. We need to speed up the

process. I will be in my 20s before he is ever proven guilty- and he will be proven guilty, because what he

did was rape.

 

And we have to stop rape culture. I shouldn’t be asked “why” or “why not”. “Why did you drink so

much?” “Why did you go with him?” “Why weren’t you wearing something else?” Those are questions

that victim blame. I did nothing wrong. I am in college. I was a month in. Four weekends. Four Thursday

nights. I barely knew what college was. I tried to stop this from happening, even in an intoxicated state

of mind. Why not ask him these questions. “Why did you take her if you knew she had drank too much?”

Why did you choose to do this act?” Give me space. Let me heal. Let me mend my heart and soul. Let my

brain try to figure out where to go from here. Don’t tell me you’re sorry. You did nothing wrong. HE DID.

Don’t threaten to harm him. Let him spend his days in prison and the rest of his life on the sex offender

registry. Tell me you are here for me. Let me feel guilt and sadness and anger. Let me tell my story. I

can’t tell all of the details because of the investigation which really bothers me because I could spend

the next years raising awareness of this issue but instead I am forced to keep quiet because of the

investigation. That is more victim silencing. I shouldn’t be silenced.

 

Understand how PTSD works. Some days I can’t get out of bed without his face appearing on everyone

else’s face around me. Some days I feel like the world is a new place and euphoria fills my being. Some

days I am normal. Some minutes my body tenses and I can feel the rage pouring from every crack and

crevice in my bones. Some minutes I can feel the guilt streaming from the bottom of my feet and the top

of my head. PTSD is confusing. I feel numb and empty and distant but I also feel hateful and frustrated

and hostile but I also feel optimistic and anxious and powerful. My mind is different now; my brain is

different. Things are different. Bare with me.

 

Stop telling me to stop drinking and partying. He took my pride and dignity, I refuse to let him take my

life. I will (and I am) making the dean’s list. I will (and I am) continue attending sporting and

extracurricular events. I will (and I am) continue to drink and party some weekends; I attend a partying

state school! I should not stop my life! I will not! I will not let him take anything else from me. He has

taken enough.

 

I am 18. I have been raped twice. It is statistically proven that those who were sexually

assaulted once will more likely be sexually assaulted again. I am not weak. I am brave. I am telling my

story in hopes that people understand and in hopes that we can stop this from happening. I came up

with this metaphor when talking about what has happened to me. If you take nothing out of what I’ve

written, take this at least.

 

Rape is like death in the sense that you never forget about it and it never goes away. When your mother

dies, you keep her in the safety of your heart every second of the rest of your life. When you are raped,

you keep this experience in the safety of your heart every second the rest of your life. It doesn’t get

easier to live with, you just get used to living with it. You can take back what your assailant stole from

you but every year some days will be harder than others, like every year her birthday will never be the

same.

You can mend and heal… but you’ll never forget.

From Practical To Fashionable Safety Wearables By Blogger Rose

From Practical To Fashionable Safety Wearables By Blogger Rose

Safety wearables come in a variety of shapes and sizes.  If you are planning on taking a vacation this summer, it may be wise to invest in a safety wearable that is not only easy to pack but gives that extra bit of reassurance that there is some way to call for help.  This is especially true if you are traveling alone.

The following wearables offer three different options that range from practical to fashionable:

  1. The React Sidekick: This device can be affixed like a keychain and is touted as the “world’s smallest personal panic button.”  It sends alerts to your personalized network and appears to work in conjunction with your phone and their free app.  Currently priced at $79.99.
  2. SAFER Smart Jewelry by Leaf: This necklace sends alerts to your network including your location after pressing the necklace twice. Also can assist in taking selfies.  Currently priced at $30.00.
  3. V.ARLT: This button can be attached to your wrist or on a pendant. It can send alerts of your location and a personalized help message to three contacts.  There is an optional fall detection alert.  It is also waterproof and has a battery life of a year.  Currently priced at $39.99.

I would check the battery life, what initiates an alert to be sent, how it sends alerts, the types of alerts sent, and compare pricing of various devices before purchasing anything, or purchase different devices for various needs.  There are many unique features to each device so make sure you are getting the options that seem to be the most beneficial in your case.

Standing Together: The Impact of Celebrity Activism

Standing Together: The Impact of Celebrity Activism

Celebrities, it seems, have always been active in political and social justice causes. From the late Muhammad Ali speaking out against racism in America to the modern activism of celebrities who fight for global human rights, these people have chosen to use their high-profile status for justice.
And that tradition has continued more so in recent years with the growth of campaigns like No More (whose ads famously star Law & Order actors Ice-T and Mariska Hargitay) and Vice President Biden’s It’s On Us.
But, as with most things in life, there are always good and bad aspects. These campaigns, no matter the good intentions, have their flaws.

The Good

The campaigns succeed in bringing awareness to their causes. It is important to prevent assaults and to educate the public on the best ways to do that.
Most notably, No More uses male celebrities to focus on male survivors of assault. They bring up toxic masculinity and how it makes male survivors feel emasculated and, consequently, less likely to seek help.
The women celebrities focus on the popular victim-blaming excuses that female survivors often face. Also, the familiar faces of trustworthy television characters can put viewers at ease – recognizing Olivia Benson as an ally.
Both facets of the campaign focus on the survivor not being to blame for the actions of their attacker. They also call out the bystanders who would rather blame the victim than confront the attacker.
It’s On Us has also addressed the underlying issue of sexual assaults: the blurred lines of what constitutes consent. By using celebrities to educate the public on what enthusiastic, informed consent should be, it shows the importance of consent in intimacy.

The Bad

The lack of inclusivity of some of the campaigns is a flaw that both campaigns should remedy. With the rise in openly LGBTQ+ celebrities (like Laverne Cox and Amandla Stenberg), there need to be more celebrity spokespeople. These campaigns should address the sexual violence against these communities because of the higher risk to non-white and LGBTQ persons.
In addition to a lack of inclusivity with regards to their spokespeople, these campaigns often neglect to publicize the truth about the assailants. Instead, they focus on the creep who targets the inebriated person at a party or the pushy person who thinks multiple “no’s” can become a “yes”. This doesn’t take into account beloved figures (clergy, politicians, and celebrities themselves), which isolates these survivors from seeking community with others and getting help.

The Silver Lining

There is nothing inherently bad about celebrities who use their status to bring awareness to important causes. But these campaigns often serve as a band-aid for many. It hides the ugly truth and leaves people feeling as though everything was fixed by a few stickers. But no amount of stickers or celebrity PSAs can substitute institutional and societal change.
While these ads may not be addressing every issue regarding sexual violence, the societal change is happening. After a rapist was reprimanded with a pathetic sentence so as not to harm his future, social media fought back. The people signing petitions to have the judge removed from his position have moved beyond just wearing supportive swag and are calling for meaningful change.

So celebrity activism isn’t perfect. But it is the catalyst some people need to move beyond passive support of social justice and into fighting for everyone’s rights. That’s what’s most important.