A Letter From A Survivor Of Sexual Assault
Health and Wellness

A Letter From A Survivor Of Sexual Assault

Brown. Harvard. Steubenville. Vanderbilt. Stanford. AiCA-LA. *insert your school here*

A Letter From A Survivor Of Sexual Assault

Dear Survivors,

This is not just for me, but for you too.

I am not here to give you the stats because it’s impossible to know. Even with the hundreds of women AND men who come forward with their stories, thousands remain silent. It’s hard to come out to the public and say, “I am a victim of sexual assault,” especially when it’s hard enough to say those words to yourself when it happens to you.

I am here today to end my silence. I am here to tell my story. I am a survivor.

November 2012 is a month I will never forget.
It was less than two months after I started college. I was able to push the exact day out of my head, so it wouldn’t haunt me for the rest of my life. I didn’t want him to own a day in my life. It happened in my dorm apartment. My rapist was my roommate’s brother. Without giving the chilling details, I was home alone, in my own bed, held down against my own will. I was sexually assaulted. He took from me something that I can’t even put into words.

When you’re violated, you realize all of those preventive things people told you to do are worthless now.

“Don’t walk home by yourself at night.”
"Don't wear seductive clothing."
“Keep your keys in your hand.”
“Avoid dark, secluded areas.”
“Watch your drink.”

See, none of those things helped me. I was home. Somewhere I was supposed to feel safe, wasn’t safe anymore. I was violated in my home.

I remember the days where I struggled to get out of bed to make it to class. I remember the days I wanted so badly not to sleep in my bed. I struggled to put on the smile to pretend everything was okay because I didn’t want to explain what was wrong. I had seen before how victims were treated, like no one believed them, or it was their fault. I didn’t want to go through that. I detached my body from my soul because I felt so damaged. I hit rock bottom.

Eventually, I woke up. I realized that what I was doing was hurting myself and my loved ones. I was destroying all the good in my life because of what someone else did to me. I didn’t want him to have that power over me anymore. I got myself out of that horrible situation, started going to therapy, and with the love and support of my loved ones, took control of my life again. I still have anxiety, painful flashbacks, nightmares and panic attacks from shadows in the darkness. I don’t know if that ever goes away completely, but things can get better.

Sexual assault changes your entire life. It has the power to haunt you in the worst possible ways. It makes you feel worthless. It makes you feel suicidal. It makes you feel alone. It makes you worry about what people will think of you, especially when you see the culture we live in today. But I’m here today to tell you, you are not alone. You are not this awful thing that happened to you. You are not worthless. You are not to blame.

It wasn’t my fault when my roommate’s brother didn’t listen to me say “NO.” It wasn’t your fault either when your assaulter didn’t listen to you say “NO,” ignored your unconscious body, took advantage of you as a child or any other way of not receiving your consent.

I’m here to tell you that you are beautiful. You are strong. You are resilient. You have worth. Those minutes, hours, or days of assault that you endured do not define the rest of your life. You have bright days ahead. Get to a better place. Don’t let this keep you down. Go to therapy. Go to school. Graduate. Fall in love. Stay in love. Love yourself. Travel the world. Create something. Do the things that make you happy. Don’t shut out the ones who care.

To the families, friends, loved ones and supporters of survivors,

You need to know, it is not your fault either. The only person who is at fault are the ones who selfishly took advantage of the one you love. All you can do is be there for them, through thick and thin. From the bottom of my heart, thank you for your support. Because of people like you, we survive.

It is now November 2016.
It has been almost four years since I was sexually assaulted. It has been a battle every day since then, but I’m still fighting. With the help of my family and loved ones, I am grateful to be alive. I want you to be alive too.

Stay fighting. Stay strong. Stay surviving.

With Love,

A Survivor

Know where to get help:
If you or someone you know has experienced sexual assault, visit: https://www.rainn.org/get-help

Know your rights:
For information on Title IX, visit: http://knowyourix.org/title-ix/title-ix-the-basics...

For more reading on Sexual Assault on College Campuses, visit: http://www.ss-designs.org/new-blog/10-11-2016/the-...

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.

-Having struggled with acne prone skin for years, I was cautious to try a new serum on top of the other products I've come to trust.

Keep Reading... Show less
Health and Wellness

Your Social Activism May Actually Benefit From A Cleansing Social Media Detox

In the craziest year of our lives, sometimes there's value in taking a break.

We are living through, unequivocally, one of the most dangerous, unstable, chaotic periods of any of our lives. From COVID-19 to crises of police brutality to the mass exploitation of the poor by mega-corporations, the world outside seems to be looking more dystopic every day. What can be done about it? For many, activism involves heavily posting on social media to keep others aware. However, this comes with a net negative cost — increased levels of anxiety, depression, and hopelessness about the state of the world. Why might this be? After all, in past eras activists have endured comparable and greater levels of abuse and relentless torment from oppressors. Why, now, are people getting so easily burnt out?

Keep Reading... Show less

Reading is a relaxing activity that provides many benefits. Everybody reads books (when they are not watching Netflix, chatting on social media, or making Tik Tok videos) to distract themselves from reality for a while. Many do not realize the positive impact that books have like reducing stress, assisting with sleep, improving cognitively, and strengthening the mind. In honor of National Book Day, there are many great novels that you can read to mark this special holiday. Here are the best ones to check out.

Keep Reading... Show less

5 Things You Need To Know Before You Watch 'Arrested Development' On Netflix

"Her?" Yes, she's an amazing show! (You'll get this joke after you watch the show).


"Arrested Development" is an award-winning sitcom that aired for three seasons on Fox beginning in 2003, and then was picked up by Netflix for a fourth season in 2013, and then again for a final season in 2018.

However, it seems to remain one of the world's most underrated and under-appreciated shows of all time. Although this article alone won't be enough to skyrocket the show to Netflix's top 10, I hope that it will open people's eyes to the value and quality of the show.

Keep Reading... Show less

I have always felt left out because of how I look and who I am. I have always felt like the elephant in the room, literally. I have always been shamed for my size. For the longest time, I cared so much about what I wear and who I wore certain things in front of. I never wanted to wear shirts that would show a lot of my arm, located above my elbow. I wouldn't wear shorts that didn't go to the tip of my knees, at least. I never wore anything remotely tight, where you could see every curve, roll, or imperfection. I was so insecure about myself, and not many of my friends knew.

Keep Reading... Show less

Being a pharmacy technician never held as many risks as it does now. Exposure too hazardous conditions were little to none, and garbing up was only conducted in IV compounding. But, now, in order to give nurses the medications they need to help their patients, they need us, pharmacy technicians.

Keep Reading... Show less

I Asked My Boyfriend His Opinion On Liking Other Girls’ Pictures, And, Spoiler Alert, It's Cheating

"When you get into a relationship and you're in love, you have to realize that liking photos is for the single lifestyle."

Ladies, listen up. If you are in a relationship with a guy and he is liking other girls' pictures on social media, then it's a red flag. A man who can look at someone else and show interest by liking it means he doesn't care about your feelings AT ALL.

Keep Reading... Show less

Celebrities Stealing Designs From Small Fashion Labels Is NOT A Good Look, And They Need To Pay Up

When larger, more established figures or brands steal from lesser-known independent creators, they are taking opportunities away from these creators while also profiting from someone else's work and claiming it as their own.

Megan Thee Stallion and Cardi B recently collaborated on their new single "WAP," with the music video also being released on Friday. Both Megan Thee Stallion and Cardi B posted photos of themselves on Instagram to celebrate the premiere of "WAP." An independent designer quickly noticed that the rappers' matching tops were copies of a top she had designed last year.

Keep Reading... Show less
Health and Wellness

When You Have A Disability, Finding A Job Is Twice As Hard, Believe Me, I Know

We have got to create a safer work environment for people with disabilities.

"My advice to other disabled people would be, concentrate on things your disability doesn't prevent you from doing well, and don't regret the things it interferes with. Don't be disabled in spirit as well as physically." – Stephen Hawking

Keep Reading... Show less

7 Books That Are NOT In The Young Adult Genre That Will Change Your Life

Young Adult isn't the only genre that exists, so here are seven books that any book lover wanting to try something new will love.

One of the most popular genres in literature that everyone has read at least one book from is Young Adult fiction. Now, I personally can say that, in the past, I have been one of those people that only read from the YA section of the bookstore.
While there is absolutely nothing wrong with just reading one genre, it's good sometimes to venture out of your reading comfort zone into the other book genres of the literary world.

In a previous article, I discussed the importance and power of words. The perfect example of this is literature and its impact on the world. Books have always played a crucial part in human lives, from how we are able to expand our knowledge to how we pass our time.

Keep Reading... Show less
Facebook Comments