We've Got To Do Better For Our Sexual Assault Victims

We've Got To Do Better For Our Sexual Assault Victims

"As far as whether I was satisfied with the outcome, it's hard to say. I felt like I was known as either a victim or a crazy person for a long time."

3304
views

College: the time in which a young person can spread their wings and begin the journey of finding out who they are meant to be. It is in fact, probably the first time most are on their own.

It can be an exciting time; students are given more responsibility and really feel in charge of their lives. They make lifelong friendships, have late night adventures, and eventually graduate to get a degree in their chosen field.

When it comes to the well-being of students, parents easily put their trust in their child's university, and I understand why parents would do that. After all, it is not unreasonable to have the expectation that universities will ultimately protect their students who have been victimized, especially after an investigation was conducted and the perpetrator had been found guilty.

An Evangel University student, who will remain anonymous, was assaulted by another student. Her relationship was abusive; she was pushed to do things that she did not feel comfortable doing.

She said no. She pushed him off. Yet, he continued. She stayed in the relationship even though she had a difficult time trusting him. At this point, you could be asking yourself why she didn't leave.

She didn't leave because of the fear of what life would be like without him; she didn't want to believe that he was as bad as his actions portrayed him to be. That is the thing with guys like him; they break down your walls, manipulate you to believe that you are nothing without them; they keep you hanging on in some way or another.

Finally, almost a year later, and much prayer and consideration, she decided to report it to the school. She said that the school was helpful and understanding in the process.

A Title IX investigation was conducted and he was ultimately found guilty. The administration decided not to suspend him, and he was allowed to stay on campus the following summer.

After all of this, she was told that she needed to stay quiet about what had happened; it was something she kept to herself until she felt she no longer could. She sought wisdom and guidance from our counselors and our campus pastor and they were so helpful during this time.

Today, while she is not fully healed, she can say that the Lord has guided her through this and that whatever consequences come to her perpetrator she believes will come from the Lord. While she is continually healing from this event, her goal moving forward is to champion on other women that have or have not been through something like this. While this is something that no college student should have to experience, she firmly believes that because of this experience she is able to relate to other women who have gone through this.

Yes, she had the support of her counselor and our campus pastor, but she was mostly left to pick up the pieces knowing that the university had done everything that they were going to. She truly deserved better. She didn't deserve to feel like she was a crazy person. She deserved to have someone truly take her seriously.

The thing is, this is not the first time sexual assault on my college campus has been mishandled. I know of at least one person per year over the last four years who reported sexual assault and it was mishandled. Chances are everyone on campus knows someone who has been victimized, whether they realize it or not.

At the end of the day, all I really want is for my university to do better. It's not a perfect university and nor am I asking it to be one; all I am asking is for them to do better.

I just want to say a huge thank you to the brave person who allowed me to write this. Your courage and willingness to speak out inspires me constantly. I am so proud of you, and if anyone else who has been through this. You did not deserve what happened to you or the way that you were treated afterward.

If you have been affected by this, there are lots of great resources you can connect with

The National Sexual Assault Hotline is 800-656-4673. If you have been victimized, please do not hesitate to reach out to a friend or by calling The National Sexual Assault Hotline. If you don't feel comfortable reaching out to a friend just yet, that is perfectly okay.

Popular Right Now

Some Of Us Need Suicidal Thoughts To Fuel Our Fight To Stay Alive

You're walking down a pier and you hope someone pulls you back to the sand.

2254
views

I have suicidal thoughts but I don't want to die. It's just like swimming underwater but coming back up for air. To be completely honest, I have attempted suicide, and I don't feel relieved or anything like that. I feel like it was a cry for help that people chose to ignore.

Many people say that suicide is selfish, but it isn't.

Like I said in an earlier article about Kate Spade, I described suicide as, "Some are too far down a path that doesn't allow you to turn around. I believe that everyone that suffers from depression is in a line, this line is headed towards a sea and you can't look up or around you because there is a heavy force weighing down your head. You are walking and walking until you finally feel your feet hitting a pier and you can either jump and end it all or you can hope to God the person behind you wraps their arms around you and brings you back. Kate didn't have anyone that could wrap their arms around her and bring her back to the sand. We could all learn a valuable lesson from Mrs. Spade, no matter how successful you are, mental illness doesn't avoid the well-off. But always remember, there are multiple people there to pull you back to the sand."

I had to claw for the people in my life to pull me back to the sand for months, it wasn't until a couple months into college I found that person.

Earlier I referenced that having suicidal thoughts but not wanting to die was kinda like swimming underwater but coming up for air. This comes from you feeling like you are drowning but you know that you will be able to surface soon and beat your thoughts. As soon as you break the water, you feel a sense of relief, however, that feeling can be temporary. Some people have felt like not coming up is going to be easier than surfacing, but I've seen both sides. I know it is easier to stay under and take a deep breath, but there are so many people that are there to pull you back to the sand when you feel you're most alone.

IF YOU OR SOMEONE YOU KNOW ARE STRUGGLING WITH SUICIDAL THOUGHTS AND/OR TENDENCIES, REACH OUT IMMEDIATELY. NO ONE SHOULD GO THROUGH THIS ALONE. SUICIDE IS SERIOUS.

National Suicide Hotline: 1 (800) 273-8255 - available 24/7

Related Content

Connect with a generation
of new voices.

We are students, thinkers, influencers, and communities sharing our ideas with the world. Join our platform to create and discover content that actually matters to you.

Learn more Start Creating

10 Ways To Take Care Of Your Heart

February is here and it's time to discuss its most important themes: black history and heart disease.

3136
views

February is both Black History Month and American Heart Month. Both are incredibly important, especially to me. It's so important for everyone, especially African Americans, to take care of their heart.

According to statistics, heart disease is the leading cause of death in America, with one in four deaths being caused by heart disease. In the black community, the rates are much higher, causing 48% of women and 44% of men to die from heart disease. High blood pressure, obesity, and diabetes are all leading risk factors to heart disease.

These are some lifestyle changes you can make to lower your chances of suffering from heart disease.

1. Exercise! Exercise! Exercise!

2. Know your numbers.

Check in with your doctor to see about your blood sugar, cholesterol, and blood pressure levels. If something seems a little high or a little low, don't freak out! Just make sure to ask the questions in order to get them to normal. On the other hand, if something seems high or low, don't ignore it, address it!

3. Watch what you eat.

Talk is very cheap people! We (meaning I) must do better about actually changing our diet and not just talking about it.

4. Take your meds.

5. Lower your stress.

6. Quit smoking.

I mean really, why is this even still a thing?

7. Cut back on the salt.

Yes, that means less processed food and restaurants, I know.

8. Know your family history.

Ask your parents and grandparents what your family health history is like. You never know what could be genetically a threat to your life!

9. Find a primary doctor.

I am guilty when it comes to not wanting to go to the doctor. I am not a fan of any doctors, but that doesn't mean I don't need to do better. Find a primary doctor, but make sure it is somebody you like! The experience is always much better when you actually enjoy your visits.

10. Spread the word. 

Teach your family members, especially your kids, how to take care of themselves and lower their chances as well. A healthy family is a happy family!

Related Content

Facebook Comments