With the heightened conversation about sexual assault this past year, especially this past week with the Kavanaugh hearings, the outpour of support for survivors has been instrumental in changing the narrative of sexual assault and the way survivors carry the burden of their trauma.
The permanent impact of sexual violence in all aspect's of a survivor's life can be insurmountable. It can impact anything and everything—from the way we react to physical touch to the way we operate in our workplace. Because of this burden, the role of a supportive partner in a survivor's life can be not only healing but life-changing.
Supportive partners are the unspoken heroes in the lives of survivors. And for that, they deserve a huge thank you:
Thank you for believing us.
Thank you for never shaming us for what happened.
Thank you for always making us feel safe and secure.
Thank you for never making us feel like we're alone.
Thank you for always being more than OK with our comfort level.
Thank you for always being there when our traumatic memories are too much to bear.
Thank you for being patient.
Thank you for making consent a constant in our lives.
Thank you for loving us unconditionally.
If you're a supportive partner to a survivor, although a few simple "thank you's" may not seem like a big deal, we want you to know how much your acts of love have made a difference in our lives. The aftermath of our experience may be life-long, but with you, it feels easier every day.
And if you're a survivor, know that you deserve to find a kind of love that is accepting and helps raise you up throughout your path of healing, regardless of whether you're currently in a relationship or not. You deserve nothing short of a love that is respectful, caring and humanizing.
To the supportive partners of sexual assault survivors, thank you.