I recently performed with the @diamondfamilycircus at the #barccwalkforchange , an organization that helps survivors of domestic violence. Proud to share my skills to create a safer, stronger community.
Like every year, this year again I went for BARCC's Walk for Change, for sexual assault awareness.
I really wanted to go this time, as a lot happened this year such as the Me Too and Times Up movement. It encouraged me (who used to be afraid to share as well as acknoweldge my experience) as well as so many others to speak up our stories. When I saw so many statuses, my heart broke and I saw that the problem is bigger than we all thought, and that we are not alone.
Keeping this in mind, I joined the Berklee team and walked for all the survivors. Its time we bring some change. Its time that all of this stops. I hope no one gets to say Me too again because the Time is Up!
Its always good to walk for a good cause, chat with people, inspiring music, food, oh and lots of dogs and babies (my two favourites in the world).
This was fun. I realized this is my last time doing this as a Berklee student, but I can do this normally.
The old pervert who assaulted me last year justified his actions to a courtroom full of people by saying he had "a natural visceral response" to the "tissue paper thin shorts" I was wearing that day. "She came around wearing those. Something bad was going to happen. I can't help the reptilian part of my brain. I don't have impulse control. Any man in here can understand--you saw her!"
Well, your "visceral response" was illegal. I was recovering from multiple prior traumas, and you added yourself to the list of men who have violated MY rights to MY body.
Today is important because standing up against sexual violence is important. Standing up for women is important. Standing up for fellow survivors is important. I AM IMPORTANT. And I choose to be heard, regardless of how uncomfortable that makes others. Rape should make you more uncomfortable than rape victims.
My history with sexual assault made me feel like 1) I was worthless and damaged 2) there would always be another incident and the nightmare would never end 3) I would never be capable of intimacy ever again 4) I would never trust men, let alone love men.
My PTSD symptoms from previous assaults and boundaries I've laid out have been scoffed at by guys I've dated and friends I've trusted.
Nobody tells you that the ‘rape talk’ will be a thing that has to happen before any romantic relationship gets too serious. Thankfully, some men will surprise you and hold your hand and weep with you when you tell them, because they can’t believe anyone would be capable of hurting you.
PTSD isn’t cured by one blissful experience, and anxiety is a bitch. But time and love heals. For the first time, I'm in a healthy relationship where my soft and hard no's are respected, and that should be a standard not a miracle.
Closing reminder: Consent is clear, active, coherent, and enthusiastic. The lack of an overjoyed yes, is a no. Hesitation, "I don't know", "I'm not sure", etc. is a no. Being blackout drunk is a no. No means no.