“I have a friend who was sexually assaulted by multiple people. Seeing her with PTSD and her paranoia now, is upsetting. It’s hard to just hangout casually with her because she’s always so afraid. It makes my heart hurt. I don’t know why people are shit. Who would do that to a person?”
“he was someone I trusted, he was someone I knew. when I felt his hand up my shirt I couldn’t believe what was about to happen. I only froze.”
“When I was just 11 years old my mom had a boyfriend. At first when my sister and I met him we thought he was a great boyfriend for our mom then he had a sudden interest in me and kept touching me inappropriately then raped me repeatedly till I became 15 years old. He went to jail but not for life only till I’m 28 and now I’m 20 years old.”*
* some spelling has been adjusted for clarity. I do not touch punctuation or re-word any stories.
“My partner has been sexually assaulted and sometimes I have to hold them while they cry.”
“My old friend was molested in 4th grade.”
“He was my friend + I said no. He didn’t stop, + his friends were outside encouraging him + making fun of me. I changed who I am, + the things I enjoy because of what he did to me. This year was 10 years
“I was sexually assaulted by a male kitchen employee. He was verbal and physical even though I clearly said no. I repeatedly told him to stop and he never did”
“It started at 16. I wasn’t ready and he wasn’t okay with that, but I felt obligated. He thought it would be ‘fun’ to hit me, he thought it would be fun to choke me. I let it happen because it made him happy, and I wanted him to be happy, so it was worth the pain for him to be happy.”
Yesterday I was lucky enough to interact with four students who were willing to share their stories of assault on paper. I feel incredibly grateful they were willing to put themselves out and deeply saddened that each had to suffer.
“I have learned now that while those who speak about one’s miseries usually hurt, those who keep silence hurt more.”
“We all have a story” cards were dropped at my doorstep today. As much as possible, I genuinely look forward to what everyone who comes by the exhibition has to say. Sexual assault has impacted everyone in one way or another.