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Let's be clear,
Compassion is not a kind of currency.
****** favors are not a type of contract.
The pictures he received were not consent.
My outfit is not an open invitation,
And there's no justification for what he did.
when I was asked to talk
about my trauma,
I opened up again and
let the words spill out.

I didn't tell them how
badly it burns when
they come back up.

I talked about depression,
about feeling alone,
about attempting suicide.
I talked about deaths
and pain and everything
that I have witnessed.

and then I began to
talk about my assault,
and the men who still
haunt my dreams.

I started by saying,
"the first time I was *****..."

I paused there.

I realized I said
"the first time"

meaning there was
more than one time.

there was more than
one hospital visit,
more than one police report,
more than one court case
that went nowhere.

there is more than one
****** still walking free,
living his life and not caring
that he ended mine.

I said it so ******* casually,
the same way you'd make
small talk about the weather.

I said it like it was normal.

I suddenly felt nauseous.
I needed to spit out more
than just my words.

I spent the next hour
hunched over a toilet bowl.
I think that my body was
trying to ***** the memories
out of my system.

I said it like it was normal.

I said it like it was
an everyday occurrence,
like it's something
you hear about daily
and no one bats an eye.

I said it like it was normal.

I felt so sick, like
I had been poisoned.
I climbed into bed and
didn't get up for days.

I said it like it
was ******* normal,

and the worst part was
when I realized it is.
my therapist told me that I should
try to imagine my mental illness
in the form of a person.

she said that sometimes
it's easier to fight these things
when they aren't invisible.

she said that maybe
doing this would help me to
remember that I am not crazy,
and that a mental illness is
just as real as a physical one.

she's told me over and over
about the chemicals in my brain,
and how my ****** literally
changed the way that I function.

she told me that he put
my body into a chronic state
of fight-or-flight mode.

she made sure
to use the word "chronic"
and not "permanent."

she makes sure
to remind me that
recovery is possible.

but when I try to picture
my mental illness
in the form of a person,
it has his face.

all of my demons
have his face.
my hands are in your hair
and your hands are around my neck,
and you’re choking me,
but I’m letting you choke me.
and it’s hard to explain
because I am not in control, you are.
but I am choosing to let you have control,
and that choice makes all the difference.
_________

my ****** did not listen
to my voice saying “no,”
but he did not take away
my ability to say “yes.”
I am a **** victim.
I am a woman who enjoys ***.
I am allowed to be both.
and if you can’t understand that,
you are part of the problem.
every 73 seconds
an American is sexually assaulted.
these statistics do not shock me anymore.
1 in 5 American women have been *****
at some time in their lives.
1 in 71 American men have been *****
at some time in their lives.
in an average year,
there are 433,648 reported
rapes in the United States.
these are only 2 of those stories.
_________


#1
it does not shock me
when my friend calls
and says that she
doesn’t remember
what happened,
but she woke up
lying in a puddle
of her own blood.

it does not shock me
when she’s sobbing
so loudly into
the phone that I
can’t make out any
of her words.

it does not shock me
that I don’t need to
hear her to know
what happened
last night.
I can hear the fear
in her voice.
I can feel her pain.
I already know.

it does not shock me
when I see her sitting
in my passenger seat,
and I automatically know
that she is not fully here.
she left a part of herself
there on that mattress.
looking over at her,
I know that right now,
she is beginning to realize
that she lost something
that she will never
be able to get back.

it should have been hers
to give away,
but it was stolen.
she is the 1 in 5.
_______


#2
it does not shock me
when we walk past
the Auntie Anne’s
in the mall,
and my friend
collapses at the smell
of cinnamon
and sugary pretzels.

it does not shock me
when he apologizes
over and over
and tells me that
he was *****,
and that his ****** was
chewing on a piece of
cinnamon-scented gum.

it does not shock me
that I am holding him
while he shakes and cries
on the floor of the mall.
I want to hug him tighter
and keep him close to me,
but I know that right now,
his mind is already gone.
he feels like he is still there.
he tells me that it feels
like they are hurting him
all over again.
I can’t hold him
tight enough
to bring him back.

it does not shock me
that he waited so long
to tell me this.
it does not shock me
when he says that
he didn’t think it
mattered because
he is a man,
because so many
people have told him
he should’ve liked it.

he does not tell them
his rapists were
six grown men
at one time,
but they wouldn’t
care even if he did.
he is the 1 in 71.
________


we now avoid parties
and pale blue bedsheets.
we never go past certain streets,
even though it adds
a few extra miles onto every trip.
we now avoid pretzel stands
and candy stores.
we never watch romance movies or films, even though almost every movie
has some kind of *** or kissing scene.

we are always aware of where we go,
and who we’re with,
and who knows that we’re going out, and
who knows where we’ll be if we do.

we avoid the things
that we once loved to do.
we avoid the places
that we once loved to go.

we are hyper-vigilant,
and we are cautious,
and we are careful
because we are scared.
we are all scared.

my friend is the 1 in 5.
my other friend is the 1 in 71.
I am the 1 in 5.

almost everyone I know
has a story like this.
this information may be shocking,
but not to us. not anymore.
it can happen anywhere
to anyone at anytime,
but we see it so often that I think
we’ve grown numb to it.

if you talk to a group of teenagers
and you tell them, “I was *****.”
they will not be surprised.
this is every day.
we are afraid every day.

know that this is not
just a collection of statistics.
these are your family.
these are your friends.
these are all people just like you,
with beating hearts
and lives to live,
and we are so much more
than just numbers on a list.
NO means NO means NO means NO

I am truth
Truth, you'll never know

The one who turns a NO to YES
To suit them best
To rob what isn't theirs

The one who turns a NO to YES
Will never feel Truth's caress

Will never feel the raw beauty
Of living with integrity

NO means NO means NO means NO

We both know it's time for you to go.
Did I stutter?
i dream of a world where **** no longer exists.

i dream of a world of respect.
where I no longer have to defend myself...
or look over my shoulder late at night when I'm getting in my car

i dream of a world where I can truly be taken seriously,

when I state the truth that I am in deed a feminist...
and no in deed I do not hate men.

i dream of the time when **** no longer exists.

when I can forget what you did.
just erase your entire memory with a gigantic bottle of mental white-out

blot out your entire existence so you are unable to hurt anyone ever again.

i dream of a world where **** no longer exists.

i brace for this brand new day and I dare to dream...
a bunch of words that came out unexpectedly....
In the whole time I experienced you

It all comes down to this main truth

Fourteen-year-old girls

Should not feel the hell

That comes from getting in that car

Driven by that older man

Who knew better than to let it get that far


So then years later,

That girl can hate

Every single man

Who didn’t treat her right


It’s a painful sight

A beautiful woman,

Losing her pride

After accepting that ride

It was the biggest mistake of her life.



Let’s talk about the truth

I meant little if nothing to you


That was back then

But now

To me, you’re just a memory

I barely reminisce

To you, I don’t even exist



Let’s face the facts head on

The only reason that I haven’t

Cut your memory completely off


Is because

Some mistakes are just so huge

And my epic life mistake was you

You’re in a microscopic part of my mind

So I remember. Not. To. Repeat. You.



And to teach my future daughters

As well as women of today

To accept nothing less but kindness and love

As the only way



So if you must open his car door

At least enter guarded

At least enter strong

Wear your pride wherever you stride

And remember you are a woman…



So, you can never be wrong.
say NO to ****** assault.
eden Sep 30
human beings are not
puppets attached to strings
whose legs you can open
at any time
human beings are not
dolls without life in them
who must bend to your
will
when you want
them to
im angry. about a boy who cares only about himself and probably has an std.
Lilly Smith Sep 26
I live in a world full of prying eyes, these windows have no blinds as I feel their eyes looking at my sleeping body. I hear their whistles, I hear their words.  I awoke when the glass shattered all over my carpet floor. I looked up into those eyes that were like a lion looking at his next ****. He walked closer to my bed and put rosy glasses over my eyes, my thoughts became foggy, my eyes turned to a blur, and all I could think of was him. How he was a nice guy, how I loved him, how he would never use me, how he loved me, and furthermore how no one could change my thoughts of him. Yes, all of those things became a reality, a reality I now wish to change because I was brainwashed. One night I was in an unsafe environment, where I was exposed to you. I said yes thinking you were sixteen but you were an adult, an adult who preyed on young insecure girls like me. After that night you took the rosy glasses of and what I knew was that you hurt me, you killed the part where I could fix myself, but now I'm broken. All I was to you was a porcelain doll that you could play with and once you were done you felt in pieces. You stole the pieces to my puzzle and now I'm unfixable, I'm broken to no point of return. I'm not the person I used to be, you killed me.
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