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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.
each moment that you survive
takes you one step closer
to the time when
things will be better.

it might still be far away.
it might not be an easy journey.

but right now,
you are reading this

which means you are awake

which means you are alive

which means that
you have survived
every single moment
up to this point.

you have survived
every heartbreak

every loss

every laugh

every smile

and

you have survived
through times where
you weren’t sure you could do it.
but you did.

and now, you are done reading.
now, you are a few minutes
and 127 words closer
to seeing better days.
better days are coming.
just keep reading.
just keep breathing.

keep breathing…
keep breathing…
keep breathing…
Carter 6d
It’s been exactly one year
since the day that started my downfall.
It’s been exactly one year
since i was broken beyond repair.
It’s been exactly one year
since I lost everything.
Good night, depression,
Sweet dreams, bipolar,
Goodbye, toxicity,
Welcome to the art of sympathy
Happy World Mental Health Day! Mental health issues are often neglected, and their survivors are unsung.
My fellow psychology students and I wish you all well today!
* By “survivor”, I meant a survivor of mental health disorder(s). I have not suffered any traumatic events; I’m here to inspire those who have been affected by it. :)
Destiny Oct 9
I was taught by societal expectations that brothers are suppose to protect their little sisters.

I was taught to trust my brothers and to know that they would do anything to protect me.

My family was never normal though, so believing this made me look like an idiot.

I am the only daughter in a family with many boys.

I was so naive and stupid to believe the lies.

It's crazy that my brother who wasn't even around a lot is the one I trust the most.

I was five the first time anything ****** happened.

I had absolutely no clue what was happening and why I was being manipulated into doing.

And even crazier, the  predator was only about 7.

What!

I still to this day haven't told a soul about that night, but I remember it like it was yesterday.

I let it slip out of my mind thinking that it was normal.

From then, he made me do things for him and watch stuff with him that I didn't want to watch.

Everyday, I thought about him hurting me more.

I was 11 the next time.

I had a little more knowledge of what he was doing, but I was still intimidated by everything.

I knew though, that it actually wasn't normal and really should not have been something I had to go through.

I was home alone with him, and I just wanted to be in my room alone.

He was around 13 years old.

That was the first time he had threatened me with the "I'll tell mom" card.

I learned to not even think about telling my parents about what happened.

Thankfully he stopped messing with me for a while because I had moved in with my grandma.

Thank God that she let me.

I ended up getting taken away from my parents, living in an emergency shelter, living in a children's home, losing my dad, and getting moved in with a potential adoptive family before he hurt me again.

I was 15 when he sexually assaulted me in my adoptive family's home.

He had gotten kicked out of placements and came to visit to see if he could be adopted with us.

I didn't say anything because I knew that no one would believe me.

I ended up telling my adoptive parents because I was in so much physical pain.

They claimed that they believed me, but I knew they didn't.

They put all these restrictions on me after he had left and an investigation started.

I was questioned more that I thought I would need to be and I had two of the police investigators tell me that I made it all up.

I felt like I was just a burden to everyone at that point and no one knew all the details.

I wasn't given the chance to tell my story.

Years later, my whole family came up with reasons to justify what he did to me.

They said that he just wanted me to be prepared.

My brother that assaulted me wasn't the only one that was messed up.

My twin brother played a big part in everything too.

He knew that my attacker was going to do what he did to me.

Not only did he know, he told me he wanted to watch.

To this day, almost 5 years later, I have never been able to look at either of them the same way.

My mother still doesn't believe me, but she stopped caring about me years ago.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Dear mom,

I believed you. Why couldn't you believe me?

Dear R,

What did I do to you for you to take advantage of my body? Why did you hate me so much that you could do that?

Dear C,

Why did you want to see him hurt me? Why weren't you supportive?

Dears R & C,

Why didn't y'all protect y'alls little sister? I'm the only one you have!

Dear Me,

None of that was your fault! You didn't do anything wrong! Don't ever be afraid to ask for help when you are in danger. I'm here for you!

Love yourself!
EmilyBatdorf Sep 25
The pain you cause is
a pinprick
on skin already
Ravaged
by scars and tattoos.
Carlo C Gomez Sep 17
Eureka!

Raised up & standing tall

She's my port of call

Such a rush

To forcibly ascend

Such a hush

That has settled in

And soon we'll surface

Life in a passionate bubble

Instead of the trouble

Of riding in the back
of a hearse
Prachi Sep 12
Earphones on,
Music off;
Thoughts are loud,
And the heart cries out.

The mind is very busy,
It is not that easy;
The issue may be petty,
Or one with the enormity.

This too shall pass,
You are gold, not glass;
Trying times will make you glow,
Love yourself and go with the flow.

Survivor is not the one,
Bearing all the pain in the heart;
But the one who knew,
When to let go and grow.
To anyone who needs to hear this, you are a survivor and you will succeed.
Carlo C Gomez Sep 11
Shipwrecks
and underwater ruins

Dressed as shiny
moons and stars

That shimmer
for the sandpipers

When the sun drops her guard
and shows a little skin
Heyaless Sep 4
I am fighting a war .
I don't run away from the war zone .
I fight !
I fight to win my fear,
I fight to win my depression
I fight to depend on myself
I fight to save my love
I fight ....Either i will lose or i will win .
Theres no give up in between .
We all are fighting with something , somewhere . I never judge a person by their appearances or their way of approach . If anyone is hyper rational with no emotions don't turn away from them . They must be in hell ..I know . Because I'm becoming one of them .
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