Although much is written on the subject of violence against women, on any given day one can search the Internet to find a myriad of stories regarding Domestic Violence from Academic Research from students and those working as professional advocates to thousands of blog, magazine, and news articles directed toward general readership audiences of all age ranges. However, there is very little written from the first-hand perspective of a formerly battered woman as told by the woman herself without speaking through professional advocates or journalists.
When we are young, most people won’t see the world as it is. I can remember the world when I was young, was full of bustle and life, empty of responsibility and solely about meeting friends and having a good time. I couldn’t see much past primary school or secondary school, I knew that they were ahead of me, but between a group of friends at school, and a room for me at home, I could never have imagined what growing older would be—the people I’d meet and who I’d become.
What specific coping mechanisms helped you the most when you were in a crisis due to sexual violence? I asked other survivors from around the world this exact question. I wanted to offer those options to someone in need and not just what helped me. Talking about it was the last on the list.
Counseling or support groups
Rearrange your room and/or your surroundings
Play with animals
Deep breathing exercises (Box breathing was highly recommended)
Take some time off for you
Play a sport
*Sigh* It has taken my mind and heart so long to finally come to the world and share this story. Before I start I do want to state one very important thing. I still love my stepmom, but I do not agree with how she spoke and handled this situation, even though my dumb self put myself there. However, the word no. STILL. MEANS. NO!
The ordeal started in grade school. Post summertime, new school year and I was already feeling the "first-day" jitters creep up on me. That's typical every school year. Growing up in a ghetto neighborhood had always been a struggle for women like me. If you acted different (non-black), you were basically treated... like a lame and a nobody.
My first week of college, I was raped. For the longest time, I could not bring myself to say that I was raped. I started off by denying that it had ever happened to me. Yet when I finally did begin to accept that it had happened, I could only call it sexual assault. I denied myself the reality of what had happened in order to protect myself, but it only hurt me more.