This is the year to end the judgments, the criticism, the hate and the bullshit that victims of abuse or sexual assault have to hear on a daily basis. This is the year to listen and open our eyes to what is going on around us. In our own workplaces, hallways, homes and everyday lives. 2018 is the year for being honest for once.
It is a new year. This past 2017 as a society of females and males we have heard hundreds of public voices speak out against abuse they have faced for days, weeks, months or years. Many have spoken out about abuse they faced in the past while others have spoken out much sooner. None of that lowers the importance of the courage these victims have to come out about their traumatic stories. While acts of victim blaming are still heard every single day by many survivors, the progress that has been made over the past year is incredible and unlike past years. Celebrities as well as common everyday Americans have spoken their truth and showed their fearlessness by sharing their stories and experiences. I am a firm believer that the most important thing to have to do as humans is speak our truth. As a victim myself of abuse and sexual assault, it inspires me to hear the amount of men and women who have had the bravery to defend their worth and inspire others to do the same for themselves. The amount of motivation, self-love, and empathy I have seen in the past year outweighs all the hate I have seen as well. The power of love will always overpower words of hate.
However, this is only the beginning of the progress.
I have gained the strength over the past few years to use my voice for the better by speaking my own truth on what I have been through as well as sharing my journey of healing. It took me months to be able to come to terms with my story, to cope in healthy ways as well as unhealthy ways. I have been able to gain knowledge on my PTSD and what triggers me in a certain moment. I have experienced nightmares that seem never-ending, panic attacks that are sudden and hours of feeling numb and hopeless. All the pain and the suffering I have gone through due to my own personal trauma has in some ways also shaped me into the way I am. While my experiences do not define me, they have taught me things such as empathy, compassion, and strength. I have been able to heal many of my broken pieces and accept the progress of piecing them back together. I have truly learned that the phrase “All things broken can be fixed again” is very true if you can find the hope to believe in it. The number of girls who have had the resilience speak out on social media and say #MeToo have made an impact on how I treat myself in my own story and makes me realize how important our voices are as well as my own.
2018 is going to be the year we reach the limits people said were impossible. This is the year we end all sexual assault and victim blaming. It is about time we come together as a whole to uplift one another rather than tear each other apart.
I am proud to be among so many special individuals with such an important message to send. I have truly been ignited to use my own power to help other victims around me. This is the year of something big, something many of us have hoped and prayed for such a long time now. To all fellow survivors of abuse and sexual assault, I say #MeToo. I believe in you and I have faith in the power of our words. Here is to change.