sexual abuse

‘I was 13 when an older friend said, ‘I’m out of condoms but it’s fine, I know what I’m doing.’ I believed him.’: Woman says the key to a healthy sex life after a ‘past’ is communication

“At 13, I began to let boys put their hands on my sacred spaces, but my permission still didn’t gain their respect. I was just a goal conquered as he walked past the football team. I saw the smirks and yet I continued to endure the degrading behavior. Sex is so much more sacred than mankind has treated it.”

‘It took an overdose to come to the conclusion I was not the young woman I was raised to be. Suddenly, everything began to click.’: Transgender man advocates for support in the ‘addicted trans community’

“I threw heavy flower pots through the glass front door and begged the police officer to shoot me. Sadly, the beast that is addiction took over. As terrifying as it was to unearth such a deep truth about myself, suddenly everything began to click. I began to recognize why I couldn’t stay sober for even an hour. I was not the woman I was raised to be.”

‘A group of ‘friends’ chased me and threw a water bottle at me, while snorting and calling me ‘Mrs. Piggy.’ I ran and carried the shame that weighed more.’: Woman shares journey to self-love, changes she made for her daughter

“After delivering my first child at 15, I was left with a body I didn’t recognize – heavier, softer, and covered in stretch marks. I wallowed here. I was molested here. I hid underneath men’s clothes, 2 sizes too big. Anything to deflect sexual attention. I am more than my body, but this vessel is not less important because its existence has been perverted and misused since the beginning of time.”

‘I screamed, thinking surely that would make him stop. He simply whispered in my ear, ‘Just another minute.’: Male sexual abuse survivor who murdered his abuser advocates for child abuse laws, ‘Break the silence’

“I was alone with pure evil. My abuser was a man I not only looked up to, but trusted completely. I began abusing drugs and alcohol to get me through my day. This was how I was living when I ran into my rapist in a deli. A young boy was by his side, calling him the same nickname he used to insist I call him. I was a completely broken man. I did the unthinkable. I murdered my abuser.”

‘He bribed me to kiss him like lovers do. He had to ‘teach me.’ He did things fathers should never do to their daughters.’: Child abuse survivor encourages others, ‘Be free. You deserve it.’

“My father would permit himself to watch me as I took showers. My father had to ‘teach me’ so when I started dating, I would be ‘prepared.’ I froze in disbelief. The fear of sending my father back to jail was far worse than speaking up of the wrongdoings. Who else would support my family and me? I wanted to scream, ‘I HAVE HAD ENOUGH!’ I can’t emphasize enough YOU are not alone. I was stronger than I thought. You are now in a safe place.”

‘I knocked on the door. ‘I remember everything you did to me.’ We drove from California to Texas, just so I could look him in the eye and say it.’: Sexual assault survivor fosters 26 children, ‘I want to bring them hope’

“I remember my grandfather always calling my name, looking for me. While most kids were dreaming of graduating high school, I was piecing together horrific memories. I remembered the smell of the burnt orange carpet when I’d hide under the bed. I remembered the knick-knacks on the dresser I focused on to escape what was happening. Many people ask me, ‘Why in the world do you continue to do foster care when your own biological kids have left the nest?’ The answer is simple: I’m meant to love people through their pain.”

‘Will I look like him?’ The plane landed. Instant panic struck. My parents never wanted me to find out about him.’: Woman ‘finally complete’ after emotional reunion with biological father, ‘He’s the piece I’ve always been missing’

“I lost my adoptive father and mother only 2 weeks before. Between all the madness, I finally found my biological father. I was told he was ‘the town drunk.’ I was never supposed to know he existed. I heard the plane fly over the dark sky. My stomach suddenly dropped. ‘Please remain seated,’ the pilot announced. I took a deep breath and turned my teary eyes. An average height man locked his blue eyes on mine. Both our smiles began to rise. This was the moment I’d dreamt of my entire life.”

‘If you want to kill yourself I’ll help you pull the trigger,’ my dad told me. ‘You’ll sit here and eat.’: Woman fights obesity, undergoes weight loss surgery at husband’s demand, ‘my soul is healing with each bout of laughter’

“I met my first husband at 19. We married at 21. He loved how I was plus-sized and enjoyed giving me unhealthy foods as ‘treats.’ He joined the Air Force. ‘There’s a woman in my unit who reminds me of you, but she’s a lot thinner. I have a crush on her.’ We went out to dinner. ‘Enjoy eating like this now because this stops when we get on base.’ I found out he’d been talking to other women while I was in the hospital.”

‘This is $150 of underwear. My team and I are no longer willing to let our survivors go home without a bra, or decent pair of underwear.’: Sexual assault nurse examiner shares act of kindness for rape survivors

“Ever seen a woman who’s just been raped, just had a 3-hour forensic exam, had every surface of her battered body swabbed, photographed, and inventoried for the police walk out of a hospital wearing oversized hospital scrubs and postpartum hospital underwear, her arms wrapped tightly around her chest, ashamed, because she doesn’t have a bra to wear? I have. And I absolutely refuse to ever see it again.”

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