Here is my answer: I believed that, to borrow an analogy from a friend, if I kept digging I would find water. And sometimes I did. Just enough to sustain me. And when you’re dying of thirst, that water is the best water you’ll ever drink. When you’re alienated from your friends, there’s no one to tell you that there’s a drinking fountain 20 feet away. And when your self-worth reaches such depths after years of being treated like you’re worthless, you might find you think you deserve that sort of treatment, and no one else will love you.
…g the nation’s women and children over to pedophiles and rapists simply because they asked them to. And if we let Senators like Al Franken — representatives that have voting records filled with support for women’s rights — fall to pedophiles like Roy Moore, then we are allowing the real traumas of exploited women be used as an excuse to put more women and girls in harm’s way.
Al Franken’s joke didn’t crush her notion of who she was or how she could walk in this world. This joke didn’t give her PTSD or depression or any of the lasting forms of struggle that true rape and assault victims must face minute by minute. It hasn’t informed every relationship she’s had since. And it wasn’t in any way what so ever a form of rape, assault or even harassment.
What Leeanne Tweeden has done is stolen the very real traumas of very real survivors — people like me — and mocked them. What she has done is taken our pain and our bravery and our strength and exploited it on behalf of a network of people that actively prey on the women and children she is pretending to show solidarity with. What she is doing is vile and it is disgusting and it is dangerous on every personal and political level associated with sexual assault in the United States.
But now everybody’s involved. Because innocent people have been killed in a church, in a nightclub, at a concert or a cafe. Domestic violence no longer lives inside that one house on the block. Domestic violence lives in the public now.
I broke my own heart when I did not come home from school that day. My mother could “take it” for me, but I couldn’t “take it” anymore. My middle sister, 13, ran away. Our father, remarried with two new small children, put her into a b…