I can only sit and imagine about the type of person I would be if I didn’t experience sexual assault. A part of me was taken away and replaced
with anger, depression and the limited ability to trust anyone. Sometimes,
I feel like I’ll never get that piece back no matter how hard I search for it. I started getting molested at 12 years old and it carried on until I was 17 years old. The gruesome experience was over the course of 5 years, the individual was not a stranger but someone who my family trusted. It’s unfortunate that at such a young age I lost myself before I even had the chance to start that journey of finding myself.
more the abuse occurred the more things started to change. Depression
and anger were the most frequent forms of trauma that I dealt with personally. As if that was not enough, I went through bouts of suicidal thoughts and attempts. My abuse ended because I moved away due to fighting in school and at my new school, I was okay but still had to learn how to cope and I was still dealing with trauma but I got through it.
Words can’t even explain how I felt, I was dealing with sexual assault once again. How was I going to fully heal from being abused as a child when
I’m dealing with more trauma again? I didn’t know where to turn, I didn’t know who to talk to, all I knew was that I was basically ‘damaged goods’ and that nobody was ever going to want me. Sexual assault changed me, since I couldn’t defend myself in those situations I now get defensive when anybody says or does something to me. I always want to stand up for myself, I always get angry, it’s hard for me to trust people, it’s hard for me to love myself. I hated everything about myself and for the life of me, I couldn’t find happiness even in the smallest places. Every morning I dreaded getting up out of bed because I had to deal with this harsh reality, it was easier to just sleep and
never wake up.
I’m currently a student at Spelman College studying biology with hopes
of becoming a Forensic Pathologist, specializing in rape and sexual homicides. I decided to become more vocal about my story at Spelman which soon led to my activism. I told my story at a “Let It Glow” event which was a huge step. My emotions took over as I shared the
details of my story, I started crying, my hands were shaking, and at
times I could barely talk. In the end I was able to finish and it felt
like a huge weight was lifted off my shoulders. My friends motivated
me to become an advocate and help others.
throughout the school year for the ItsOnUs Week Of Action, participate in Twitter chats, and also continue to spread the ItsOnUs message on campus and in communities for others to join the movement of fighting against sexual assault. In November 2015, Vice President Joe Biden visited the Atlanta University Center to talk to students and faculty of Morehouse College, Spelman College and Clark Atlanta University about sexual assault and holding each other accountable.
I had the opportunity to meet and work with members of the White House and Generation Progress as well as meeting the Vice President, and
In addition to my work, I partnered with the mayor of Atlanta, Kasim Reed and his Take A Stand Campaign to launch Atlanta as an official ItsOnUs city. Following the event, I had a chance to sit down with District Attorneys, celebrities, survivors, members of Atlanta Police Department and city council to discuss next steps on fighting against sexual assault in the state of Georgia. Over the summer, I interned with Sexual Health Innovations in California for their Callisto Project. Callisto is an online reporting process used by universities for students who experience sexual assault, dating violence, and stalking. This system was presented at the White House Data Jam on protecting students against sexual assault.
Changemaker, letters from Vice President Joe Biden and President Obama, and being recognized in blogs and websites in my community and outside communities. Today I’m currently working with sexual assault organizations such as ItsOnUs, End Rape On Campus, and NO MORE.
Atlanta, volunteering at many events, helping the homeless, and mentoring students not only in the United States but also in Africa by providing them with project based learning activities, unlimited educational and professional resources that mold them into young leaders.