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America, tell me that I should shut my mouth because I am one of the 17.7 million women, because I am three times more likely to suffer from depression, six times more likely to suffer from PTSD, and four times more likely to contemplate suicide. 

Because my rapist’s reason was ‘you’re too sexy to stop’, because my rapist locked the door, repeatedly shoved me down and ripped my clothes off again and again, every time I tried to escape. 

Because I never thought to report, like the 60% of victims who don’t report their assaults, because when I wanted to report, I didn’t know where to go, because no one would support me, because of the 40% of assaults that are actually reported, only 10% lead to an arrest, 8% are prosecuted, 4% lead to a felony conviction, and only 3% of rapists will spend a day in jail. 

America, ask me what was I wearing, ask me what I did, ask me why I didn’t go to the police immediately, ask me right after it happened when it felt like there was nothing left inside but shame and flashbacks, ask me when I felt stripped of dignity or when I spent an hour shaking in the shower scrubbing every skin cell on my body but still feeling dirty, or when I spent hours in a friend’s arm while I searched for that silver lining to make life seem good again. 

So I ask you America. when are you going to stand with your daughters and sons?

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