I attended the Amber Rose Slut Walk in DTLA yesterday. Through everything anyone could or would take away from the event, and no matter how hypercritical you could be of the walk itself or even of Amber. I found, tucked away in a corner of silence, a story of innocence not only lost, but ripped from this young girls’ life. Being a young woman and us being only a few years apart in age, I had to hold back the tears, as I read what she had to say on a sign she made the night before the walk.
The first time it happened, I was 14 years old… then it happened a few more times after that. It was late at night and perhaps I was out when I shouldn’t have been. Perhaps I was hanging out with people I shouldn’t have been, in a neighborhood I shouldn’t have been in. I had clothes on that perhaps I shouldn’t have. And might I add, at age 14 — I didn’t look 14… I didn’t tell anybody. Because with all that follows, how could I not be blamed… right?? I was asking for it? I had no business being out that late, that people would ask me about the shorts and tank top I had on. So the few times after, I still felt hurt, guilt and afraid that somehow it would be my fault. I had been “in the wrong place, at the wrong time…” I am now 24 years old and fear of being in “the wrong place at the wrong time…” It has been 10 years since that first time, and I am now breaking my silence, because for 10 years, my silence had broken me. I walk today to say, no matter what the circumstance, no matter what we wear, where we are or what time of night it is, this is not something that we ask for!! NO MEANS NO!!
It took me back to a time that I have spent countless seconds, minutes, hours, days; leading up to years trying to repress…
The story of my own abuse.
As I look down at my little girl, I cannot help but be filled with rage as to how I would react if anyone and I mean, A-N-Y-O-N-E even attempted to harm her.
Her words I read, evoked these emotions within me, perhaps they would have laid dormant for years more… now I feel empowered to speak out. Not for myself, but for the protection of ALL Women, Children and especially Young Girls.
This brave young woman should be celebrated. She may not be aware of the fact that she is a Hero. A Hero to all the silenced and broken women out in the world, who’s only form of therapy has been placing a band-aid on their abuse. She is a pioneer, stepping out and breaking her silence. UN-breaking her heart in an attempt to heal. Turning her tragedy into triumph.
I will follow her lead…