Campaign wars... Dear Sexual Assault Survivor....

Dear Sexual Assault Survivor - 

I know you're hurting, especially if you have never come forward, and I know that right now our country's political tone and climate is adding to your pain. 

You're seeing all the flippant remarks on social media and in the news from some of the most influential and powerful.  The ignorant comments about a crime you know all to well even though there's never been a guilty verdict- and no justice has been served. A crime that has robbed you of your voice and quite possibly your soul. Each time you see or hear comments of "prove it" ..."she asked for it."... "she's a liar" ...a little piece of you dies as you cringe into the dark memories of your own experience - your truth. 

I want you to know there are many fellow survivors walking the same path or have walked it at some point. I
want you to know we believe you and there is a community of us who will be there for you when you're ready to seek us out.  Please don't allow our presidential campaign to drive you further into seclusion, isolation and deeper into the personal Hell you live with every day of your life. 

I apologize for our society's ignorance. We're sometimes petulant teenagers too busy finger pointing while screaming at each other to realize that standing next to us is someone screaming silent pains as tears roll down their cheeks. 

I urge you to take a moment and realize you need to take care of yourself. You are valuable and worthy of so much more than a world of painful silence. 

To those survivors who have found your voice, thank you. Thank you for being on the frontline of the debate and reminding all others of the humans we are. We are mothers, daughters, aunts, and sisters. Some of us are sons, brothers, uncles and fathers. Sexual assault is a crime that can and does touch both genders and all ages. It reaches across the great divide of political affiliations. It happens in all races, all faiths and in all neighborhoods -from the poverty stricken to the elite. To all of you, remember to also take care of yourself as you fight the battle of respect and awareness. 

I pray that the spotlight we are currently in will break way to a new tomorrow of enlightenment where the crime we've suffered is no longer considered banter or leverage in a campaign. I have great hopes that those in power will see the damage it causes and how like a poison it spreads to all aspects of our society and in our communities. 

We are many and we can make a difference. We will make changes and bring awareness to all on what we endure - We will honor those of us who were tired and ended our lives too soon at our own hands whether it was from drugs or alcohol...looking for love in all the wrong places and from all the wrong people...or if we decided the world was better off without us.  Their plight was not in vain. 

From this great argument now playing out, I know it will give way to civil discussions - empower the silent to speak and create more avenues for healing.  The rainbow reminds us that there is beauty to be had after a storm. 

Be well, and remember you are not alone. 

From a fellow survivor - 

Eva Marie Woywod  


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