LUCKY NUMBER THREE
Everyone has a number in their life that they find has a significant importance to them. That number for me is the number three. Now, lets not be deceived by the title because for me, it is quiet the opposite of lucky. For me, some of the most traumatic experiences that I have experienced has been in a bundle of three: three dog attacks, three stalkers, three sexual assaults’.
Best Colleges conducted a study of the amount of nonconsensual sexual conduct that an individual encounters during their college experience and 26% of female undergraduate students reported that they had experienced some type of nonconsensual sexual contact with another person. Whatever we may think of how high or low the number 26 is, this is only the people who were brave and confident enough in themselves to come forward make a statement of what had happened. The majority of the time (92% of the time to be exact) the predictor is someone that the women knows and most likely trust, and this is the biggest issue that I can see. When we personally know a person, we see them in a specific light, holding them at a certain level. It is difficult to see a person in a light that we have not witnessed ourselves, this is okay and natural, but what is not okay is when someone tells another person -who was not present- that someone they mutually know harassed them and the other persons response is ” well I know (insert name), I couldn’t image” or “I’m sure they didn’t really mean it” or the best one I have personally heard, “I think there is a misunderstanding.” If someone comes to you in confidence, please believe them. A majority of the time, they just want to feel like they are in a safe space, not to debate whether or not this individual is who you thought they were.
As I would agree with the rest of society that these events are horrendous and traumatic, I don’t think it should be considered a taboo topic or something that should be handled at the expense of the other persons pity. I am a victim, yes, but I don’t want to be seen or treated as a victim. I am strong and resilient and don’t want other peoples apologies or insight to what I should do. I don’t want to try to handle my cases and how I should “fix them,” I want to fix society and the root of the problem. I want to fix the fact that women feel too scared to speak up of what has happened to them, the fact that the feel like they have to be ashamed of what happened to them as if it was their fault. I don’t want to be seen as broken. We as a society say we are doing everything to prevent these incidents from happening but rapist and predictors are rarely prosecuted or held accountable for their actions. I don’t want people to feel bad for me when I tell them about my past, I want them to fell bad that we live in a society where incidents like these are more common than we realize, but there isn’t real consequences for those who do wrong.
While laws exist to prevent instances of sexual violence, colleges and universities struggle to meet the needs of students who fall victim to predators.Realities of Sexual Assault on Campus | BestColleges
Reports also reveal that cases do not always protect the victim or properly punish the perpetrator.Realities of Sexual Assault on Campus | BestColleges
I don’t want condolences or sorry, I want to see a strong collective conscious for societal change. I want people to take responsibilities for their actions.