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Victoria Brownworth @VABVOX
, 20 tweets, 6 min read Read on Twitter
I had to take the day away from Twitter after I read #UmaThurman's story. I was shattered.

I was raped & nearly killed a few years ago. I wrote about it for my local newspaper and @HuffPost.

[TW for this thread]

Rape: Another Coming-Out Story…
I'm not sure why #UmaThurman's story hit me. Was it because 30yr old me dodged a bullet with #HarveyWeinstein? Was it because her friend saw her disheveled and hysterical? Was it because of what happened in that car scene?

No way to know. #PTSD is like that. Unpredictable.

I can tell you that I will never fully recover.

I am not alone in this. We talk about #survivors, but we never talk about how we're supposed to become a survivor.

I wasn't killed, but I was beaten, bitten, punched, slapped, sodomized and raped.

I have permanent scars.

We don't talk about how you scrub yourself raw in the shower or how you wash your mouth w/hydrogen peroxide.

We don't talk about the testing for hepatitis,gonorrhea, syphilis,HIV or how that goes on for months.

We don't talk about how every day you have to repeat your story.
We don't talk about how you have to sit with a police sketch artist, look at a bazillion photos of rapists to see if your rapist is there & if he is not, that you have to help with a description so that a sketch can be generated because stranger rapists are serial rapists.

We don't talk about how you have to tell your spouse/partner that you were raped and that you feel then, more than even when you talk to the police, that it's your fault.

That feeling never fully goes away no matter how kind they are or how feminist you are.

We don't talk about the nightmares, the fear, what #PTSD really is, how therapy can't "fix" what happened to you.

We don't talk about the damage rape does to you and everyone close to you.

We don't talk about how badly police add to all your complicated feelings.

We don't talk about how you second-guess every move you made prior to your rape, no matter what it was or when and how you were raped.

We don't talk about how angry and wounded you are after and how long that lasts.

We don't talk about the physical scars.

We don't talk about how hard it is to talk to anyone afterward.
How hard it is to go back to work. How hard it is to decide who you can and cannot tell.

We don't talk about how badly some people behave toward you or how some people feel your rape is about them, not you.
We don't talk about how people expect you to "get over it" and how people tell you it will be "empowering" to "just move on."

We don't talk about how when you close your eyes, you see him, and so you sleep little.

We don't talk about how many victims self-medicate.

We don't talk about what it's like being alone with men again.

We don't talk about what it takes to be sexual again.

We don't talk about the complexities of intimacy after someone has violated you.

We just tell women it's over, move on, STOP TALKING ABOUT RAPE.

We tell women to stop being victims.


I survived, but not because he didn't want to kill me--just because he was interrupted from killing me.

Survivor is a word we were told to embrace--like it or not.

When i read her story, I thought about #UmaThurman being spit on by Tarantino and about her being dragged into a sauna dressed in leather by Weinstein and about how because she was a star Thurman thought she could say no but there's never a no when men decide to hurt you.
I want people to know that rape is more than the event itself. I want people to know that when police don't catch the rapist or when he doesn't go to trial or when you don't get justice, it's incalculably painful.

I want people to know how many women haven't gotten justice.

For a year while my physical wounds healed I couldn't read a book. I write books, but I couldn't read a book. I couldn't read a book because I couldn't immerse myself in a story because what if I was so absorbed in reading that I didn't hear that rapist back at my house?

This is just a little bit of what else happens after the rape ends and then you have to find a way to be in the world and in your body and in your bed with another person and in your coterie of friends and colleagues where you are now That Woman Who Wrote About Being Raped.

So if you are fortunate enough to not have been raped in your life but are one of those people asking why this or that woman is STILL talking about it when it happened X time ago, STOP.

She will talk about it as long as she needs to. It's not about you. It's about her.
A stranger raped me. He preyed on women at lunchtime. He had raped several other women before me. In broad daylight, with a specific MO. His other victims were black, but I live in a black neighborhood. We were all in the wrong place at the wrong time--just living our lives.

Right now women are being raped. Some chose the wrong date on this Saturday night. Others are living with their rapists already.Still others are walking home from somewhere and someone grabs them up. Still others are being raped at work.

This is happening to women every day.
I'd like it to stop.

I'd like men to stop weaponizing their penises & their power.

I'd like men who don't rape to stop being #rapeapologists for men who do.

I'd like the world to be an equal sexual landscape.

I'd like you to think about what I've written here.

Thank you.
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