...especially when your story involves a history of sexual assault.
Witness the proliferation of stories about sexual abuse that have corrupted America’s dignity over the past few years…beginning with the Church, then shaming the military and Hollywood, and now erupting at every level of government. Affecting even our Olympic athletes.
Witness the “me, too” movement rising from every corner of the country, voices that went silent years ago out of shame, fear, and guilt. Men and women alike.
The first time it happened to me, I was twelve years old. It happened again in high school and in college. Then in medical school. Then as a medical resident.
“People talk about sexual assault like it’s a
bad habit that men have.”
These were not just dates run amok. They were not consensual affairs. They were uninvited, unwelcome, intrusive encounters.
“It’s not consensual
if you make me afraid to say no.”
National Sexual Assault Hotline
I was lucky, though. None of these incidents was especially frightening or painful or traumatizing to me. In every case, I knew the person. They were all men who, until then, I had come to respect and admire…one, a relative. One, a fellow student. The others…physicians and colleagues.
The problem is I have no idea where these men ended up or what they are doing today. That means you might actually know one of them. Your child’s coach or teacher or pastor could be one of them. Perhaps one of them is your own physician, surgeon, or counselor.
Interestingly, we haven’t heard much about sexual assault among members of the medical community yet. God forbid patients should speak up. Imagine the stories they could tell...
“Our lives begin to end
the day we become silent
about things that matter.”
~Martin Luther King, Jr.~