Why I stayed silent 🤐

After 17 years I’m ready to tell my story because I’m not ashamed or afraid anymore.

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My 18-year-old self (September 2001)
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The night I was assaulted

I chose a university that was 2,000 miles away from home because I wanted to get away. I wanted to be on my own.

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Party with my sorority celebrating the new pledges (September 2001)
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My sorority sisters pouring shots into each other’s mouth
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This is the part of the story that haunted me for many years.

The next morning I woke up with a serious hangover. We were cuddled up in his bed and I felt incredibly confused.

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Me at Joshua Tree (September 2018; photo by Robert Cowherd)

Epilogue

I’ve shared a lot of stories about myself over the years — but none more personal or complicated than this one. I’ve tried writing this down at least a dozen times, but I just couldn’t figure out how to get it out.

“Just as a city has a certain structure before a major earthquake, so too do we have certain fundamental beliefs about our lives and the world.

Trauma shatters those assumptions.

But out of the rubble comes an opportunity to rebuild.

In the aftermath of an earthquake, cities aim to erect buildings and infrastructure that are stronger and more resilient than what now lies in ruins.

Similarly, those who are able to rebuild psychologically, spiritually, and otherwise after a crisis are better equipped to deal with future adversity, and they ultimately lead more meaningful lives.” — Richard Tedeschi & Lawrence Calhoun

I would prefer that night never happened, but it did.

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At Facebook’s F8 in 2018

CEO of Squad. Life story: “Nevertheless, she persisted.” Optimist. Technologist. Wearer of many hats.

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