My truth

People have been questioning me about different things, so I feel like somethings need to be said.  I am from a small town in the Midwest. My family has served in every single war since World War 1 to present. I was raised to respect this country. I was taught that serving a cause bigger then myself was my duty.

When I was eleven years old, I was molested by a sixteen year old. I was told that if I ever told any one that I would be killed. So I never said anything until I was 20 years old. Once I graduated from high school, I went to University of Cincinnati where I was raped by two black men. I reported it, had a rape kit done and was told by female University Police Officer that I deserved to be raped since I was drinking underage and drunk. That destroyed me and I came close to jumping off of Siddall Hall’s roof.

When I was 23, I was raped by a friend. I did not bother to go to the police to report it because I knew that I would be blamed. I started going to therapy and tried to get my life back together. My sponsor helped me to see that I had a drinking problem and we worked some of the steps in AA. I managed to get a year in a half sober before I left for the Navy.

I was raped by a third class Petty Officer at Super 8 hotel on January 17, 2004. I reported it to my chain of command. I was immediately told that it was my fault, that I had a drinking problem and was treated like I was scum of the earth. I was retaliated against, emotionally abused and had my career ruined. He kept his job, was promoted and become Sailor of the year.

I live with PTSD every single day. I have flashbacks, body memories, grief, anxiety, depression and a tendency to cut myself. This is because I want to stop the emotional pain that I feel and at times have wanted to kill myself.  I have shared my truth in the two books I have written which are The Boulders In My Life That Shaped My Journey and The Journey Back to Myself: A Book of Healing Poetry.

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