This week, provoked by outrage over the Stanford rape verdict (where, in case you aren’t reading the news, the college student who raped an unconscious woman behind a dumpster received six months’ prison sentence for what his father dismissed as “20 minutes of action”), an important conversation has been happening on a private Facebook thread. Responding to one woman who courageously shared that she had been raped, hundreds – hundreds! – of professional women have stepped forward with a mixture of rage and tears. One by one they have described their experiences of rape and violation at the hands of husbands, same-sex partners, dates, mentors, teachers, co-workers, “friends.” The collective outrage has broken open what in some cases has been lifetimes of silence.
Hundreds of women are raising their hands, saying, “Yes, me too.” Powerful conversations are happening about what this implies for how we raise our children, what we teach our sons and our daughters, how we treat one another as adults, and how we can nurture and support each one of us in our strengths and our pain.
Wherever you are, if you are part of this sisterhood of pain, know that you are not alone. Whoever you are, may you see yourself as I see you: beautiful and whole.