Let me tell you a story.
When I was a junior in high school, life started getting better for me. My abuser had graduated and I didn't have to worry about seeing him every day. I was finally free. I started doing things after school again. I joined the school newspaper and was super excited to be a part of something.
After the first meeting I went to, I got my stuff out of my locker and walked down to my car. I had to go through the cafeteria where the juggling club met in order to get to my car, and when I came into the cafeteria that day I couldn't believe it. Right in front of me stood my abuser, who had graduated the year before, participating in a high school club.
I tried to shove down the panic attack that arose. I tried to make small talk with the boy that stopped me to make sure I was okay. I tried to make it to my car without crying. (Spoiler alert: I failed at all three of these things.) I told my mom about it when I got home, and then she started making phone calls.
At this point, I had reported my sexual abuse to the school counselor about six months prior. I had started therapy and had been diagnosed with PTSD. But I was still wrestling with a big decision: did I want to press charges or not?
My mom made phone calls to the administration at my high school. I had to sit down and talk with the assistant principal for an hour only to have him tell me that "kicking someone out of a high school club is like kicking someone out of a basketball game. We can't do it."
It's been SEVEN YEARS and I'm still bitter about this. Which makes everything happening with Kesha right now hit really close to home.
I stopped showing up to newspaper. I once again made myself smaller and let him win. I didn't feel safe at school anymore. If he could come back for a club every week, who was going to stop him from coming back all the time? The administration wasn't going to do anything. I had lost a battle there was no hope of winning in the first place.
This is why rape culture is winning. Because Kesha can't get out of her contract. Because I didn't feel safe in school. What type of message are we sending as a nation to girls everywhere? If someone as famous as Kesha can't get away from her abuser, what hope do the rest of us have?
#istandwithkesha #freekesha #sonysupportsrape