Scarred by a Stalker

By Kelcie McKenney

Many things in life can be considered scary, like bugs with lots of legs, horror movies that leave your skin crawling, or hearing weird noises when you’re alone in the dark. But these things are predictable or easily solved. It wasn’t until recently, when my safety was at risk because of another person, that I discovered the feeling of true fear.

Over the past year, I have been trying to live my life around a constant fear, one that permeates my job and career, my personal relationships, my home life, and even my plans for the future. Every aspect of my life was changed because of one thing: a stalker.

This person, let’s call him Jack, taught me true fear. Now, I’m not hiding his name to protect his identity, but rather I want you to know this story doesn’t have to do with him and his actions—it’s about how it affected me.

Photo by Nicole Mason

Continue reading

When you SEE someone who might need help, you DO something.

By Nicolette Clairmont

Yesterday on the bus, a drunk guy kissed me on the neck. He was in the process of being kicked off. Once off, he yelled something at me through the window and licked it, leaving a 4-inch-long saliva streak in the dust.

Prior to that, he had sat next to me and bothered me for 30-40 minutes.

This dude was a 44 year old (he told me), 6’5 (he told me), ex-convict (17 years in prison, he told me) with a large scorpion tattoo on his neck and what appeared to be knife scars all over his face. He punctuated every sentence with a loud, “the fuck you talkin’ ’bout?” and frequently took pulls from the bottle of rum in his coat.

Photo by Aleksey Malinovski

Continue reading

Grudge

By Hope Grey

Photo by Cherry Laithang

I cannot remember the date

Of which I was last raped

I believe I was eight,

When my virtue was at stake

When my soul left its gate

When a serpent took my fate

No, I cannot remember when

But I do remember the sin

I remember the choice that was stolen

And the heart, which remains broken.

 

Anonymous final

Hope Grey

Since Eight

By Hope Grey

Photo by Molly Belle

I’m trying to tell you something!

But you won’t listen

Why can’t you see that my heart has a sting?

This burden, it has gone unforgiven!

The pain that it brings.

But, it has made me strong

because I was so young.

I want you to stop!

I think that you ought!

I wish you’d be caught!

Oh, how I should have fought!

But, I was only eight

and I took the bait!

“Girls” and the Reality of Sexual Assault

By Kayla McCombs

I recently started watching the HBO series “Girls.” The decision to watch it stemmed from an odd mixture of my crush on Adam Driver and my irrepressible desire to have an opinion on everything and everyone, including the series’ creator Lena Dunham. As a person who cares deeply about social justice issues, I had “Girls” in the back of my mind for a while due to a lot of controversy over its lack of racial diversity and abrasively middle-class characters. That was my motivation to watch the show—I wanted to argue about it.

Photo by Rene Böhmer

While the aforementioned issues are undeniably important, I won’t be touching on them in this post. Instead, I want to delve into the topics of sexual assault and relationship abuse, two very real problems that are to this day clouded with controversy and misunderstanding. Sexual assault and abuse are often portrayed as being straightforward and easy to identify in film and television. While they both have distinct definitions—and it would be great if the world could be on the same page as to what constitutes either of them—the reality is that most cases come across as ambiguous and confusing. This, naturally, is a major source of pain for many victims who feel unsupported or discouraged from speaking out or asking for help.

Continue reading