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  • Willa Hahn

madonna.

This article, from The Huffington Post, perfectly hits the nail on the head for what it’s like for victims of sexual assault and rape.

I was molested when I was 13 years old. It’s something that I have just started to deal with in the last year after being diagnosed with post traumatic stress disorder a year ago. I deal with it every single day.

When I first started therapy, I was having flashbacks and awful dreams. I was scared to go home. I felt withdrawn from everything and everyone around me.

Riley has gone through the entire process with me, and although he is amazing, it has at times put stress on our relationship. I have a hard time expressing myself, I think because I kept so many emotions bottled up for so long. I have a hard time with intimacy—I think probably because at such a young age, my first exposure to intimacy, which is something that is supposed to feel so good, came from something so awful.

I deal with a lot of shame. The tricky part is, I don’t have a “perfect victim” story. I was, at one point, a “willing victim.” I was groomed, coerced into doing things, and later, when I was no longer willing, threatened.

Many people didn’t give me a chance to tell my story because they thought they already knew what happened. I had friends who no longer wanted to hang out with me, and friends whose parents did not want them to hang out with me anymore, and people pointing fingers at me, because I was a bad influence—because I did something wrong. But I didn’t do anything wrong.

I’m just starting to accept that myself.

Someday, I hope to say that this whole experience made me stronger. For now, there is something very empowering about being able to tell a little bit more of my story.


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Willa Pearl Hahn | Albany, NY | willahahn@gmail.com 

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