Empathy! And where to go from here…

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Hi guys!

I wanted to thank all of you for your kind words. I was so relieved to read them and for the first time I felt like maybe what happened is not irrelevant. I feel like a big part of trauma is everything that comes afterwards. I’m expected to function, to be a productive member of society, to “just be normal”. But that’s difficult if I feel so abnormal inside. Reading your comments on my post made me feel like it is OK for me to be here. 
Part of why I struggle so much to speak about what happened is that sexual violence was shrugged off as “no big deal” for so long. So many people experienced and still experience it. We are used to hearing stories about sexual assault and r*** and a lot of people have no interest in hearing another one. There is this notion that we should just take it and not make a fuss, like it’s just a part of life. While I was studying I have been told by a professor that a script I wrote for her class was “done a million times before” because one narrative was an abusive relationship.  She said “we don’t need another comment on #MeToo, find something that personally concerns you and don’t try to make a political statement.” 
This was incredibly upsetting to me because my text was very personal. I didn’t tell my story, what I wrote was fiction, but it was the closest I ever came to openly be all parts of myself. I could have dealt with her statement if I had felt like the script was bad, but it was not! I stand by that. After this incidence I dropped out of uni and never finished my degree.
The frequency of sexual violence doesn’t make my or anyone else’s story less important, it makes them more important, and I feel like all of us deserve to be heard. Thank you for giving us a platform! It is true, what I am saying, feeling and thinking is redundant and has been said, felt and thought before, many times. So why do we still have to go through this? Why do I worry about offending others if I were to talk about having been raped?  I struggle to exist. Every single day. And that’s not irrelevant. I feel like I will never achieve anything. I am so incredibly privileged and still feel like I’m never even gonna have a shot at life, so I can only imagine how many people must feel the same way. 
I truly don’t know where to go from here. I don’t know how to make money to support myself because working in a meaningless job, surrounded by people who think of themselves as better or worse than others, made me cry every day, so I quit. I don’t know how to ever be a writer because it takes me a stupid amount of time to get anything done. I feel broken, but through your comments I feel empathy. 
There are so many things I want to do, and I just don’t have the strength to do anything.

Join the Conversation

77 comments

  1. Amysue43 Volunteer

    Thank you for sharing this with us. We are happy to hear how you’re doing after posting with us. Interesting concept you bring up here with sexual violence perceived as repetitive. I think you’re right in the fact that everyone’s story is important regardless of whether someone thinks it’s redundant or not. Personally, I believe that each story is unique in that it’s perceived differently for each person and feelings may be similar at some points but they are not always. Your mindset is phenomenal. This concept can be hard for some to grasp as you’ve described by your experience with your former professor and others. You should know that you are strong. You have endured so much and you are still here fighting for someone to listen. We are here for you and we are proud of you for posting with us. You are strong. You are making decisions for yourself that you find to be appropriate because of your past experience. You have the strength. You are strong enough. You are deserving! You will find something.
    Stay strong <3

  2. Mary Ella Volunteer

    Hello fee,

    I’m glad that you were able to find a community here with us at AVFTI. We are here to support you, and I am so glad that you felt supported here. I am sorry to hear about your professor dismissing the project that meant a lot to you – having experienced sexual violence. I can only imagine how crushing it might feel to have your experience dismissed as something that has a political agenda, when in reality this is you wanting to raise awareness through your story and through your talent. I’m sorry this has caused you to drop out of university.

    We are so proud of you for sharing your story here with us. If you want to continue writing to us, please do! We want to hear your story and we are here to support you.

    Mary

  3. AlisonDKaufman

    Hello Fee:

    I am so happy the messages you are receiving here are providing you some support, we truly are here for you and will continue to be here. You are so dead-on with all of your comments and you expressed it beautifully from a survivor – perhaps THAT is your passion and purpose. You have the ability to begin healing yourself by helping to heal others. So many amazing organizations need believers, supporters, and someone to be a voice for those who cannot find theirs.

    I hope you continue writing because it is an amazingly therapeutic outlet, it may take you a bit longer to get the words to formulate but that is ok expressing trauma is NOT EASY! Please continue to visit and share.

    Ali

  4. nidhigandhi Volunteer

    Hey Fee,
    Thank you so much for the update! We would always love to help and hear you out so remember our whole team is here for you. I understand the way you feel about your situation, the path out of trauma can’t be easy. But we know that assault is NOT a normal thing and it should never be normalized. I understand that you might feel lost and unsure about your path now, but I can assure you that it can only get better. Put your energy and thoughts into things you enjoy doing, maybe taking walks, or dinner with friends. Try new things and excite yourself, soon enough you are going to realize there is so much left for you to do and enjoy! This might be your darkest moment but there are many people around to help, maybe a professional can help you out of your situation. Maybe even a job search will help you put your energy into things you love! Just know that if you need to talk to someone we are all here for you!

  5. eagle206 Volunteer

    Hi Fee,

    Thank you for coming back to share an update! We are always here for you. What happened to you is definitely not irrelevant. It’s totally normal to be processing things and not want to act “normal”. Healing is a journey that’s different for every person. Your professor was wrong to dismiss your storyline just because she thinks it’s been done before. Everyone’s story deserves to be heard. You’re exactly right, just because these things happen often it doesn’t make the actions less important. We have some amazing resources here if you care to peruse: https://www.avoicefortheinnocent.org/help/ . It’s ok to have time where you don’t have the strength to move towards your goals. We all need downtime. Maybe try and just check 1 thing off the to-do list on those days, and save the rest for days when you feel a little more energy. We will be with you every step of the way.

    Stay strong,
    T

  6. t3nnis_player18 Volunteer

    Hey Fee,
    Thank you for sharing your thoughts with us and I as much as I want what you are saying to be untrue its not. You’re right when you say people have heard about sexual assault and rape so many times they don’t want to hear about it anymore but their reaction should be just the opposite. People should want to listen and have compassion for those going through these horrible events, but the world is a messed up place. I’m so sorry you’re having to deal with these feelings of invalidation and that they have taken so much of your life away. You are never going to be invalidated here. We are here to listen to anything you have on your mind and help in the best way we can. You are strong and your journey of life and healing has just begun so don’t count yourself out of the race just yet. I know you are capable of great things and can do anything you put your mind to if you give yourself time and compassion. I am wishing you nothing but love and happiness.

  7. pinksky92 Volunteer

    Hi Fee,

    I went back and read your post. I am so glad that we could support you on your journey.

    You make such good points. You sound like a very strong and courageous person. You are absolutely right that sexual violence is often just shrugged off. This is absolutely not right and things need to change. I am also disappointed that your professor dismissed you in that way. It’s people like that that continue to make it difficult for survivors to come forward to share their story. Your statement: “The frequency of sexual violence doesn’t make my or anyone else’s story less important, it makes them more important” is incredibly powerful. You are absolutely right!

    In terms of where to go from here. You sound like a talented person. You should definitely move at your own pace. There are so many different options for people now. I think you should take your time in finding something that you are passionate about and that will bring you true happiness. There is no rush. Everyone’s path will look different.

    I wish you all the best on your healing journey. Don’t hesitate to reach out.

    Take care.

  8. oscarl2 Volunteer

    Hello Fee,
    Thank you for sharing and the point that you are making about your story being important is so true and don’t let anyone voice negative opinions on it. You are still on your path to healing and I know that you are going to find your way. I believe that everyone is capable of doing great things and I know that you are also capable of doing great things as well. Feel free to come back and update us when you feel comfortable. Wishing you the best of luck on your path to healing.
    oscarl2

  9. jyoung Volunteer

    Hey Fee,

    Thank you so much for coming back to update us, and thank you again for sharing your story! I’m so glad that you were happy with the feedback, and I hope the responses provided you with some relief. Please know you are not alone, we are here for you, and we will always be. I hope you never hesitate to reach out if you need anything at all. Stay strong!

    Best,
    Jasmine

  10. odishoe Volunteer

    Hi Fee, its always nice knowing you came back to read the replies. thank you for coming back and reading our replies. We hope that we helped you at some point. anyhow, I wish you the best and don’t ever give up.

  11. Ramon Moran Volunteer

    Hey Fee,
    I am glad you are back to share more with us, but sorry that people think it is easy to just pretend like nothing ever happened. You do not need to feel bad, because nothing that has happened to you is your fault. You can take all the time you need and no one can say otherwise. Sexual assault is not and should not be considered normal, so it is good that you can see what others do not. Everyones story does deserve to be heard, just like your voice is heard. Some people, as you said, just want to pretend like this stuff never happens, so it is good to inform them and show them its not only happening but is a reality that many people have to live with daily. Take your time to find what you like in life the most and make it work. College classes can provide you with good source of information on what you may enjoy doing in your life. You are strong, everyone takes life at their own pace, you can do whatever you want in life if you put some time and energy into it. I know you can do it just take your time and feel free to come back and update us in the future. Stay strong and feel better.-Ramon

  12. chompyapple1 Volunteer

    Hi fee,

    Thank you so much for sharing your thoughts with us. I’m really sorry for all that you went through; you did not deserve to go through all of those horrible things. It’s unfortunate that your professor disregarded your script, but continue to have positive thoughts. If you need support, we are always here to listen to you and our “Find Help” tab has amazing resources as well. Take your time and continue to be strong!

  13. KatherineL Volunteer

    Hey Fee,

    Thanks for coming back and sharing your thoughts. I am glad our statements were helpful to you and that you feel welcome here. A lot of what you said resonated with me. The sexual violence that people experience on the day-to-day is normalized, but survivors are chastised for speaking out their experiences and these issues. It’s an unfair contradiction. It’s meant to silence us so the harm can continue. I hate that this silencing has caused you pain, but do not it deter you from speaking out where you are comfortable doing so. Take up space, be seen and heard, make people uncomfortable. It’s when we stay silent on these things that the harm is able to thrive. I hope that in speaking out on these issues you find your place and you find the strength to be there. Come back anytime!

    KatherineL

  14. Caitlin Volunteer

    Fee,

    Welcome back. You are very aware and willing to put yourself out there (even when its hard) and know what the worlds response “should” be. That is the first step. The second step is what you are working toward next although it might feel as though you are standing still. It’s being able to give yourself the thoughts, comments, validation , acceptance you are looking for in others. You said yourself the script was good. I am sure it is! Let it be good, be joyous in that triumph of all that hard work you undoubtedly put into it! I understand what I am saying isn’t easy and none of us get it right all of the time. Ever. But you are enough and you are remarkable. What you are doing is healing and learning to accept yourself. That is HARD WORK! And you are doing it! It might feel like your path is molasses right now, but be kind to yourself and your journey. Make a fuss, talk out loud, write a script, talk about your experience; your words. If that is what YOU want. Because the only one you have to accept and impress is you!

    Sometimes the smallest step can be impactful.

    hang in there, we are here if you need an ear.

    -Caitlin

  15. musicislove

    Hi Fee,

    I’m really glad that sharing your story here has helped you and that you feel like it’s ok to be you, that’s amazing! You’re right, it sucks how disregarded sexual violence is and I’m so sorry your professor was so dismissive about your script. I know it’s really hard to try to figure out what you want to do for anyone especially when you’ve gone through so much, and I’m sorry you’re in this stage right now. You definitely shouldn’t have to be at a job that makes you so upset every day, and I hope that you find what you want to do soon. Don’t give up and please come back any time you want to share more, we’re always here!

    Delaney

  16. colton95 Volunteer

    I’m really sorry for all that you went through. You definitely did not deserve to go through all that. I’m also sorry that your professor coldly disregarded your script and story. I know that things may seem helpless right now, but I hope you’ll be able to continue to find some comfort in the kind responses from people here. Feel free to share your thoughts, however long or short or random they may be. We’ll always be glad to listen and give advice if possible. Stay strong and positive!

  17. jcastle38 Volunteer

    Hi Fee,
    I just read your previous post and I am sorry you have gone through that. Just know you do belong here and we will always be here to listen and help in any way that we can! Sexual assault is definitely not a part of life and nobody should go through it ever. I’m so sorry your professor made you feel that way, it’s sad to know that there are people like that in the world. But know that there are also people that validate your feelings and are routing for your recovery. We are always here to listen and your feelings are completely valid. Stay strong!

  18. karinakalke Volunteer

    Hi Fee,

    I’m glad that sharing your story with us was a positive experience! We are always here for you, and you can share as often as you’d like. I’m sorry that your feelings and your work were invalidated by your professor. Your story is important, and you are incredibly brave for sharing it. Healing takes time. It’s also not a linear path. It’s okay to feel frustrated with it. Even though it’s not here right now, your strength will come back.

    Sending love and support,
    Karina

  19. sarahsays Volunteer

    Hey Fee,

    Thank you for checking in. It’s definitely okay for you to be here. This is your space too.

    I understand how hard it is to open up and talk about your assault and what it feels like to be brushed off. It really makes you internalize all of the heavy feelings that can come with it and it makes healing so much more difficult. What your professor did is so wrong, it really upsets me that an educator would respond with such a lack of empathy and a disdain for a serious topic, especially in a college scenario. This isn’t a political situation. It’s a personal one, that impacts so many of us, and I’m so sorry she invalidated you.

    Your story is important. It’s absolutely important and you deserve to share and express it in any way you feel comfortable. Something happened to you was not your fault and it takes brave people like you coming forward to tell their truth for anything to ever change. Thank you for being so brave.

    I promise you that your life isn’t over, though. Healing isn’t linear and takes time, and you might not have the strength every day, but when you do, remember that you’re worthy of the things you enjoy.

    Take care.

  20. Starling Volunteer

    Hi Fee,
    Thank you for continuing to share your story with us. I’m glad that we’ve been helpful to you. I’m sorry that you’ve felt unvalidated. It’s very frustrating and upsetting to go through that. If you ever need anything, let us know. We’re always here for you.

  21. Neesha Volunteer

    I am so glad we could be of help. It is horrible that others trivialize trauma and make it so it is unwelcomed to speak about. Check out the resources tab you might find something that helps you figure out how to do what you want to do.

  22. mikaylaanne11 Volunteer

    Hey again, Fee!

    I’m glad that you were able to find empathy and support here! That’s what we’re here for, and you’re always welcome to share.

    I agree that each survivor’s story is important. Sharing your story doesn’t have to be political or become a hashtag or be swept under the rug. There being a lot of survivors doesn’t negate the fact that they have been through life-changing experiences and deserve to express them. You deserve to feel comfortable writing your narrative and narratives that you feel deeply connected to!

    I’m also a creative, so I empathize with the job situation. It’s soul-crushing to be in a space like that when it isn’t facilitating your goals and dreams. I think that you should continue to push through as much as you can. Maybe that means that you write a little bit every day, regardless of the quality. Maybe that means you take a week where you don’t write anything and then come back to it later. Do what feels comfortable for you!

    Like I said, we’re always here to be a support system. Come share any time. We’re here for you!

  23. VolunteerNem Volunteer

    Hi Fee,
    I am glad to hear that these comments are helping out. We are here for you and will support you always. I am sorry about that experience you had with the professor, that was really rude of them. I hope you take as much time as you need to heal. We hope to hear from you again and stay safe.

  24. music2799 Day Captain

    Hi Fee,
    I’m so glad that our comments were helpful for you. I don’t think the effects of trauma are talked about enough, and some people expect us to take it, move on, and act ‘normal’ as quickly as possible, even though these traumatic things happened to us and we need time and space to heal. Dismissive comments about sexual violence can be hurtful, and they can even set us back in our healing. It’s awful that your professor dismissed your script as something that has been done “a million times before.” It’s so important for people to know about the signs and the effects of abusive relationships and work to be better people. That involves repeated conversations about these topics, which means that your script adds to the conversation. That’s important and valid. You’re right; the frequency of sexual violence and abusive relationships makes each story more important, and we need to acknowledge what survivors go through because it’s relevant.
    It can be exhausting to have so many goals in mind and not have the strength to do anything. I find that taking things one step at a time can be helpful because we can focus our energy on something manageable, then move on to the next step. We build a momentum that way, and it can be easier to keep going once we’ve started. I believe you can have a shot at life. It may take time, which can be frustrating, but I believe you can get there.
    Thank you for sharing this update. We’re here to support and listen to you, so please write back if you need anything. I hope you’re doing well this week.

  25. Bluebell13 Volunteer

    Dear Fee,
    Thank you for coming back to give us an update and share more of your story. It is always wonderful to hear that our community has helped in some way. I want to reach out to your professor and give her a few lessons!! I hear you when you talk about how overwhelming it is to be in this place and time. There are days when I feel like there is nothing but abuse, violence, and injustice everywhere and that nothing I do will every make a change. It is easy to allow that to drain all of your energy and to begin to feel hopeless. We have to make sure to balance all of those things in the outside world with glimmers. Small things that bring you comfort, joy, and a sense of safety. Put them in places where you can see them/access them throughout the day and use them to ground yourself. You aren’t going to have the energy to fight all of that injustice if you don’t work on healing and taking care of yourself. Anger and rage are such powerful emotions that most of us have been taught they are dangerous and we should avoid those feelings at all costs, but they are important. Anger tells us that a change is needed and if we take some time to listen to it, we can hear its message and let it go before we begin to become it.
    You are not broken. Awful things happened to you. You were hurt and you need to have time and space to heal. Sometimes we resist that healing and feel like pushing it down and pushing through is what we need to do, but is always there and it will not just go away.
    No one person heals in the same way. We share what helps us only in the sense of offering information and resourses. You know you the best and will know what works for you when you hear it. Please keep writing to us if you find it helpful and let us know if there is anything we can do to help.
    Sending you love and strength,
    Roxie

  26. rachelb098 Volunteer

    Hi there,

    Thank you for your update. I’m so glad to hear that the responses here have given you the validation that you truly deserve. I’m so sorry people tried to minimize your experiences. I can’t imagine how devastating and frustrating it must have been to go through that invalidation. It sounds like you’re not sure what steps to take next, which is totally understandable, and you deserve to do something that is meaningful to you. It might be helpful to make a list of fields you’d be interested in, and manageable steps you can take towards reaching your goals. The find help tab may also have some helpful resources. Good luck!

    All the best,
    Rachel

    1. Fee

      Thank you for your response! That’s not true at all though. I know exactly what I want, who I am, who I wanna be and what I wanna do with my life. I know what I am good at. I am really lucky to be secure in who I am. However, that fact doesn’t take away the social anxieties and triggers I experience. If anything it makes them worse because I constantly have to fight to be myself. I am not good at setting boundaries. 

  27. slozoya1120 Volunteer

    Hello Fee,

    I want to say that your story matters to us, to all of us. That professor should not have made you feel as they did; it is their opinion, do not let it make you stop doing something you enjoy doing. Your experience is a big deal, and it should not be shrugged off. We are always here to listen to you. I hope that you return to your studies one day. I am sure you are an amazing writer, don’t be discouraged. I am sorry about your job experience; a lot of jobs will be that way unfortunately. I have coworkers that should be working for NASA with all their knowledge (according to them), but they work with me. People will boast and brag, it is hard to take daily, I understand. Feeling broken and struggling to just exist sounds like a lot to carry, please use the resources in the “find help” link here on the site. I hope you can get more help and start healing soon. Take care.

    -Sam

  28. coachdiggs Volunteer

    Hello Fee,
    I wanted to say thank you for sharing your story. I just wanted to say you are always open to tell your story here. Nobody will going to judge you here. I am sorry for what your professor said. Your professor was in the wrong for his comments he made. He did not need to say anything. I would also say keep telling your story. Just know you let you are always welcome here to tell your stories. Lastly, I wanted to say thank you for sharing your story.
    Kevin

  29. CarmenR Volunteer

    Hi Fee,

    It is absolutely okay that you are here. We are here for you. I’m sorry that your professor made those comments. They are wrong though, your story is meaningful and your writing is important. We believe in you, and we support you. You are always welcome here.

    Carmen

  30. Stark21 Volunteer

    Hello Fee,
    Thank you for sharing your story with us and updating us as well. I’m glad you found this space supportive and welcoming. I would like to say sorry, that the professor’s “criticism” couldn’t have been more wrong. I’m sorry that she said your story was done a million times before, it was wrong for her to say and completely untrue. Your story is important to us, we want to hear your story because it matters to you and all of us here in this space. I’m sorry this caused you to leave University, you deserve to feel supported and validated. I would recommend checking out the “Find Help” tab and seeing if anything fits for you. Please do continue to update us. We are you for you and care about your story and healing journey.
    -R

  31. heretohelp101 Volunteer

    Hi Fee,
    Wow everything you are saying here is 100% correct. Im sorry that you had to experience such a horrible professor, to ever tell someone something like that is so wrong in so many ways. I am happy that you are realizing things and that us here at AVFTI have been able to help you. It’s important to know that everyone deserves to feel heard and like they matter in this world, because we all do. Everybody writes their story in their own time. I am confident and I believe that you will be capable to live the life that you want.
    Best wishes,
    -Jan

  32. KevionS. Volunteer

    Hi Fee,
    Thank you for sharing your story with us. I am very happy that we were able to help. I would also like to say that you are correct, trauma does come afterwards and you shouldn’t have to feel rushed to be “ normal again” because not everyone deal with trauma in the same way. You can take as long as you will need in order to heal from trauma. I would also like to say to keep your head up because you are a very strong individual who can accomplish anything. We are here for you Fee and would love for you to keep us updated.

    Best,
    KevionS.

  33. iap66325 Volunteer

    Hello Fee,
    Thank you for coming back and sharing with us. I am so sorry that your professor had done that to you. I honestly do agree that in so many cases the discussion of sexual assault is being overlooked and apparently makes people in society uncomfortable to talk about it. However, it does not matter how people feel at this point because it needs to be addressed since in reality it occurs to so many individuals and so many of them still to this day happen to remain silent because they do not feel comfortable sharing their story to a society that does not seem to care. I wish that your professor at the time could have not looked down upon what you wrote because of it being repeated, one never knows peoples situations and what they go through. Which is why I am happy that our support in some way has built you up from everything that you had experienced also how you have been facing this trauma. I always like to emphasize how everyone here like myself will be here to listen and uplift all survivors. We know and highly believe in each and every one of you, you are all important and always deserve to have your voices heard. I completely understand how you may feel, like you do not know in which direction to go right now in regards to your career. But all I could say is, do as you aspire or wish to do. Never set limits for yourself and never ever feel discouraged to try and reach your goals do what truly makes you happy and that you feel will really be meaningful. Neither allow yourself to settle for anything less. I hope that this helps, I also cannot wait to hear from you again on another new update! I do send my love and best wishes to you, you got this!

  34. Pamela Z Volunteer

    Hi Fee,
    Thank you for coming back and updating us. You are welcomed here, we support and believe you. I am sorry you have felt this way, your professor was in the wrong. You are going to find yourself being doubted and shut down but we believe you in and I believe you have the strength. It is your story, your voice, no one can take what happened to you and make it less than what it is. Sharing your story helps bring awareness and motivates others to tell their story. And It is okay to not know what to do next, it will be confusing but believe in yourself.

  35. dzreid Volunteer

    Hello!
    It breaks my heart whenever I read the words from someone saying how broken they feel. It does makes me glad to see that you gained support, empathy, & encouragement from reading our comments! The avfti page was created to simply do that: provide a hope, empathy, empowerment, & tons of support. The road to healing is long with many curves, hills, & bumps. It’s through these where we grow & learn. Never stop growing in your healing because one day when these bumps, or curves come, you will stand strong! The climb is slow but hanging in there provides a inner strength to keep propelling you forward! Never stop because you are worth every moment!
    Dawn

  36. Chris Volunteer

    Hi Fee,

    It is good to hear from you again and thank you for taking the time to come back and give us an update. It is always nice to see that the responses reach the individuals that post here. I am so sorry that your professor said what she said and took that unprofessional approach in her response. The text that you sent took a lot of strength and you didn’t deserve to be responded to in such a way. I know it may seem like you don’t know what to do or where to go from your current stage but it is always a smart idea and take it one step at a time. Focus on something you enjoy and go after it and you will be amazed at just how quickly the rest will fall into place. The strength you want will come with time. I am wishing you the best and look forward to another update soon! Best wishes.

    Chris

  37. casitasbonitas Volunteer

    Hi Fee, Thank you for updating us! You deserve to have your story heard. I am sorry one of your professors commented that. I think it is good that you quit your job that makes you feel worse. I am also trying to leave my job that makes me wanna cry all the time. You are able to do it! Please do not doubt yourself because you are a strong individual. We are all here to help you. Stay strong and you can always go on the Findhelp tab.

  38. lmc83823 Volunteer

    Hi Fee,
    It’s nice to hear from you again! Thank you for coming back and sharing with us. I am happy to hear that we’re able to help! I am sorry for the way that your professor responded to you. It was terrible and completely inappropriate. Your professor should have never said that to you because your story does matter! Although you may feel lost right now and unsure where to go from here, just remember to be patient and gentle with yourself. You’re still healing and if you don’t want to be stuck working for a meaningless job, something better will come your way. You are a strong person and I am sure you will find the paths that work for you. We will support you every step of the way. I hope to hear from you again soon!
    Sending you strength and love,
    Luna

  39. betterdays1 Volunteer

    Hi fee,
    I’m glad you know this is a safe space for you! This is where you can come to if you ever wanna talk to us or need some advice, we can be helpful sometimes. People need to be heard, like you mentioned, and everyone’s stories matter and are relevant. More people need to be aware of sexual assault. In regards to your writing, I think you should go for it! Even if it does not end up working out for you, you’ll know that you tried and won’t live on the what if’s. There are online jobs that could probably fit you. Some don’t have to deal with people and you get to work from home. You should consider going back to school, don’t let one bad professor decide on your future. Thank you for updating us and feel free to reach out soon!
    -v

  40. leoreslavick Volunteer

    Hi Fee,
    I just wanted to start off by saying that what happened to you was definitely NOT irrelevant and whoever made you feel like it is, is part of the problem. And I totally understand that you might feel like you are “abnormal” or an “outcast” because of everything that happened to you. It is so sad what society has done to victims of sexual assault/abuse and made people feel like you feel like they can’t talk about want happened. This is not how it should be and it hurts me to even think that victims have to live in a society where they are scared of “offending” someone. You are broken because of what happened to you and will never be able to recover from that. What that person did to your self-esteem/ability to believe in yourself will never come back so please don’t ever worry about offending anyone and continue to talk about what happened to you as you do deserve a platform and space to express how you are feeling. I also wanted to say that you have the power to come back from this. One of my favorite quotes that I’ve ever heard is “you can’t change what happened to you but you can control how you react to it.” Use it to prove the people around you wrong and to give you the strength to do the things that you never thought you were able to do.
    Best of luck with everything and we hope to hear another update form you soon,
    Leore

  41. morganndelacruz Volunteer

    Thank you so much for coming back here and I got goosebumps on the fact that our comments and this organization are helping you and you feel better. I am so sorry that the professor said that to you, that person shouldn’t have a job any more than what happened. Imagine, if that happened to you, it is happening to many others. I’m just so sorry. Please come back again and always feel and safe to share your journey with us.

    you are loved, Morgan.

  42. Erin O'Callaghan Day Captain

    I am glad that you feel better after posting here, and that our comments helped. I’m so sorry about what that professor said, what a terrible thing to say, and honestly they clearly shouldn’t be teaching if that is their response. You deserve support-have you considered seeing a therapist? Maybe they would help in starting to get more help. You can also write here anytime-we are here for you.

    Erin

  43. zelda Day Captain

    Hi, Fee! Thank you for coming back here to post. I could really relate to a lot of what you’re saying. I also feel like I’m very privileged in some aspects of my life, and I also dropped out of college and quit many jobs, as well. For me, I was really broken inside due to the traumas I’ve experienced. I gave up on myself and on my life. I didn’t want to try anymore.

    Last year, I started to make changes. Nothing big at first; I made myself get up, shower, get dressed. Then, I would complete tasks and try to conquer small challenges. After several months, I re-enrolled in school and started to apply for different programs and organizations.

    I go to therapy now, and I try to work on myself to be the best wife, daughter, sister and woman. It took (and still takes) a lot of hard work, and there have been many days where I haven’t done well. But I keep trying. And that’s all I can do.

    Fee, you have been through trauma! I’m sorry your professor minimized your experience, and I’m sorry for the challenges you’re facing now.

    I wanted to share a bit of my story with you to (hopefully) give you hope. Trust me, if I can get my life back on track, then you can, too. You are so much stronger than you may think, and you have a warrior spirit deep inside of you.

    Just because you are in a rough patch now, it does not mean that it will last a lifetime. My rough patch lasted almost a decade; it’s never too late for a turnaround, and it’s never too late for winter to pass into spring.

    I’m wishing you all the luck, strength, and guidance. You are not alone, and I want you to know that we are here for you. Please come back soon to let us know how you’re doing. I will keep you in my thoughts and prayers.

    Thank you for posting, Fee.

    1. Fee

      Thank you! I really appreciate your honesty and everything you’re saying. I don’t think it’s too late for me to turn my life around, I’m just so sick of how slow this is happening. I just want to write, make music, travel and be with my friends, but there is this massive rage and confusion in me, and it just turns off my brain and makes me into an unlikeable, horrible person. And sure, I can go to therapy and talk about it, and it helps a bit and I can do breathing exercises and name my emotions and so on… but it doesn’t really change anything. 

      In the end of the day I just don’t know how to deal with injustice. I cannot change other peoples behaviours, but it is other people who make me feel shitty in the first place. I didn’t rape myself, I don’t regularly hit on myself inappropriately, I don’t tell myself that “we don’t need another comment on #MeToo”, and of course I am internalising these things end up blaming myself, but that’s not the core issue. It’s that they are happening in the first place. 

      How do you deal with people? How did you go back to school and got a job and go through life with people being classist, racist, sexist and judgemental? I am extremely triggered by social injustices because they make me feel helpless and at the mercy of something/someone I cannot control. Similar to how I feel about having been raped. Pretty much every other day there is some form of discrimination happening to me or someone next to me. catcalling, a racist comment, someone being unkind to a homeless person, etc. How do you deal with these things, or any triggers for that matter? How do I get to be at peace with the world? How did you manage?

  44. tolleytn Volunteer

    Fee,

    I’m so happy to hear that you feel welcomed by everyone here at AVFTI. You’re absolutely right – these experiences are often undermined by others and going through them should not be looked at as a political statement. Everyone’s story is important and I think that it is so wonderful that you were able to share yours with us. Please don’t hesitate to ever come back and share your progress. You’re always welcome!

    I know how you feel when it comes to finding meaning in the seemingly mundane parts of life. Keep pushing through, I know you can do it! Just remember to always take the time to take care of yourself whenever you need it. The work and writing will always be there.

    – Tiff

  45. Araceli1090 Volunteer

    Hello Fee,

    Thank you for updating us once again. I’m sorry to hear that your professor responded to your story that way. The professor had no right to say that about the story that you wrote. I’m sorry about that. Im glad that you feel comfortable posting here. we are here for you and your voice matters and it is heard.

    Im sorry to hear that you feel as thought you don’t have the strength. I hope you find it and I hope you achieve all the things that you set your mind to. Best of luck!

    we are here for you.

  46. aegardiner Volunteer

    Hi Fee,

    It is good to hear from you again. I am glad that you received so much support here and that it was of help to you! The goal of everyone here is to listen to each person and the story that they share – you will never find judgement here. Everyone wants nothing but the best for you. That is really discouraging to hear that when you have tried to share your story in the past that you have been criticized – that should never have happened. You are right: everyone has the right to be heard. That is such a huge step and I think some people just don’t understand the courage that it takes. Be proud of yourself – you have taken that first step and are trying to make the journey towards healing from the past. Don’t let anyone knock you off course. Please come and share here as often as you need. As some people have already recommended, working through everything with a professional could be really beneficial. You are strong and a therapist can help you to recognize that in yourself again. You deserve to find peace and to live the life you want to live. Take care of yourself.

  47. Angela Volunteer

    Hi Fee,
    Thank you for coming back and updating us all. I am glad to hear that our responses have helped and gave you a sense of relief. I am sorry that the professor acted this way, they should have been more considerate especially because it is an important and sensitive topic. I believe in you, I know you can do a lot, please push through and keep on going. We are all here for you!

  48. snandi2 Volunteer

    Hi Fee,

    Thanks for the update! I’m glad that our comments made you feel more welcome in our community. I completely agree with you when you say that the frequency of sexual violence doesn’t doesn’t make anyone’s story less important, it makes them more important. What your professor said was not okay at all, and it just highlights how unfortunately commonplace sexual assault stories have become. All of us here at AVFTI believe your story, and don’t doubt anything that happened to you at all. For what it’s worth, I think you have great potential to be a writer. Your writing style is incredibly unique, and your post has great flow and consistency. You did a great job of making your post sound like a well-crafted story. As other volunteers have mentioned, I’d highly recommend talking to a therapist or a counselor, since they’d listen to everything you have to say and offer some advice that might help you feel more energized and motivated to pursue your dreams. Our “Find Help” tab also has some resources that you might find useful. Please stay strong, and know that we’re happy to have you here with us!

  49. SarahLove Volunteer

    Hi Fee,

    Thank you so much! I am happy that our replies are helping you through your healing journey. I know it must be challenging to speak about your experience, but we are always here for you. It is entirely understandable why you were upset when your professor told you to pick another topic. You choose something that you can relate to, and she shut you down. If speaking helps you, you should never question your coping strategy. I believe you are resilient and will figure out your next move, even though it seems complicated right now. Please check our resources at our “help” tab.

    Your story matters to us here at AVFTI.
    Stay strong,
    SarahLove.

  50. bbbmjohnson Volunteer

    Hey Fee,
    I am so glad to hear from you. Thank you for sharing your experience. We are here for you. I have come to learn that there is strength in numbers, especially when we feel weak. It’s hard to know what to do next sometimes and to feel lost. Don’t give up writing please. Keeping old hobbies is a good way to keep a sense of self for yourself. I’m happy to hear the comments helped you. You are amazing. Keep going please.
    Wishing you the best,
    Bailey

  51. sarahj Volunteer

    Hi Fee,
    Nice to hear from you again! I am glad to hear you found the support here helpful. 🙂 I relate to your frustration of being expected to live a “normal” life but feeling utterly “abnormal”. It is especially hard carrying a trauma that is invisible to others and trying to live up to social norms and standards. It’s kind of like that feeling of screaming and no one even lifting a brow. I’m sorry to hear you are still struggling as much as you are. Know that you are always more than welcome to come here and share with us. We are always here to listen and support you. Alternatively, have you ever considered working with a mental health professional? Might be helpful to talk with someone and get their insight on working through your experiences. That might also help you find your true purpose and a way to work in a field you find rewarding… something that can sustain and also support you. If you need help getting started, you can always check out the “Find Help” tab here for resources. Hope to hear from you again.
    Til then — take care of yourself!
    Sarahj

  52. Zithlaly.cruz Volunteer

    Hello there, Fee.

    Thank you for keeping us informed. I’m happy our advice was helpful to you.
    I think it is unfair for society to expect us to carry on with our life following a stressful event that has caused us harm. Your professor made an error in judging and assuming that all stories are the same. Everyone has a unique story to tell, and each one is important and should be heard. I’m sorry you’re feeling unmotivated and stuck, but keep in mind that you don’t always need a plan. It is okay to take one step at a time. You are always welcome to share your emotions with us; we are here to listen and help you.

  53. Ana Espiritu Volunteer

    Hello Fee,

    Thank you for coming back and giving us an update. I am glad that here at AVFTI has given you the encouragement and the positive response you were looking for. Know that we will always be here to give you the support you need and that we care for your well-being. I am definitely sorry that your professor was being inappropriate with the response to your assignment. I feel that in that situation, you should have reported her behaviors to the dean. I’m sorry that she made you feel that way, but know that you are important. No matter how hard life can get, or because things don’t work out well remember why you started using your voice. You use this platform because you help others in a similar situation, yet you are growing to be a person that wants change for yourself or how to even get the strength to be a writer. Its starts with you. I believe in you and your voice and because you are getting the strength to feel determined to have written the assignment, don’t let anyone break you donw. you are stronger than you imagine. Have you consider a mantra to help you gain strength and feel positive. Mantras can be really helpful, such as:
    ” I am love. I am strong. ” “I choose what I become” ” I am enough” “Breath. Relax. Everything is ok”. This can be really helpful to heal and I know it will take time for you to heal on your own terms. Know that we are listening to and cared for. Stay strong hope to from you again.

    Sending Support and Love,
    Ana

  54. jenniferb Volunteer

    Hello Fee,
    I am glad to see another post from you so thank you for keeping us updated. I am happy that we were able to help you and make you feel a bit better. As others have mentioned in the replies, we are always here for you and to support you. I agree with you, everyone should have the opportunity to tell and let their story be heard. Which is why I am so sorry that your professor said that to you. I can see how important your writing was to you, and what she did was wrong. You can always share your writings on here if you would like to. I understand that it can be overwhelming to feel like you do not know what to do next, or feel that you take too much time to get anything done, but it is important to take things at your own pace. You are not broken, you are strong and courageous, and we are always here for you. Take care, I am sending you lots of support.

  55. candyappleb Day Captain

    Hi Fee,

    I am so sorry that your professor did not pause to consider where your story was coming from. Your story is not redundant. Every individual that endures abuse heals in a different way and each story is important and unique. No matter how many times its been told. I am glad that you found us and a platform to speak your truth safely without judgement. You are always welcome to share with us, anytime. We are here for you!

    All the best,
    Becca

  56. 123Ahmet Volunteer

    Hello Fee,

    I am glad that the responses and replies you have gotten have helped you and eased you. Remember that we are always with you and we are here to listen whenever you want to talk. Dissmisivness on its own is horrible and to dismiss someone’s sexual violence experiences is even worse. If writing is your way to release and heal yourself then keep doing it, do not let anyone discourage you because this is your passion and it is your way of coping. AVFTI creates an open area where you can come and tell us anything you want, your professor should have the same mentality but nonetheless, we are here for you and we will always listen. Instead of people focusing on the victim and blaming them the perpetrator should be taken into account and dealt with, but our society is quick to blame the victim before even looking at the perpetrator. I want to say this again because it is very important, we are here to listen to whatever you want to talk about with empathy and compassion, that is the way AVFTI interacts with individuals. Remember that if you need any additional resources click the “Find Help” tab above to browse through various and informative resources.

    – Ahmet

  57. CSUN Volunteer A.M Volunteer

    Hi Fee,
    Thank you for updating us ,Im happy that our responses helped you feel better and brought you comfort.Im really sorry your professor didn’t approve your work, your an amazing writer don’t give up keep writing and keep improving Im sure you’ll see the result .
    Best
    A.M

  58. Karenv12 Volunteer

    hello fee,
    I glad to hear that your responses have brought some type of support and comfort to you. I would also like to say that I am so sorry for what your professor said to you, they ad no right to respond to your paper like that, especially because they had no idea the impact their words could have. You are so strong and have been through a lot and no one has the right to dismiss your feelings, because they are yours and they are real and they matter. Please keep writing and sharing with us, whatever brings you comfort and normality you should do and never quit fighting for you. we are here and believe in you always.
    sending you love and positive vibes,
    Karen

  59. ryannlashea Day Captain

    Hi, I am so sorry that your professor wasn’t supportive of your script. Your story matters and I am so proud of you for sharing it with us. It take a lot of bravery and courage to speak about these things. I understand feeling unmotivated, but I want to remind you that you are so strong, and that you have already shown so much strength. We are all here for you and support you!

  60. pfuentes Volunteer

    Hey Fee,

    I’m glad our responses have brought you some comfort and helped you feel like your story matters, because it does! Just as you said, there is no reason why anyone’s sexual violence experience should be dismissed simply because it happens far too often. It is not “just a part of life” so it is normal to feel all these overwhelming emotions. But you are not alone! We are here for you! It’s awful that your professor would shut down your writing the way she did. If it is something that helps you and you are passionate about, I encourage you to continue writing and not let her words discourage you from doing what you like. You are strong and you can achieve anything you really set your mind to. Don’t let anybody tell you otherwise. Stay strong and keep us updated!

    pfuentes

  61. Tokyo_Kaneki Volunteer

    Hi Fee,
    You are right, it is okay to feel abnormal inside, many of us feel the same way too. It is a horrible thing that being sexually assaulted is looked at as “taboo” where members of society do not want to hear or deal with the consequences at all and because of that, survivors have to deal with negative stigmas and are forced to deal with everything all on their own. It is not just a part of life, it is a horrible and traumatizing experience… that is why hear at AVFTI we want to make a safe space to make sure that all of your stories are heard and acknowledged because they are all valid. I am so sorry that your professor made you feel that way and said those comments about your script. It was wrong of her to judge, we all have stories and they all matter. Someone like that should be in the profession of teaching if she makes her students feel invalid. I know you feel as though you will never achieve anything but yes you will. It all takes time, all of our journeys are different. you said you do not have strength to do anything, and that is okay! we all do things when our bodies are ready. Do not feel invalid, I promise you.. you are valid. Please continue to know we are all hear for you and update us soon. Sending you lots of love and support.
    -J

  62. Marissa Day Captain

    Hi Fee,

    Thanks for sharing. It is so bizarre to me that your professor would completely write off your writing just because of the topic. You’re completely correct – good writing is good writing! It’s so unfair that they invalidated your experience and your talent at the same time because of their close-mindedness.

    Everything you said is so true. Just because so many people have experienced assault doesn’t make anyone’s trauma less valid. If anything, it should be talked about more! So many people want to push assault under the rug and act like it never happens, which is why it continues to happen. You speaking out here is helping to bring change to the world.

    If you’d like, you are more than welcome to share your writings here. We would love to be part of your world and learn how talented you really are. Please let us know if there’s anything we can do to help you! We’re here for you! Stay strong.

    Marissa

  63. Solongago Volunteer

    Hi Fee,

    So much of your post is stuff that I think of too. We should not be silenced, and we should not be relegated to only talk about this subject on a site like this one or in a therapist’s office. Lord knows, it is hard enough to talk about this stuff, to have these conversations, but the silence and the silencing of people around this topic is what allows it to happen and happen and happen. Your frustration about this is so valid. I am really sorry that your instructor rejected your script because of the subject.

    Some of how you seem to be feeling about working and your future sounds like you may be depressed. If you are, then working with a therapist may help you feel more optimistic and may help you to focus on some steps you can take to move forward. I understand feeling unable to get anything done, and being overwhelmed by everything. There is help out there. Have you looked through the resources at the top of the page, under the “FIND HELP” button?

  64. ericasarkisyan Volunteer

    Hi Fee, Thank you for updated us on how you have been feeling. I remember I replied to your first post an it moved me so much because you were so honest and venerable about your experience. You absolutely do have a voice here with us. Your story matters to us so much and we are all here to support you through your journey of finding yourself. You deserve to be heard along with every victim of sexual assault. Do not let people silence you for their convenient. What happened to you was not convenient for you and you have to struggle with it everyday. You are so strong and brave for being so open about your story. Please update us on any new realizations.

    With love,
    Erica

  65. lizzi

    Hi Fee,
    I’m so sorry to hear that your teacher was invalidating of your story about sexual assault. Just because it happens so much doesn’t mean it shouldn’t be talked out. If anything, it should be talked about more because we know it’s a problem yet it is still happening! We should never be afraid to share our story because it might offend someone, and we should never have to feel like our story is redundant. Share your story with whoever you want and if they don’t respond to it with complete compassion and empathy, that says more about them than anything else.

  66. CSUN Student1 Volunteer

    Hi Fee,
    Thank you for coming back and sharing with us, I am very happy to hear that our comments left a positive impact on you because we are always here to provide support. I am very sorry to hear that your professor’s comments made you quit school and not be able to finish your degree. You deserve to tell your story and remember everything you say is important and you should never feel discouraged about doing anything. It doesn’t matter how long it takes you to complete your writing, if its helping you through your healing process then don’t hesitate and keep writing. Staying positive and having the mentality of not quitting will help you a lot. We are always here for support and whenever you want to speak to us, come back and we’ll be here.
    Thank You

  67. silverliningsunshine Volunteer

    Hi Fee,

    Thank you for having the courage and taking the time to share your story with all of us on the platform. We are all here for you and support you. I’m so sorry to hear that your professor told you that the story you wrote was not important and that incident made you drop out of university. You did not deserve that, and I hope you know that your story matters and that you deserve to be heard without feeling invalidated. Your goal of being a writer sounds wonderful and I hope you are able to become one someday! It may seem impossible now with all the roadblocks, but you had a lot of strength to share your story here and we all appreciate you. Keep us updated.

    -silverliningsunshine

  68. Northlane1991 Volunteer

    Hey Fee

    It is good to hear from you again. I am sorry your professor invalidated your work and I am sure you are an amazing writer. Your feelings are valid and it is okay to have the feelings you are having. You can do everything you want to do and no matter how little or long it takes. We are here for you!

  69. haesol Volunteer

    Hello Fee,

    It’s good to hear from you again. I’m glad that the comments left a positive impact on you. I’m really sorry that your professor invalidated your work, I’m sure you’re an amazing writer. You are right; for the thousands and thousands of victims and survivors there are, it only makes their stories a thousand times more important. Your story matters just as much as you matter. Your feelings are valid, it’s okay to feel like you have no energy, but just know I believe in you. You can do everything you want to do, no matter how little or long it takes; do it at your own pace.

    We’re here for you always.

    Stay safe.

  70. Lusine05 Volunteer

    Hello Fee,
    Aww, I am glad that you felt better after writing here. I am sorry that your professor said all those rude things, and I want you to know that I stand by your writing too. There are some websites where you could post your stories, scripts, and any other writings, and other people can read them and write comments. Most of them are free, and I enjoyed posting some of my stuff there too. I know that it is not a paying job, but if you want to become a writer one day, I think it is a good place to start. Here is one of them https://www.writerscafe.org/ . I see that you are lost, but just remember that it is only for some period of time. You will find your path, and we will be next to you for the whole journey.
    Stay safe and strong,
    -L

  71. brookeallnutt Volunteer

    Hi Fee,

    Thank you for giving us an update on how you are doing! I’m so glad that this community has helped you. Your story and experiences deserve to be heard, and it’s terrible that people like your professor said such insensitive things. You made so many great points in this post, and I can tell that you are a great writer :). Your struggles and feelings are valid, and it’s totally okay to not always be productive or on top of things. Your mental, emotional, physical etc. health are so important, and you deserve to take time to do things that make you happy. I believe in you, and you will do everything you want to do when you are ready! We are always here for you, and please feel free to come back and share anytime.

  72. Jiggy Volunteer

    Hey Fee,
    Good to hear from you again! It’s great to hear that our comments have helped you. I am sorry that your professor did not give you a chance and she steered you away from getting a degree. So many people talk without thinking and she blurted something so offensive without thinking how you might feel. But what she said really brings up a sad reality. Instances of sexual assault does occur frequently but just because it has occurred “millions of times” does not undermine the feelings victims may feel. If anything, that just means society needs to wake up and be more active in stopping these types of crimes from happening. You should be easier on yourself, it’s easy to say you won’t amount to anything but you overcame so much. We all know you will continue on improving, you are very strong.
    Hope to hear from you again

  73. jcas120 Volunteer

    Hello Fee,

    It’s so great to hear from you again, I am so glad that you found our responses helpful. I am glad that you feel safe and welcome here. I really agreed with your statement about how the frequency of sexual violence doesn’t make yours or any one else’s less important, but more important. That is so true. I know you said that there are so many things you want to do but don’t have the strength to do. I just want to let you know that after all you have been through that is normal. You have overcame quite a bit and sometimes healing takes time. However, I know that you are very strong and brave and will be able to make it through this. You have been through so much but also overcame so much, you are incredibly resilient and we are also here to support you any way we can!

  74. Ashley Day Captain

    It’s wonderful to hear from you, Fee!

    I’m thankful that our words provided you with relief and validation.
    It’s unfair how we’re expected to go on with life normally after experiencing a traumatic event; we deserve space and time to heal. Sexual violence is a big deal and I wish that people wouldn’t have made you feel otherwise. The professor was out of line with her comment since you were talking about something that has affected you.
    “The frequency of sexual violence doesn’t make my or anyone else’s story less important, it makes them more important, and I feel like all of us deserve to be heard.” I love this line because everyone does deserve to be heard. If someone is affected by sexual violence, they have the right to talk about the impact it has/had on them.
    Be kind to yourself while you’re on your journey of self-discovery. There is still some time to figure things out.

    Ashley

  75. Alyssa Day Captain

    Hi Fee,
    I’m so happy that our comments helped. It’s good to hear back from you. I’m sorry that your teacher thought you had a bad script. I actually graduated with a degree in communications and was part of my schools film club. I write scripts a lot and when I was in school I wrote a lot about personal stories. My teachers who read my scripts also criticize them, but I still went through with making them with my friends. Maybe you can get a few friends to help you make the script into a reality by filming it. You can put it on YouTube or keep it to yourself. Wherever you feel comfortable. Never let anyone tear your dreams apart. You are not stupid. I’m sure your script was amazing. Scripts that come from the heart are the best scripts.
    You are not broken or stupid. You are smart, talented, and strong. It takes a lot to write a script. It is not an easy thing to do. I believe in you and so does everyone else here at AVFTI. Maybe to help you continue to write you can set small goals for yourself. Like maybe everyday for an hour you sit down to write a script until it is done or whatever it is you want to write. Or you can say I’ll give myself 2-3 days to come up with a topic to write about and then I’ll give myself 2-3 days come up with a title and so on. Continue to believe in yourself and stay strong. If you need anything we are always here for you!
    -Alyssa