Dear Dr. Christine Blasey Ford,
Thank you aren't enough words for what you have done for my life. Your bravery, courage, and testimony have not only triggered me, but also inspired me to reclaim my voice. One month ago, I was sexually assaulted, again. The first time I remained silent and buried it.
The second time, because I have lived this situation before, I chose to not report it. I thought because I knew “how to handle" a situation like this, that not reporting would be the healthiest choice. I was wrong.
The memory of me saying no, and saying how I wanted to go home played like a never-ending movie in my head. It was a clip on repeat that I didn't and still don't know how to turn off. Hearing you speak made me realize I never want to go through the scrutiny that you are going through right now. I never want to see his face on television, and I never want the fear that someone as evil as our perpetrators could run our country and get away with their heinous actions.
After writing an article on “Why I Didn't Report" to help people understand that side of the effects of sexual assault, I grew angry. I grew angry for the injustices you are facing, I grew angry for all the other women and men that faced this injustice and crime, and I grew angry that someone took advantage of my body when I know I clearly stated I did not want to engage in intercourse. I am now 'finally' reporting. I know this justice system does not make it easy for survivors, in fact, I question if they even protect survivors at all. However, I am no longer afraid. I know what they are going to do to me. I know the amount of victim blame I am going to face, but I am at the point where I am empowered to say,' bring it on'.
I will not be submissive to a system that is skewed. I will not succumb to society's judgements, and I will stand up for myself and all the other survivors out there. Whether the DA finds enough evidence or not, I will walk away knowing I did everything I could, rather than sit and wallow like I did the first time. No one will take away my power, strength, and integrity ever again, and you Dr. Ford made me realize that.
Dr. Victoria Bateman, an esteemed economist best known for her nude protests for gender equality, uses her body as a form of art that serves to challenge the stigma around women's bodies and women's rights, in the world of economics.