Shaindel Beers’s Story: Hundreds of Dollars

Dear Younger Sister,
This happened in 2004 when I was twenty-seven, which is probably older than you are now, but that’s part of why this is so important for me to tell you—because a lot of times people act like this only happens in high school or college. Or you feel especially dumb about what happened if you were older than high school or college age.

Sarah Certa’s Story: Dead Woman

Sarah Certa’s Story: Dead Woman

Trauma: Like this the truth trickles down to you. Slowly you peel back one layer at a time. You built walls in defense but now you live inside a house inside a house inside a house. You live underground. It is safer to be dead but you realize you’re not ready for that. Slowly you unearth your grave.
Slowly you make space around you. Slowly you take up that space.

My Story: He was given ‘permission’ to rape me

My Story: He was given ‘permission’ to rape me

I'm less afraid of talking about these ones than the first one. I have no idea what became of either of those guys, and I don't care. I've lost touch with all of the "friends" we had in common back then, the ones who knew and didn't stop it, the boyfriend who gave permission for his friend to rape me…it's a part of my life I've put past me.

My Story: The summer I became a slut

My Story: The summer I became a slut

The first time I was raped I was 16 years old. The night exists in a series of flash-bulb images that I can neither piece together nor erase from my memory, despite years of trying. I’m still not sure if it was my fault, even though I know it wasn’t.

I don’t think about it very often anymore, but every few years I revisit the spiral of shame, and guilt.