An outspoken feminist friend of mine shared this (13 Years Ago, I Took My Rapist To Court) on Facebook today, and when I got to the bottom I realized it was her own story (missed the byline at the top). It is really well written and I encourage you to read and share it. Obviously, it is probably quite triggering for many people.

I think a lot of it is very quotable, and so it’s hard to choose highlights, but here are some:

Maybe rape is the great equalizer of women. The universal experience, designed to remove our power and our agency, a violent reminder that we are carbon copies of each other, that we are simply stacks of body parts designed for men’s taking.

In pop culture, rape has become almost a rite of passage for female characters. They are only allowed to become real characters once they pay the price. Their strength is fueled by their trauma. Their humanity is fueled by their pain.

But here’s the truth: we don’t have strength because of our trauma, we have strength in spite of it.

Rape is the act of taking away someone’s power. I will never give my rapist credit for my strength.