‘5 out of 6 of my sisters have been sexually assaulted. We’re all under 30. I’ve had ENOUGH.’: Woman pens open letter, claims we ‘can’t change the ugly,’ but we can ‘support each other through it’

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“Last week something happened that, well, just simply set me off.

I am one of six children, all girls. A couple days ago one of my sisters disclosed to me for the first time that she had been sexual assaulted by her male best friend two years ago. That means a whopping FIVE out of us, myself included, have been sexually assaulted in our lifetime. We are all younger than 30 years old.

That doesn’t even include my mom (who is also a domestic violence survivor too, might I add) and my aunt.

It doesn’t include all of my friends and family members who have yet to find the bravery and comfort to come forward.

It doesn’t include all of those who have yet to be victimized.

Y’all, if you’re listening, I’ve had ENOUGH.

What kind of world do we live in where it’s okay that FIVE out of six women have been traumatized? That’s enough trauma to pass on for centuries.

Y’all, I’m TIRED.

I’m tired of having to carry pepper spray in my purse. I’ve been doing it since I was 11 after a middle-aged man chased me home when I got off the school bus.

I’m tired of pulling my shorts down or covering up in 99-degree heat out of fear of being catcalled for the million and tenth time.

I’m tired of piling on makeup because I’ve been taught my worth depends on my beauty and my acne scars make me feel inadequate.

I’m tired of restricting what I can and can’t wear based on what will best hide my tummy rolls.

I’m tired of counting calories, perpetually waiting for that ‘summer body’ that just won’t ever come.

I’m tired of having to tell men that no, I’m not on my period, I’m just angry.

I’m tired of smuggling tampons and pads into my purse like it’s some sort of illegal substance because I’m embarrassed of my own nature.

I’m tired of feeling nervous in Ubers with male drivers.

I’m tired of looking over my shoulder.

I’m tired of school dress codes targeting girls and young women. No, my damn shoulders are not sexy or distracting.

I’m tired of comparing myself to plastic celebrities.

I’m tired of women covering their bruises with makeup before work.

I’m tired of female athletes going unacknowledged.

I’m tired of being overlooked by men.

I’m tired of the wage gap.

I’m tired of words like ‘sl*t’ and ‘wh*re.’

I’m tired of men, not women, making decisions about abortion laws.

I’m tired of sex being about male pleasure only.

I’m tired of being expected to shave my legs, and my underarms, and my pubes. My nature is not disgusting.

I’m tired of being only 25 and asked every other dang week when I am going to get married and have kids instead of what I want to do with my career and what amazing milestones I’m meeting in graduate school.

I’m tired of having to cling to my cup at parties like some wild animal out of fear of getting roofied, again.

I’m tired of men coming up behind me unannounced when I’m just trying to dance with my girls.

I’m tired of the mom shaming.

I’m tired of the childless women shaming.

I’m tired of ‘feminist’ being a dirty word.

I’m simply TIRED. Aren’t you?

But you know what I’m not tired of?

Kindness.

The women who have lifted me up in my life.

I couldn’t have gotten this far without you.

And if you’ve gotten this far in my story, remember that we’re all in this together ladies. We can’t always change the ugly, but we can support each other through it.

And I hope that you do.”

This story was submitted to Love What Matters by Grace of Houston, Texas. Submit your own story here and be sure to subscribe to our free email newsletter for our best stories.

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