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Breaking the Silence: The Journey to Surviving Sexual Assault

Paperback - 08 November 2017
Cohen, Marissa F. (Author)
Vitale, Nicole (Foreword by)
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Through the eyes of 20 warriors of sexual assault, you will be transformed into the mindset and universe of a person that has battled for and won their lives back from someone who aimed to take it away from them.

Breaking Through the Silence; the Journey to Surviving Sexual Assault is a compilation book of interviews from warriors of from all over the world, as well as 18 professionals and other people that provide a support system, from SANE nurses to Friends, for warriors. The purpose of this book is to allow warriors who still feel isolated and silenced to know that they are never alone, that they never will be alone. By including stories from other warriors, victims can find someone to relate to. They can see their journey, what happened, how they reacted, what they used to cope, and finally, where they are now, and gain insight and hope in maneuvering through their journey to survive. And following the stories, are first-person accounts from professionals in related fields; SANE nurses, Detectives, Prosecutors, Social Workers and more. As well as other means of support; Friends, Advocates, Significant others. These are the people who make up the full support system that many warriors used to help them cope and heal.

This is also an easily navigated manual for support systems to utilize when they are helping a survivor. The insight you'll gain from reading this will help understand what the warrior is going through, whether or not they are capable of fully verbalizing it yet. The lessons, insights, mentalities, coping mechanisms, everything your survivor may be experiencing, can be better understood from the voice of someone else who experienced it and coped with it.

The events in this book are all very different. No two assaults are the same, ever. However, there are pieces that connect us all to each other. There are similarities, and comfort in the fact that no story is unique. To recognize that is powerful. It unites us all and makes us stronger together. Once we all see the light and realize that there are more people who have been traumatized like this, than people who are assaulting, it will take power from the abusers, and put it in the hands of the warriors. We can and will end this.

A prevalent theme throughout this book is advice from warriors. Almost every warrior will tell you that talking about it makes the entire situation easier to conceptualize and heal. Most of us, myself included, began our healing journey the moment we were able to admit it to ourselves and somebody else that we were raped or assaulted. It is so unfortunately common for people to feel ashamed that this has happened to them as if it's our faults, we asked for it, or we deserved it. But that is COMPLETELY untrue. This happened TO us. WE didn't make a choice, in fact, we didn't have a choice. The people who abuse us deserve to feel the way we feel. And we deserve the platform and strength to be supported and speak out about what happened to us without backlash, disbelief, and shame.

This book is our call to action. There are more than 1 in 4 women and girls, and 1 in 6 men and boys that are sexually assaulted every year. Those numbers are inferred from the number of cases that are reported every year and produced by the CDC. As you'll see through the content in this book, those numbers are significantly lower than the real number of assaults per year. Only about 5% of assaults are reported. The world is changing. Our voices are beginning to be heard, but it is just starting. Let's teach society how life-changing it is to be raped and assaulted by telling our stories. We need to be the change and speak up. It's our time now.

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