Fresh Takes Opinion — 01 February 2018

By Taylor Lobb

@TAYLORLOBB

As sexual assault survivors seek to the media for outreach, thousands are being criticized and ridiculed for their lengthy recovery and confession time. Credibility is being tarnished because victims are waiting months, sometimes years to gain the personal strength to effectively communicate the assault that occurred. But who is to say what the most effective way of voicing something like this is?

To endure such unspeakable trauma such as sexual assault is something the majority cannot relate too, and that should be taken into true consideration regardless the time period.

However, the American population in particular has taken it upon themselves to create an intense atmosphere of shame around the matter, and to all who have endured such insurmountable traumas who dare to let time pass before speaking out.

To publicly mock and disregard a victim of assault due to length of time is humanly unjust.

Should someone come forward with allegations about something so traumatic, is beyond the scope of comprehension to most.

Fortunately we have social media in place, which serves as a somewhat comfortable form of expression to some who may not be able to comprehend the trauma themselves. In addition, it is a way for individuals to seek companionship and relate to one another on a matter that is difficult to face alone.

As we have rapidly become a heavily technologically influenced society, social media has developed to be a major platform for discussion to important matters such a sexual misconduct. Comparatively, it has become a prime platform for judgment and opinion on the topic as well. It is extremely unfortunate to see that in such an advanced society, we shame others for utilizing an outlet that would otherwise be used for material content such as your favorite pair of shoes, or what your having for lunch.

The reality is, life is not an Instagram page full of your favorite memories. Life is full of rapists and sexual predators, and we should be fragile and indifferent to the victims using it as a form of expression. Social media can actually provide aid to those who are battling mental illness such as depression, anxiety or even suicidal thoughts.

Something like this is comparable to death, and any who have endured the loss of another can understand that coming to terms with something like this is untimely and difficult to process individually, let alone publically.

By creating a stigma around reporting a crime in such heinous nature in turn puts direct stress on victims everywhere, possibly even increasing risk of depression and suicide.

It is important that we shed light into the darkness that is sexual assault. The whispers are becoming loud exclamations quickly in society and this has in turn helped create a softer and safer atmosphere for those who have been wronged.

This is setting the tone for future generations that if something horrific like sexual assault were to occur, timely recovery is not essential if they would like to be taken seriously.

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Taylor Lobb

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