AceShowbiz - %cAshley Judd% wrote a powerful essay about violence against women after she received violent messages from Twitter trolls following her comment about a March Madness basketball game. In her writing, she revealed that she's a survivor of rape and incest.
"What happened to me is the devastating social norm experienced by millions of girls and women on the Internet," she said of the hate messages she received on the internet. "Online harassers use the slightest excuse (or no excuse at all) to dismember our personhood."
"I read in vivid language the various ways, humiliating and violent, in which my genitals, vaginal and anal, should be violated, shamed, exploited and dominated," she wrote. "My intellect was insulted: I was called stupid, an idiot. My age, appearance and body were attacked. Even my family was thrown into the mix: Someone wrote that my 'grandmother is creepy.' "
"I am a survivor of sexual assault, rape and incest," Ashley opened up. "I am greatly blessed that in 2006, other thriving survivors introduced me to recovery. I seized it. My own willingness, partnered with a simple kit of tools, has empowered me to take the essential odyssey from undefended and vulnerable victim to empowered survivor."
"Today, nine years into my recovery, I can go farther and say my 'story' is not 'my story.' It is something a Higher Power (spirituality, for me, has been vital in this healing) uses to allow me the grace and privilege of helping others who are still hurting, and perhaps to offer a piece of education, awareness and action to our world."
She went on to recall sexual assaults she experienced in the summer of 1984. "I experienced two rapes by an adult and systematic molestation from another adult, who also had another man in the room watching (I now understand this was to ensure he had a witness, in order to undermine me in the event I tried to report the incident)."
"I have done purgative, cathartic work on those particular acts of violence. The nature of recovering from trauma is that it can be ongoing, with deeper levels of healing and freedom coming with indefatigable persistence to keep chipping away at it."
"But let me tell you: I am exactly like every other survivor, and the sexual assault centers of our country are for me, just as they are for all of us," she added. "So for now, I am handing it back over to those of you who are unafraid to speak out against abuse like I have faced, and those of you who are righteous allies and intervening bystanders."
She concluded, "You're on it. Keep at it - on the Internet, at home, at work and in your hearts, where the courage to tackle this may fundamentally lie. We have much to discuss, and much action to take. Join me."