The answer to that question depends on all of us. When we collectively get our acts together so that rape, abuse, and violence isn’t so commonplace…..maybe we can address people’s concerns about what now seems like daily open conversations about rape, abuse, and violence.
Some people seem to think that since Bill Cosby, pastors, priests, teachers, and potentially R.Kelly have gone to jail; “maybe y’all can stop talking about it all of the time.”
Bad news indeed. People might continue to be uncomfortable with conversations around sexual violence.
There is still so much more work to do…..so much to fix.
So much to learn and teach……
So, so, so, so much to heal.
Women’s Health & Domestic Violence & Sexual Violence often quietly collide in ways that can lead to long-term illness, disability, and/or death.
Like many other ppl, I’ve lost relatives to conditions unique that are unique to women.
Misdiagnosis, silence, shame, embarrassment has kept too many women suffering in excruciating pain, silently and alone.
Even today, sometimes decades after their deaths- we still only whisper about it.
We’ve only just begun to talk about sexual violence and domestic violence, too.
We still need to have a national conversation:
- Around rape kits. Why are victims of the crime of rape are being charged to gather evidence? Why do we have a huge backlog all of THIS country?
- Around pregnancies and comprehensive prenatal care for the 32,000 pregnancies each year that result from the crime of rape.
- Around the lingering psychological and mental suffering that most victims suffer from. Studies put it as high as 4 out of 5 victims.
- About the fact that people in mainstream media still call an adult raping a child below the age of consent; “having sex”.
- About the need for long term mental health services required by many victims and Survivors.
- About the need for excellent, low-cost health care coverage needed to treat the long term health conditions and disabilities experienced by victims and Survivors.
- About the need for impactful safe healing spaces to meet the needs of as many victims/Survivors as we are able.
- About the need for more funding, more culturally competent staff, more culturally competent services, more culturally competent training to address the needs of victims/Survivors.
- About the need to get into those difficult conversations about just how current gun laws are impacting domestic violence, rape, and abuse and what we are going to do about it.
- About the need to discuss how we MUST close the pay gap between all women and all men.
- Around how rape, slavery, colonization, racism, sexism, and homophobia knock right into issues of domestic violence and sexual violence.
- Around sexual assault in the military.
- Around how campuses address sexual assault on college campuses.
- Around how we continue to fail vulnerable populations like people with disabilities who remain at high risk for abuse and violence.
- Around how we must find more effective ways to address the high numbers of disappearance, murder & rape in Black and Native American communities.
- Law and Order SVU is an amazing television show that has really done some heavy lifting in anti-violence work. I myself have appreciated working alongside police officers with that same kind of persistence, professionalism, and courage to bring justice to victims. But real is real.
We still need to have conversations around how we still have too many victims/Survivors who refuse to go to the police departments because they may be further victimized. We need to talk about how those people that have that fear are not wrong.
You all feel free to add this list. I’m sure that I missed quite a bit.