"When I was 16, I was sexually molested by a man on a city bus. I had never seen him before in my life. I didn't know what to do with myself so I froze until I had to get off. I told two of my friends, but at our young age, they didn't know how to handle it. They never brought it up again, so neither did I. Since my parents were getting divorced at the time, I felt like I had no one to talk to, so I just kept it in for seven years. When I went to Sherut Leumi, I went to therapy because I thought I was having a hard time separating from my younger sister. It helped... but at that time I didn't think that the assault had such a big effect on me. Therefore, I just ignored it and didn't bring it up during my sessions.
Only after I got married seven years later, did I realize the effect it had on me. Our first year of marriage was very hard in every way, especially the sexual experiences. My husband supported me the whole time, and eventually I started therapy again. He also encouraged me to tell my two closest friends, thinking that I would likely need support from other women. I was sure they would be there for me in my hard times, like I was there for them, but they abandoned me. They left me when I needed them the most. They preferred to ignore my pain than deal with a subject that might be difficult. My heart was crushed again. It took me a long time to get over them and understand that I'm better off having no friends than having friends like them. They made the most offensive excuses to their actions. They even mentioned that they didn't think I needed them because I was seeing a therapist.
Throughout the years I have worked on myself a lot and have really become a better person. I am able to speak my mind, and I have overcome the initial reaction I had when I was molested. I now react, yell back and scare others that have tried to attack me. I'm still struggling, but I'm proud of myself for being present and overcoming situations that are hard for me.
I want to tell the world:
Please please don't ever blame the victim!!!
I was wearing long sleeves and a long skirt. It didn't matter!
Be there for your friends when they need you, especially in hard times!
Teach your kids how to react in these kind of situations.
Be grateful to the people who are there for you and love you in any kind of state.
I truly am grateful to have my amazing husband and son keeping me up every day.
This photo shoot really took me out of what just a few short years ago would have been my comfort zone, and showed me how far I have come as a person..."
Hair and Makeup by Cassy Avraham