Monday, April 20, 2009

This is a Remarkable Woman I Know Who is Speaking Out Against Rape

The majority of my friends, my own family and people who know me have no idea that I am a victim of rape. It's not something I talk about. In fact, for the past 7 years it's been a mix of tremendous emotion that I've buried deep into the shadows of my soul. I will be honest and say that it does effect me almost on a daily basis, but not today, today I woke up and I am like a brand new person, I am that person I was meant to be 7 years ago before I was raped.

That is because yesterday was a huge day for me. I was at the San Diego District Attorney's Office attending a press conference with all of the major players in the San Diego community. The press conference was about the launch of the new viral videos created for the PRICE (Preventing Rape by Intoxication through Community Education) organization and to bring awareness to Rape by Intoxication. I had my husband and my dad with me, both who sat and watched as the head District Attorney praised me specifically for my efforts in creating and producing these viral videos. I had never been prouder in my entire life, to see the past 7 years of my life leading up to this moment. It was now that I was coming forward to share my own rape experience for the first time since my trial 7 years ago and coming forward using the media that I love the I guess you can say I am now a spokesperson for rape. I am not just a statistic anymore, I am a real victim....a real survivor....with real emotions and I am thriving! I have survived this. And yesterday I came full circle and in a way felt reborn. I am a brand new person! I am no longer hiding the pain, scars, trauma, shame, humility that I pushed into the shadows of my soul for far too long. I am free! I am speaking out about rape. I now am a face that you can look at and see that I am a victim of rape and I am your friend, sister, wife, daughter...I am someone you care about. I have vowed to make it my goal in life to continue to raise awareness about rape and rape by intoxication. If I can help just one person, I will then have a purpose to all of my pain.

I've been working on these viral videos for PRICE since October. I was contacted by, Deputy District Attorney Pat Espinoza, who was the DA in my case, he had found my music videos and other work and had asked me if I could help them develop videos for their campaign. I jumped at the opportunity and decided that the best way to help and to reach out to others is bring the campaign to a very very personal level. Why do we never see or hear from victims of sexual assault or rape? It's because our society shuns them. Because for whatever reason it is always our fault for being raped. Well I wanted to break all of those stereotypes and challenge people to see and listen to real life survivors of rape. And that is what I did. I came forward and told my story and it was not easy. In fact I think it was one of the hardest things I've had to do, but for that I am a stronger person. There was only 1 other victim of rape by intoxication that wanted to come forward and share her story on camera. JUST ONE OTHER PERSON! We couldn't find anyone else that wanted to come forward. And I applaud Michelle for being so brave and the courage she has every day to come forward and tell her experience. Michelle has inspired me on so many levels. She's been talking about her own rape experience for a while now, she works with the Center for Community Solutions in San Diego, she's an incredible woman! She's empowering and beautiful and she has an amazing message to share to the world about rape.

Please go to:

to hear our stories and to learn more about how you can help prevent rape.

There are a handful of you who know what happened or who were there when it happened, who have been with me for the 7 years and who held my hand, who sat in the trial, who were always there for me no matter what, who cried with me, who fought with me, who supported me 100% through the terrible and tough times and to all of you...and you all know who you are, I say THANK YOU, because of you I have survived this! I am a better person for it. And I couldn't have done any of this or have reported my rape to the police without having you all supporting me 100%. I dedicate these videos and my involvement in PRICE to YOU. I truly hope you know how much you all mean to me and I hope you know how you have changed my life.

On April 30th, I will be the keynote speaker at the Take Back the Night rally at SDSU. I want to invite all of you to join me if you can!

I'm also starting my own non-profit organization, watch for, I will have a website up and running in a few weeks, where I am going to encourage other survivors of sexual assault and rape to blog, I'm also going to be selling t-shirts, bags and jewelry and will be donating 100% of the proceeds to PRICE.

I also want to thank all of the members of PRICE. Whom everyday supported me and the making of these videos. The love and support I get from all of them is overwhelming and incredible and jump started the healing process for me, whom believe in me and who every day fight to stop sexual assault and rape. You are all my heroes!

And more importantly I want to thank my family! Who have supported my decisions since the moment that changed my life. My family has been my rock! My husband is the most incredible man I know, who loves me for me and has taught me how to trust again and has showed me that I can be whole!

I love all of you! THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU!!!!


April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month. Wear a teal ribbon in support of victims and the cause.