Ed Note: This is a guest post from Lunamax, one of the 600 who attended SlutWalk St. Louis on July 16. Do you have a story to share? Email to sexpositive.stl @ gmail .com
I initially chose to attend the St Louis SlutWalk to support a mission and ultimately support rape and “slut shaming” prevention. As the event date grew closer, I started to recognize that my desire to support this cause was much greater.
As a dual-episode rape survivor I realized I still had some healing to work through. Aside from my own personal growth, I wanted to do something (ANYTHING!) to make this a safer place for my two small daughters, in hope they never have succumb to the same barbaric treachery.
I found myself reliving my victimizations en route to the SlutWalk. At 17, not yet sexually active, I was raped while attending a high school party. I remember understanding the general idea of what was happening and feeling so ashamed that I couldn’t tell anyone for fear of being branded a “slut”.
When I was almost 30, I was dating a man who brutally sodomized me against my wishes and my screams of pain and terror. Both situations left me feeling helpless, ashamed and certainly played a part in developing who I am today.
It has been 20 years and then 10 years since my respective rapes; plenty of time to work through the mental and physical anguish. Plenty more time to become the sexy, confident woman I am today. I had no idea I still held so much emotion over these past experiences. Yet, by the time I had reached the event destination, I found tears streaming down my face.
The SlutWalk felt empowering and safe to me. The women and men who attended expressed such amazing passion and teamwork; all of whom were there to support the same message:
My clothing choices, flirting, alcohol, or anything other reason does not give someone else the right to rape me.
Supporters gathered early to make signs expressing these or similar sentiments. Many were dressed in provocative clothing to prove this point further. My favorite expression of the day was “Yep, still not asking for it…”
At the start of the walk, the group moved en masse with signs and posters in tow. Music lifted our feet as we stepped in time and began chanting “Slut! Slut! Slut!” as we progressed to our final destination. Huddled in the corner of an intersection, cheers rang out and I felt an overwhelming sense of release. It was truly a remarkable event.
I am a business professional, mom, wife, sister, daughter, aunt and above all else, a damn sexy woman. I am a dual-episode rape survivor. I do not deserve to be raped based on my clothing choices, my location or the amount of friendly conversation I choose to conduct with others.
I am thankful for having experienced this event, for reliving my past and for being just that much stronger at the end of the day. Those closet demons… well, they will come out and get you at the worst times if you don’t confront them now and again.
~ The Lovely Lady Lunamax