Speaking Up For The Silent Survivors

I have a few speaking engagements coming up that I am freakishly excited about. First, my husband invited me to come speak to his high school class about child abuse as that is what they are currently learning about. I just adore how supportive he is of my work! Second, I get to speak at a local college event about being a survivor of acquaintance rape (I learned this term after perusing some health department brochures). I spend 40 hours per week at my dream job, but I still want to do more for these populations, so I believe this is God’s way of giving me that wish.

If you were given the opportunity to speak to 9th graders about child abuse, what age appropriate information would you want them to know? A few things I want to include are common things abusers tell kids to keep them quiet, that I have seen only one case where the parent didn’t believe the child, and not to bully other students because they never know what others are going through at home. Any ideas for a quick activity they won’t forget? Feel free to comment on any of these questions!

Next, I get to tell my story of acquaintance rape… yippee. But if it helps one person seek healing for something they’ve endured, then I count it as a victory. 1 Corinthians 15:58 says, “So, my dear brothers and sisters, be strong and immovable. Always work enthusiastically for the Lord, for you know that nothing you do for the Lord is ever useless.” I will stand in front of 150 people and recount the memory that stirs my animosity toward alcohol. That internal desire to empty a Corona onto the ground, and then shatter the glass bottle against a rock wall while screaming out the anger, okay guilt, that I’ve held in. And somehow, I will refrain from begging the college students to not go to parties… because they’re going to anyway. Someone else’s experience never stopped me from making my own mistakes… but then again, no one ever talked to me about this stuff, especially since I was a 16-year-old student at a Christian school. We never had personal testimonies. The extent of our sex ed was a hula hoop representing holes in a condom and a pillow (aka Speedy the Sperm) representing the sperm that fits through the condom holes and still impregnates a girl. Yeahhhh, so that was memorable, but not quite impactful. Okay, back on track. So, any tactics that have worked for you? Any memorable speeches you’ve heard that have made you change your ways? Tips, tricks, advice?

I’m looking for direction here so any advice will most likely be utilized! haha

Hurtful truth: It’s better to be a humble student than an insufferable know-it-all.

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