Thousands of harassment survivors came forward on social media recently with their own stories of why they didn’t report being sexually assaulted. They took to Twitter and shared their horrific experiences along with the hashtag #WhyIDidntReport. This created an opposition not only against President Donald Trump, but also anyone else who questions an accuser’s honesty.
When President Trump questioned Dr Christine Blasey Ford’s claim against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh
Actor-activist Alyssa Milano who, last year, popularised Twitter hashtag #MeToo has started a new hashtag #WhyIDidntReport now. Milano shared her personal story of being sexually assaulted through this. She also encouraged others to do the same. This came right after President Trump questioned Dr Ford’s claim.
Dr Ford had accused Kavanaugh of holding her down and groping her at a party during their high school days. President Trump went on to say that had the accusation been true Ford would have filed a police report at the time.
Milano did not take the brutal insult the President showered through his statement. She responded:
Hey, @realDonaldTrump, Listen the fuck up.
I was sexually assaulted twice. Once when I was a teenager. I never filed a police report and it took me 30 years to tell me parents.
— Alyssa Milano (@Alyssa_Milano) September 21, 2018
Soon other survivors shared their stories
Milano’s urge for other survivors to share their stories went viral in no time as numerous women, celebrities and the commoner alike, contributed their own devastating accounts. Here are some tweets, by women, revealing why they didn’t come forward with their complaints during their time of incident.
He lived in my house.#whyididntreport
— Beth Moore (@BethMooreLPM) September 22, 2018
There were 5 other rich, white boys in my boyfriend's college frat room.
I was poor white trash on a scholarship.
I was drunk and drugged and passed around like a fucking bong.
Like a game of hot potato.
I thought he loved me.
I was embarrassed and scared.#WhyIDidntReport https://t.co/CtJekvDFD9
— Holly Figueroa O'Reilly (@AynRandPaulRyan) September 21, 2018
Because I didn’t want to lose my job or make people think I was a drama queen. #WhyIDidntReport
— Lili Reinhart (@lilireinhart) September 21, 2018
Ashley Judd also shared the devastating experience she endured from sexual abuse at a young age.
#WhyIDidntReport. The first time it happened, I was 7. I told the first adults I came upon. They said “Oh, he’s a nice old man, that’s not what he meant.” So when I was raped at 15, I only told my diary. When an adult read it, she accused me of having sex with an adult man.
— ashley judd (@AshleyJudd) September 21, 2018
So #WhyIDidntReport I was 15. Raped by a drunk football player at a high school party. I was SURE my dad would shoot him if he knew and then my mom would be alone. I stayed in my room for days and cried to my cat. Didn't tell dad until like 20 years later after my rapist died.
— Pauley Perrette (@PauleyP) September 22, 2018
Amy Oppenheimer, a California-based attorney who specialises in investigating sexual misconduct told NBC News that this is the start of a new hope. Oppenheimer expressed happiness at the intense reaction to the #WhyIDidntReport hashtag saying is a sign that Ford will be treated in a better way. “It’s another #MeToo moment. We’re not going to sit around and watch this happen again,” she said.
Thousands of social media users rejected Trump’s argument. Some of them publicly revealed their pain for the first time. While their reasons for not reporting were varied, all of them shared their versions in solidarity with Ford. Author Patti Davis, daughter of former president Ronald Reagan and Nancy Reagan, also defended Ford. Davis, in a Washington Post op-ed, revealed she was raped by a prominent record executive 40 years ago.
The official Women’s March account tweeted: “There are too many of these stories. Too many of us have these stories. Too many of us have never felt safe to share them. And men like @realDonaldTrump are why”
• There are too many of these stories.
• Too many of us have these stories.
• Too many of us have never felt safe to share them.
And men like @realDonaldTrump are why.
— Women's March (@womensmarch) September 21, 2018
Kavanaugh has denied Ford’s accusations. However, the Supreme Court nominee will be responding during a hearing that may take place next week.