Why Should I Call Myself a "Survivor" Instead of a "Victim"?

"I don't recall who first told me that I wasn’t a victim, but it happened soon after someone told me I was raped. I was 17 and wasted. I was a nerd who had been drunk maybe three times in my life, surrounded by the safety of giggling girlfriends and a childhood home free of vacationing parents. I had never been to an actual party where everyone was drinking, and a boy seemed to like me, and I had no curfew or responsible adults to report to. I was a virgin who didn’t want to be one much longer. Several strains of the impossible became possible all at once. There was nothing but the present moment, walking out of a party that was too loud and too crowded, holding a guy’s hand, like I was the kind of girl who got to do that."


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