by Danielle Antoinette Hidalgo, PhD
Assistant Professor of Sociology
California State University, Chico
TRIGGER WARNING!: rape, sexual violence, sexual assault, trauma
I don’t usually yell at the television, sit in front of the TV for 8 straight hours, post my real-time thoughts on Facebook over the course of an entire day, cancel every work-related meeting I had that day, have tear-filled conversations with my Mom about our own violent sexual histories, burst into tears upon hearing a single word uttered by a stranger, or sit in my (painful) memories for long stretches of time. This is not my daily, weekly or even monthly routine. But Thursday, September 27th 2018 was a special kind of day, one that literally forced me to confront, head on, what had been buried deep for well over 2 decades. Since then, I know so many of us have been in a similar space, grappling with pain that is often far too difficult and deep to confront at any one time. Honestly, the pain and rage is often so fierce and sharp that it feels like it is literally cutting me into pieces, ripping my chest apart and open a thousand times over. This entry is the beginning of my coming to terms with the avalanche that hit me on Thursday and hasn’t really gone away. It’s the beginning of some kind of clarity regarding how to move forward; some way that I/we/all of us might be able to use these moments of rage to support one another and contribute to some real social change.