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Madison’s Story

At the 2018 Visionary Awards Reception, Madison shared with everyone how sexual assault has impacted her life. In her own words, “During the process of brainstorming how I could relay my experience, I was unsure of how I could do such a thing in such a short time period. Then it hit me, my poetry expresses my experiences quite well. So, I would like to share a poem I wrote last year.”

Closed door.
It’s late, it’s time to sleep,
The door opens
And inside he creeps.
He locks the door,
And I’m confused,
I didn’t think
I would be abused.
Abused in my own home.
Like a fisherman,
He lured me in.
I was an easy catch.
So young and so scared,
I was unaware.
Unaware that I could scream.
Would it have mattered if I did?
I was upstairs,
And they were down below,
They were partying,
They didn’t know.
Know that I was being raped.
Closed door.
Ah, he tricked you.
How could you be so dumb?
He’s got you now,
You slowly turn numb.
It’s happening again,
This time, by a friend.
“Yeah, you like that?
I bet you do!
Everyone’s gunna know what
A slut you are when I am
Done with you.”
He wasn’t lying.
But he wasn’t done.
“Do as I say or eat bullets…
Choose one!”
So I did as he said.
He made me hold his hand.
So, I held onto his sweaty palms,
And he arrogantly paraded on.
He showed me off as if I were a prize,
They called me a slut just like he said they would but didn’t realize.
That I just had yet another piece of me taken, They were convinced I asked for it, They were mistaken.
Closed door.
My friend promised me that she
Wouldn’t leave.
Apparently that was a promise
She couldn’t keep.
I couldn’t take care of myself,
I was a bottle deep.
I thought I could trust them,
But they proved me wrong.
The two of them hovered over me,
They said” I’ve been waiting for this for so long.”
So, they took their turns on me,
Like I was a damn board game.
I was motionless,
Yet the tears came.
Closed door.
Their cold, rough hands,
Turning my body into ice.
Frozen with fear.
Vulnerable and naked,
Yet clothed with betrayal.
Closed door.
It’s not real,
It’s over.
Please heal,
Get over.
Get over it,
Or just admit,
That you wanna quit.
You want it to stop.
They say you’re lookin like
You’re feeling better,
But you know you’re not.
You’re miserable,
You wanna die.
But they can’t seem to fathom why.
“You’re so beautiful and you’re strong”
If I’m so strong, then how has this been holding me captive for so damn long?!
A prisoner in my own mind,
It’s been 8 years!
But, if you ask me how I’m doing I’ll say “I’m doing fine”.
I’ve tried everything.
Medications and therapy.
That’s not how childhood oughta be.
Those closed doors didn’t do me no good, You tell me, “don’t stop trying,”
I wish I could.
I️ wish could persevere,
But I’m tired.
I just can’t do it,
they have put out my fire.
I hate to be the one responsible for my
Own demise…
but Enough closed doors.
Closed eyes.

You see I wrote that poem when I was in a dark place; overwhelmed with all my problems I couldn’t face. I felt so alone, like my own island. For too many years, I felt silenced. I was told that Assault is a part of life, “Shit happens,” but I refuse to be a man’s token or a part of his gruesome satisfaction. For too many years, I hated myself for not having the strength to fight, But here I am sharing my story tonight. It took me up until this year to realize my fire, To use my trauma to shape my desire, Desire to help fellow survivors. I refuse to remain a part of the silence because “Everyone deserves a life free of domestic and sexual violence.”

I really wish I had a resource like Call to Safety when I was experiencing my assaults, and it really solidified my feelings about how important it is that the work of Call to Safety continues.

It requires resources for this work to continue. I’d like to encourage you to give generously to Call to Safety.


“For too many years, I compared myself to other survivors. I felt guilty for not healing fast enough and felt too damaged to be loved. That all changed in this last year, since I have been interning at Call to Safety. Due to the amazing support, knowledge, and dedication the staff at Call to Safety have exposed me to, I have grown tremendously and have turned my trauma into fuel to help other survivors.”

— Madison
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