I am a survivor of former Olympic gymnast doctor Larry Nassar. In 2018, I gave an impact statement, along with hundreds of other women and girls, to ensure he would spend the rest of his life in prison. However, being sprung into the spotlight was completely unexpected and has truly changed the way I view my life. “My life” is key. I have learned not to lose sight of who I am, the goals I strive for, the future I dream of, and the passions that feed my soul. Yes, I am a survivor but It does not define “my life.”
It has taken time to learn not to lose myself within the label and role of victim and survivor. In the past, I felt that I was only defined as a victim of sexual assault. This title of victim/survivor is something I never asked for, and I don’t wish upon anyone. But if you do find yourself labeled as a victim/survivor, know that you are strong and that your life and future is still yours to define.
I didn’t choose to be sexually assaulted. But, I did choose to become a board member and the secretary of The Army of Survivors so I can help bring awareness, accountability and transparency to sexual violence against athletes at all levels.