How Girls Survive.

"I can remember floating up above the trees and floating through the soft fluffy clouds. I could swear I even felt the mists touching my skin." ...............Written by an 18 year old survivor.

If you are a survivor you probably know what it feels like to "float" outside your body. Many girls describe how they seem to leave their bodies during molestation and lose all sensation of what is being done to them. Some girls describe singing songs to themselves, remembering movies, spelling out words, losing themselves in the wallpaper, or the curtains, or a painting in the room.

photograph by Aviva Rowley. ©

The point is that many girls have this extraordinary way to disappear during their rape or any kind of sexual abuse. Girls survive this abuse with their hearts, brains, spirits, and souls intact. Girls compartmentalize, they put the abuse in one place and the rest of their lives in another place so that they can walk out into the world, out of their private hell. Girls are strong and resilient and find light in between the cracks and they hold onto that light to get them through their abuse.

"I would think about open forests, and gardens. I would picture every vibrant color I could. Then I would picture myself in this magical little house in the forest surrounded by all the beautiful colorful flowers. Then he would be finished molesting me and I would go on with my day." ...............written by a 20 year old survivor

Compartmentalizing your life is a temporary way of surviving your abuse, of putting off the problem for another day. But there are some girls who have a harder time handling the molestation and who are unable to compartmentalize their lives. They may become seriously depressed, suicidal, promiscuous, or involved in drugs and alcohol. Other girls may become overly involved in school, sports, music, friendships.

We are here to tell you that girls do overcome the abuse they have suffered. It is important for you to remember that girls survive and thrive and you can too!