CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (WDEF) –People in the Chattanooga area and across the country are taking to social media to share their experiences of being sexually harassed or assaulted.
Bergen Aldahir, with Partnership, looks over posts with the hashtag me too. Alyssa Milano posted this on Twitter. It then took off, with people sharing their experiences of being sexually harassed or assaulted.
“This is a huge, huge step in terms of awareness, in terms of letting the community know, the broader community know that this isn’t okay and it is a major step in passing the shame and putting it back on the perpetrator,” Aldahir said.
She says awareness about sexual assaults is rising.
“This isn’t something you saw ten years ago when this happened to me, me too. Ten years ago, when I was sexually assaulted as a Freshman at the University of Alabama, this wasn’t something anyone talked about and a big part of my mission became talking about this,” Aldahir said.
She says social media can be a powerful way for people to share their experience.
“It is interesting because we have seen social media play both ways, right? So there have been horrific incidents of sexual assaults that have been live streamed on social media. So we have seen the horrible effects that social media can have, but then you also see the empowering effects, just like this me too campaign.”
Partnership’s Rape Crisis Center is busier than ever. The amount of sexual assaults isn’t increasing, but awareness is.
“So more people are saying, ‘You know what?’ This isn’t my fault. I didn’t deserve this and it is not right and I am going to seek help,” Aldahir said.
Me too is a campaign making people realize, they are not alone.
“I know personally as a survivor, that there are many times that you feel that you will never be okay again, but you will be,” Aldahir said.