Know My Name
I just finished a book called Know My Name by Chanel Miller. This was recommended to me by a blog subscriber (thanks Caryn!). And holy cow is it a powerful read.
It's not a fun read, but it's incredibly moving and much-needed. I found myself tearing up numerous times. Chanel writes about her experience of being sexually assaulted on a college campus by a high-profile athlete. She invites us to realize how “[her] pain was never more valuable than his potential.”
Then she walks us through the aftermath of pressing charges against her attacker. It's a wild ride through emotions as she educates you on what it means to be a victim and points out how our culture gets it wrong. Her case ended up changing California law.
Chanel writes with such clarity, vulnerability, and hope. We would all be better off reading this and sitting with her reality.
I survived because I remained soft, because I listened, because I wrote. Because I huddled close to my truth, protected it like a tiny flame in a terrible storm. Hold up your head when the tears come, when you are mocked, insulted, questioned, threatened, when they tell you you are nothing, when your body is reduced to openings. The journey will be longer than you imagined, trauma will find you again and again. Do not become the ones who hurt you. Stay tender with your power. Never fight to injure, fight to uplift.
I remember when the "Me Too" movement gained traction, there was quite a split reaction from people around me. Many praised the development while some felt like there were motives and agendas. This book helps to personalize a topic that is often stereotyped and misunderstood.
The book's power is not just her story but the way she invites you to see the world with clear eyes. You begin to realize that many of the narratives we tell ourselves actually perpetuate environments for abuse.
The friendly guy who helps you move and assists senior citizens in the pool is the same guy who assaulted me. One person can be capable of both. Society often fails to wrap its head around the fact that these truths often coexist, they are not mutually exclusive. Bad qualities can hide inside a good person. That's the terrifying part.
Not to mention that when we have a former president who bragged about sexual assault (on record) now looking like a strong candidate to return to office, books like these are crucial for us to spend time with.
Click here to get a copy.
(Disclaimer: As an Amazon Associate, I may earn commissions from qualifying purchases from Amazon at no cost to you. Your reading can help support my writing. Thanks!)
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