This project is dedicated to women who have suffered severe trauma caused by sexual harassment and abuse. The consequences of which are beyond imaginable. Lost innocence, freedom, confidence, the ability to face the world directly and many more.
The children in these portraits represent the lost freedom to be one’s own self. My interpretation is that if a woman suffers a traumatic event like assault she goes back to feeling like a defenseless and helpless child. These girls represent women of all ages who have lost their identity and now feel unprotected, confused and scared. The mirrors symbolize their inability to face the world out of shame, fear and insecurity and thus unable to develop their true self and potential. Always feeling like an observer, outsider peaking through the mirror.
My goal with this project is to talk about the shame and trauma caused by sexual abuse and the long term implications it has in one’s life. My hope is that not only victims of sexual assault will connect with these portraits, but also people who have never experienced such horrible events. The community, as a whole, must protect and prevent this from happening. It is crucial to encourage women to speak up to end these patterns of violence before they even begin.
We as women need to fight for our rights, privileges and our bodies all around the globe. It is important for us to open up the conversation and remove the shame that harassment and assault causes in women. Because when it comes to aggressive behavior at home, sexual harassment, rape and sex trafficking, casualties are regularly disregarded except if the survivor approaches and reports that they have been attacked and abused. The #MeToo movement has brought issues to light of sexual abuse and harassment and encourages survivors to stand up and speak out, however systemic issues remain. Law enforcement and social service providers frequently do little to urge women and girls to self-distinguish, so it’s up to our society and our media to empower women to affirm that all types of sexual maltreatment and abuse are serious and harmful.