Friday, June 17, 2011

Early Tee Shirts or Wearing What's True

     Almost every time the next step in my work to raise awareness around the Global Rape Epidemic appears clear to me, I disagree. 
     When I realized that I would choose to use my own body, of my own volition, almost as a billboard, I was, quite frankly, horrified.  The Slutwalk phenomena had not yet started (this was late Spring 2010) and I'd been writing (theatre, screenplay, literary) and working in and around the rape subject for nearly thirty years.  But wearing the words?  This seemed a new level of "... No. This I will not do ..."  Still, as is most often the case when work 'comes' to me, and as you can see, I made the first 'Rape Talk' Tee shirt.  And then I wore it.  To Home Depot.  Where I had a most wonderful conversation with a woman who, while helping me locate a particular stainless steel, finish screw I needed, let me know that she'd been raped.  She also let me know that reaching across - perhaps more gently than this first shirt seemed to her - would probably be more generous.  I told her about the Documentary.  When she heard it was to be a film that journeys with people who have lived through rape, people who have raped and people in the extended families and communities of both, she thanked me.  I was elated, which helped because fear kicks off my own PTSD and under the Tee shirt, I'd been sweating. Quivery. Tremulous.
     This woman helped a lot. I went home with the screws, a few other tools, and food for the project and my heart.


  1. I have been watching the Rape Sucks videos on youtube and have been in tears. I also am sharing them.
    You are so brave and what a great moment for you and the other woman at home depot. We never know where we will find another survivor and how much we inspire each other. I am so glad I am finding out about your work :)

  2. I'm really glad I my friend found your blog and told me about it. I was raped for more than 20 years. My blog is at

    I've made some t-shirts too about rape and incest; amazing the looks people give me when I wear them... like I am the odd one.

    Thank you for the work you are doing to raise awareness. Thank you.

  3. Amazing, and so very brave! I'm part of the Cycle of Healing blog. Thank you for all of the work you are doing. Awesome:)

  4. Yes, Andrea, You Are Extraordinary!
    I got stuck on one sentence in your post,
    "She also let me know that reaching across - perhaps more gently than this first shirt seemed to her - would probably be more generous."
    What is meant by "reaching across" being "more generous"?
    I just don't want to miss anything :)
    Thanks, if you or someone else can explain, otherwise, I know you're busy, busy.
    Sending You my Love, always and always xoxo

  5. (previously K.Mo) I also want to share words of encouragement.. This shirt is a phenomenal idea and I give you bundles of credit for wearing it! I would definitely do something like this. I am a very open and honest person, but my truth comes out AFTER the meeting of another person.. To be a walking billboard for my truth, releasing it to people I have yet to meet.. Well, that sounds OUTSTANDING! I want to be more involved in raising the public's awareness, outside of the consciousness raising I do with the people in "my" world, whom I was granted the chance to meet already.. I want to help this cause on a wider scale, like you are, Andrea, reaching beyond the people I interact with day-to-day. Andrea, you are amazing. I wonder if there is something I CAN do, that I have not ventured into yet..
    Peace, Light & Love

    1. Oh dear.
      Almost a year has gone by, and yes, I've been truly busy growing the work, but still. I'm so sorry I never found your comments. Thank you for your kind and encouraging words. And yes. If you want to be more involved, we definitely need and want help. :)