If only PTSD were as easy to overturn as a sexual assault conviction.
If only Bill Cosby’s victims felt as free as he will now be.
What do we tell those 60 plus victims of Bill Cosby, whose sexual assault conviction was just overturned, who still suffer from nightmares, intrusive thoughts, and constant fears.
How do we comfort these women who suffered at the hands of this sexual predator and rapist? What do we say to comfort these women who were offered a quaalude by a trusted friend only to wake up dazed, confused, and naked in Bill Cosby’s bed?
Decades ago in NYC when my own rapist was offered and accepted a plea deal for the heinous crime he committed which carried significantly less jail time, I was sickened by the justice system. For the past 4 decades, I have suffered from PTSD.
The Pennsylvania Supreme Court’s decision about Bill Cosby’s conviction being overturned elicits the same ill-feeling.
Overturning this decision is not without consequences.
What do we tell these close to 50 women, these brave women who had suffered in silence for years but emboldened by the “Me Too Movement” came forward with their stories about Cosby?
For me, in 1979 there would be no Me Too Movement for support.
There was only me.
Scared, alone, and filled with shame, I still came forward. Bravely, yet tentative at a time when the rape shield protections were not in place. So that I could still be questioned about my sex life and past sexual encounters. As if that were relevant to an intruder breaking into my apartment. And asked what I was wearing that morning in bed when I was raped. Indignities aside I pursued a criminal complaint and went to trial.
Only to be ultimately thwarted by the justice system.
Some things it seems, are so slow to change.
Not unlike the symptoms of PTSD.