It’s a Friday night in New York City and I am sitting on my bed, listening to the sounds of the air conditioner running for the first time in 8 months and trying to find the words to not be angry. Angry over what, you ask?
Where do I begin?
I am too angry to not just say it like it is right now – MTV you suck. Canceling Sweet/Vicious was one of the most idiotic things you have ever done.
You may remember a few months back, there was an article written on this site about how Sweet/Vicious helped one of our writers start to cope with her rape. I wrote it.
It wasn’t easy for me to write that then, because my story is mine. The shame, the guilt, and wondering what if – I am dealing with it all. I have been for years. I could never say out loud that I was raped. I couldn’t use the words, look at myself in the mirror, sleep without seeing every moment replay in my head. I felt alone, confused, scared. What would people think of me? What would people say?
See MTV, there are many people out there like me. Looking for a champion, looking for someone to tell our stories. We were looking for someone to believe us, while there are so many in the world telling us that we could have done something differed. So many in the world telling us that it was about what we wore, the things we said, the way we led someone on.
I was raped by someone I knew. Someone I saw every single day.
For three years, I let it overtake everything in me. I put on over 120 pounds – because if I was fatter, I thought no one would touch me. I stopped caring what I looked like. I didn’t socialize anymore and I hid behind the walls of my room, rather than let anyone come near me.
My rape controlled my life.
I can’t forget. I never thought I could move on. I didn’t believe that I was worth anything, because every bit of me was broken. My soul didn’t exist anymore – I was a shell of a person.
It sounds weird to say that a TV show changed all that for me.
Sure it was a trigger. It was scary. It took everything out of me. But it saved my life. The day I wrote my first article about Sweet/Vicious, I had also written letters to everyone I knew, everyone I cared about, in case I died. I didn’t feel like I was living.
But somehow through the superheroes that I didn’t know I needed, the laughter in between the pain – somehow for the first time, someone got through to me that I wasn’t alone. See MTV, you never gave it a chance. You took for granted the lives you were touching, the lives that you were saving, in order to save your bottom dollar. You should realize what Jenny Robinson created was smart and effective. You should realize that Eliza Bennett, Aisha Dee, and Taylor Dearden are extremely talented.
You should realize that you had the chance to make a difference, if you just would have held out. Instead you did a disservice to the fans and the people that were just beginning to realize that they should get on board with the show that everyone can’t stop talking about.
I have a right to be angry that MTV cancelled what is one of the best shows that they have ever put on the network. I only pray that someone see’s how powerful this show is.
Sweet/Vicious taught me that I am not alone.
Sweet/Vicious taught me that my rape was not my fault.
Sweet/Vicious taught me that I don’t have to hide.
Sweet/Vicious taught me that I deserve to live.
Sweet/Vicious taught me that I can get help.
Sweet/Vicious taught me that people will believe me and not judge me.
Sweet/Vicious taught me I can have control over my life again.
The day I wrote that article, the day I put into words for the first time what I was feeling, was the day I stopped wanting to die. It was the day that I stopped wanting to live in a hole and it was the day I stopped crying myself to sleep.
Because of Sweet/Vicious, I have gotten help. I talk to a therapist once a week, I go to support groups. I am reclaiming my life. It taught me, and several other people that are survivors, people that I know, that we aren’t alone. We may not be superheroes, but we survived.
And I can finally say, my name is Erin and I was raped. My rape does not define me, my rape does not control me, and it doesn’t make me fear living anymore.
For that, for that bit of control that I now have again – I am forever thankful. I owe the cast, crew, and creator my life. This show saved me. I am forever thankful to them that for the first time in years, I have the strength to live it.