Kathy Parker on Breaking the Silence

Today we look at Kathy Parker's phenomenal spoken word performance Breaking the Silence (Rules for Girls).
CW: Kathy's work discusses sexual abuse. Please exercise self-care.

Kathy Parker: On Why I Wrote Rules For Girls

My entire childhood was spent in secrets and silence; when I finally found the courage, at twelve years-old, to tell of the years I had been raped at the hands of my stepfather, I was accused of making up stories; a church minister brought in to remind me that lying is a sin. Many years later, when I chose to report him – a retraumatising experience shrouded in humiliation and shame – again, it was his word against mine; nothing more came of it.
Rules For Girls was written as a response to the hashtag trends, #metoo and #whydidntIreport. It was written in regard to the rules girls are forced to live by – rules that ensure we remain quiet and compliant. But mostly, it was written from my own experiences; the fight against the silence and the injustice and defeat we feel when we finally find the courage to speak, only for our voices to not be heard.