Minneapolis Mayor Betsy Hodges has bravely revealed that she was sexually abused for many years when she was a child, beginning when she was 8. We salute the courage it took for her to come forward.
We also applaud the courage it takes for every survivor to come forward. Every survivor’s voice is important, no matter how famous or powerful. But, as April is Child Abuse Prevention Month and Sexual Assault Awareness Month, Mayor Hodge’s revelation is a timely reminder that abuse can affect anyone in our society and it provides powerful public leadership on abuse awareness.
Mayor Hodges addressed her childhood abuse on the Facebook page of Break the Silence, a local nonprofit that supports sexual abuse and rape survivors and invites them to come forward and speak publicly about being a sexual assault survivor.
Not every survivor is ready to speak publicly about his or her abuse. Many survivors prefer not to. Either way, if you are a victim of sexual abuse, there are resources available to help you. In Minnesota, advocacy programs in your area are just a call away and are dedicated to helping survivors and those traumatized by unhealthy relationships seek safety and be safe. Check www.rapehelpmn.org/find-help/ for an advocacy program in your area. Further, you can contact a law enforcement agency if you are abused.