The Pepper Bough

Woman’s basketball star Breanna Stewart shares her “Me Too” story

Kimberly Castellanos, Reporter

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Just recently WNBA star Breanna Stewart shared her sexual assault story that contributed to the “Me Too” trend in light of Movie mogul Harvey Weinstein allegations of sexual assault against 50 women. Stewart is a star basketball player for the Seattle Storm’s team. She started playing in fifth grade and has only improved since, but like for most people, not everything was perfect in her life. Stewart was one of the many women to have been sexually abused.

In “The Players Tribune” Stewart talked about her sexual abuse as a child. She was just “a shy nine-year-old, with a long, lanky body and a head that felt too big” and she “used to sleep over at relatives’ houses all the time.” “He lived in one of the houses I slept at the most… I’d stay up late, watching TV on the couch after everyone went to sleep. That’s also where I slept — there wasn’t a guest bed or bedroom.” But then she could “hear his footsteps coming down the stairs. He’d sit down next to me, pretending to watch TV. Sometimes, he never went upstairs to sleep and just waited on the couch. I knew what was coming next… I was molested for years. The TV would flicker, and everything would be quiet. “It’s O.K.,” he’d say. He’d touch me and try to get me to touch him. Sometimes I would try to pull my arm away, but I wasn’t as strong. I was just a kid.” She says she “Sometimes I wondered what would happen if I just yelled out. Anything.” and how “It wouldn’t always happen at night. Sometimes I’d be off from school and it would happen in broad daylight. He’d always find a way to be near me in public. It was subtle — he’d sit next to me at a table, or, when no one was watching, he’d try to touch my butt. Things only I would notice.” Eventually, she did tell her parents even with the fear she felt, and her abuser was arrested. Although she had gone through all of this she still wanted to go to her basketball practice. It was her own little kind of escape for her.

There are a lot of issues that do not get the attention that they need. Statistics have shown that one in ten children are sexually abused before the age of 18 and 90% of child sexual abuse victims know how their abuser is. Bad enough as that is, 1 out of six women is victims of attempted or completed rape. This has gone too far without change so let’s make the change because if not us then who?

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Woman’s basketball star Breanna Stewart shares her “Me Too” story