21 Men Holding Signs Quoting Their Rapists

Why don't men tell? The answer may lie in the things their rapists say to them.

Grace Brown began Project Unbreakable with people she knew who had been sexually assaulted. The project quickly escalated and now includes more than 2,000 survivors from all over the country holding signs with the quotes from their attackers written on them. Her mission is “healing through art.”

Brown, 21, is a photographer and public speaker from Massachusetts. Her first subject was a friend who confided in her. The story made her realize how common sexual assault is and she awoke the next day with the idea for Project Unbreakable.

One striking thing about these images is that they’ll remind people that sexual assault is not a new phenomenon. Some of these men are middle-aged and are just now telling their stories. Most didn’t share their stories until they were adults. The perpetrator isn’t always the lecherous step-father, creepy neighbor, or depraved priest, either. Sometimes they’re friends. Siblings. Grandparents. Neighbors. And, yes, sometimes their rapists are women.

One in three women have been or will be sexually assaulted at some time in their lifetime. One in five men have been or will be sexually assaulted at some time in their lifetime. The numbers aren’t much different, so why don’t we hear more about the men who are assaulted? Why don’t they tell? The answer to that question lies largely in the lies their rapists tell them. See for yourself. There is a video about Project Unbreakable at the end of this article.

UPDATE 11/19/13 We can not make gender assumptions. Some of the courageous people in these photos may be transgender, and therefore, I can not assume that they are male or female.


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You can support Project Unbreakable by direct donations or by purchasing t-shirts or wristbands from the store. Visit on Facebook, Tumblr, or Twitter. For information on submitting your own photo, visit the site. Watch a video about the project below.


Images from Project Unbreakable’s Tumblr

h/t Buzzfeed

About Tiffany Willis

Tiffany Willis is a fifth-generation Texan, a proponent of voluntary simplicity, a single mom, and the founder and editor-in-chief of Liberal America. An unapologetic member of the Christian Left, she has spent most of her career actively working with “the least of these" -- disadvantaged and oppressed populations, the elderly, people living in poverty, at-risk youth, and unemployed people. She is a Certified Workforce Expert with the National Workforce Institute, a NAWDP Certified Workforce Development Professional, and a certified instructor for Franklin Covey's 7 Habits of Highly Effective Teens. Follow her on Twitter, Facebook, or LinkedIn. She also has a grossly neglected personal blog, a  Time Travel blog, a site dedicated to encouraging people to  read classic literature 15 minutes a day, and a literary quotes blog that is a labor of love. Find her somewhere and join the discussion. Click here to buy Tiff a mojito.


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