FACES OF RAPE AND SEXUAL ABUSE

Sheree Cleland, 23.
Vancounver, B.C., Canada

Sexually abused by her father and stepfather. Cleland testified against her stepfather when she was 12 years old and sent him to 4 years in prison. He got out of prison in less than one year for 'good behavior.'

Vanessa Hillstead, 32
Burnaby, B.C., Canada

Molested by her adoptive father, raped by a man who also raped her friend and sexually abused by a foster brother who father her two children. Now Hillstead works for abused women through the Kootneys for the Immigrant and Minority Women of B.C. and the United Nations Association in Canada.

Debbie Wheeler, 42, Omaha, NE.

Raped at age 13 by a neighbor, and again at age 18 by a stranger.  "Just me and God", says Wheeler, who spends mornings at her church where she is a pastor's assistant.

Christine Starks, 32.
St. Paul, MN.

Artist. Her father molested her. Used her to make child pornography and sold her for postitution in her teenage years on a Minneapolis street. Grussdorf now teaches art to rape survivors at a local shelter and fights against child prostituton in the neighborhood where she ws once sold.

Beth Gamble, 34.
Tucson, AZ

Science teacher. Molested by her adoptive father who still is a church minister on her Indian Reservation in NM and raped at age 21 by two men and one woman while attending a teachers' conference. She used to cut herself as she suffered from depression.

Yvonne Maes,
West Vancouver, B.C., Canada

Former nun who was sexually abused by a priest who was the director of a retreat center in Lesotho, Africa. Maes published her story in "The Cannibal's Wife: A Memoir," In 1999 her abuser was still working as a priest at a Catholic Church in Liverpool, England.

Andrea Payne, 27.
New York, NY

Sexually assaulted by her marriage therapist after being involved in a car accident. As she filed a complaint against the therapist, she was fired from the New York congressman's office where she worked. Payne suspects the reason was that the therapist was a donor to the congressman.

Lorrie Ann Valencia, 33.
Ladonia, TX

Repeatedly molested by her uncle and grandfather throughout her childhood. Valencia started an online support group 'Survivors Foundation' to reach out to other survivors of sexual abuse.

Arthur Austin, Braintree, MA.

Abused by a priest 30 years ago as Austin sought counseling from the man. The priest sexually abused many others, mostly street children in Boston area. As Austin went back to the cabin he used to be taken to be abused for the first time in 30 years, he confronted his fear and touched every hand on the wall. To him, those hand prints were children who were brought to there for the abuse.

 

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