Many rapes go unreported: Hannah’s story

By Grace Fox
March 8, 2020

Hannah and her friends at the beach. Submitted photo.

Editor’s note: The subject asked that her name not be used.

“Please speak up as soon as you can. It shouldn’t of  taken that long to know what has happened to me,” Hannah Smith (not her real name) said.

Hannah went through a tragic situation when she was younger. She was raped by her step brother and his friends when she was asleep. 

“I was sleeping and heard footsteps. Somebody came into my bed and started touching me. I didn’t know what to do,” Hannah said.

Hannah wasn’t able to tell the police after this incident. She didn’t tell her mom for six years. She was only able to tell her one friend. Her friend told her that “it wasn’t a bad thing,” because one of the boys were cute, and she believed it.

“I was scared nobody was gonna believe me. My mom knows I don’t like my step brother very much so she would have thought I was lying anyway,”  Hannah said.  

Many rape cases go unreported because the victim is scared and feel ashamed by what happened to them. Some people feel that with what happened that it was somehow their fault. 

“I feel like if someone does it once they’re gonna do it again until something happens and I feel like that’s what happened in my situation. He got away with it once and then he did it to somebody close to me,” Hannah said. `

Hannah was able to talk to her mom about the situation that happened with somebody close to her and also told her mom about what happened to her that night six years ago. 

“After I told my mom,  she was understanding and happy I came to her but wished I would have come to her sooner,” Hannah Smith said.

Only 230 out of 1,000 rapes get reported. Some of the main reasons would be they are scared of retaliation. Some think it’s a personal matter and some others believed that the police wouldn’t do anything about it if it got reported. 

A couple weeks before Thanksgiving Hannah’s mom called her when she was up at school and asked her if it would be okay to have her step brother there at dinner with them.

“I didn’t know how to respond to this. I wasn’t sure if I was ready to see if after this all got  out,” Hannah said.

Hannah has been able to keep her mind off of everything through her art. Hannah loves to  draw and paint so through all of the hard stuff, she can escape through her art.

“Anything I do that I enjoy helps me get out of my head and stuff like my cat even just laying with her and petting her puts me in the same kinda easy mind, my art certainly helps,” Hannah said.`

Hannah has been through a tough time, but she isn’t the only one who has been through this hard time and came back stronger than ever. Please speak up before it’s too late


This is one of the things Hannah painted; Picture taken by Hannah Smith

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Grace Fox

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