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The following content contains material about sexual violence that might be triggering.
Growing up in a rural town in the South Island, where the rugby culture is very real, sexual violence is so normalised you don’t even know that what is occurring to you is sexual violence.
When I moved to Wellington in first year I was shocked. Wellington seemed like a safe haven. It took me a long time to adjust to the respectful culture. For example, throughout my whole first year my ass was grabbed only once in a club. In contrast to home where I got put in a headlock for consistently refusing to go home with a guy. However now that I know what sexual violence is and know that it is obviously a disgusting, sickening thing to happen to someone, I implore the need for trigger warnings.
This year I feel like sexual violence and people’s experiences have been talked about every day and I find it quite confronting. This triggers me. I get upset and verge on panic attacks at the mention of someone’s experiences. It takes me back. So when I see a Facebook post with no trigger warning I get upset. However I do not want to silence anyone. Obviously everyone has / knows someone who has been a victim of sexual violence so it is important to be aware of what you are saying. By just putting the words “trigger warning—contains sexual violence” at the start of the post you are saving me, and a whole lot of others, from upsetting, panic attack material.