I Have The Right To: A High School Sur­vivor’s Sto­ry of Sex­u­al Assault, Jus­tice, and Hope

Francesca Prout; Jen­nifer Abelson

  • From the Publisher
May 4, 2018

After Chessy Prout was sex­u­al­ly assault­ed as a 15-year-old fresh­man at an elite board­ing school, she brave­ly report­ed her attack­er to police and tes­ti­fied against the pop­u­lar senior in a tri­al that attract­ed inter­na­tion­al attention.

Her will­ing­ness to stand up to the school’s tox­ic cul­ture and pur­sue jus­tice result­ed in swift back­lash: girls shunned her, boys bul­lied her, and school lead­ers tried to intim­i­date her.

The sup­port Chessy received from her fam­i­ly and social jus­tice advo­cates helped the teenag­er turn her pain into pow­er — a poignant jour­ney that embod­ies tikkun olam. At age 17, Chessy broke her silence on the Today Show to let oth­er young sur­vivors know they are not alone. She launched the #IHaveTheRight­To cam­paign to encour­age peo­ple to claim their rights to their bod­ies and their voic­es, and to stand togeth­er in sup­port of vic­tims of sex­u­al violence.

This mem­oir explores the role of fam­i­ly, faith, and for­give­ness in over­com­ing trau­ma. Chessy ulti­mate­ly finds strength in edu­cat­ing teens about con­sent and empow­er­ing them to use their voic­es to heal the world.

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