Monica Lewinsky: 'Anyone who is suffering from shame and public humiliation needs to know 1 thing.'
Short, but powerful.
Imagine you're 22. You're fresh out of college. You just started working at your dream job.
And then your boss decides he likes you.
It's confusing. And weird. And kind of exciting.
You don't exactly know how to handle it. You love your job, and you don't want to make him mad. Maybe you also kind of like him a little too. Being 22 is hard.
(Just ask Taylor).
So you hook up with him.
In most cases, maybe that's the end of it. Or maybe things get weird. Or even bad. I mean, it's pretty messed up of him to come on to you in the first place, considering he has the power to make your life miserable at work if you say no, or to fire you. But you deal with it and, eventually, move on.
But in your case, it becomes national news.
People imply you're a "slut."
People mock you mercilessly on TV, night after night after night.
(And win awards for it.)
You're no longer you. You're just "That woman."
What do you even do? Do you believe them? Do you let it destroy you? Do you crawl into a hole and vow to never come out?
Probably, yes. For a while.
But do you give up?
Or do you get back up?
Monica said a lot of really important things in her full talk. About how it feels to have your life turned upside down. About our culture of shame, especially for women. About the need to reach out and help those who are suffering from bullying.
But the most important thing?
If you're a young person — or any person — who's dealing with shame, abuse, harassment, or humiliation (or you know someone who is), please reach out to someone who can help. StopBullying.gov has great resources and information. For LGBTQ youth, The Trevor Project is absolutely essential.
You're not alone.
No matter how bad things seem right now, life goes on. And gets better.