H. Marie Williams (B.S.Ed. ’06 Sports Med) recently published a memoir about overcoming the trauma of sexual assault. The Remedy includes chapters about Williams’ time as a student at U.Va., where she arrived just after she was assaulted. She talked to U.Va. Magazine about her book and her hopes for improving awareness about sexual assault survivors on Grounds.
What motivated you to write this book?
It was the book I needed to read and could not find because it had not yet been written. I thought about girls whose only knowledge of manhood is routinely misrepresented by a sexually abusive father or stepfather. Realizing how fortunate I was to have grown up with positive male role models left me with a very real sense of social responsibility. If I lost hope, with my spirituality, strong familial ties, positive male figures and education, what happens to girls who are less fortunate than me?
It became clear that I did not survive everything I’d experienced to retreat into the same silence that almost claimed my life. I knew I was to be the living sacrifice victims around the world needed. This book is that sacrifice. Read more of Hannah’s interview in U.Va. magazine.