Earlier this year, Kylie Jenner started an anti-bullying campaign around the hashtag #IAmMoreThan, which shares stories about people who turned bullying into something positive. The stories were heartwarming, and preached self-love and staying strong through adversity. But now she's using her platform to spread the word about domestic violence and sexual assault.
On December 21, 2015, Kylie shared a submission from Matteo Bologna, a fan who lives in Melbourne, Australia. His story highlights a side of the sexual assault conversation that we don't hear enough: Men who are victims and feel too ashamed to speak out.
Here's his full message:
#IAmMoreThan a victim of rape. I'm a survivor. This is my story. With domestic violence being such a big issue in Australia at the moment. I thought I would share my story in hope that it will inspire at least one person to get help. I was with my ex partner for just over a year, things were great…at the start. Until he got addicted and started to rely heavily on the drug crystal meth. That's when things started to get abusive and extremely violent and I started to lie to my friends that I wasn't seeing him, because they knew how abusive he was. I had to cover marks and bruises with makeup. I refused to believe that he was an unstable person, and believed that I could change him, but I couldn't. One day we went out to a club and he drugged me, I woke up tied to a bed and was gang raped by him and seven other people. He made me believe that I deserved the abuse and I would take it. Towards the end of the relationship he called me telling me to go to his house because there was some type of emergency. I went and found him having sexual intercourse with another male. That should have been the end of it right? Though a couple weeks later he texted me saying to meet me at his house because he wanted to apologize for everything that he did…stupidly I went, as soon as I arrived he grabbed the back of my head and smashed it into a brick wall, while choking me he forced himself on me. I didn't tell my parents about the abuse until about a year later, and told my friends that I managed to get him off me because that's what I wanted to believe. Though no one should be ashamed of domestic violence and rape. It's never your fault and you should always speak up and help is out there. […] Never think you're alone and help isn't available. You're not a victim, you're a survivor. #IAmMoreThan depression, anxiety, PTSD.
Don't ever hesistate to seek help for mental health issues.
This article originally appeared on Cosmopolitan.com. Minor edits have been made by the Cosmo.ph editors.