A New York based activist is speaking up about why she felt compelled to post intimate details of her alleged sexual assault on social media — only minutes after the attack took place.
In November, Amber Amour was in Cape Town, South Africa, promoting her “Stop Rape. Educate” campaign when she claims she was raped by a man named Shakir after agreeing to take a shower with him.
Amour says she instantly knew she couldn’t keep what happened to her a secret and logged onto Instagram to post a photo of herself crying along with a detailed account of the assault.
“Here I was, telling survivors every single day that they should speak up… I knew I had to practice what I preached,” she explained to Marie Claire UK. “So the first thing I did was take a picture and write a post, describing what had happened.”
“It was almost an intuitive thing,” she added. “I was still in the bathroom — in the crime scene. I don’t even think I’d stood up. I just typed and typed.”
However the fact that Amour agreed to take a shower with her accused attacker instantly made her an unsympathetic victim to those questioning her discretion.
“Don’t take showers with men you aren’t intimate with. Period. Someone should of been told you that,” one poster chided.
“Wow sounds like you love attention,” another commented. Yet there are many who were appalled by the backlash and found the 27-year-old’s transparency brave.
“The fact that there are WOMEN commenting negatively on your posts makes me feel very afraid…This is the world we are living in,” said one advocate. “It hurts to see this. It is never ok to think you are entitled to have sex with a woman solely based on what is wearing or if she let you kiss her or not??? Never does that give you the right.. Im honestly baffled”
“No matter what a person does, it is not an invitation for rape,” Amour fired back in a subsequent photo caption. “It doesn’t matter if I kissed him. It doesn’t matter if he was drunk. It doesn’t matter if I said yes to a shower. I never said he could get violent with me. I never said he could make me bleed. I never said he could rape me. But still, that’s how the scene went down.”
Check out her full account below.
It was only a few minutes ago but sometimes these things happen so fast it's hard to remember all the details…. I've been sick for the past 2 days and today was my first day out. I went back to my old hostel to leave a note for a friend, Nick. There was another guy there, Shakir, who was desperately trying to get with me. I kissed him once but he seemed drunk so I told him it was bad timing, I had already met someone. Before heading out, I went upstairs to say hi to one more friend, Clyde from the states. Shakir followed me upstairs and said he was going to take a shower. He invited me to join. I said yes because the water at my current hostel is pretty cold and after 2 days of being sick, I just really wanted a hot shower. As soon as I got in the bathroom, he forced me to my knees. I said "stop!" but he just got more violent. He lifted me up and put his penis in my vagina. I asked him to stop, again, as I began to cry. When he shoved it in my ass, that's when I passed out. I woke up a few minutes later and saw him trying to creep out the door. When he saw that I was awake, he came back to finish me off in the shower. I have all those fucked up feelings that we get after rape…shame, disgust, suffering. I'm here, alone, and any DNA has been wiped away in the shower. The South African police will just roll their eyes when I walk in. Feeling sicker than ever now. Needless today, I'm going to disappear for a bit. Just need to enjoy the freaking sun and call my friends and family in the states. Love you guys. Thank you for always being there for me. All the more reason to continue @stoprapeeducate but not today. Today, I need rest. #StopRapeEducate
My view of the rape kit. Thank you all for being so loving & supportive during this time. Your messages pushed me to take action and to stand up for myself and for all rape survivors. For those who wish to BLAME ME or any other survivor out there, I want you to know that you are the very reason that I am so brutally honest. I could have hidden details. I could have kept some info to myself, but NO. You need to know the truth and to see the reality of the situation. No matter what a person does, it is not an invitation for rape. It doesn't matter if I kissed him. It doesn't matter if he was drunk. It doesn't matter if I said yes to a shower. I never said he could get violent with me. I never said he could make me bleed. I never said he could rape me. But still, that's how the scene went down. I don't need to explain myself but if you're wondering WHY I took a shower with him, it was written in the text, I'd been sick with food poisoning for 2 days and needed to sweat it out. My current place of residence has only cold water (third world problems are real!) and it seemed like a miracle to be offered a hot shower. That's not what he was there for though, because as soon as he got a chance, he threw me to the ground and had his way. Dealing with rape is hard enough but the aftermath is often even more traumatic but I did this for you and I did this for me. The US Embassy and the South African police are super supportive and he may be arrested as soon as this week. Thank you for the love. And for the victim blamers, I send love, peace, and enlightenment to you so that you may be a beacon of light for us, too. #StopRapeEducate #AmberAmour #AmberTheActivist #SouthAfrica #humanitarian #healing #education #africa #survivor #sexualassault #recovery #victimblaming #overcome #rapeculture #staystrong
Since I got raped last month, I've been spending more time naked in public with strangers. (Yes, you heard that right!) 💯 Not only do I enjoy the freedom I feel being nude in nature, but it's also to prove the point that nudity does not equate to sex or rape. I skinny dipped in a few waterfalls and swam naked at night in the Indian Ocean. I was with men & women from different backgrounds and ages and GUESS WHAT? I didn't get raped. 🙌 This proves the point that clothing/nudity do not cause rape, only rapists do!! The man who attacked me would have done so regardless. I didn't even take my clothes off to take the shower, he destroyed them leaving them bloodied. 🛁 So to answer the question "What kind of woman takes a shower with a guy who is not her boyfriend?" (Stop assuming I'm straight, btw.) The answer is I DO! I'm a liberated, body positive naturist. If I want to swim or shower with a stranger, that's exactly what I'll do! Most people are not rapists. Most people have self control. I'm not putting myself in "dangerous situations" I'm being the change I wish to see in the world: a world where women are safe and free to live how they please! By exposing the female body in a non-sexual way, we systematically desexualize it. So, I'm gonna keep rocking birthday suit which reminds me: My birthday is in 3 days!! 🎉 Photo by @nateynukez 🌸🍃🌸🍃🌸🍃🌸🍃🌸🍃🌸🍃🌸🍃🌸 #AmberAmour #AmberTheActivist #nature #nudism #model #modeling #feminism #feminist #yesallwomen #humanrights #freethefuckingnipple #girlswithdreads #CreatingConsentCulture #bodypositive #bodypositivity #effyourbeautystandards #birthdaysuit #girlpower #goddess #naturelovers #naturism #wildwoman #skinnydipping #freedom #StopRapeEducate
Such a great time at University of Cape Town with @wewillmakeherstory and her big bro @joshuamaggott for @creatingconsentculture 🌟 We chalked this message that reads, "Consent is: ongoing, enthusiastic, sober, freely-given, specific, legal, and informed." Follow @wewillmakeherstory & @creatingconsentculture for more fabulous feminism! 🌟🌸🌟🌸🌟🌸🌟🌸🌟🌸🌟🌸🌟🌸🌟 #StopRapeEducateWorldTour #Africa #SouthAfrica #love #peace #humanitarian #humanrights #loveandlight #namaste #makeadifference #changetheworld #bethechange #AmberTheActivist #AmberAmour #universityofcapetown #travel #instatravel #unity #capetown #college #instaart #art #artoftheday #chalkart #feminism #feminist #heforshe #yesallwomen #peace #CreatingConsentCulture