My story begins with a darkness that consumed me, a darkness born from the brutality of rape. I found myself lost and broken, seeking refuge in the sterile walls of a public hospital. But even as the physical wounds healed, the scars on my soul ran deep, and the pain of that moment threatened to suffocate me.
The thought of ending my life loomed large in my mind, a constant companion in my journey through the abyss of trauma. I was terrified of facing society, afraid of the judgmental eyes and condemning whispers that awaited me outside those hospital walls.
With no one to turn to and nowhere to run, I made a choice born of desperation. I turned to sex work, seeking solace in the anonymity of the night. But even as I embraced this new path, the fear of society’s judgment weighed heavily on me. I hid in the shadows, concealing my truth from the world, for fear of being labeled and cast aside.
The road was not easy. I faced harassment and violation in the dark corners where I sought refuge. The very places that were meant to provide me with a means of survival became battlegrounds of exploitation and fear. I felt powerless, unable to seek justice from a system that turned a blind eye to the plight of sex workers.
But amidst the darkness, a glimmer of hope emerged. A friend introduced me to a peer educator at the Bar Hostess Empowerment & support programme. She showed me a different path, one of empowerment and self-worth. She taught me about my rights as a sex worker, and for the first time, I felt a spark of hope ignite within me.
I was hesitant at first, but with each visit to the Drop-In Center for Education (DICE), I found strength in the camaraderie of fellow sex workers. Together, we shared our stories, our struggles, and our triumphs. I realized that I was not alone, and that there was power in unity and solidarity.
The peer educator became my guiding light, helping me navigate the challenges of sex work and providing support when I needed it most. She assisted me with accessing healthcare services and ensuring I received my necessary refills. With her help, I began to shed the shame and stigma that had plagued me for so long.
Today, I stand tall and proud of my journey. I am no longer defined by the darkness of my past but by the resilience that courses through my veins. I am a survivor, a warrior who refuses to be silenced or shamed. My story is a testament to the strength of the human spirit and the transformative power of empowerment and support.


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