New York Rep Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez has tearfully revealed that she is a survivor of sexual assault as she talked about the trauma she felt during the deadly insurrection at the US Capitol.
The 31-year-old made the revelation during an Instagram live video on Monday night that has been viewed more than 1.4 million times.
While speaking about her terror, Ocasio-Cortez chastised those who she said were pushing for people to put the day behind them and not recognize the lingering impact of such an event.
‘The reason I’m getting emotional in this moment is because these folks who tell us to move on, that it’s not a big deal, that we should forget what’s happened, or even telling us to apologize, these are the same tactics of abusers,’ Ocasio-Cortez said.
‘I’m a survivor of sexual assault, I haven’t told many people that in my life… As a survivor, I struggle with the idea of being believed.’
She gave no details about the assault or when it took place.
Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) was discussing the aftermath of the Capitol insurrection on Instagram Live on Monday night
Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) tweeted on Monday night about her experience that she shared with more than 150,000 Instagram followers online
The New York congresswoman drew parallels between the lawmakers seeking to ‘move on’ from the Capitol riot and the denial tactics used by abusers.
‘They’re trying to tell us to move on without any accountability, without any truth-telling, or without confronting the extreme damage, loss of life, trauma,’ she said
‘When we go through trauma, trauma compounds on each other.
‘There’s no, something really big happens to you and then you deal with it and you move on, and then when something else happens to you, you deal with that.
‘Whether you had a negligent parent, or whether you had someone who was verbally abusive to you, whether you are a survivor of abuse, whether you experience any sort of trauma in your life, small to large. These episodes can compound on each other.’
‘All of your traumas can, kind of, intersect and interact.’
At one point, Ocasio-Cortez appeared to wipe away tears.
Ocasio-Cortez grew emotional as she described her experience hiding from the Capitol rioters
She said she heard someone storming into her office as she hid in a bathroom She then told how she was ‘a survivor of sexual assault’ with tears in her eyes
Ocasio-Cortez went on to recount the terror she felt during last month’s attack on the US legislature at the hands of Trump supporters who were trying to overturn the election results.
She explained how at one point a man whom she believed to be a rioter broke into her congressional office as she hid in the bathroom.
She recalled hearing him yelling: ‘Where is she? Where is she?’
‘This was the moment where I thought everything was over,’ she said. ‘I thought I was going to die… I have never been quieter in my entire life.’
She later said she found out the man was actually a Capitol Police officer.
Ocasio-Cortez came out shortly after when her legislative director told her to and saw the officer in the office. She said the officer told them to go to another building, but didn’t say specifically where or escort them.
‘You don’t know if that person was actually trying to protect you or not,’ she said.
‘My story is not the only story, nor is it the central story, it’s one of many stories of what these people did in creating this environment,’ Ocasio-Cortez said.
‘These folks who are just trying to tell us to move on are just like pulling the page – they’re using the same tactics – of every other abuser who tells you to move on.’
Ocasio-Cortez went on to address calls for her to apologize after tweeting that Senator Ted Cruz ‘almost had me murdered’ during the riot
Ocasio-Cortez went on to address calls for her to apologize after tweeting last week that Senator Ted Cruz ‘almost had me murdered’ during the riot.
‘Some of the representatives who actually encouraged people to threaten members of Congress… are actually asking me to apologize for saying and speaking truth to what happened.
‘These are the tactics that abusers use… And how I feel is, not again.
‘I’m not going to let it happen to me again… and I’m not going to let it happen to our country.’
She told viewers: ‘If you have experienced any sort of trauma, just the fact of recognizing that and admitting it is already a huge step. Especially in a world where people are constantly trying to tell you that you didn’t experience what you experienced, or that you’re lying…
‘Those are additional traumas on traumas that you’ve already experienced. There’s the trauma of going through what you went through, and then there’s the trauma afterwards. Of people not believing you, or trying to publicly humiliate you, or trying to embarrass you.’
Ocasio-Cortez, whose district includes parts of the Bronx and Queens, is one of the most prominent progressive leaders in the United States.
She become an influential voice in both New York city and national politics often drawing intense and sometimes vitriolic criticism from those on the right.
She had strong condemnation for Trump for inciting the riots, as well as members of his administration who did not invoke the 25th Amendment to remove him from office, as well as those who voted to overturn the election results.
This post was first published on DailyMail.