March 2018: Part of a series of interviews Sowmya Rajaram and I conduct of survivors of gender violence.
When Suhashini Thomas was just two years old, she was sexually abused by an older male cousin, commencing a series of episodes that would last 15 years! She finally escaped his abuse by putting a physical distance between herself and the abuser.
Years later, after having the chance to connect with her to-be mother-in-law (who is a counsellor), she was able to open up about her experience for the first time. She decided with her now-husband that she would pursue legal action under the newly minted POCSO laws. When that met a dead end due to bureaucratic red tape, Suhashini chose to let go of the case. She got married and moved on to what she assumed was a different life.
However, at a time when she least expected it, after the birth of her son, the memories resurfaced in deeply painful forms and led her to a therapist. As they dug through her history and worked together to create a strategy to combat her post-traumatic stress, Suhashini decided that it was time to share her story with the world. Today, for the first time on camera, Suhashini speaks to Sowmya Rajaram of her difficult journey from victim to survivor.
Videography- Rahul Deshpande | Production- Jacob Cherian & Priyanka Sutaria | Editing- Kartik Rajan
This interview appeared on Pass the Mic, the blog of Why Indian Men Rape in March 2018.