"I try not to think about what my life could have been like," Bevelyn Mitchell said.
Mitchell, a rape crisis advocate with Rape Crisis Centers of Horry and Georgetown counties, was among a handful of speakers at a Coastal Carolina University drop-in reception highlighting the 16 Days of Activism Against Gender Violence.
After sharing her story with the group, Mitchell sat down one on one with Newschannel15's Lindsey Theis to share more of her story.
Mitchell says she was young, and eloped when she married her first husband.
"To find out later that here you're living with somebody...that's like...or this this my marriage I've got to make it work," she said for a year she was walking on eggshells.
"I still don't remember what caused my first time to get slapped."
And then, the abuse turned to rape.
"People say you can't be raped within marriage well anytime you tell somebody no, I don't care if you're in marriage or not, if you say no. No. No means no, and if that person continues that's rape," she says.
Monday Mitchell spoke as part of the 16 Days of Activism against Gender Violence.The campaign is an international effort started by the first Women's Global Leadership Institute in 1991. Since then, the campaign has raised awareness of the human rights issues at stake when violence is directed toward women.
The reception was sponsored by CCU's Women's Resource Center and the University's Women's and Gender Studies Program.
Click Links below for local organization's information on rape, human trafficking and victim's rights.
- *ZONTA, the International Women's Advocacy Organization;
- *the Rape Crisis Centers of Horry and Georgetown counties
- *Eastern Carolina Coalition Against Human Trafficking
- *The Children's Recovery Center
- *Citizens Against Spouse Abuse
- * Family Justice Center of Georgetown .