Author Junot Díaz revealed that he was sexually assaulted as a child in a piece for The New Yorker today titled The Silence: The Legacy of Childhood Trauma.
While he explains that some readers had caught on to this fact—the characters in his fiction stories frequently deal with sexual violence—the Pulitzer Prize winner was never able to publicly acknowledge his own trauma, even when asked by other victims of abuse directly.
In this heartbreaking essay, Díaz, now 49, shares his truth with the world, detailing how being raped at age eight sent the rest of his life into a dizzying spiral. He adds a different, necessary voice to the #MeToo movement. A man of color, hiding, coping, and finally starting to heal.
As Díaz puts it, “since us Afro-Latinx brothers are viewed by society as always already sexual perils, very few people ever noticed what was written between the lines in my fiction—that Afro-Latinx brothers are often sexually imperilled.”