You are not Dylan Farrow.
I am not Dylan Farrow.
I was not adopted like she was and I did not have famous parents like she did. The color of my skin and the shape of my soul are different than Dylan’s. I’m even a whole 10 years older than she is. Aside from growing up in Manhattan and maybe sharing a few favorite foods or habits, that’s probably all I have in common with Dylan Farrow on the surface.
But I am a grown woman just like she’s a grown woman.
I lied when I said I didn’t have anything else in common with her.
When she and I were both 7 years old, me in 1982 and she in 1992, we did something no child should ever have to do. We told an adult we presumably trusted, that we’d been sexually assaulted. Whether or not she or I were telling the truth, Dylan Farrow and I, undeniably dropped a bomb the size of a seven-year-old’s heart. That’s big. There’s no going back.
There’s shit people want to hear.
There’s shit people don’t want to hear.
But once the allegation is made that you’ve been a victim of sexual abuse…it’s a gamble. It doesn’t matter what age you are or whether or not you’re telling the truth. When you say it out loud it’s always a gamble. It’s a curse. It’s not what you think it’s going to be. Everything changes. Everything. You answer what seems like hundreds of questions a day between meals with ultimately justice or failure of mankind, on either side, done.
Every case of sexual assault or abuse is almost exactly the same, in theory…
“Sexual crimes are not about sex. They are about violence and control and rage, ” Jack Owens, author, friend, and retired-FBI agent of 30 years.
But Dylan and I have different endings to our confessions. My alleged rapist was a nobody who was born without a fair shot, and from a low-income home of nobodies, and not my Hollywood demagogue adopted father. My rapist was convicted while I was still healing and scabbing, but the system was all fucked up back then and he got out so fast he found me again and threatened my life. I should be grateful (grateful?!) my story was believed but it was a slam-dunk for NYPD anyway because of all the evidence and my rapist’s confession. The point being, I was a nobody and he was a nobody and everything got dealt with quietly and swiftly.
How would I feel if my nobody rapist’s face was actually my film-god stepfather’s face plastered all over the world on small-screen, big-screen, in magazine? I don’t know because that’s not a logical line of thinking anyway. This is an extraordinary case. I’m not Dylan Farrow and I can’t fathom being her. It doesn’t matter how much I have in common with her or not, or if I “know” her or not.
I’m just someone who had something in common with her at the same age and I’m now a wife and mother and survivor and I do not write this for sympathy, but just to be more aware of everything.
I wish Dylan peace through all the noise now that she’s said her piece as a grown woman.