Jemimah Williams-Rumble's Story - Her recovery journey after rape and how fitness helped her through

Updated: Jun 7, 2020

At 19, in my first year of medical school, I was raped by someone I trusted and had counted among my closest friends.

Five years later, I’m the happiest I’ve ever been. But the process of arriving at this point of my life wasn’t easy. It was the hardest thing I’ve ever done, because there’s no blue print of how to recover. We don’t talk about trauma- it’s messy and awkward and if we do it’s disguised, at least for me, in a dark joke.

For over two years, I hated my body, blaming it for what had happened. Then, in 2017, I rediscovered fitness. In the midst of the toughest workouts, I found a calm that I hadn’t felt in two and a half years. My body’s strength eventually transferred to my mind, and I found a way to pull myself out of the hole I’d been in for so long. My body was mine again.

Trauma will make you question everything in your life, and you can allow it to define you. Or, you can use that anger, that fear, to drive you. In my case, I realised I was incredibly unhappy in the career path I had chosen, I realised that I wanted to work in the industry that had given me so much, and after a year out of medicine, I finally decided to leave for good and devote myself to fitness, hoping to help others in a similar way.

I have joined I Am Arla as an ambassador because I want to be who I needed when I was younger.

Trauma is the loneliest feeling, and I want to be this person for someone else so they don’t feel alone anymore. When I was 19 I knew no one who had experienced what I had, and I felt that this rape wasn’t big enough to cause a fuss about. I hadn’t been dragged down an alley. It happened in my room in halls. But this is an experience shared by many victims- one study has found that over 90% of sexual assault victims know their attacker; a stark contrast to the media portrayal of rape and sexual assault.

We are so happy to welcome Jemimah to the I am Arla team. We are honoured to share your story🤍

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