INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. – As dozens of women continue to testify against former USA Gymnastics team doctor Larry Nassar, some survivors of the alleged abuse are being attacked on social media.
Nassar is one of several men at the center of sexual abuse allegations.
Back in October, dozens of Hollywood celebrities came forward with sexual abuse allegations against movie mogul Harvey Weinstein. Those allegations sparked the #MeToo Movement.
The viral campaign shines a light on the widespread issue of the sexual assault and harassment of women, especially in the workplace.
“It is not at all surprising that once a few people come forward, it starts a groundswell of people coming forward and that will increase over time,” said sociologist Amanda Miller.
Miller is the chair of the department of sociology at the University of Indianapolis. She tells us the brave women who have come forward with their own stories of sexual abuse have sparked a feminist social movement.
“Unfortunately, many women have a #MeToo story,” said Miller.
Amongst the heart-wrenching accounts of sexual abuse are comments from the public blaming and shaming the survivors.
“While social media gave us the #MeToo Movement…it also gave us the backlash,” said Miller.
The backlash could stop others from coming forward with their own accounts of abuse.
“We are really worried about people not believing us. That gives us a reluctance to come forward, but then if we come forward and instantly the reaction from people is that it cannot be true…it discourages you from sharing your story,” said Miller.
The Michigan Attorney General’s Office is seeking at least 40 years in prison for 54-year-old Nassar.