Anonymous Pitzer Student Raped at CMC

The letter below is a detailed account of a female student who was raped at CMC. Keep that in mind before you read it.

A week ago I went to check my mailbox and found a letter addressed to me: “Miller Saltzman, The Peel”. Unsure of what it was, I opened it and began to read. Below, are photos of the letter. The writer, an anonymous Pitzer first-year, tells the story of how she was drugged and raped at CMC on Saturday April 16th (I assume the date from the letter).  When I finished reading the letter I was physically shaking. I was so surprised that this would happen at the Claremont Colleges and I wanted to help this person.

Dear anonymous, I post your letter with three goals in mind. First, I hope you, the author of this letter, will find the support you need. I can’t stop thinking about what you must be going through. I visited the EmPOWER Center today and I highly recommend you contact them for support. They work with Project Sister to provide survivors with free and confidential counseling. Dr. Nancy Arzate, the on-campus counselor can be reached at (909)623-1619 to set up an appointment. You shouldn’t feel alone going through this. She is very helpful and knowledgable. Second, I hope you decide to file a report against the CMC students who did this to you. They need to be punished for doing such a despicable thing to you. Third, I hope that your letter will help show other survivors that they aren’t the only ones that went through something like this. I also hope it will empower other survivors to tell their story.

Please feel free to post comments below. Unsupportive comments will not be accepted.

 

new doc 1_1new doc 1_2

24 thoughts

  1. Dear writer, I really believe you have a whole community out there to support you and plenty of resources. But I know sometimes that’s scary and sometimes you’re just not ready to deal with it, especially when you don’t have a foundation of friends or family to lean on. If you would like to anonymously talk to a survivor and upperclassman without any pressure feel free to email me. asarrett@pitzer.edu (unfortunately, I’m sure there are also plenty others with related experiences to talk to too)

  2. I am so so sorry this happened to you. Please know there are people who will support you if you decide to come forward and that what happened to you is in no way your fault. You do not deserve any of this and I honestly can’t believe how strong you are for being able to go back to class with your attacker. You are not invisible and you are worth so much more than what those people did to you. If you ever want someone to spend time with and just chill with even if you don’t want to talk about this please please feel free to contact m. Especially with the way your relationship with your roommate is please know that I would love to give you a safe and welcoming space to talk or even just hang out. I live in North Sanborn and I am a sophomore my name is Julia my number is 978-852-8609

  3. This is fucking disgusting. We need to change rape culture, I expected more of CMC as my future college. I hope these boys learn their lesson. You are strong writer. I believe in you

  4. You are brave, not alone, and supported. If you ever need anyone to talk to email me or call me rkavulur@students.pitzer.edu or 4089308928. What they did to you was horrible and I hope they pay the price. I’m so so sorry that this happened to you and know that we all love you and will continue to support you through this.If you want tomes sage me anonymously and talk about it that’s fine too, jut know that you are not alone and you are so so brave for speaking up.

  5. Dear Writer, This is not your fault. You are not alone. I know you feel invisible and scared right now. If you can muster up the energy to reach out–please do! Pitzer offers private support and reporting resources for sexual assault survivors. You can call or email marni_bobich@pitzer.edu 909-607-8533 — she is a staff member and a Title IX Coordinator. There is a website you can go to for info: http://www.pitzer.edu/title-ix
    It is not too late to report this. I’m so sorry this happened to you. My heart goes out to you. I hope you find some comfort and care before you leave Pitzer. I care! And I know many others that will, too. Please reach out!

  6. After reading your letter my heart breaks for you. You are so strong for sharing your story. I am sorry that you have had to deal with so much of this pain alone. I understand how isolating Pitzer can be and I respect your choice to not come back, however, if in these next few days you want to talk to someone I would really love to speak with you (I will be here till May 15th and will make anytime work to talk with you). As both an advocate for survivors of sexual assault and a survivor myself I want to offer you as much love and support as humanly possible. Feel free to message me privately at anytime and I will meet with you. I am a confidential non-mandated reporter and I am trained to provide resources but most importantly I care about you.

    Even if you do not feel ready to talk I want you to know that I believe you. I am so sorry that this happened to you and none of this is your fault. You are worthy of support and of healing.Your story matters and so do you.

    I really hope this reaches you and I hope we have the chance to speak.

    Also if you do not want to use school email or Facebook to communicate my cellphone # is on student talk and there is no time too late to text or call. I will leave it on all night. <3

    There are so many people at this school who feel your pain and want to help.

  7. Dear anonymous,
    I believe everything you say.
    My name is Jubilee and (maybe we’ve met) I am also a first-year at Pitzer. I’m a member of Pitzer Advocates for Survivors of Sexual assault and this semester, as an Advocate, I’ve participated in a weekly food support group. From these experiences I can tell you: you are not alone. As heartbreaking as it is there are many fellow survivors on campus and many more people who are deeply survivor-centric.
    I want to make it clear that there is no right or wrong way to respond and for now, you may feel more comfortable responding in no way. There is power in everything you have decided to do so far and in each response moving forward (to keep your experience private, to disclose to someone close, to report in a formal manner or anything else). You have complete control of the situation now and if you are not ready to report you do NOT have to.
    However, I am more than happy to talk to you at anytime, in any place. I, as are all advocates, am a confidential non-mandated reporter with training to provide resources and support. I live in East Sanborn C320 and you can reach me by this email, my private email – jubileelopez@outlook.com or by my cell phone 503-784-2099.
    There is no wrong way to be a survivor. You suffered a trauma and any response you and your body is having is exactly what you need to be doing to survive. There are many resources on and off campus but if you would like to have a conversation with a peer, perhaps one in your grade, please reach out in anyway you feel comfortable to the Pitzer Advocates in class of 2019.
    Katherine Carey – (503)-791-4559
    Maddy Gould – (206)-724-9092
    Hannah Chui – (516)-582-3042
    Jacob Finkelman – (503)-866-2022
    We care about you and, if you would like, each of us would love to help you in anyway that you want or need. We are here to listen to as much or as little as you want to share.
    With love,
    Jubilee, Katherine Carey, Maddy Gould, Hannah Chiu and Jacob Finkelman

  8. Hi Anonymous. My name is Sage and I’m a senior at Pitzer. I’m an Advocate for Survivors of Sexual Assault on campus and I’m also a certified crisis intervention counselor/advocate for survivors at Project Sister Family Services (local rape crisis org). You are so brave for sharing this letter, and I want you to know that you are not alone, I believe you, and this was not your fault. My hope for you is that you will gain some much needed support right now. You can always come meet with a Pitzer advocate on campus to talk. I’m really concerned about you, and I really want to encourage you to reach out either to Pitzer advocates or to a completely anonymous+privileged victim advocate at project sister.

    Here’s some ways to reach out:

    1) If you would like to speak to the head of Project Sister victim services + hotline, please request to speak to Liliana at (909) 623-1619. She can speak to you over the phone or come meet you on campus.
    2) Dr. Nancy Arzate is a Project Sister privileged psychologist psychologist at the Claremont Colleges in the EmPower center– she is trained specifically to work with survivors of sexual assault.
    3) If you would be comfortable speaking to me, our communications will be completely anonymous. You can reach me through Project Sister’s 24/7 hotline at (909) 626 4357. I have told the hotline answering service that they can connect me to any callers who specifically request to speak to Sage, and I will not be given your phone number (or name, if you request that). If you would like to reach me directly, feel free to call me *anytime* through email: slachman@students.pitzer.edu or my cell phone (909) 942 0988, but please keep in mind that this does not give you as much privacy/anonymity, if that is what you want.

    Neither Liliana nor I or any of PZ advocates would ever tell you what to do or how to act. We would never tell you that you should report if you don’t want to report. That’s 100% your decision. We would never blame you for what happened, because it was not your fault. We really want to help you get the support you need right now, and whatever that may be is absolutely your call. Anonymous, please know that I want to offer you support right now, as your peer, as a victim advocate, and as a survivor myself. I am so sorry for what they did to you. You deserve support right now, and I just wanted to offer you a few options of how to reach out, while still maintaining your anonymity, if you wish.

    I hear you when you say how hard it is when you don’t have a strong network of supportive friends around you. But you’re not alone, Anonymous. Liliana and myself at Project Sister and Pitzer Advocates are here to offer you support.

    I care about you and I’m here to help. I’m here to listen to as much or little as you want to share. I’m so sorry about what happened to you, but with the support you need, you can begin the healing process.

    – Sage

  9. Your not alone, although I left college with a few friends I generally also didn’t find Pitzer to be a hospitable place, I also witnessed and experienced (although not to the extent of some of my friends) serious harassment from a Pitzer student. I have been raped many times, including when I lost my virginity. You have every right to feel alone, let down, however you feel. I just hope you know your not alone, and that it meant a lot to me to read your story, thank you for being brave enough to share.

  10. You did not disappoint anyone and you are not to blame. The people to blame are those idiots (Tom and Bob) and the those that allow these creeps to believe they have the right to take something that is not theirs.

    I’m a survivor and even though it may not feel like it but talking about it and letting everyone know what these idiots did will empower you. Do not let them win by keeping you silent.

    Warn other women and speak out and empower yourself over these idiots.

  11. What happened to this poor soul was just incomprehensible. How incredibly brave it was for her to come forward and speak about her pain. This young woman was failed by so many. To the many college roommates out there, as a mom, I beg you to never lose sight of your capacity for compassion and your humanity (no matter how you may feel about your roommate). To hear someone crying out in pain, to only respond “Shut the F up” … I have no words. For the one, possibly two young men who committed this vile and unforgivable act of violence and cowardice (in an effort to assert your power at the expense of hers), I can only imagine that your self esteem is so low, and your self respect so absent, that perhaps you felt that the only way you could have any intimate contact with a female was to drug her and render her unconscious. Young men and women who are victims of assault, and that IS what this was… know that YOU are enough…YOU are worthy, and YOU never have to cede to someone else the power to steal your shine (or the right for you to make choices about your mind/choices and body). To Anon, I Pray that you find the support you are deserving of, and I Pray that you reach out to B. Carlisle. These young men must be forced to face the consequences of their choices and actions. If not now…do know that Karma is a B#@ch, and that Light always in the end consumes darkness. Please do not allow this act of violence against you… an effort by people who clearly view themselves as weak and deficient…to frame the context for relationships moving forward. May you find Peace, A Concerned Mom (P ’18)

  12. On behalf of Pitzer Advocates for Survivors of Sexual Assault, in response to the anonymous letter published in The Peel:

    TW: Sexual Assault/ Rape

    Dear Anonymous,

    Thank you so much for your bravery in sharing your story. Pitzer Advocates for Survivors of Sexual Assault would like you to know that you are heard, believed, and supported. We are deeply concerned, and we would like to extend ourselves to you in any and all ways that feel comfortable and safe to you. There is no right or wrong way to respond to events such as those you have described, and we would like to offer you support in your process, whatever that may look like, and at whatever pace you choose. We recognize that receiving a lot of information at once, even when well intended, can be overwhelming, so we hope to share with you the resources we offer while emphasizing that whether or not you utilize them is entirely your choice. We gently encourage you to reach out if and only if doing so feels right to you.

    Pitzer Advocates for Survivors of Sexual Assault is an entirely student-run organization; many of our members are first-years at Pitzer just like you. We hope to offer you solidarity, compassion, and resources. Pitzer Advocates are non-mandated reporters; this means that we are a confidential resource, and we are under no obligation to share any information with any administrative authority at the Claremont Colleges. We respect your decision to disclose anonymously, and we would like to support you whether or not you choose to remain anonymous.

    If you would like to get in touch with an Advocate, there are several ways to do so. We have an office space upstairs in the Grove House, and you can find an Advocate on-call in the office on Sunday-Thursday from 4-6PM. You can also reach an Advocate by email at pzadvocates@pitzer.edu. This is our website: http://pitzeradvocates.squarespace.com, where you can find more information about who we are and what we do.

    Pitzer Advocates also highly respects the work of Project Sister Family Services, a local rape crisis organization, and we encourage you to consider their resources as well. One of our Pitzer Advocates, Sage Lachman (PZ ’16) works as a certified anonymous/confidential crisis intervention counselor and advocate for survivors at Project Sister. You may also reach Sage anonymously through the Project Sister 24/7 hotline at (909)-626-4357, by calling and requesting to speak with Sage. If you would rather contact the head of Project Sister victim services and hotline, you may do so by calling (909)-623-1619 and requesting to speak with Liliana.

    Anonymous, neither Pitzer Advocates nor Project Sister will disclose your story or tell you what to do. We stand with you.

    To the wider Pitzer/ 5C community,

    It is the unfortunate truth that there are far too many survivors of sexual assault on these campuses, both anonymous and not. Pitzer Advocates for Survivors of Sexual Assault extends the resources and sentiments detailed above not only to Anonymous but to all survivors and those affected by sexual assault in any capacity. We recognize that the content of Anonymous’ letter may be triggering for those who have had related experiences, and we would like to emphasize that we are here for all those affected. Please consider contacting us if we can offer you support and resources in any way.

    Best,
    Pitzer Advocates

  13. You are brave, not alone, and supported 100%. You are foolish to blame yourself. Don’t give up but believe in better. You are loved

  14. They both should be kicked out of school and put in jail. Who knows how many other girls they have this to.

  15. Dear, Writer

    You’re not alone. I cried reading this letter thinking of how many other girls feel the same as you. Alone. But we’re in this together. I noticed that in your letter you felt compelled to explain that you don’t party and that you should have been responsible and not taken the drink. You did not do anything wrong sweet girl. Tom did. I also want you to know that I too am a first generation college student. It feels good doesn’t it!? You are smart and beautiful! And though I don’t know what you look like we as women are all unique and special because we are one of a kind. There is only one you! Please don’t leave school. You make Tom leave school. I know you don’t know me. But I am willing to hold your hand and be your friend if you need help through all of this. I am a NRS at Pitzer. I am 30. I have a daughter and 7 sisters. I offer you my hand because I would hope someone would do the same for me and my daughter or sisters. You’re strong. You will get through this. I am leaving my email and number. Please. Let me be there for you. You’re not alone.

    All my love,
    April
    aforrest@students.pitzer.edu
    951-315-1363

    1. Lastly, I can help you with resources. I have worked with battered women and women that too have suffered act of sexual violence.

  16. Dear Anonymous,

    Thank you for having the courage to share your story with the community. Claremont can and must do better, and it is the brave survivors like you who pioneer change in campus culture demand attention to these painful discussions that can no longer be ignored. Should you ever wish to reach out, the Claremont Survivors Alliance is a group of 7c survivors and allies who are here to listen and support you. You are having a natural response to an unnatural trauma, and you we wish you the peace and healing that you deserve.

    With much love,

    Ashley and the Claremont Survivors Alliance

  17. I am so sorry you had to go through this. Your words carry so much power. Please know that you have already touched many hearts and are surrounded by compassionate classmates who want to help and protect you from further harm. As a mother of three daughters I believe our hearts are always open to listen and hear from our precious girls. Thank you for speaking your truth and sharing your story. You are important. You matter. I hope that you reach out. On behalf of mothers everywhere, I wish you well and send you love.

  18. Dear anonymous,

    I am not someone who is from a organization for Survivors of Sexual Assault, nor am I someone who has survived such a terrible, and horrendous ordeal. However, I just wanted to say thank you. I want to thank The Peel firstly for being brave enough to post this letter of what happened to Anonymous, and I thank you for helping people like me to be able to really see how it feels to be stripped down like that, to be violated, to be in so much pain and in so much agony from being a victim of drugging and rape.

    Secondly, Anonymous, Thank you for sharing your story. You have no idea how much sorrow and sadness I feel for what you are going through right now, for having to stand through such an ordeal and feeling helpless and not able to tell anyone. However, I want you to know that I know that you can fight through this. You can make it and be strong and fight through this. I personally do not know you, I haven’t met you before, I’m not even a student at Pitzer. However, I know that we all are strong and are capable of fighting and coming out stronger over such a trial.

    I believe that this trial was sent specifically to you because you are strong enough, you are wise enough, you are powerful enough to fight through this trial. You are a brave, courageous, and amazing person. I know that you can fight through this. Please don’t give up. Please don’t let this knock you down on your feet and keep you down. You can get up and fight through this every day. You are brave. You are strong. You are you. And that should be more than enough to keep you strong.

    God Bless.

  19. This hits home for me. This happened to my loved one. She was a freshman at Cal Poly at the time. Similar sequence of events. She chose to finish school to prove that she was stronger than this. She did it ! She occasionally passed him on campus, so would find different routes. She went to the campus councellor for help. She filed a police report. You should too. You may help someone else. Chances are, they WILL look for their next victim.

    As you progress in school, you WILL feel stronger and stronger. Do NOT allow this to pull you down. Think of this as your own act of feminism for all the other women who have been through this. These date rape drugs are way too common on college campuses.

    A (former) Cal Poly Mom.

  20. Dear Writer,

    I am very sorry for what happened to you.

    I wanted to highlight the fact that when a guy from one of your class offers you a drink, this should normally mean that he is just being friendly. There is no way you could have seen it coming. Those two guys are psychopaths. They permitted themselves to hurt you, without showing any remorse. And worse, by coming back to class as if nothing was wrong, they want to make you believe that this is normal. Which is not.

    You did nothing wrong. You were not foolish. You did not fail to be responsible. You got trapped, and there is nothing you could have done.

    Guys like them are sick, disgusting, and what they did to you is purely revolting.

    I cannot possibly imagine what it takes to speak about this. But don’t let them go unpunished.

  21. As a male college student reading this, I feel so disgusted. Anonymous, I am so sorry this happened to you. You in NO way deserved that. It’s really sad to think how other guys can just knowingly go and rape someone against their will; it just doesn’t make sense how they can live with themselves. And from what it seems like, they never feel any remorse or guilt.

    As for my advice, I highly recommend you report this. If they get away with this, there is a high chance they will do it again to someone else. Don’t give them that. They deserve to be punished for the macabre things they did to you. If you’re worried about what others in the school will think, then screw them!

    1) Their opinion does not matter the slightest bit.
    2) You won’t be at the school next year, either.

    I hope you recover from this both mentally and physically soon. Again, I’m sorry you had to experience this.

    -A Chapman University Student

  22. Dear Anon,

    I cannot express how horrified and sad I am for you and that we live in a community where such violence is tolerated and survivors are so stigmatized. I am heartened to know that many people have reached out to send you their support and I want to be another to tell you that you are not alone. I also am a survivor of sexual assault, verbal abuse and bullying during my time at Pitzer. I cannot even imagine what you are going through but I understand how the Pitzer community can be a very judgmental place and one can feel unsupported and unsafe. I am here if you ever do feel as if you want to reach out to someone. Another fantastic form of support outside the 5C community is an organization called End Rape on Campus (EROC). One of the women who founded the group, Sofie Karasek, is featured in the documentary The Hunting Ground, which is about sexual abuse on college campuses. Sofie is one of the only people I have ever felt comfortable talking to about my story. If you feel like reaching out to anyone, her email is skaeasek@endrapeoncampus.org and the website and Facebook are all under endrapeoncampus.
    Thank you for your incredible courage in sharing your story. I hope to one day be as brave as you and share my story. And thank you to everyone who has sent support to Anon because other survivors of sexual assault, physical abuse, and verbal abuse are watching, reading, and hearing the responses as well. Seeing people come out publicly to support you has made a difference for all of us.

    Thank you, Anon.

    Much love and support,
    Jessa Stein

  23. Dear anonymous,

    We are so, so sorry to hear about what happened. Please know that we are here for you. You are not alone and we are here to provide you with care and support. Please do not hesitate to contact myself (909-607-2689) or Project Sister’s counselor who sits at the EmPOWER Center (909-623-1619) if you would like to speak with someone confidentially. We are located close by – 1030 Dartmouth Avenue. Take good care. Warmly, Rima Shah, Director, EmPOWER Center.

Leave a Reply