Free Virtual Play 11/6/22 on Zoom

In the virtual play Ask A Sex Abuse Survivor, Michael Broussard talks about being healed by Doctor Who.

Get your tickets for a virtual performance of the interactive play Ask A Sex Abuse Survivor on Sunday Nov 6th, 2022. Details below.

Ask A Survivor play reading + Q&A on Zoom
Sun, Nov 6th, 2022 at 3:00 PM EDT
Tickets at http://askasurvivorplay.eventbrite.com

From Meg Lenherr, NCC, Counselor for Women’s Services, Inc. – “As a counselor who works with survivors of sexual trauma every day, I was amazed at the healing power of Michael’s honesty and courage while standing in front of an audience to perform his story in such a raw way. With splashes of colorful humor throughout the performance, Michael authentically and daringly painted the picture of the torment and abuse he experienced in a way that became tangible and relatable to everyone in the room. Before his performance was over I witnessed true healing in some survivors in the audience, who were able to discover, through Michael’s brave retelling of his story and the opportunity to ask questions, that they were not alone. Michael showed us that no one has to be alone as a survivor, and that everyone can heal. Whether you are a survivor or simply a supporter you will not be able to walk away without being deeply affected.”

Questions? Email askasurvivor@gmail.com

2 Free Virtual Events in June: a poetry reading and a play

In the virtual play Ask A Sex Abuse Survivor, Michael Broussard talks about revisiting the schools where he was bullied.

Get your tickets for 2 free virtual events in June: a Survivor Poetry Reading on Zoom on Saturday June 4th and a virtual performance of the interactive play Ask A Sex Abuse Survivor on Sunday June 5th. Details below.

Survivor Poetry Reading on Zoom
Sat, June 4, 2022 at 8:00 PM EDT
Survivors of sexual abuse read their poetry.
https://www.eventbrite.com/e/survivor-poetry-reading-on-zoom-tickets-334037293537

Ask A Survivor play reading + Q&A on Zoom
Sun, June 5, 2022 at 3:00 PM EDT
https://www.eventbrite.com/e/ask-a-survivor-play-reading-qa-on-zoom-tickets-328996586647

From Children’s Advocacy Centers of Pennsylvania: “We hosted a virtual performance of Ask A Survivor and it felt just as dynamic and interactive as an in-person event. This show is as honest as it gets about the hard reality of child sexual abuse. As Michael tastefully recreates through dramatic monologue the most painful scenes of his childhood, we become “witnesses” to the abuse that Michael suffered alone and in silence for so many years. Yet this carefully guided journey does not abandon its audience in those dark places of memory. Michael strikes a “just-right” balance between raw emotional intensity and self-reflective commentary. Each memory-scene is followed by an opportunity for audience engagement—and Michael creates a genuinely safe space for participants to ask questions about this very sensitive topic. The brilliance of Michael’s approach comes down to this Q&A—without realizing it, we have been empowered to have a conversation that is still so taboo in our society. We leave the performance feeling compelled to pay greater attention to victims and survivors, to feel their pain more deeply, and to act more decisively to protect children from abuse.”

Call for Survivor Artists and Performers for Survivor Knights Philadelphia 2019

Survivor Knights

We are seeking visual artists, speakers, storytellers, musicians, and other performing artists for a free event in Philadelphia co-sponsored by the North Carolina based arts community Survivor Knights and Ask A Sex Abuse Survivor.

Survivors of any kind of trauma, abuse, medical condition, or any other life challenge, are invited to display their visual art and/or to perform at Survivor Knights Philadelphia, Sunday afternoon, March 24th, 2019 at the Rotunda, 4014 Walnut Street in Philadelphia. For driving and public transit directions to the Rotunda visit sexabusesurvivor.com/rotunda.

To participate, send photos of your visual art or audio/video of your story, poetry, music, performance piece, etc to askasurvivor@gmail.com. We will be accepting submissions until February 28th, 2019. Audio and video does not need to be professional quality. We just want to see/hear your work.

The Survivor Knights community is the brainchild of survivor and advocate Brian Cardoza, who is also the founder of the Broken Knee Club, a support and advocacy organization working to raise awareness about childhood sexual abuse.

We look forward to showcasing your visual and performance art. Only together can we survive. Your darkest moments may be the light to another.

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Call for Survivor Artists and Performers for Survivor Knights Philadelphia

Survivor Knights

We are seeking visual artists, speakers, storytellers, musicians, and other performing artists for a free event in Philadelphia co-sponsored by the North Carolina based arts community Survivor Knights and Ask A Sex Abuse Survivor.

Survivors of any kind of trauma, abuse, medical condition, or any other life challenge, are invited to display their visual art and/or to perform at Survivor Knights Philadelphia, Sunday afternoon, March 25th, 2018 at the Rotunda, 4014 Walnut Street in Philadelphia. For driving and public transit directions to the Rotunda visit sexabusesurvivor.com/rotunda.

To participate, send photos of your visual art or audio/video of your story, poetry, music, performance piece, etc to askasurvivor@gmail.com. We will be accepting submissions until February 28th, 2018. Audio and video does not need to be professional quality. We just want to see/hear your work.

The Survivor Knights community is the brainchild of survivor and advocate Brian Cardoza, who is also the founder of the Broken Knee Club, a support and advocacy organization working to raise awareness about childhood sexual abuse.

We look forward to showcasing your visual and performance art. Only together can we survive. Your darkest moments may be the light to another.

[mfgigcal id=25]

You Can Help Abuse Survivors with a Tax-Deductible Donation

Ask A Sex Abuse Survivor is a sponsored project of Fractured Atlas, a non-profit arts service organization. Contributions for the charitable purposes of Ask A Sex Abuse Survivor must be made payable to “Fractured Atlas” only and are tax-deductible to the extent permitted by law.

To make a Secure Tax-Deductible Donation for Ask A Sex Abuse Survivor click here.

Ask A Sex Abuse Survivor utilizes the arts to raise awareness about childhood sexual abuse. Ongoing projects include the interactive theatrical show Ask A Sex Abuse Survivor, art shows, spoken word showcases, and film screenings.

The interactive show Ask A Sex Abuse Survivor has been widely praised by survivors and professionals in the field for its value as a healing and educational tool.

Survivor and New England Director of SNAP (Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests) Dave O’Regan said, “I came away from the performance uplifted, braver, and will always remember Michael’s courage and draw strength from it when needed in my own life.”

Psychologist Margaret D. Sayers called the show “an excellent illustration of the healing power of art and community”.

Clinical Psychologist Dr. Elizabeth Dale Blair said “As a psychologist who treats survivors of childhood sexual abuse, I would highly recommend this show to anyone who struggles with the emotional aftermath of these traumas.”

Clinician Megan L. Doyle of SOAR (Survivors of Abuse in Recovery) called it “a powerful and moving testimonial to the impact of childhood sexual abuse throughout a lifetime”.

Clinician Maureen O’Regan of Orleans Psychotherapy Associates said, “I walked away with an understanding of the survivor experience that no book, training, or even my years of work as a therapist could have ever given me”.

Ask A Sex Abuse Survivor has been presented for audiences of survivors, medical and mental health professionals, social workers, law enforcement officials, and others associated with the response to this kind of abuse.

Recent notable performances include the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania and the Philadelphia Children’s Alliance Conference “A Team Approach to Child Abuse Intervention”.

A packed crowd at the Children’s Alliance conference gave the presentation an average score of 4.5 out of 5 and comments included: “It will help me to do my job more effectively”, and “It gives insight into the mentality of a victim which should inform all our work”.

Ask A Sex Abuse Survivor runs approximately 60 minutes, including feedback breaks. Many organizations that host it choose to follow the program with a panel discussion conducted by professionals in the field.

Ask A Sex Abuse Survivor in the Metro

Michael Broussard in Ask a Sex Abuse Survivor

We would like to thank Madeline Presland and the Metro for this wonderful write up. The article also features a press photo (above) taken by the very talented Sarah R. Bloom. Read the full text below and see the article on the Metro site at this link:

http://www.metro.us/news/local-news/philadelphia/sharing-childhood-abuse-onstage-to-help-others-understand

Sharing a childhood of abuse onstage to help others understand

In interactive show, 52-year-old man speaks with audience about his struggles surviving sexual abuse as a child.

By Madeline Presland
Published : June 08, 2017 | Updated : June 09, 2017

Walking onstage to perform a one-man show isn’t easy. Acting out your own trauma is almost unheard of.

Michael Broussard, 52, takes the stage in a plaid shirt. He begins his show, “Ask a Sex Abuse Survivor,” by talking about a happy childhood he doesn’t remember. The memory of a child who loved dancing is lost to several years of rape and abuse that began when he was 7 years old. His stepfather was his abuser. Euphemisms are off the stage, and the pain isn’t sugar-coated. Broussard began writing his ever-evolving show in 2014. To this day, he continues to write his brutally honest narrative from his own memories.

“Every time I come up with something to try to portray it, and I start crying, I put it in the show,” said Broussard. “If I get mad, it goes in the show. It’s ripping the stitches open.”

Broussard, based in Landsdowne, Pennsylvania, has performed his interactive show up and down the East Coast for psychologists and law enforcement, and a crowdfunded performance was just held at the Adrienne Theater in Center City.

A key part of Broussard’s show is giving the audience time to ask questions and react at several points throughout the show. Instead of waiting to answer questions at the end, Broussard allows thoughtful pauses for discussion. Broussard breaks up the performance with opportunities for the audience to ask questions and give feedback. His focus on interaction makes the experience as much about others as it is about him. For Broussard, that’s the entire point of performing.

“This is very vulnerable,” said audience member and fellow performer Pete Haas. “Taking all of that emotion without a break would potentially be devastating.”

“The thing about audience feedback is that it’s terrifying,” said Broussard. “What I want people to do is talk about this and learn from it. You need to have feedback in order to do that.”

In addition to performing in front of a public audience, Broussard has also done his show in front of therapists and other professionals who want to learn through a new medium.

“I’m a walking, talking case study,” said Broussard. “People who are traumatized are re-traumatized every time they need to tell their story. I can answer questions about what happened to me when I was 7 from my perspective as a 52-year-old.”

“What Michael is doing we all do to some extent – channeling his anger and rage, so to speak, into a productive pro-social way,” said Dr. Steven Berkowitz of Penn’s Child and Adolescent Trauma Program. “He’s doing this by educating and helping people understand his experience and the experience of other people who were sexually abused as kids.”

In addition to diagnoses such as post-traumatic stress disorder and depression, Berkowitz says that substance abuse is a common struggle for adults who were sexually abused as children. The National Child Traumatic Stress Network reports that 70 percent of people who are in detox programs for substance abuse have a history with childhood abuse.

“This performance allows him to take those experiences into the world and not hang onto them,” said Berkowitz.

Broussard’s message is one of hope. The darker moments of his performance are offset by his sense of humor and a passionate love for the show “Doctor Who.” But after the applause ends, Broussard’s performances can take a toll on him. Reliving the abuse can trigger depressive episodes and panic attacks.

But he knows his shows must go on.

“I have seen people talk about their own abuse for the first time in their lives,” he said. “That makes me feel like there’s a reason for what I do.”

Learn more about the show at sexabusesurvivor.com.