I Was Sexually Abused & Spoke Up About It. Here’s Why You Should Too…


My name is Isabella Grosso and I am a California native who dedicated my life to the biggest passion of my life: the art of dance. I started dancing at the young age of three and quickly fell in love with it. My love and passion for dance lead me to study at the Debbie Allen Dance Academy , and the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater.

When I turned 18 I got a dance agent and started working with artists such as Lady Gaga , Rihanna, Justin Timberlake, and Pitbull. Dance was (and still is) a huge influence in my life and it was the only way I could really express myself completely. Deep inside I was dealing with my issues being sexually abuse which started at the age of five, and I never knew how to express it.

Growing up I didn’t want to talk about it, I mentioned it once and no one did anything so it continued on. It wasn’t till I turned 12 that it stopped. I felt ashamed, scared and felt that no one would ever understand me and vowed myself to never to speak of it again. Through my teens and twenties I didn’t understand why I felt uncomfortable with friends and relationships. I didn’t trust and always felt alone. I knew I needed help, but didn’t know where to turn.

I always loved to write and when a friend of mine told me about this writing class, I decided to take it. It helped me open up so much and see what really went on with my life and when I started to share my story, I knew the reasons why I felt the way I did. I was holding on to a secret and felt so ashamed to tell anyone that I shut family and friends out. Through it all, I discovered that I wasn’t the only one. There are so many girls who experienced the same abuse as I did. I instantly knew that I had to change this and started looking for ways to raise awareness and overcome this tragedy.

Every child has the fundamental rights to a childhood, free of sexual abuse. So I decided to stand up and dedicate myself to what helped me personally through it all: Dance. Dance allows you to reconnect with your body, mind, and soul and I knew that it could help others in the same way it helped me. I discovered ‘Children of the Night‘ a non-profit dedicated to rescuing America’s children from prostitution. I started to teach there and they inspired me so much that I wanted to do more.


That’s how I founded the non-profit organization SHE-IS powerful. My mission is to teach dance to young girls who have fallen victim to sexual abuse at other non-profits. SHE-IS consists of a group of professional dancers who have dedicated their time to educate the world about sexual abuse and help victims overcome this by teaching fun, energetic and empowering dance classes.

Even though we are based in LA, it is my dream to one day travel to Thailand and India to help the countless victims there and help spread the word and be their support system, no matter how far they are. Sexual abuse happens everywhere and together we can make it stop. In the meantime, I want to share some valuable information to help you if you have been a victim of sexual abuse, so you can take the first steps toward healing.


How to rise above sexual abuse and become the woman you are supposed to be:

Speak up – First things first, talk about it. I know it is scary and you don’t want anyone to know what happened to you. You might feel ashamed, humiliated, and scared. You might feel as if you are the only one in the world this has happened to, but reality is that you are not alone. Talking about your experiences is a way to connect with others. 1 out of 3 girls are abused; it is sad but true. The healing process starts when you start talking about the pain and experiences you went through. Remember, sexual abuse is never your fault. But you have to heal yourself, no one else can do it for you. The longer you are holding on to the secret, the longer you are holding on to the pain. You have to be true to yourself and love yourself first and foremost. I know it is very hard, but trust me that’s the first step to recovery…..talk.


Support– Once you start talking about the abuse you’ll be surprised how many people care about your story and will support you during this difficult time. You might have felt that you were alone this whole time, but you soon will see that you are never alone in this. People you don’t even know will support you and will give you the strength to overcome your bad experiences. Even though you think there are bad people in the world you’ll also find out that there is still good around. There are people who are willing to care, listen, and help. Surround yourself with people who encourage and empower you to be you. Let these people help you and give you the proper guidance you need. Allow for them to come in and give your inner child the love she needs.


Trust- Honestly, this is probably the most difficult one to overcome. Until this day I still struggle with this issue. Here’s why it is so difficult; your abuser was most likely the person you put your trust into. Statistics show that more than half of the abusers are family members, relatives and close friends. Who are you supposed to trust if you can’t even trust your own family and other close relatives? Red flags everywhere but you can’t live your life like that. Being scared and having mistrust in others will lead you to pushing away the people that truly care about you as well. I know that you are afraid to trust someone out of fear that they might take advantage of you. But it really starts with yourself: trust yourself and listen to the voice inside of you: We know what’s right and what’s wrong. No matter if your abuser said “trust me this is normal”, deep down inside we know it’s wrong. So listen to that little person inside of you instead of shutting it down. This will take time and perhaps years but you will trust again, just start today!


Cry – Yes, I said c-r-y . We hold on to so much pain and hurt why do we want to add to it by not crying?! We are so scared of that emotion that we shut it out. We feel weak and for me I thought I was the strongest person I don’t need to cry. I am a tough cookie! Some time ago, I took a writing class to help me overcome my past and to really understand it and when I would read short stories from my past, I would hear people sobbing. Oh man I didn’t even want to look up, after I was finished I was like what the heck I don’t want to cry, so you guys don’t cry I’m fine. If I had a penny for every time I said , “I’m fine” I would be a millionaire. The way I dealt with it was shutting off my emotions like a light switch and let me tell you I was a pro at it. But in reality I was only hurting myself and I didn’t know who I truly was. I mean I knew my name, “ check “, I am a professional dancer, “check” , I love music and reading, “check”, “check” but I didn’t know who I really was until I let the emotions out after that there was no stopping it. I knew how to feel and that was okay actually it wasn’t just okay it was empowering! Allow yourself to be vulnerable even in front of someone else. Showing emotions is not the same as being weak, it is actually being strong and determined to overcome and start a new fresh page.


Taking charge of your life – Please listen to these words:” You are an amazing strong human being!” Yes, I said amazing and strong oh wait…. and I forgot you are a Hero! What, you don’t believe me? Listen to this: You have overcome so much pain and you’re here today as a stronger woman. That qualifies you as a hero. Every time you wake up, live your day productively and then go to sleep I want you to repeat to yourself that you are a hero and I want you to believe in it, one million percent. Nobody can really understand what you been through, only the people who experienced it. I experienced it myself and I’m here to tell you, you are a hero. You have a second chance to change your life for the better and let that beautiful strong woman come out and take over the world! I know this sounds cheesy but I’m telling you the truth. Never give up, stay true to who you are and be a voice for others. Face your fears, live your dream and retake charge of your life. You are worth so much in this world.


To find out more about SHE-IS go to their website and follow them on Facebook and Twitter.


  1. cheryldelp says:

    What a sad statistic~~1 in 3 women are abused! I knew there were a lot of sicko’s in this world, but that is awful! I hope girls/women who read this take her advice and get help. And I hope the sicko is punished to the full extent of the law!

  2. Great article and work you’re doing Isabella. I have taught teen girls self esteem for many years.

  3. Alegra Valentin says:

    I, like you am of one in three 🙁 Thank you for sharing Isabella! What you are doing is awesome!!! keep up the great work!!!

  4. Pingback: LA-Based Non-Profit Bringing The Healing Power Of Dance To Sex Trafficking Victims Around The World - GirlTalkHQ

  5. I am also 1 in 3. Evan though it was a random attack, and it was only an attemt, it still scared me for life. Because I am only 12 and I happen to have a very good memory. It’s a blessing and a curse.Thank you for sharing Isabella. You’re an angel.

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