Surviving sexual assault: Sac State alumna Keyko Torres


Kelly Kiernan - The State Hornet

Keyko Torres is a Sac State alumna and survivor of sexual assault. She is now the vice president of communications and outreach for Sacramento Take Back the Night.

Gloria Gibbs

Keyko Torres, alumna of the class of 2011, is the vice president of communications and outreach for Sacramento Take Back the Night, and a survivor of sexual assault.

Torres said the rally is a safe space for anyone who wants to share their story about sexual assault, as well as issues in the community.

The march, as described by Torres, is a healing experience, with marching in the streets and chanting with allies.

Torres also took time to share her story of sexual assault with the crowd at the rally and with The State Hornet.

RELATED: Take Back the Night gives voice to survivors

Torres said she was assaulted twice; once at 17 years old, and once at 21 years old. She described the first incident during the rally.

It was at an after-work party where she said underage drinking was involved; Torres said four men took advantage of her while she was in a drunken state.

This experience made Torres “hate herself,” and caused her to fall into a depression for a year. It was also during this time that she had thoughts of suicide.

Torres said the second time she was sexually assaulted started with emotional manipulation. Her abuser would do things to harm themself in order to play with Torres mentally.

Torres had a fiance at the time and said that the the man manipulating her would threaten to tell him everything that had be going on.

“I felt completely and utterly powerless in that situation,” Torres said.

She also talked about a time in her life after her assault that she called “dark ages,” which was her way of self punishment. She was desperate to reclaim her sexuality, but often in unhealthy ways.

“I would engage in sexual relationships with a lot of people and everytime I would be in that situation I would hate it,” Torres said.

Torres says that therapy helped her realize that her second assault had a lot to with her struggles with co-dependency, which she says therapy has helped heal in addition to medication.

Torres has learned to have specific boundaries with people and continues to use her community, friends and family as a resource to help continue healing.

“I’ve been making my mental health something I work on the the most.”