Sigrid Boersma

Sigrid Boersma

by marlies|dekkers

Pirate: Teuta of Illyria

Embodied by: Sigrid Boersma (model & domestic violence activist)

I may not have 200 Roman ships and 20.000 legionnaires after me like queen Teuta, but I know what it’s like to feel trapped and attacked. Too many women do. But we have one very important weapon: our voices.

Only three years ago, I found myself in an abusive relationship. It started with mental putdowns, but eventually turned violent. Why did I not leave after the first strike? It was a combination of shock and wanting to help him. And after a while, I became so emotionally drained that I couldn’t think straight anymore. My confidence was gone. People will always tell you that it can’t be done. I’m sure Queen Teuta didn’t have a lot of supporters when she took over her husband’s crown. But I’ve learned to trust my inner compass. My big breakthrough happened when I participated in the Miss Netherlands competition. I decided to use my voice to break the taboo surrounding domestic violence. Sharing my story was so empowering and liberating! I have now created a platform where women can do the same, anonymously, because sharing is the first step in overcoming shame and getting back your confidence.

During the pirate shoot, Marlies asked me to tap into my inner strength. And as I was standing on that cold, windy beach with my sword and heavy leather coat, it kind of all came together for me. I realized that I’ve managed to turn my pain into my passion, and it’s made me stronger than ever! I’m not afraid to go after things; shop around ideas for tv shows, approach magazine editors for articles. I’m fearless! These pictures are a celebration of that, and who knows? Perhaps they can inspire other women to also shamelessly chart their own course.

Follow Sigrid on Instagram.

 

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