- Posted March 1, 2013 by
This iReport is part of an assignment:
'The Bully Effect': Making it stop
You and Me Can Stop Bullies
Patrick Dati grew up in a devout Catholic family on the northwest side of Chicago. His father was Italian, his mother, Irish. He was the youngest of five children, three boys and two girls. At the age of nine, Patrick’s life changed after a deeply traumatic event: he was raped by notorious serial killer John Wayne Gacy in the restroom of a department store. Out of fear, he hid the rape from his family and friends for 35 years.
Patrick has now broken his silence and has written a memoir about the abuse and bullying he endured from an older brother throughout his childhood and adult life. The memoir is also a torturous coming out story of a man raised in the midst of a devout Catholic family, after years of playing a role he hated in order to please his loved ones. In living to please others, Patrick married twice and today is the proud father of a beautiful and loving 17 year old daughter. As he struggled to accept himself and leave behind his false life for a real one, he found freedom - and himself - in three simple words: “I have survived.” Recently, he met a man he loves and is now sharing his life with his partner.
Since going public with his story, Patrick has worked in conjunction as a trauma survivor for the 2012 National Trauma Campaign by the US Department of Health and Human Services and the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Administration. He has become a member and speaker for activist organizations including RAINN, Champions Against Bullying, and the National Association of Adult Survivors of Child Abuse, as well as an advisory board member to DreamCatchers for Abused Children and Head of LGBT Affairs for the Compassion Fashion Project.
He has appeared on, WGN News, ABC News, NBC News and numerous Talk radio programs and has been profiled in Connextions Magazine, Windy City Times and Huffington Post.
Patrick graduated with a BA in Broadcast Communications from Columbia College in Chicago. He has spent the last decade as a marketing professional working in the book publishing industry. Most of his writing consists of newsletters, promotional copy, and website content to sell books for publishing companies.