Danielle Moore's Story
Aspiring gymnast Danielle Moore began struggling with a chronic injury when she pursued the sport in high school. At 13, she was referred by her family physician and her coach to (now) convicted sex offender and former USA Gymnastics team doctor Larry Nassar for treatment. Like many young athletes before her and since, Moore was subjected to Nassar’s continued sexual abuse masquerading under the guise of “therapy” for a period of four years.
“With sexual abuse, there's always a dynamic or a power struggle. [Nassar] was the Olympic gymnast doctor,” Moore says, “I thought it was a medical procedure.”
Years later, when she was driving home, the former gymnast’s mother called her and told her Larry Nassar had been arrested. “Everything came flooding back,” she says, adding that while she fully understands the strong desire many survivors feel to remain anonymous, Moore herself was immediately compelled to come forward and share her story.
Today, Danielle Moore holds two master’s degrees and a doctorate in clinical and forensic psychology, and says she understands first-hand what’s at stake for victims—not just when it comes to receiving the support they need, but in feeling a part of that larger family of survivors. “You have hobbies, and dreams, and goals in life,” she advises, “try not to lose sight of that, and [do] the things you still enjoy.
“Going through this can be very isolating; [it’s] isolating even if you have support,” adds Moore, who recommends joining a support or advocacy group, and trying to educate yourself on the facts, including the prevalence of abuse in sport. “[Just] know that you’re not alone.”