I hate that so many people have chimed in with #metoo.
While I don’t at all agree with or condone Mayim Blalik’s ridiculous, ass-backward “feminist” rant, a small part of me nodded when she wrote that she’s never been a victim or target of sexual harassment or assault because she’s not “Hollywood pretty”. I’ve never been a victim because I’m not pretty enough to harass or assault. I get it. I feel safe travelling alone, because no one would look at me twice. I know it’s not about sex but power, but I’m not really worth the effort, so I’m good.
Then .. I remember. Being 12, and having strange men ask me if I want to be their girlfriend. The stares I’ve gotten since my breasts developed. The long-running jokes about my chin, and how good it would look dripping with cum. At 17, being coerced into sex I didn’t want and tried to get out of, and finally just going along with it to get it over with. Being drunk and given to his cousin for sex. Having a friend come out to the car to check on me after drinking too much at the bar, then start kissing me. Another friend, draping his body across mine on his couch. Waking up at a party to someone going down on me. A friend’s birthday, when a goodbye hug ended with a hand down my dress and a tongue down my throat. Slut-shamed by men and women for my cleavage. Hands groping my calves and caressing my legs while I stood behind their chair. Bus boners. My tenth grade math teacher who hunched over me from behind to “help” me with algebra. “I didn’t think you knew how to dress like a professional” from a boss. Being stopped on my way to work by a man who wanted to make love to me for 8 hours. Forcefully groped in public by a boyfriend. Trapped in a makeout session by someone bigger and stronger. Men trying to touch my breasts while corset modelling. Hiding in bathrooms from men trying to corner me. Comments. Stares. Coersion. Threats. “How about a smile, gorgeous?” Accidental grabs. Things thrown down my shirt. The times I just gave in, too scared or tired to fight. Hands on my face. Cab drivers insisting they escort me to my hotel room or rerouting to “show me the city”. Praying for a red light so I could jump out of the car.
I hate that this has made me remember. I hate that I know there are more that I’ve forgotten, or didn’t realize were wrong at the time. I’m smart but oblivious. I believe everyone has only good intentions. I thought the impossibly strong drinks purchased for me were a mistake. I thought he was just being friendly. I thought I had spinach in my teeth, or he was just admiring my necklace. I thought I asked for it by smiling too much, wearing too little, laughing too hard. I should have been more, or less, or tougher, or invisible. I hate realizing just how much #metoo there is. I hate that hundreds of thousands have shared their pain to try to prove and point – and that some people are STILL ARGUING AND DISMISSING IT.
What have we become?