Friday, 8 June 2012

On Unwanted Sexual Attention

I want to start off by linking you to this short essay and telling you to read it and then come back here.

It really got me thinking about a lot of things, about how horrified I am by the way the world has turned out, and about how angry and disgusted I am with how a lot of men view women as things that evolved to please them, but mostly it shocked me.

“Your body is not for you. Your body is for men’s pleasure.
And you are at risk, all the time.”
I’ve never properly realised it before, I've always been very content to walk home alone in the dark, or wander around London's backstreets by myself. I've lived in this city all my life and that has supplied me with a certain cockiness that could be my downfall. When I think of how easy it is for people to take advantage of me it's terrifying.

The part where the woman writing the essay mentioned a professor at her college stroking her arm and standing very close to her and other female students was like a slap in the face. I'm entering that kind of education system this September (or so goes the current plan). A huge building full of older, stronger and because of their position as educators, more credible people that could so easily have their way with anyone they chose and then completely discredit any complaint is such a sickening thought that I can't stop letting it circle round and round in my head.

What's getting to me the most is that I would end up ticking that box… It’s horrid to think that even though I’m just fifteen I would have to check that box.
I’m beyond thankful that nothing overly serious has happened to me, but that won't stop me dwelling on the small things that have happened.
Being followed from my local library two years ago, That boy at my friend's party asking me if I wanted to “dance” (grind), the man in the white van who whooped and wolf whistled as he drove past because I was wearing shorts, the boys who started laughing and thrusting on the other side of the playground fence as I went past on the bus, the men that stare at me on the train, watch me as I walk by, who can't keep their eyes from my legs.

Purely because of the body I was born with I am subjected to so much more attention than if I was a guy. Send a man out into the world wearing a huge sign on his chest that says 'FUCK ME' on it, make him say 'OH!!! Yes please!!!' to anyone that suggests that they might and then make him try to walk away. Tell him that's what it's like to be a woman.

I suppose I can't complain, not really. But to know that already I'm the object of men's stares and perversions is a harrowing thought.



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