Lately, I have become more aware of how people treat women.
I consider myself a feminist because I believe in equality between all sexes, and I think that women, in general, need to stick up for each other in any sort of situation.
But over the last months I have really grasped the term “feminism” and held on to it as tightly as I can because the way people treat women sucks.
The other night, for example, I pretended to know a girl who was being harassed by a guy who wanted her number at the walk-up bar. After a couple of minutes seeing the situation develop, I walked up to them and brought her to my table. The guy bombarded me with questions about where I was from and how I knew her. He eventually left, she came with me to the table and we became good friends.
If anyone had asked me a couple years ago if I would willingly confront someone who was harassing another person in public, I would have said no. I was extremely shy and hated confrontation.
I still hate conflict. But, recently I have been getting so angry and annoyed at the way things are when it comes to being a woman.
Living in this society as a woman is not fun.
Granted, we have way more freedoms than some countries and more privileges than what we were initially given when the United States first became a country, but I should be able to buy groceries without having an old man coming up to me and asking why I allow the tampons I’m buying to be out on the conveyor belt for everyone to see.
Victim shaming is another thing I have big problems with.
I have been and have witnessed victim shaming, and I find it ridiculous. I have seen it not just with women but with men, too.
I know guys who have been assaulted and mocked for it. I know women who have been assaulted and raped and I hear some of their “friends” tell them that they probably had it coming or that they imagined the whole situation.
All I can really say is shame on those who victim shame.
Shaming victims is not something you should do to anyone, no matter who they are or what the circumstance is. This is one of the many reasons people don’t come forward about being assaulted.
I am a feminist and a firm believer in respecting others. Unfortunately, finding genuine, respectful people is rare.