Silence is not weakness and decency is not pride. ~ Arthur Machen
In the wake of recent events unfolding because of the #metoo campaign, I often wonder, is this the time for me to finally speak up? Am I finally getting my revenge and reducing the trauma I have been going through for two decades? Oh no no! I have no big names or powerful men to bring down with my reveal; so my story might be of lesser interest. Nonetheless, they were all assaulters, abusers, paedophiles and molesters.
It is very important that we speak about these things out loud and to a large extent it has been made possible. After-all, the vast social media network reaches out to, well, International Space Station!
So, the question here remains. Do I speak up? Truth is, I don’t know. To answer why I didn’t say #metoo, or complain when it happened, well, I was 10 then and the memory was so clear that I realised what had happened only when I was 20. The moment of realisation of what had happened then, was soul crushing. That was my earliest memory. I am not sure if I was ever assaulted before but many followed. From absolute strangers to friends/acquaintances. Thus began my trust issues. I’m a mother and it terrifies me to think of leaving my child out of my sight.
Are you a woman? Have you ever experienced sexual harassment? If the answer is ‘no’, KUDOS! It is indeed remarkable that you managed to not have experienced it. A girl is taught from a very very young age on how to keep herself safe. To all the people who say ‘Girls mature faster’, well, this is why! We are told to be vigilant when boys were let to play freely and be carefree. We women, literally have to get our act together way before boys are expected to.
Sexual harassment has existed for generations. It has been normalised to such a large extent that many men and even women fail to identify when such an act is committed.
I am a victim. But to be part of this campaign, I need to reveal specifics which clearly I am not comfortable with. I back this movement 100% but if I raise my voice, they’ll need a name/face which I’m not yet ready for. Maybe I am right, maybe I am wrong. But with everyday news, and every #metoo that comes up, I take a deep breath and say #metoo in silence.