Speaking out on Sexual Harassment
Originally Written here
When it has happened to Elizabeth Warren, why should you be reluctant to disclose.
Several times. Waking up to find a grown man sleeping next to me on the same berth, tangled in his lungi as a 10 year old on pilgrimage with parents. Or being grabbed by a frail shriveled old man in a crowded street as I visited town for the first time without parents at 13; wondering why my pee-pee area would be of interest to anyone. The hand that reaches out from amidst a crowd, grappling for a feel of your breasts, that cowardly old man who rubs an erect thing on your upper arm in a inter-town bus, only to be shrunk back my a mere stare, the feel of privates pushed against your thighs while in a crowded bus, catcalled walking back at 9 by thugs, followed while getting down at KGP station at 11 pm, stalked in sparsely populated train coaches, death threats for turning down a proposal, creepy high school teachers that steal glimpses at your chest, clicked under the excuse of being in the back ground, married predatory 40-year olds at boot camps that try on many young ladies to maximise probability, boys that take a ‘no’ as a ‘yes’, propositioned by a homeless man offering drugs right outside my house in Canada that left me so scared that I stayed in, locked, for a whole day despite work…so many times, so many places, so many people. Heck, they even ridiculously suck at a brinjal(eggplant) as an allusion, waving it at you, gleefully delirious and grinning, while you’re travelling with friends, including male friends, in a Kharagpur-Kolkata metro at 3am!
Most men I come across are under the belief that the prior is very infrequent. But to women, especially Indian women that I’ve interacted with, this is commonplace so much so that we are already expecting that hand while in the crowd. We have accepted it as our normal, isn’t that sickening? Every woman has their stash of experiences. What has come to help is courage, often these cowardly pieces of shit are taken aback at your courage to merely look them back in the eye, having thoroughly expected no consequences for their actions, believing you’d take it staying mum. When they address your chest, just remind them your face is up here, not there. That courage to respond/act has come by virtue of empowerment, and that is one more reason why we need feminism. A lot of Indian parents avoid having those awkward conversations with their children, and may in fact be endangering them instead of protecting them, that if I have a little girl I’d be talking to her sooner than later.
Don’t suffer in silence, fight back! :)