Tragedy continues to strike upon the nation with various sexual assault stories about women being attacked; it’s a subject that requires the utmost delicacy and sympathy and respect. When a situation arises, we need to learn how one would feel if they were on the receiving end of such violence. We need to start looking at it from a female’s perspective. We aren’t asking you to switch lives with us forever, but we are asking you to understand our anxiety, fear and so many other emotions that come to the surface during times of distress. Slide yourselves into our shoes and experience a whole world of feelings that you continue to underestimate or “pretend doesn’t exist”.
“Bro, she flinched while I walked past her, bit dramatic!”
This is not a “dramatic” gesture or action, it is our way of defence, and it is our anxiety erupting in its little volcanic world. It is our way of putting up a barrier that shouldn’t be up in the first place; we shouldn’t have to be flinching at strangers when they cross our paths on the same side of the pavement, but that is what happens nowadays because of the unexpected and scary world we live in. We genuinely don’t mean it, we genuinely don’t want to be flinching with every passing male, but our trust is broken and with a bit of understanding and a friendly helping hand we can begin to let the tension go. One shouldn’t be seizing up and tensing every muscle in their body when encountering every new person. As previously mentioned, understanding and a helping hand go a long way with us.
“Short dress, eh? She must be looking for something more…”
A dress is not an invitation. A skirt is not an invitation. A low-cut top is not an invitation. Tight clothing is not an invitation. Women are NOT an invitation, in any way shape or form. We should be able to wear what we want, when we want without being afraid that it’ll attract the wrong attention. From personal experience, I wore a skirt on a night out for a friend’s birthday. I was in a well-known nightclub in the city and bumped into someone who claimed to be a follower of mine on Instagram. After taking a picture with him, he took my smile and my skirt as an invitation to push me against the wall and pull my skirt up to expose my underwear. He thought I wanted more. He thought. He thought wrong. I wanted none of that. This is what’s scary, stop assuming that a woman wants something more because she’s wearing something “too revealing”. No such thing, we are human beings, and we can wear what we like. To this day, I won’t wear that skirt because of the wrong attention it attracted, and I didn’t ask for that clothing to be ruined in its own way.
“She’s standing alone over there…. might go say hi…”
Maybe she is standing alone for a reason. Leave her alone. She wants to be left alone except if she needs someone to step in and offer help. I experienced this too; waiting for my bus at 6pm in the evening when the summer days were long, people around everywhere, but some male decides to stand too close for my liking and before I knew it he was telling me “There’s no man out there for you, I’m the only man for you…don’t you want our kids to call you mommy and me daddy”. I was terrified and I shut down completely until another stranger cut through two lanes on the road, pulled up next to me to see if I was alright. We want to be left alone, but we’ll only want someone to step in and help us if help is needed. Company is great if it’s the right company.
We aren’t dramatic. We aren’t over-reacting. We aren’t being unfair to you. We are just trying to protect ourselves in a world where a lot of the opposite sex think we are “easy” and so many other vile things that shouldn’t even exist in the human mind. We’re women who just want to make it home safe. We are women who just want to stand at our bus stop. We are women who just want to live our lives.