Enough Of This Shit

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“Where you born to resist, or be abused?

Is someone getting the best, the best, the best, the best of you?”

-Foo Fighters, Best of You

Saturday was a fun day. We spent the evening at friend’s house. The kids laughing and playing in the pool while we enjoyed good food, great conversation and more than a few drinks. We all came pouring in the door full of energy and laughter. We shuffled the kids upstairs to get ready for bed. I paused for a minute to soak up the moment. My family. All of us smiling, happy. I was still reflecting on the fun evening whenI grabbed my phone. I popped on to Twitter for a quick peek to see if there was anything of interest happening.

#YesAllWomen. That’s what was happening.

I stopped my distracted cleaning that I had been doing while reading tweets. I had to sit. It was everywhere. Women tweeting. Tweeting in response to the shooting in Santa Barbara. Tweeting about their experiences.

All the things that have been said and done or implied that reminded them that they are less.

Less important.

Less valued.

Less worthy.

Less powerful.

I was taken aback. I felt overwhelmed. I felt tears burn at the edges of my eyes. I felt sick to my stomach. I felt too connected to what these women were saying. I could relate. I knew what they meant. I had experienced so much of what they were discussing. The every day misogyny. It’s not the stuff of news stories or even blog posts. Usually. It’s the stuff that I have brushed off my whole life. The things that I have learned to expect and to accept. And I don’t know if I ever truly realized it until reading these tweets.

I am no stranger to women’s issues, to feminist causes. I have written about it many times on this blog.

I’ve written about rape, the need for Feminism, on-line misogyny, and sometimes just your basic rant against Feminist deniers.

I participate in a wonderful and enlightening #FeministFriday discussion every Friday with some smart and engaged blogger friends. I obviously am very passionate about these topics. But it did not occur to me that I had spent most of my life minimizing and diluting the very thing I was writing so vehemently about.

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I think it went like this:

  • In Kindergarten a boy pulled my pants down. It was nap time aka time for the teachers to watch their soaps. I had scooted away from him and he got mad and grabbed ahold of my pants as I army-crawled to a different spot. I pulled my pants up quickly. The teachers were engrossed in their show. No one saw. Out of embarrassment I said nothing.
  • Boys at school would occasionally grab and grope me in the hallway. I said nothing. It happened to my friends too. We would just roll our eyes and shrug our shoulders. If the offending boy hadn’t darted off we would maybe offer a quick punch to send him a message. But we didn’t make a big deal out of it. It was just what happened. It was normal.
  • During my teen years, it came from adults. Strangers. And I was still a kid. A teenage girl, whether she has breasts or looks mature, is still just a kid. These men had no problem flirting with a cashier who was 20 years younger than them. These men saw nothing wrong with saying lewd things passing me in a parking lot. These men would make obscene gestures at a stoplight. These men thought that a young girl was an appropriate outlet for their sick and twisted and perverted impulses. But I brushed these creepy encounters off. It was normal.
  • On the first day of college we had a meeting in the dorm. A meeting about campus safety. About how to not get raped. Don’t walk on campus alone at night. Don’t drink too much at a party. Don’t go back to a guy’s room. Don’t lead a guy on. But never, not once, did we hear: Don’t rape. They definitely said “No means no.” But this phrase was such a sing-songy vague campaign, in the vein of “Just Say No To Drugs” as far as effectiveness. Repeated so oft it becomes white noise. What would have been impactful was a simple rule book. With one rule. Don’t rape. Instead we all heard “Don’t get raped.” We got the message. The onus was on us to not get raped. We didn’t flinch or question. We’d heard all of it before. It was normal.

I left college unscathed by the horror that too many girls face. I realize, only now, just how lucky I was to have breezed through four years without being violated.

Still, this shit happened:

  • I couldn’t wash my car for an entire summer in my parent’s driveway because the construction workers building the house next door would make disgusting comments.
  • I got my ass grabbed too many times to count by my boss at the restaurant where I worked.
  • I had to fend off a kiss by my boss with a punch in the stomach.
  • I worried when my boss’s started drinking before the end of the shift if this time they would try to take it further than an ass-grab or a kiss.
  • I had to politely, with a smile, derail come-ons by drunk older men at the bar where I worked.
  • I learned to expect that I would get groped at some point at every single concert I went to, at every crowded bar I frequented. Almost every time I would turn around to try to confront the offender, only to see a crowd entangled, trying to edge closer to the stage and/or bar.

And even now, as a grown woman, this shit STILL happens:

  • I stopped by the house we were building to check on something. I got in my car to leave and turned to look at the house from the road, only to see one of the construction workers making very large, dramatic, jerk-off motions in the window. Directed at me. I was stunned and he stopped as soon as he saw me looking. I drove away considering my options. I could call the builder and tell them. But what if they fired him? What if he has four kids and is struggling to put food on the table? Yes, he’s a misogynistic asshole, but I couldn’t bear the thought of someone being out of work because of me. So I said nothing.
  • Condescension. Too many times to count. The baseball coach who said “And try not to be late next time” when I inquired about an upcoming game. I bit my tongue. I wasted my opportunity to school him in how to speak to a woman, to a person. I didn’t take a moment to let him know that the only reason we were late to practice was because my daughter’s piano lesson ended at the same time that baseball practice started and since my husband travels during the week that I have to do it all and be all places at all times and get all of my kids where they need to be and that I have been all over town in a frantic rush just trying to make it all work. All so he can stand there and smack his obnoxious gum and talk to me like I’m his child. And I knew, beyond any doubt, that if it had been my husband who had been standing there instead of me that he would never have said it. Because no one has EVER talked to my husband that way. But I said nothing. Because my kids were standing right there. Because my son still had a whole season of playing on this dickwad’s team and I didn’t want him to ride the bench because of me. So I said nothing.
  • My husband and I tried to have a drink a our neighborhood martini bar. We sat and watched middle aged men ogle the young waitresses. Girls young enough to be their daughters. The two waitresses stood off to the side, their arms awkwardly hanging in front of their bodies, trying to cover themselves from the creeptitude. My husband I sat and watched, disgusted, as the waitresses timidly walked to the tables where these men sat on their fat asses, leering with such entitled lust and righteousness. I wanted to say something. I wanted to scream at these men to keep their metaphorical dicks in their pants. I wanted to get right in their foul smelling faces and demand to know what gave them the right to make a young girl feel that way. I wanted to walk up to the owner of the bar who was walking around chatting it up with patrons, and knee him in the gut and then explain to him how to treat his employees and how to demand his customers treat them. I wanted to take these girls home with me and wrap a comforting blanket around them and feed them some homemade soup. I wanted to tell them that no one would ever look at them that way again. But I would be lying. And I didn’t do any of that. My husband and I sucked down our sickeningly sweet martinis and paid the bill and left, vowing to never give that bar another dime. I said nothing. Even though I really wanted to.

Enough of that shit.

I’m tired of saying nothing. I’m tired of minimizing the everyday bullshit that happens to every girl and every woman everywhere. To me. To my friends. To those waitresses. I spent my life shrugging it off. I laughed it off. And even when I wasn’t shrugging or laughing, even when I was angry, I said nothing. But then I started this blog. And I started saying something. And then I met some pretty awesome bloggers who care about the same things. And together we started saying something. And then I read these tweets and I saw women, all of them saying something.

And I’m going to keep saying something.

I won’t shut up.

I will say something when I see politicians minimizing rape with qualifications.

I will say something when girls are video taped being raped.

I will say something as long as female genital mutilation continues.

I will say something as long as women are subjugated and demeaned and dismissed.

I will keep saying something.

You won’t be able to shut me up.

I’m hoping you won’t try.

I’m hoping you’ll say something too.

 

What are your thoughts on #YesAllWomen? What kinds of everyday misogyny have you experienced? Do you think a social media movement like #YesAllWomen is helpful/ enlightening/ productive? Talk to me…

 

 

55 Comments

  1. When I first encountered this post, I thought it was something against feminist, so I saved it and thought that I’d read and put a proper +ve/-ve comment later depending on what you wrote.

    But now that I’ve read, I can say that I get very upset at things like these. All I can think of is torture them. But what about the innocent ones, who depend on these arseholes? But if I could, I would torture them like in the movie “I spit on your grave,” or worse.

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    1. Oh gosh! I hate to think my title or lead-in could give an anti-feminist impression! *shudder* I’m glad you came back to read it! I have stumbled upon some anti-feminist posts and have gotten so worked up and enraged- especially when I see women taking that view!

      I can only hope that the people who speak to women like this treat the children and women in their lives better than they do strangers. I know that is likely not the case, but thinking that helps me sleep at night. Otherwise I would lay awake worrying about people I don’t know who I can’t do anything to help. Maybe if all of us start calling these things out, the little things even, it will enlighten some of these men who demean women. Of course, I am eternally optimistic. Sometimes ridiculously so.. Thank you for taking the time to come back and read and comment!

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      1. My pleasure… 🙂

        The anti feminist impression actually came after adding the title and pic together…

        I do my best to put it deep inside people’s (around me) mind to treat women well…

        And once a friend of mine and I had a serious argument with an elder who tried to impose the idea of women being careful not to get harassed, like what happened in your college meeting, I guess. Our point was simple, “When was the last time you told a guy to behave himself instead of lecturing the girls?”

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  2. Whether people like to admit it or not, a lot of this is to do with physical strength. If these men thought you could beat them up, they wouldn’t disrespect you. That’s almost certainly why the coach spoke to you like that, but wouldn’t dare do that to your husband. That’s why women and children get physically abused by men so often – or why children get physically abused by women – or why children get abused by bigger children at school – because they can’t physically overpower them. If you were walking down the street with a 6.5 ft, built like a brick shit house, kickboxer, other men most probably wouldn’t make derogatory comments at you. It’s a sick world.

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    1. You’re absolutely right. A lot of it does come down to physical presence. I’ve always wanted to learn some kind of hard-core fighting technique. I always tell my husband I want to be able to take down a 300 pound man… But I think I would be even more likely to speak up in some of those circumstances if I thought I could completely defend myself physically. It’s sad that that is how we have to think…

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  3. Pingback: Part Time Monster
  4. Reblogged this on Sable Aradia, Priestess & Witch and commented:
    It’s true that not all men act like this, and we need to remember that, if for no better reason than a) it’s not fair and b) it would be counterproductive to shoo away our allies. But it’s true that it is normalized and it happens far more often than it should. No more. This is reblogged from “Drifting Through My Open Mind.”

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  5. YES. It’s so difficult, because just reading your post gave the blue haze one gets before passing out. Seriously. So much of it is suppressed that when it starts to come to the surface I almost lose consciousness. Thank you for writing this, and for visiting my blog and offering your support. It means the world.

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    1. That’s exactly how I felt reading the Tweets Saturday night – “the blue haze before passing out.” I just think this conversation is so important. I don’t want my daughters to grow up becoming numb to this stuff or brushing it off like I did. My mentality was that I didn’t want to be a “victim” and complain about it. Now I see the flaw in that thinking.

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    1. I will. I promise. I’m mad/sad that it’s taken me this long to realize I should have been all along. Thank you for saying that. And for your support, you’re always stopping in to give me (and others) a lift. You’re a good one, Guap.

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  6. I am not on Twitter (techically I am, but i don’t use it) so I have not heard of the term. Also, I haven’t heard about the shooting, I will have to google now… But I do agree with you on everything you said, I have joined Feminist Fridays before and looking forward to many many more…

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    1. I hope you join us this week, I think it will be a really important and lively discussion. If you go on Twitter and search #YesAllWomen, you’ll see all of the tweets. There is something very moving about seeing all of these things women are saying, all in one place. It is still going strong and very active, with dozens of new tweets every second. It is really something to see.

      Thank you for stopping in here! I hope to see you Friday for the discussion!

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  7. Outstanding, Gretchen, bravo!

    It’s amazing what we learn to minimize and just accept. It’s not okay, yet we let most things slide. To call yourself a feminist is like painting a bullseye on your head.

    I saw yet another article today about a woman who was stoned to death by her own family right outside a Pakistan high court. Why? Because she married a man she loved, but they did not approve of. Another so-called honour killing. Where’s the honour in that? Why is a women’s sexuality so damned important to everyone?

    From the daily slights to murder…it boggles the mind. It truly does!

    I hope the parents of the boy who was so inappropriate with your daughter, sat him down for a good long talk. Sure, it was kids being kids, but that’s where it all starts, right?

    The construction guy though…he needs a good smack upside his head.

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    1. I think that’s what struck me when I was reading all of the tweets. How much I could relate too but just always brushed off. I can’t believe I let some of these things go for so long. Not any more, promise.

      I heard about the Pakistani woman. My son is doing a Human Rights project on women’s rights. He is focusing on Afghanistan mostly, but we all discussed this in the care this morning, the woman who was stoned to death. So many cultures (and people) view women as possessions. It truly does boggle the mind, as you say.

      The construction guy definitely needed a smack or a kick in the… anyways. I just couldn’t bear the thought of possibly having him fired. But I did show up about an hour later with my husband and he was sweating for sure. ( I didn’t tell my husband until much later, I didn’t want him to kill the guy).

      I hope you can join in on Friday when we discuss this in our Feminist Friday round. I think you would enjoy it, it’s a great group of people who really care about this kind of stuff!

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      1. I’d like to, but I’m not clear on what platform it’s held on. Is is here on WordPress, or a chat room or Twitter, or…?

        What time does it run at? I keep odd hours so if it’s too early I can’t make it. As in it’s it’s 3:45 AM as I write this. And I’m hoping to get to sleep much earlier than usual as I have a cannot miss appointment on Thursday. (I sleep better during the day – if my neighbours and pets let me – as I’m usually in less pain during the day. And, well, I’ve grown to enjoy the peace and quiet I get when everyone else, including hubby and the pets, are asleep! Gives me time to think.)

        Glad you managed to make the construction guy sweat a bit. Hopefully he’ll think twice before pulling that crap again!

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        1. It is on WordPress. A few of us take turns hosting it, writing a post and managing/responding to comments. This week it will be hosted at Parttimemonster.com I’ll post a re-blog on here also. The post usually publishes in the morning but the conversation lasts all day, sometimes all weekend. Some people can’t chime in until later in the day or evening because of work, etc. So, if you want to participate, just comment on the blog post when ever is convenient for you!

          Hope you get some rest today! I have to have a fan or white/noise to block out sounds or I can’t sleep. Of course, pets and kids will find a way to wake us no matter what! 🙂

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  8. I’ve been in such a crisis over my writing,and then #YesAllWomen happened, and then Daile posted an amazing post. And now this. So I feel a little better.

    Because I’m single, and I blog openly in a frank, sexual manner, and have a pottymouth, and, and, and, I get a lot of unwanted attention through WordPress. I’m not even going to talk about IRL, because when I come here, I expect a safe outlet.

    I get lewd emails, crude DMs, and have had to block people on Facebook because of things they’ve said to me in chat.

    I have the right to tweet playfully sexual comments and not get gross DMs. Does that happen to men? I’ll bet not.

    Even though I’ve blogged about music, mental illness, history, Sept 11, the corporate world, ADHD, a children’s book, etc., apparently the sex posts are what sticks. I’ve talked with a few blogger friends seriously about changing my writing style. Luckily, they convinced me not to.

    In the end, what I realize is that controversial writing will stir up some crazies. I just have to make peace with that. The fact that some of what I write is sexually controversial brings out inappropriate behavior in some people.

    I doubt I can change that anytime soon. I’ve just decided to be me, and develop a thicker skin.

    Amazing post, Gretchen. As always. So glad we’re on the same side.

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    1. I would personally kick your ass if you changed ANYTHING about how you write! I’m so glad you were talked off the ledge, Samara. Your writing, whether it’s about sex or the serious stuff or the fun and playful stuff, is unique and always insanely good. I want to be a better writer when I read your stuff. Seriously, I’m not just blowing sunshine up your ass. There are a lot of great, crazy talented writers on WP (which is why I love it soooo much) but I’m completely serious when I say that you have something special. It would be a loss for ALL of us if you changed or (god forbid) watered it down. You can’t let some asshole sitting in his sweatpants in his parents’ basement change how you write. I’m not minimizing the fear, that’s gotta be some unnerving stuff. I’m completely sick of cyber bullying and internet harassment and stalking and the fact that no one can do anything. It doesn’t make sense that with the technology that’s out there that these cowards can’t be tracked down somehow…

      I don’t know if you read the article in The Atlantic by Amanda Hess (it was the inspiration for my post that was FP’d) but she details her struggle with the same kind of harassment. And I got SO many responses from that post, women who’ve dealt with the same thing. I have been meaning to write a follow up about all of the comments that relayed similar stories.

      I’m so sorry you’re having to go through any of that. You should be able to do and say ANYTHING without fearing repercussions. I think that there’s a portion of these people that just get a sick turn on from contacting women directly with sick and ugly messages. But I also think that there’s a lot of them that want to shut you up. Who are bitter and don’t want a woman expressing her sensuality or talking about it in any way. WRITE. ON. SISTER. *hugs*

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      1. I’m going to have to read that post you wrote.

        Yes, I wanted to be “different.” I’ve tried, and I really can’t. I can pull back a little, or really push, but my voice is my voice.

        Thanks for the amazing things you say about my writing. And for this shot of courage. Write on, indeed!

        Send me the link, okay?

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  9. The everyday misogyny that women endure on a daily basis is both heartbreaking and disgusting. It’s hard enough to get through personal issues, but to compound that with all the gender bias and abuse is tragic.

    Reading through stories such as yours and other #YesAllWomen comments inspired me to start writing too. Holding a lens to something, making a person question something “normal” they had previous accepted is at the very least a small step in the right direction.

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    1. Yes! Absolutely! Write, please write! The more people writing about it the better! I just popped over to your blog, I think there’s a lot there I’m going to like reading! And please feel free to join in our Feminist Friday discussions. There’s a group of bloggers that I have been chatting with and every Friday one of us writes a Feminist Friday post and we all comment and have a discussion. Everyone is welcome to comment and join in, we absolutely love to have new voices! This Friday it will be at Parttimemonster.com

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      1. There are so many topics I want to write about related to feminism, because it’s such an important issue. I’m looking forward to posting more to stir up discussion and to inform and educate. Even if some of my points turn out to be flawed, at least it gets people thinking.

        I’d love to participate in Feminist Friday. I’ll keep an eye out for that post and join in the discussion as well. Thank you for the invitation and for checking out my humble new blog.

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  10. I love this! I am so happy you are opening up to us your struggles, sharing your beliefs and taking a stand!
    Growing up I have gotten harassed by looks, touches, words and gestures.
    I know struggle to trust any type of man or his intentions, It was drove me to feminism!
    I look forward to your blogs, inspirations and messages!

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    1. Thank you so much. I have friends who developed early and as very young teens were stared at by older men. They were made to feel self conscious about their maturing bodies. And then I recently heard that a girl was kicked out of her prom because the Dad chaperones were uncomfortable with how much cleavage she was showing… And to have to walk through life with someone harassing you because you’re a woman or because of the way you look, it’s got to stop.

      Thank you for coming here and reading this and joining the conversation! I get so happy when new people comment and read!

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  11. So great. It is amazing the amount of sexism and harassment we have become accustomed to, that we don’t even recognize for what it is. So many of the situations you have described have happened to me or to women I know. And we do nothing.

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    1. I think most women, ALL women, have experienced some level of misogyny. My daughter just got slapped on the butt the other night (by a boy 4 years younger than her, a sweet kid otherwise). She wasn’t traumatized, more like annoyed. But I told her that even though he’s young and a friend of ours that she should come to me so we could talk to the parents next time. I want her to understand that it is NEVER acceptable even if it’s playful. And this all reminds me of a boy that harassed her in second grade. The teacher made excuses for him (he’s a good boy, he’s trying. He has some issues). Fine. But he’s not going to work them out by harassing my daughter. It is not her responsibility to “teach” him or to “deal with it”. I had to repeat this a few times to this teacher to insist on her separating them. Aaaarrrggh! Now I’m getting angry all over again! *Sorry. Thank you, Kelly. You know how much I value your thoughts. Didn’t mean to rant.*

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      1. Hey, there are things deserving of rants. And you are right. It has to start when they are young. I already feel like I need to explain those boundaries to my son at the age of 5. Boys need that ground into their brains early, not have excuses made for them.

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  12. Reblogged this on Part Time Monster and commented:
    As usual, Gretchen nails it. Her #YesAllWomen post is both harrowing and poignant. And it’s an important one, one that I want to pass along.

    I’ve been watching women write these 128 character chronicles, and I’ve written a few of them myself in the Twitterverse. Over, and over, and over, the stories of everyday misogyny are written. It’s bitterly sad, but in the communication there is hope.

    #YesAllWomen is something I’ve been paying close attention to but haven’t said too much about. On Friday, I’ll be hosting our weekly Feminist Friday discussion at the Monster, and I’ll be talking #YesAllWomen then. Please join us.

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    1. Thank you for reblogging this! I really think this whole thing is going to do something. I think a lot of men who are paying attention are starting to understand things a little differently. I think maybe this will make some people understand the need for feminism still. And I know it’s made me realize the stuff that I have allowed to happen with little push back. Even the small things need to be called out. I’m angry with myself for not realizing it until the ripe old age of 41, but so be it. I will not brush this stuff off anymore. My kids would have benefitted from seeing me confront that baseball coach (because I would never do it in an aggressive way). My daughter, especially. Still learning over here…

      Can’t wait til Friday, I’m so glad you’re hosting. If you’re sure it’s going to be at the Monster, I’ll start Tweeting it up…

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      1. And thank you for writing this. I try not to get disheartened by the negative reactions I’ve seen, because I have seen, as you said, some people who seem to understand things in a new way because of this.

        I’ll be hosting here at the Monster, definitely, and we’ll also definitely be discussing this. Just got to write the post over the next few days. 🙂

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  13. Fantastic account of your personal experiences and I would have to say I relate every.single.one.

    That makes me feel pretty annoyed! Stuff that we get so used to it becomes normalized, and not just in our heads but holistically across our communities, throughout the world.

    http://youtu.be/QUQsqBqxoR4 via – I support speaking out – say it all!

    Thanks for sharing

    Miss Lou
    xx

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    1. Thank you so much, Miss Lou. I think that’s what struck me when I started reading the tweets the other night. I had no idea that I had normalized these things in my own mind. I can write about women’s issues and causes, the whole time not realizing that I was downplaying these things. I never want to feel or act like a “victim” so I just shrugged stuff off. None of these things were traumatic. But they’re wrong. They are part of so much more that creates an entitled mentality by some men. But normalizing it for myself doesn’t mean I’m tough or strong, it just allows all of these little things to go on without confrontation and without calling men out.

      And you’re right, when we minimize these things, it just spreads beyond us to accepting it on a larger societal scale. You saying that just strengthens my resolve that I won’t sit idly ever again. I will speak up and say something. Thank you for that. (And for the video… awesome!)

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  14. Oh my goodness. Let me answer your question first. I do think the social media movement is helpful and productive. What you’re saying here about never brushing it off again is a difficult decision to make. It’s hard for some people to even see it for what it is. So #YesAllWomen is important because maybe it’s helping other people reach the same conclusion. The trick with something like this is to keep it going.

    That’s one of the things I’m doing with the discussion. Just keep it going. No matter how comments the thread gets on Friday, I always ask “Do we want another one?” As long as one or two people other than Diana and me want another one, I figure out how to have one. And keep this in mind, always. These discussions started with three people talking. We’ve taken a tiny ember and breathed on it until we had a little flame.

    The best thing you can do for #yesallwomen is keep using that hashtag. If you’re comfortable sharing this stuff more widely, turn every item into that list into a tweet, is my advice. And don’t post them all at once. One or two a day. Keep it going. And retweet other people. Use that hastag to find people who share your interests and are willing to talk to you.

    I don’t see how a person can look at that hashtag on Twitter or Facebook and not see the problem. Every objection to it I’ve seen so far just serves to prove the point. And I’ve never had a close acquaintance with a woman who didn’t have a list of experiences like this. Not one.

    We’ll talk about this on Friday. Diana and I were already discussing it while that conversation upthread was going on, and the Twitter conversation today just confirmed our decision. Hopefully, she’ll write the post and it will be hosted at her blog. If she can’t handle the moderation, we’ll host it at mine. If she isn’t able to write about it this week, someone else will, even if that means me. That’s a promise. If we don’t have something on this for Friday, I won’t post on Friday at all.

    As to the post itself. It gave me the weeps. I had to stop and collect myself before I could read the thread. It’s powerful. Someone needs to send this link to @MondayBlogs before the day ends. I’m so sorry I didn’t see it sooner, but I’m out of social media ammo for the day. Just tweet it from the browser button and edit the message to include @MondayBlogs and #MondayBlogs.

    @Natacha – Your contributions are invaluable, and your voice is powerful. I appreciate your support. And not just the links and the retweets. The ideas you give us, the art you create, and the comraderie you bring to this little group are all things I treasure.

    I’m so glad we all on the same page with this, and so early in the week.

    Sorry for the post-length comment. Or, maybe #sorrynotsorry, lol.

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    1. It is really so cool where we are now with our Feminist Friday discussions! I was so nervous to tweet you and Diana about feminism that first time but something told me that you guys would be receptive and not make me feel stupid! (So thank you for that!)

      I retweeted a BUNCH of the #YesAllWomen tweets this morning, some of them Diana’s. I could have done it for hours. I’m still keeping tabs on it, it’s not slowing down from what I can see. And I’ve retweeted a few blog posts about it as well. I need to start thinking a little more strategically about these things, so thank you for the advice. It’s always needed and appreciated!

      I am really looking forward to discussing this on Friday. I think this could be an epic Feminist Friday discussion. I’ll tweet about it periodically and we’ll try to point people to Diana (hopefully she’ll be hosting!). I think people are itching to discuss this beyond 140 characters…

      Also, thank you so much for tweeting this to @MondayBlogs. You and Diana and Natacha are so supportive and I agree with everything you said about @Natacha. She is vital to what we’re doing and I’m so glad to meet good people who truly care about the important things! Thanks for getting it started!

      (And you know no comment can ever be too long on my blog, I’m the queen of TLDR! But I’m trying to embrace my wordiness without letting it get out of control!)

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      1. We try not to make people feel stupid, ever. I think Diana will agree with me that this is a cardinal rule.

        Yes, learn to think strategically. The whole thing where you try to keep ideas alive on social media is like a game of volleyball. Tweets, posts, Pins, Facebook updates, all those are ways of passing the ball to someone else. The reason this is working as well as it is, is that there are 4 of us. All of us are on WordPress and Twitter, and all of us have other friends who will step onto the court now and then. We’re continually passing this stuff back and forth, and the structures of the networks are important. This would not work so well on Facebook. I spend the time giving you the advice because you seem like a person who might use it 🙂

        I’m also looking forward to the discussion on Friday, and I hope it happens at Diana’s blog. That’s the natural place for it to happen, the biggest blog she and I have, and the one that’s girl-centric (that was an accident, but it’s turned out to be a happy one).

        As far as the Monday Blogs things goes, I sent that tweet because I wasn’t sure anyone would read my comment before tomorrow, and I wanted to get you as much as I could. I didn’t send it to @MondayBlogs. Only to the hashtag – #MondayBlogs. At some point, I’ll write you a post about Monday Blogs and how I interact with them. Sending them one link and retweeting three of theirs is just about the best 15 minutes you can spend on Twitter every week.

        That account is run by @RachelInTheOC, who retweeted that #MondayBlogs link I sent, and she runs @BadRedHeadMedia, as well.

        I’m so happy to have a friend who’s ok with the long comments. Sometimes it’s hard to make them short. Just so much to say.

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  15. Thank you for saying something! I, too, am sick of this shit. Honestly, what the duck is going on in our culture? I tried online dating once and quickly shut it down because of the responses I was receiving. A few “normal/nice” individuals and a shit ton of asshats who ranged from creepy to hostile, and everything in-between. I’d rather get a cat.

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    1. I know, Rachael! Is it getting worse? It seems to me like it is. I don’t know if it’s all of the access we have to each other on-line now or if it’s that the way women are treated and portrayed has added to it. I imagine it must be soooo hard being a single woman these days. When I thought over all of the things I experienced, I realized that most of them occurred before I was married. It’s funny how a wedding ring can change that. And I don’t think it’s out of respect for marriage, more that these types of men generally are cowards and don’t want to have to be confronted by an angry husband. I think I’d rather get a cat too. And I’m allergic to them!

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  16. Freaking amazing post, Gretchen. I do think a social media movement on this subject is important because it spreads knowledge, and knowledge is power. I bet a lot of women didn’t even realize (prior to reading on SM) that this grab ass stuff was not okay, because it’s so damn everyday normal. I have zero doubt that the SM movement has reached countless woman who now feel more validated in saying NO or STOP. They will fight back because they’ve learned it is not okay, not right, and not acceptable.

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    1. Thank you Beth! I was blown away by how this took off on Twitter this weekend. It really opened my eyes on Saturday night and I was kind of shocked that I related to SO much of what was being said. I think sometimes it’s easy to downplay things that we experience and much easier to fight or speak up when you see the same things happen to others. (Although I’m still kicking myself for not saying something at the Martini Bar. I am not proud that I walked out without doing something)

      I think everything happening on SM is quite possibly making women feel more comfortable speaking about their experiences. I would imagine there are women tweeting under #YesAllWomen who normally don’t engage in that type of stuff. And that in itself is so important.

      Also, last night, we were walking home after a party at a neighbor’s house and my daughter told me that one of the boys (much younger than her, really young) kept saying “Shut up, women” to all the girls and then slapped her on the butt. We know this kid, he’s a good kid, great parents. He probably heard it from older kids, tv… who knows. It’s just EVERYWHERE…

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  17. Thank you for this post. I can’t stand when people tell you that feminism has no place, that everything is fine and that all problems are solved. No they’re not. I think that the #YesAllWomen hashtag and all the tweets (and other posts) that ensued was a great idea. The more people express the issues women are still facing, the more chances we have that they might one day come to an end.

    I personally am extremely uncomfortable discussing my private life online, including all that I could have said regarding this topic. This is why I support and retweet as much as I can, so I’m not a totally mute voice, despite not speaking about my own experiences.

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    1. I agree! The horrific shooting in California this weekend, along with the shooter’s misogynistic manifesto, clearly show that there is a mentality out there that is pervasive. That too many men think that women owe them something or are no more than something for their amusement or enjoyment or scorn.

      I totally understand the need to keep your life private. It’s something I struggle with on my blog. I can write about some personal things very freely and other things I don’t think I’ll ever be able to share. I think that you are an important voice whether you’re sharing personal experiences or engaging in other ways. I am so glad you are out there tweeting and writing and being a part of the Feminist Friday discussions!

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      1. The mere fact that the killer’s manifesto could be praised by some shows how dangerous and rampant the misogynistic mentality still is. Events like that can’t just be discarded, just as everyday issues should be taken seriously no matter how “small” or “insignificant” they might seem to some.

        I am glad to see your posts about such topics. I have always refused to apology for being a feminist because I know that this is still needed to make a better and safer society.

        I didn’t speak to Gene’O about this, but it feels that maybe making the next Feminist Friday Discussion about this and #YesAllWomen would make sense, despite how we would take a break from the education series that was started last week.

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        1. I think that would be a good idea… I saw Diana post some tweets with #YesAllWomen, I wouldn’t be surprised if she or Gene’O were going to write about it. I think this is so relevant right now that it would make sense to break from education to talk about it… We can always pick up education next week…

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      1. Yes! And I’m getting real tired of justifying why we need Feminism. That question is really getting old. Still, too many people see it as an attack on men, which is just ridiculous. Those people are assuming and listening to propaganda and not really listening to feminists. Thanks for your comment! Tomorrow we’re having a Feminist Friday discussion about #YesAllWomen on another blog (we’ve been doing this for a few months). It’s a bunch of bloggers who care about feminist issues and we discuss in the comments section of whichever blog is hosting that week. This week it will be at: http://parttimemonster.wordpress.com The conversation usually goes all day, sometimes all weekend. We encourage everyone to join in, hopefully you can pop in and join! (I’ll be reblogging it here as well, but the comments and discussion will be at Part Time Monster.)

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