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For all the times I didn’t tell you to back off.

Tonight, I shook hands with a guy that had literally just treated me with disrespect. I was furious and offended, and I still offered my hand. Only to walk away and suddenly want to explode with all the things I actually meant to tell him… I felt mad at myself for not having stood my ground, and the fact I did not fight the fight.
 
He over-casted my light and brought me down in front of others, for absolutely no reason other than showing that he was the king (of the sweet fuck-all kingdom). He totally threw me off guard, and at that moment, I felt unable to speak up, to push him, to tell him to leave my house.
 
You are not welcome. You, testing / pushing your power over me, over us, over whoever else.
It is not ‘ok’, and it should not pass under silence. Ever. just because we don’t want to make a scene…
 

WHY ? Because, to do as if nothing,

to laugh in the discomfort,

to stay quiet instead of speaking your mind,

to forgive and forget without honest apologies…

Is to allow this to keep happening!

 
By now, we’ve all seen the #MeToo in our feed.
At first, I read it, but didn’t want to get involved in the discussion, because like many, I give no shit about those “social media trends or chains” and I think it is sometimes too easy to put a hashtag and press publish without truly acting upon it in the off-screen world.
 
But the more stories I read, however, the more I reflected about my own experiences, the more I felt like standing up too.

Today, I want to say BACK OFF, for all the times I meant it, but could find my voice, my fists.

I’ve been living in latin countries for the last 2 years now, where the “macho” culture is full-on, where the roles of men and women are still very distinct, where boys make animal noises when a girl walks by, literally.
 
I’ve laughed or smiled in various uncomfortable situations.
I’ve acted as nothing when I got called upon in the street.
I’ve stayed quiet when I wanted to fucking punch the guy in the face because I couldn’t find the words in Spanish.
I’ve sat deeper in my seat, paralyzed, on a train when this old pervert was literally touching his dick and slowly unzipping his pants while casually chatting with me.
 
It has happened a lot while travelling, in situations where I was vulnerable, not fully understanding everything that was happening / being said, destabilized and therefore not standing as tall as I possibly can…
But it hasn’t been happening only away from home. It happens everywhere and anywhere, whatever the social status, the age, or the level of education.
 
For me, the #MeToo campaign isn’t so much about showing the boys that a lot of us have been victims – maybe some men will recognize themselves in the stories, but most of them, the ones that truly should, won’t get the memo…
 
For me, #MeToo has been about bringing forgotten memories to surface and truly realizing that WOW, actually, there has been as shit load of situations where I surrendered, looked away or waited for it to end.
It disgusts me when I look back.
 
I’ve never been raped or assaulted in the proper sense of the term. But do boys even know that the female body does react to stimulation and proximity even if we initially had zero desire!? So yes, if you are pushy, and slide your hand under my skirt, I might surrender. I’m pretty damn sure we’ve all said ‘okay,’ when it first was a ‘no.’ Only to wait for it to end and think, ARRRRK, I actually didn’t fucking want this…
Will you then go back to your buddies and claim this as a win ???  Nah mate, you are a frickin’ loser.
 
We can’t publish a hashtag , blame the whole world for being fucked, and simply hope for it to change. We all know it ain’t that simple.
 
However, I hope this new wave did ring a bell in some people’s head, and shred light on the need to respect boundaries.
 
More than anything else, I hope this has given the power and courage to more women to stand their ground.  Where before you would have walk away silently, I hope you now find the strength to face your opponent, lean forward and say: BACK THE FUCK OFF !

About the Author:

"I believe we all have the chance to live an extraordinary life if only we follow our gut feeling and seek challenging experiences." - Cofounder of Salty Souls

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