Me, Too

I was assaulted by a stranger once, on an escalator on the Metro in Paris. I was there for my 16th birthday. I couldn’t get away, the escalator was packed, I was blocked in forwards and backwards. 

Someone I love and trust was stood just in front of me, but I didn’t tell her or anyone else. I thought I should have yelled at the time it happened, and I felt ashamed that I didn’t. I thought I would be told off for not having shouted at the time. I somehow thought it had happened because I deserved it, to be treated that way, that maybe I had asked for it? (By standing on an escalator? By being out in public? By being in a crowded place?) 

But I had been too scared to know what to do in the moment. 

I was never taught what to do in the moment. I was never taught what to do afterwards. Of course I wasn’t. We always want to hope that our children will be the generation that has it different. 

I didn’t see the person assaulting me, and I often think, how many others did they do it to?

——————————–

I almost didn’t post this. There are so many other battles, all the time, clamouring for my attention. I’m like, really?! I have to open myself up, again?!

And I feel so much safer since I’ve been with Pete. 

(Safer. With the “r”.)

——————————–

And that’s why I have to post it.

Because I want Eleanor to feel safe whether she finds a “nice man” or not. 

I want her to go to Paris, to take up space in the world.

And I don’t want Sam to have to carry around being a “nice man” for someone else. I want him to be free, too.

They’re closer, now, to the age I was when I was assaulted than I am. 

#metoo

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