I Kept Asking, “Why Me?” When It Should’ve Been, “Why Did He?”

Just being a girl or a woman is enough - men consider them fair game. But it matters what question we ask - instead of blaming her, ask: why did he?

Just being a girl or a woman is enough – men consider them fair game. But it matters what question we ask – instead of blaming her, ask: why did he?

Age 9

Once my tutor asked me a question
when I answered correctly,
he cupped my face with both his hands
and tried to kiss me on my cheeks.
I was uncomfortable, and
pulled myself away with all my strength.
I was too afraid to even tell my mother.
My little mind failed to justify his behavior.
So, I did what I could- washed my face
rigorously with soap, for days.

Age 21

On a sunny afternoon,
my friend and I were
having a reunion at the Marine drive.
We sat facing the sea-
oblivious to the world,
buried so deep in our conversation,
that we didn’t realize how our dangling legs
and fluttering dresses,
invited attention.
It was only after a few hours
that we noticed the rag-picker
standing down below,
looking up at us-
with his pants off.

Age 26

“I will miss your tits”-
message, one of my classmate sent me
after our farewell party.

I was disgusted, ashamed, and angry.
I couldn’t figure out what to do.
So, I shared with a friend.
Who casually suggested,
“maybe he was drunk”,
“maybe he would really miss you”,
“he will apologize tomorrow”.

But, what would I do with his apology?

I replayed the events of the night,
trying to find a fault in me.
I recalled all the clothes
that I ever worn to college,
wondering if any of them were
ever inviting or revealing.

I kept asking, “why me?”
When it should’ve been,
“Why did he?”

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About the Author

khimpidutta

A woman who believes in lifting up other women. Runs on coffee, poetry, long walks, and tiramisu. Loves stand-up comedy, rerunning Friends, and making travel plans. Every year's one fix resolution is to read more...

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