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Here’s an open letter to men who think it isn’t as ‘harmful’ or ‘offensive’ as rape or molestation, to flash at a woman in real life or on social media.
Before you classify this article as “just another writeup you are going to skim through”, let me show you how it is going to be the one you relate with the most.
So I’ll take off with something that happened to me on Instagram, and I got a random message request saying “Having sex, free.”
Relatable? The broken English messages specifying how you could have free sex in your life with random strangers? Yeah, me too.
Anyway, back to the topic.
I was about to block the profile when accidentally my touch enabled the live story the person was filming at that moment. To my disgust, I ended up having flashes of a random guy zooming on to his genitals and jerking off, in clearer words — masturbating.
I was too shocked to react; however, I managed to come back to life post a second or two of the incident, and I decided to do something about it. I clicked a few screenshots and uploaded a story, tagging Delhi Police, and Instagram authorities.
But what surprised me was that people either laughed at my status or told me how disgusting it was of me to upload such stories. I obviously gave it to them left and right, asking them how this guy could masturbate on a public account on a social platform and still not offend you, while a woman reporting the incident did.
I told them how I had sent an email to authorities to uncover the person using the fake account, I even discussed it with my mother, who was infuriated at the incident but asked me never to open such accounts or their stories in future.
Funny, isn’t it? How I cried for nearly an hour after fighting a virtual battle with a fake profile and some morons who judged me to be the disgusting one.
Now let me tell why I ended up in tears even after standing up for myself. No, it wasn’t because I was being judged by the people I knew. No, it wasn’t because I saw a random guy’s penis. Instead, it was because my consent was violated, and it would keep on being violated because I am a woman. I cried because this is just one-third of my life as this gender and I have blocked over (more or less) a hundred contacts, smashed an equal number of fakes and reported uncountable profiles. Is this there all it is to my life?
Was I born to deal with morons, have my privacy violated, stalked on social media by fakes, and being sent sex invitations and made to see people jerking off — all without my consent?
I am honestly exhausted telling dumb-heads that “I am not interested,” “Leave me alone,” “Don’t follow me,” “Don’t message/stalk me again,” and many more statements of the sort.
I am sick. And not pneumonia or smallpox kind of sick, not the migraine kind of or PMS-ing kind of sick, instead I’m sick of being harassed because I am a woman. I am sick of telling the opposite gender to behave, to understand how I have a life of my own and how “not interested’ doesn’t mean “I could be talked into it.”
A few days ago, I went to a waterpark with my family and a friend, to wear off all this exhaustion and annoyance. But of course I was a woman in swimwear in a crowded place!
I was with my family, yet someone pulled the lower elastic of my suit, ending up as a red rash on my waistline and not knowing who the person was.
How am I to spot the culprit amidst nearly two hundred people walking behind me in families and a tonne of friend-groups?
Why am I to be the one telling you to be human?
To be considerate of everyone around you?
Or to have basic etiquette?
Why? Why! WHY?
The question stands why do you think it isn’t a crime as bad as rape or molestation?
Why do you think harassment is excusable or worse — acceptable?
Why is being a creep not a crime and jerking on live videos, making others watch it accidentally considered as funny? Because I, sure as hell, don’t find humour in it!
Why is circulating my number in a food-delivery employee group okay? And why is it fine for you to impose your lust on me?
No, I am not sulking. No, I am not overthinking or overreacting. And no, I am certainly not backing off from being vocal about what a sick, disgusting society it is that we live in.
And before you raise the most famous question of all times, NO, I am NOT a man-hater.
What I hate is men misbehaving. What I hate is men not knowing their way to converse or simply be around the other gender.
This is an open letter to yell and screech about how the decrees of crimes aren’t to be compared. How bothering or harassing someone is as much of an offense as molesting or raping or murder — you get the point, don’t you?
And lastly, you must know when I use I, I speak for all the women, even those who brush it off by saying “It’s a part of life,” “You know we women encounter that a lot, it’s not even a big deal anymore”.
Because you know what? It will always be a big deal.
Some will forever hide it in the layers of their conscience, some will still shut the door and cry, and someone will still resent being a woman because they are too exhausted of being harassed on loop.
From the tribe which is petrified and exhausted of the harassment, they face every single day, only because of the different genitals.
Image source: shutterstock
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