TRIGGER WARNING This article or section, or pages it links to, contains information about sexual assault and/or violence which may be triggering to survivors.
You’ll note that I totally didn’t write yesterday. Even though I said I would.
Partially because this one’s going to be a sucker punch to the throat meat.
I joke when I’m nervous.
I lashed out.
Because Something Happened.
And I was disappointed.
Disappointed that it happened. Disappointed that individuals let it happen. Disappointed that people reacted as poorly as they had every right to react when I lashed out unfairly.
Because they reacted poorly and spoke up and pushed back, I realized how much I hurt them. Which I didn’t mean to do. I apologized. And am still helping mend some wounds.
I want to share some knowledge. This brings us to the trigger section.
But, first, an explanation.
Several people asked me why I was so upset. Which was even more upsetting. And, usually, when someone pushes back against me, “Why are you so upset? What’s so offensive?” I become blindingly enraged.
It’s like when you’re really upset and suddenly you can’t speak in your non-native tongue. Except English IS my native tongue and I suddenly can’t even think straight.
My hope is that by writing out, no, COPYING AND PASTING definitions, it’ll help me keep focus when someone asks why something is inappropriate.
“CAUSE I SAID SO” isn’t good enough.
Sexual assault is any type of forced or coerced sexual contact or behavior that happens without consent. Sexual assault includes rape and attempted rape, child molestation, and sexual harassment or threats.
Sexual assault can also be verbal or visual. It is anything that forces a person to join in unwanted sexual contact or attention. Examples can include:
- Voyeurism, or peeping (when someone watches private sexual acts without consent)
- Exhibitionism (when someone exposes himself or herself in public)
- Sexual harassment or threats
- Forcing someone to pose for sexual pictures
Unconscious Bias and MicroAggression
Unconscious bias refers to a bias that we are unaware of, and which happens outside of our control. It is a bias that happens automatically and is triggered by our brain making quick judgments and assessments of people and situations, influenced by our background, cultural environment and personal experiences.
Microaggressions have always been about racism, transphobia, sexism, homophobia, xenophobia, Islamophobia, ablism, ethnic nationalism that is sometimes seen and sometimes just under the surface in people’s language and actions. Naming microaggressions has always been about making connections between our everyday interactions to these larger systems. And naming is just the first step.
Casual Sexism and Misogyny
Casual sexism is nothing but misogyny. You can spot a woman-hater by the language they use. The way many men talk about women reveals their misogyny.
Sexism or gender discrimination is prejudice or discrimination based on a person’s sex or gender. Sexism can affect any gender, but it is particularly documented as affecting women and girls.
It’s a lot, I know.
I hope you’ll read it all. And watch the videos.
And stand up, too.
More eloquently than I did last week.