From a young age I’ve had ‘large breasts’; they were there, they were big and they got noticed. My high school years were plagued with comments about them, and how I should show them off more. This kind of attention was mainly from my peers, but it also came from older men. Men in a position of authority. Men who were preying on a young girl. At the time I didn’t think much of it, but looking back on it now, it was clearly sexual harassment. It’s even more infuriating when I think about how it has changed me as a person.
Sexual harassment has changed me
I rarely wear low cut or tight fitting tops, instead I cover up with oversized clothing. And when I do wear them, I feel uncomfortable and self-conscious. Friends, family and even random men have told me that I should ‘be happy that [I] have big breasts’. Because apparently having smaller breasts would make me somehow less satisfied with my life?
A few years ago I was openly groped in a public area. A man came up to me in the middle of the street, grabbed my breasts and squeezed them. When I shouted at him, he laughed in my face and walked off. The people around me who saw the incident did nothing. They said nothing. Last year I was sexually assaulted, again in a public place, but this time it was much worse. And again, no one helped me. Not even the authority figure I went to in my time of need. I felt helpless.
Where do we go from here?
I want some good to come from what has happened. I don’t want to change how I dress or act because of what has happened to me. I want to fight for what is right, and stand beside those who need our support.
I don’t care if someone wants to wear a low cut top and a mini skirt, or chooses to cover up entirely – wear whatever makes you happy and comfortable. Women should be able to dress and act how they like without the fear of sexual harassment. I’m tired of women being objectified. I’m tired of how society deals with sexual harassment. It’s time for change!
There is so much more I could say on this topic alone, but maybe that is better left for another time and another place.
Please do feel free to share your personal stories and views on the topic in the comments though.