|This is the photo that started it all.|
standing nude on your front porch (though if they are and it’s not someone you know in a bizarre joke, you should probably not answer the door and just call the police), it isn’t okay. It is never okay to take away someone’s safe place. That’s what happened to me. In one short message, I no longer felt safe in a place that was my own. In one short message, I was taken back to all the other times when something like this happened and nobody did a thing.
1)Parents, teach your sons that this isn’t okay. It isn’t okay to treat a woman like an object or to talk to them the way that I was spoken to today. I use a simple example with my sons and it’s one that I mentioned earlier. I ask them how they would feel if a random person came up and grabbed their crotch. Neither of them liked the idea.
Your sons should be just as appalled that someone would grope a woman’s boob as they are at the idea of someone randomly grabbing their crotch. Men, your sons mirror your actions. So, be the man that you want your sons to be.
For those of you with girls, teach them that this isn’t okay and it is okay to stand up for themselves and for their friends. Heck, boys ought to be taught the same thing. Stand up for your friends, female or male. Stand up for yourself. Nobody stood up for me when I was younger. Today, I stood up for myself but that hasn’t always been the case.
2)This follows right up on that last paragraph and this goes for everyone. Looks aren’t everything. Boobs aren’t everything. Muscles aren’t everything. There is a heck of a lot to a person. Don’t hyper-focus on one aspect of a person. I have someone special in my life who reminds me that I am the 3 B’s: I’m beautiful. I’m brilliant. I’m brave. It’s not just about the outside. Sure, the man thinks I’m beautiful on the outside, but he loves my spirit, my soul, my sense of humor. He loves me…and the beautiful portion of those 3 B’s covers all of those things.
3)If you see this happening, don’t just stand there and watch. I don’t care if it’s happening to a total stranger. Step in. Speak up. Let the person know that what they’re doing is not okay. Let the person that it’s happening to that they’re safe. Be someone’s safe place if they need it. I opened this whole thing with a comment about ripples. One short message can cause ripples that none of us see until they’re there. I expected to take a few deep breathes, remove the guy, and move on with my day. Instead, nearly 2000 words later, I’m here writing this.
If this happens to someone you know, don’t be afraid to check in on them. Make sure they’re okay. I just had a friend call me and say hey, I’ve got your back. Let me know what you need from me. That’s a treasure worth more than gold.
4)Get angry. This kind of thing isn’t okay. It’s never okay to objectify someone or to make someone feel like they’re not a person. Every single person on this planet deserves to be treated respect. So, get angry with those who don’t treat you and others the way they ought to be treated.
5)Be the solution. Yep. I’m asking you not to be part of the problem. Anyone remember “Man in the Mirror” by Michael Jackson? Change starts from within. It starts from within every single one of us and so that’s how I’m going to close this whole thing out. I’m going to ask each and every one of you to be the change that we all need to see in this world.
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