To the older man at the Abbotsford Convent who pinched my thigh,
I’ve been experiencing some form of sexual dynamics, power or outright abuse, since at least the age of 6. That’s when the most problematic, and lasting, memories begin anyway.
And I wonder…
When contemplating the world they’re growing up in,
do you ever stop to consider the role and responsibility you hold in how it takes shape?
Gender “norms” are perpetuated every day by men like you
Not criminal per se, but evidently unable to relate to women or girls without reference to their beauty or implicity (heck, even explicitly!) their sexuality.
You muse, as if bestowing some desired compliment, that the only obstacle to your touching me romantically is
…that of your age
…that of your marital status
“If I was 20 years younger!” you giddily exclaim
Oh to be held back by these points, restrained like some animal in a cage
Which is, of course, my consent.
Let me make it clear that no matter your age, or how available you may be,
Even in a strictly hypothetical sense
That I shall never be your prey
That this conversation should not be happening
I am wholly conscious and wilfully unavailable
To all that you represent:
Sexism insidiously harming
So don’t tell me “I didn’t mean to pinch your leg”
I’m not here to accommodate the excuses you use to covet your abusive desires
Grow up and take responsibility for your actions
Know that they have real consequence.
That I am
Forever Not Yours,
Image taken from Phil Gyford‘s photostream on Flickr under Creative Commons License.