I’m not quite sure when we as women got to the point of letting people treat us however they wish, and we have to internalize it, do nothing and walk away. I’ve been guilty of that, but ended up getting to a point where I felt like I was going insane and just wanted to pull my hair out all the time. Especially this year.
Three times this year, I let people batter me down to the point where I completely crumbled. The first time was when I was sexually assaulted. I believed I was helpless. I eventually said “screw that” and filed charges against him. The second time was during the court case. They believed I was a liar. I eventually said “screw that” and fought for myself. He got a plea deal, but now has a record. The third time was when I was in a domestic violence relationship. I believed I was a “psychotic f***ing b****” because I stood up to him. I said “screw that,” threatened him with some domestic violence action, chalked up a cooler that meant a lot to me as a loss and completely walked away.
I’m not quite sure when we as women, and people in general, stopped holding people accountable for their actions and getting justice for ourselves, but I’m tired of it. I’m tired of letting people treat me the way they do, believing the things they say, feeling hurt about it, and doing nothing. In the domestic violence relationship, I was told to stop talking or responding and he would stop. It does nothing but enable the constant bad behavior that has already happened.
As Time’s Up says, the time is up. And it is. Someone else in this magazine said it, and I will reiterate now. I’M SO BORED OF MEN LABELLING GIRLS A PSYCHO OR A B*TCH FOR CALLING THEM OUT ON THEIR BAD BEHAVIOR AND ASKING FOR BASIC RESPECT. EVERYONE, regardless of gender, deserves basic respect, and I’m not sure when our men went from being chivalrous to disrespectful pigs. It is up to us to dictate and teach people how to treat us, and it starts with how we treat ourselves. How we let others treat us dictates how we feel about ourselves.
So screw it. Screw how society says we should look or act. I am not and will never be considered a lady, nor will I ever be skinny. I have too sharp a tongue, drop too many F bombs, and like food too much to ever be considered either of those. But I am no longer afraid to hold people accountable for their actions. That is the movement we as women need to instill ourselves. It starts with us, then our families, then others. And if someone doesn’t want to adhere to that respect?
Author: Carly Kotlyn
Author Bio: Domestic Violence Speaker. Heroin Epidemic Speaker. Cat Mom. Sports Enthusiast. Feminist. BAMF.
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