Tag Archives: Women

Time to call this behaviour out. 

I’d say this article made me cry. And it did. But it also made me very angry. Particularly as I’d just read Lenny Letter, where a female comedy writer has decided to open up about her experiences in Hollywood also. Non Weinstein related by the way.

She, like Emma Thompson here, is calling out some men in powerful positions in Hollywood who’ve degraded and disrespected some women.

In this interview, Emma Thompson says ‘there’s a crisis in masculinity’. I’ve said this myself in the following words – ‘I’ve always thought we need a push towards the feminine …but maybe you guys need just as much attention’. For what leads some men to this kind of behavior? Fear and feelings of inadequacy to start.

Gotta take power back somewhere right? And what nicer way than getting off right?

NO.

Read Naomi Wolfs ‘Vagina’. There’s a chapter on how sex is used specifically to torture women in war torn countries. Why? Science has proven some things about women’s biology including the relationship between a woman’s sex organs and her mind (her emotions and ability to create).

The other thing I think of here is something Krista Tippett said recently at the Melbourne Town Hall. She was talking about how Obama being elected was one of the most important and wonderful turning points in American history… for some. For others it stirred up (the bottom) of the pot. The things America (and let’s face it, many countries) still hadn’t looked at.

…and it stirred the pot so much it got a man like Donald Trump elected.

…a man who said ‘you can just grab them by the pussy’.

Many women’s response to this comment and those who’ve spoken up about Weinstein has shown there’s a shit load of anger out there from women who’ve been subjected to this behavior in various forms by some men since (as Emma Thompson puts it) the beginning of time. We still have so much to look at it when it comes to the equal treatment of women.

Some days I’ve thought – thank god I know so many great men …to counterbalance all the shit experiences I’ve had with some others.

…being told I didn’t get the role because I didn’t look like an easy f#?! As a young girl, avoiding getting on my bus because a man (yes I said I was a young girl and he was an adult) had made advances on me at the bus stop and wanted to take me home. A cab driver masturbating in front of me. Waking up in the middle of the night to a man at my bedroom window …also masturbating.
…and then there’s examples from people I know. That I trusted.

Just this year I had to call 000 to get help.

And I knew the man who assaulted and threatened me.

And so. Get ready. Because I think there’s going to be an onslaught of women speaking up. Calling out this kind of behavior. And it’s going to feel uncomfortable. But it’s got to be done. By everyone. Not just victims.

If you see or hear it. Call it out.

It’s got to be brought to the surface so we can see it for all it’s ugliness. Then maybe these types of men can get some help. And we can educate our sons better. And this shit can stop.

I for one would love to walk home in the dark and not be afraid.

Better yet

I would like to go to places that are supposed to be safe, that I know and love, and not have to be cautious. Not be subjected to abuse and threats of any form.

A huge thank you to the women who have spoken up about Weinstein. You have paved the way for others in the industry (and hopefully inspired people everywhere).

And to those industry people who protected Weinsten? Shame. It is so hard for victims to speak up (for many reasons. Never mind if the person holds a position of power or not. Do you know how small victims feel after being subjected to such behavior?). Everyone needs to speak up. Again – time to call this behavior out. No matter what position these people hold.

A note here : People – it’s going to seem worse for awhile as more and more women come forward (like all the shit that’s been stirred by Trump being elected… white supremacists as an example). But that’s not our cue to get bogged down by it. Get depressed. I tried that this year and it certainly wasn’t the right approach. Not just because I was so disheartened …my heart aching, wondering where our species would end up;  but because I pushed to fight – partially because I had to in one experience (where adrenaline surged for survival) and partially to prove something I NEVER HAD TO PROVE.

It’s going to appear all doom and gloom but this is just the first part of the journey. The revelation. THEN comes the learning.

Sadly victims have to do some learning ( ie learning its not their shit, only that they have a choice as to how they react to it / how much power they give it) but then, if and when we ALL do the learning, after a long while, because this kind of change takes time… we won’t have to talk to our daughters about how to protect themselves and won’t have to talk to our sons about how to treat women respectfully. Because we just will.

A side note: Please see below for some of the comments I have received on this post. They’re really insightful and worth sharing.

  1. I was glad she said that about masculinity. I’ve thought that about all and my own masculinity since my late teens. Feminism needs to address both genders and help men and sons toward a new defined masculinity. We’re largely lost and have no idea what our strengths are meant to be and where our power is.
  2. Laurie Penny discusses this in her book Unspeakable Things. She points out the prevailing attitides of the Patriarchy hurt EVERYONE, including men. It is a life-changing, wonderfully written read. And, laugh-out-loud funny, at times.Highly recommended.
  3. Thanks, for sharing, Love. Yes, so much needs to change. That fear has been such an innate part of life, since childhood. And, whether it’s overt incidents, such as you’ve described happening to you, or an attitude of constant entitlement, which leads to verbal, mental & emotional abuse, both subtle & brash, it is a.destructive, dangerous & insidious. I am still recovering from PTSD after a relentless spate of abuse, committed by men – both sttaight & gay. Entitlement is all about an egregious belief that one person has a right to something from another, no respect for boundaries.
    I’m so glad the.horrific behaviour of Weinstein has been exposed. I do hope that this has a domino effect.
    I’m sorry for the pain & hurt that you would’ve gone through, due to the experiences you shared. What does it say that we all have our own such stories?
    How much does that innate, ever-present (if not always in our conscious awareness) fear stop women from bold, open, fully-present & empowered enough to be the truest, biggest, strongest versions of ourselves? It’s time to deeply consider & discuss this. It is time
  4. Entitlement. We are not things. And I for one this year have really struggled with the fact that my working towards being ‘bold’ and ‘the biggest strongest version of myself’ as you have said above had been WORK. That I’ve had to push to be that, fight for it because the way some peoples behavior have made me feel about myself. That I have had to rise DESPITE all this shit. Why should I have to fight to be me?
  5. I feel you, my dear friend. I feel your words. You’re absolutely right! It does take work…reprogramming our belief system, supporting ourselves through recovery & having the courage to feel through. I’ve wondered what heights I would’ve reached had I not spent ao much energy placating others, navigating the daily politics of existence as an intelligent, attractive woman who is quirky & doesn’t fit ‘the mould’? I’ve feel as if I’ve wasted SO MUCH TIME. But, that’s due to the environment I was plopped into, at birth.
    Self-realisation is work. And, we do have our times of depression, when it’s been relentless & overwhelming & traumatising & self-esteem has been shattered. It’s a battle sometimes to go within & find a seed of openness to self-love.What a process!??!?! You’re worth it, though. I’m worth it. We’re all worth it.

 

 

Advertisements

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Untitled

* if you ever need help, dial 000. Don’t be a victim for too long. Stand tall. It’s unfair but it’s not your stuff. Speak up. Say no. Call people out on their behaviour. With empathy , of course, know people hold within them their own darkness. But that darkness should never be inflicted on someone else. I urge everyone to sort out their own shit so we don’t inflict it on other people. 

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Girl 

Today she thought 

I miss being a girl. 
How many times these months

chants & championing 

The words 

woman & strong 

impregnated so as she might erupt

An Orphic egg

Spit out a new cosmos amongst the darkness

maybe, 

Create from the wound. 
She was sorry to let the universe down. 
But when she buckled up her own helmet before riding 

when she took her own hand to cross the road against the lights   

She shuffled her feet at the curb & breathed

‘All the women in me are tired. 

I miss being someone’s girl’. 

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Forgetting in an age of swipe left, un-follow and delete.

‘I cannot resolve why it is that men go and women stay’.

 

Of late, I have romanticised the days where a man leaving meant he hunted- tended with the time needed, to those parts of himself only satisfied by wilderness and the kill.

When women stayed to tend to their communities, to feed, nourish and converse.

I do this because, nowadays one cannot truly leave nor truly forget.

If I wanted to find or be found, I can access any number of platforms like Google, Instagram, Facebook, text or email.

And if I wanted to force forgetting there is Internet porn, tinder, grinder, …’unfollow’, swipe left and delete.

I long to be properly missed and to equally go missing; as much as I long to miss my men in a way that the only images retained are the ones we made. Images that I invite back or that come to haunt me when I am open enough to our poetry.

But I am not standing on a shore line under parasol waiting for a sailor to return.  I am not boot-footed in the dust kissing my cowboy before he rides off to chase cattle across the plains. And I am not a daughter with as many friends who share the experience and understanding that – fathers go to work for long periods of time.

I am a millennial sitting at a desk in a new home… And I have turned my phone and my computer off so I cannot see where they are going without me.

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

‘Speak your mind even if your voice shakes’.

‘The Renaissance metaphysician Paracelsus said that we cannot love something without knowing it, or know something without loving it. When we feel deeply loved, we also know that we have been encountered authentically, that we have been true to ourselves in the presence of the other and found that truth fully embraced and accepted. When we tell the truth to a partner or friend, we are indeed vulnerable to being judged, blamed or rejected. If we hide the truth in favor of protecting ourselves and appearing in a certain way, however, we may retain an illusion of control but we lose the possibility of being known for who we really are, and hence of being loved’.

‘When you learn to speak the truth, you come to recognise that you have no special power over others to make them do your bidding. You cannot pressure or scare away others by speaking your desires. Other adults also have free will. We all have a responsibility to speak our own desires and to respect those of others’.

Polly Young-Eisendrath from Women and Desire.

There are books that change your life and Polly Young-Eisendraths ‘Women and Desire’ was one of those books for me. My copy is heavily underlined with asterisk’s and different pen marks, with notes made each time I have re-read it and found new or perhaps more pertinent insights.

Indeed it is a book written about women and their struggle to not only speak up for what they want but know intimately what they want, having spent many years being told to concentrate on the needs and wants of others. But I also think it’s a book for all human beings because I know so many that struggle to speak their truth.

Speaking your truth brings one of life’s oddest experiences, that of existing in an in-between place. For speaking up for what you want can make you feel both incredibly vulnerable and incredibly strong. By finding a voice for your desire you make yourself wide open, open to people rejecting you, saying no, being embarrassed by you …but it also brings the possibility of empowerment for you stand firm and grounded in what you want. From this place it is possible you could get it, that you could live the life you want. This isn’t possible if you keep your wants to yourself.

Investing in your wants isn’t selfish in the slightest, not in the way we have come to know and understand the meaning of this word anyway. Investing in the self, the true self, is about choosing a life that brings about the possibility of your full potential. From personal experience as much as through observing friends who’ve given this a go, when stepping forward, putting your hand up, saying yes to an experience that resonates with your core desire, it puts you in your element. From this place you are the most attractive person in the world because you are satisfied, have purpose and most often, beaming. This is a most healthy happy you and it is my belief that this state can inspire others to do the same, that it’s not only good for you but good for your immediate and wider community.

Investing in your wants can quite often also be investing in the health and happiness of others or things that have and do no harm such as the desire to see someone you care about. In expressing your want to see them you are simply saying ‘I like spending time with you’. Again there is nothing negative here.

But what stops us from saying this and other more difficult things is the fear of ‘no’. No from other, no from self. The other we have no control of and we humans often like to be in a place of control. We want to know before we take the risk, or worse, not take the risk at all because we have already envisioned the rejection.

The no from self is I think to do with shame – shame that we are not good enough to receive what we want. It is that loud voice that says ‘who am I to be brilliant?’ as Nelson Mandela quoted in his inaugural speech. We do not trust ourselves nor what we are capable of, and in doing this we risk not trusting others as they have the right to be. We give them a voice before they’ve even had the opportunity to respond, simply because in our fear, we don’t even ask.

But as the first quote above states, if we do not live our lives authentically how can we be truly loved for who we are? It is funny to think in this regard that one of the main instigators of not being authentic IS to be loved. We choose not to be open, not to be vulnerable, not to reveal the dag, the quirks and the eccentricities because we fear that they will not be accepted, that they will not fit in with the group or the larger world we live in.

If everyone followed the group then we would potentially be as Aldous Huxley reveals in Brave New World, nothing interesting. The individual would not prevail and the world as result would not be moved and shaken the way it needs to be in order for our survival and in order for life to be what it is supposed to be – an adventure, a journey and a path to learn, to grow, to change, to experience and to feel.

Wonder. Meant …that I must shout from the rooftops this moment that I love Star Wars, can quote the original trilogy almost in its entirety and still sleep in the t’shirt I had as a child. There. Done. Dag truly revealed.

…It also meant that with every day I try to give voice to what I want I am full of fear and vulnerability. At these times I want to ask for forgiveness, bashfull and blushing in my forthrightness. But I also want to know that no matter what the response, I have honored myself and the life I am fortunate enough to have the freedom to, in the most part, choose.

And so, I ask.

x Kate

2 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized