Your Disbelief Matters

I do not get shocked by the news that women are sexually abused in all sorts of industries by all sorts of men.


What I am more in shock of is the reaction of disbelief by people when the accussed is someone they know to be "kind, loving and wonderful".


But kind, loving and wonderful people can be perverts too.  And sometimes the reason they were able to get away with doing these things to a lot of women is because they are being protected by that same reputation.


As a victim, you cannot believe that this highly respected and loving father groped you at a party.  You must have misled him.  Or totally misinterpreted the whole situation.

Maybe it was an accident? Better be calm and quiet about it than confront him.  Afterall, he is a loving father to his children, he gives to charity and takes in shelter dogs.


And who would believe you anyways?


So women stay silent.  They smile and continue on as if nothing happened.  They convince themselves that it was no big deal.  That maybe nothing really happened?


Until they hear it from other women who had the same experience and reacted the same.


And the feeling of shame is intensified with the feeling of guilt, self doubt and anger.


This is what these women experience – everyday... from these men, from their peers and even from themselves.


The least we can do is believe these women.  Because until women feel that they are safe from telling their stories and until we stop questioning their motives for staying silent, then we won’t hear a scream much less a whisper.


And we only have ourselves to blame.



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