By Caroline Hesby, TIWP Student
I’m sorry, women. It wasn’t until recently I understood the weight of our struggles. The dark history and the persisting pain. I still don’t know what we’ve done to deserve it. How a made-up hierarchy translated into centuries of abuse, murder, silencing. Was it the way we cared for all and thought before we acted? The way we choose efficiency over pride, and logic over petty-emotion? How ironic, the men with the less emotionally-developed minds saw the least in us. How ironic that while some continue preaching the role of male protector, we walk in fear of their impulsive, animalistic attack. They fight a war on women until we’re small enough to fit into their microscopic mindset. Are you proud of turning the ones who gave you life into your prey? And with your frothing mouths you scream and punish us for staying away. Ironic once more, in important decisions or “matters for men” we remain useless, unwanted–hours before you stumble through the door or buy us a drink and now we are so needed you’ll do anything to have us. Just a toy, an escape. Something you deserve, something we owe. I wonder if you realize how pathetic and sad it truly is. And maybe you do, and maybe that’s why when the word “no” rings in your ears, for a split second you feel the shame and the embarrassment and it’s so unbearable, that you must transfer it back onto us: your escape, your tool. “Tease” is your defense weapon of choice. It hurts more to think about those who avoided-self reflection all together, transforming into that crazy-eyed monster, clawing at their desire, jumping over the word no, turning those women into something less than human so you can get what you want. So that’s what you want, right? For us to be walking machines, experienced and willing? No, you spit back at us, carving the letters S-L-U-T into our forehead. No, not wanted once it slips out of your control, no longer something you’ve conquered and caught. Are you proud that this is your formula? So unstable that in order to survive you must feed off of vulnerability, seeking to break innocence but still never letting the innocence grow strong or powerful. When your logic fails or your great plan goes awry, you return to the life-givers, the nurturers, the ones who keep the world spinning, and you break them once again just so you can live with yourself. I hope you know we see through it all—the loud words and the louder actions—and we have no sympathy. Your barriers are built on lies, on stolen credit, on broken respect and the lives that you broke along the way. And when we come for what is ours, we don’t want to break down your pathetic city. We’re going somewhere far, far away from you.