It’s amazing how parenting changes ones perspectives. Though out our years of infertility, I secretly yearned for a daughter. Now I have two daughters and I’m blessed in ways I never imagined possible.
I am terrified of the society I am raising my daughters in.
Objectification of women
How to I protect them from this? In a society where rape culture and victim blaming is everywhere. In a society that values a woman for her looks and her thigh gap and not what’s between her ears and who she is.
I am so frightened of what lies ahead for my daughters.
I recently started watching The Hunting Ground!
The Hunting Ground is a documentary film about the incidence of sexual assault on college campuses in the United States and what its creators say is a failure of college administrations to deal with it adequately. Written and directed by Kirby Dick and produced by Amy Ziering, it premiered at the 2015 Sundance Film Festival. The film was released on February 27, 2015, an edited version aired on CNN on November 22, 2015, and was released on DVD the week of December 1, 2015.Lady Gagarecorded an original song, “Til It Happens to You,” for the film.
The documentary focuses on Annie E. Clark and Andrea Pino, two former University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill students who filed a Title IX complaint against UNC in response to their rapes while enrolled. The use of Title IX in campus sexual assault cases became a model for universities across the country.
Critics of the film, including writer Emily Yoffe and a number of Harvard Law School professors, have questioned The Hunting Ground’s accuracy and objectivity. Among the issues raised by critics are the film’s portrayal of one man as a rapist, while not disclosing that the university and the police had found him not responsible for the alleged sexual assault, and for use of controversial statistics. The filmmakers have actively defended their work, responding to most criticisms.
Now I studied in a university town. I know these things happen. One of my friends was raped as a student and by a student there.
And then of course, there was the whole conversation on Twitter this week, sparked by one tweet:
Women: tweet me your first assaults. they aren’t just stats. I’ll go first:
Old man on city bus grabs my “pussy” and smiles at me, I’m 12.
— kelly oxford (@kellyoxford) October 7, 2016
Have you read all the replies? Seen how many times that tweet has been retweeted? Because really, as a woman, haven’t we ALL at some point, been touched, groped or objectified without our permission?
Raising a girl child is terrifying!
And then I stumbled across this video this morning and once again, I was reminded of just how terrifying raising a daughter is. Just what a massive responsibility this whole parenting gig is, if you’re raising your daughter, you need to teach her about these things and if you’re raising a son, you have a responsibility in all of this too! To teach your sons about this, to teach them not to perpetuate this.
Parenting is terrifying. I feel inadequate and completely unprepared for what lies ahead. I don’t know where to start. How do I teach my daughters to respect themselves, that they are more than just the sum of their pretty faces or thigh gaps. How do I teach them that rape culture and victim blaming, while so easily accepted by many, including women, is NOT ok. How do I teach them to value themselves enough that they will always stand up for themselves and NEVER accept anything less than respectful treatment from a man or anyone else in this life?
I am afraid!