Feminism Fodder

Feminism Friday: Fearful #feminismfriday

Feminism Friday

I attend uni in the city on Monday and Wednesday nights. Usually, I drive from work and park at a suburb that’s 10 minutes from home and 30 from work and catch the train to uni. It’s just easier. Anyway, this Wednesday, I actually had training in the inner west so I decided to take public transport all the way from that said suburb close to home. It’s a very safe suburb and is the same one my gym is located in. I had to park a bit further away from the station though, given it was an all day thing. When I finished uni and got back at 10 p.m., I walked to my car. To do that, I had to walk through a park. And I noticed something interesting. I noticed that I was even more fearful than I’d ever been since coming to Australia.

It’s a fear I know. I had it for years in India if I was on the streets by myself. This Wednesday, as I was walking to my car with my key in my hand, I made sure they were held in  way that I could stab someone in the eye if needed. I also had my phone ready in my other hand. Unlike a few of the men I’d seen disembark the same train, I didn’t listen to my iPod. Instead, I just focussed on walking quickly and listening intently.

I finally relaxed after getting into my car and locking the doors.

I hate this. I hate having to be fearful in a safe neighbourhood. I hate that while a large part of me knows I have every right to be there at that hour, I still feel that fear that someone might try and assault me. After all, aren’t rapists getting the message that a woman walking by herself is inviting to be assaulted? Sure, the people who pass on this message retract it after backlash and emails by feminists, but it’s obvious that the mentality exists.

It angers me that as women, we are pretty much trained since we can walk and talk, to be hypervigilant. But the more the crimes increase, the more messages that are passed that we are at fault, the worse we end up feeling. The thing is, it’s not just on the streets. I have female clients afraid of going to school, afraid of being in certain classes because they have had boys feel them up or call them ‘sluts’ or just pass lewd remarks. You know why? Because the boys think they can get away with it. And they do. Try challenging a vulnerable 14 year old’s belief that she is to blame when boys treat her this way. It’s hard to do when society is telling her that her belief is correct. That she is to blame. That she needs to live in fear.

I’d love to see a day when women can be less fearful.

For today, I just want to share a video I came across while working on one my assignments for uni. It’s Clementine Ford talking about gender inequality.

What about you? Do you find that you are a lot more fearful when out alone than before?

Do share!

***Linking with Grace for FYBF and Ann for Things I know***

Until next time,

Cheers!!!

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  • jess
    8 May 2015 at 10:58 am

    Great post Sanch, a feeling that I have every night when I leave work! I think the fear comes a lot from my mum, who always asks if I am safe walking home, what the area is like, do I have alternatives etc. It’s hard to feel safe when you are getting the message that you aren’t safe from the women in your life! (let alone society in general)
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  • jess
    8 May 2015 at 10:58 am

    Great post Sanch, a feeling that I have every night when I leave work! I think the fear comes a lot from my mum, who always asks if I am safe walking home, what the area is like, do I have alternatives etc. It’s hard to feel safe when you are getting the message that you aren’t safe from the women in your life! (let alone society in general)
    jess recently posted…The Friday Wrap 8.5.15My Profile

  • Deborah
    8 May 2015 at 12:21 pm

    I’m fairly lucky in that I haven’t felt too threatened here in Australia. I’ve had situations overseas – once I was grabbed / attacked (but not harmed) when out walking at 6am (in East Timor) and I was very lucky to survive a couple of years in Africa without any problems.

    Deb
    Deborah recently posted…Being happy NOWMy Profile

  • Deborah
    8 May 2015 at 12:21 pm

    I’m fairly lucky in that I haven’t felt too threatened here in Australia. I’ve had situations overseas – once I was grabbed / attacked (but not harmed) when out walking at 6am (in East Timor) and I was very lucky to survive a couple of years in Africa without any problems.

    Deb
    Deborah recently posted…Being happy NOWMy Profile

  • Shilpa Garg
    8 May 2015 at 1:24 pm

    Oh! I can relate to this fear big time! Whenever I am out of home and especially during travel, I am super vigilant which borders on paranoia! I hate it that I cant feel safe!
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  • Shilpa Garg
    8 May 2015 at 1:24 pm

    Oh! I can relate to this fear big time! Whenever I am out of home and especially during travel, I am super vigilant which borders on paranoia! I hate it that I cant feel safe!
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  • Harini
    8 May 2015 at 3:58 pm

    Its the mindset of people that needs to change. Asking a girl to be careful or not sending her out of the home after 8 wont do any good. You need to give the girl enough confidence to go out in the night. I have never been that scared about traveling alone or late in Hyd. I know the risks but also somehow I am not that scared.
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  • Harini
    8 May 2015 at 3:58 pm

    Its the mindset of people that needs to change. Asking a girl to be careful or not sending her out of the home after 8 wont do any good. You need to give the girl enough confidence to go out in the night. I have never been that scared about traveling alone or late in Hyd. I know the risks but also somehow I am not that scared.
    Harini recently posted…The Month That Was AprilMy Profile

  • Parul
    8 May 2015 at 4:02 pm

    Great post and I try and be in surroundings that make me feel safe – like a market, a well lit road..but yes, when I am not walking on such a road, I am scared..
    I dont know when will that day come when we will be able to walk alone anytime during the day anywhere and feel safe!
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  • Parul
    8 May 2015 at 4:02 pm

    Great post and I try and be in surroundings that make me feel safe – like a market, a well lit road..but yes, when I am not walking on such a road, I am scared..
    I dont know when will that day come when we will be able to walk alone anytime during the day anywhere and feel safe!
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  • CookieCrumbsInc.
    8 May 2015 at 4:41 pm

    Ha. It doesn’t matter where I am, who I am with, what time it is…. Lechs will lech, loafers will pass lewd comments and I will cover up and walk faster to get behind a locked door and breathe a sigh of relief. Then I will proceed to take a shower to scrub off the disgust. Every damn day.
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  • CookieCrumbsInc.
    8 May 2015 at 4:41 pm

    Ha. It doesn’t matter where I am, who I am with, what time it is…. Lechs will lech, loafers will pass lewd comments and I will cover up and walk faster to get behind a locked door and breathe a sigh of relief. Then I will proceed to take a shower to scrub off the disgust. Every damn day.
    CookieCrumbsInc. recently posted…Smoke.My Profile

  • elly stornebrink
    8 May 2015 at 4:45 pm

    It’s a shame that women need to be aware, hypervigilant even, in order to walk the streets alone at night, sometimes even during the day! Ridiculous these archaic beliefs are that damage women’s sense of safety: such a shame!
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  • elly stornebrink
    8 May 2015 at 4:45 pm

    It’s a shame that women need to be aware, hypervigilant even, in order to walk the streets alone at night, sometimes even during the day! Ridiculous these archaic beliefs are that damage women’s sense of safety: such a shame!
    elly stornebrink recently posted…Wordy Wednesday: FootprintsMy Profile

  • simple girl
    8 May 2015 at 6:37 pm

    I am paranoid when I walk on the road. Don’t know If ever in my life will I be able to walk relaxedly on the road.

  • simple girl
    8 May 2015 at 6:37 pm

    I am paranoid when I walk on the road. Don’t know If ever in my life will I be able to walk relaxedly on the road.

  • Natalie @ our parallel connection
    8 May 2015 at 6:52 pm

    Yes Sanch absolutely and I hate myself for it … I run with caution… I open my front door with caution … I watch my kids with caution… No right
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  • Natalie @ our parallel connection
    8 May 2015 at 6:52 pm

    Yes Sanch absolutely and I hate myself for it … I run with caution… I open my front door with caution … I watch my kids with caution… No right
    Natalie @ our parallel connection recently posted…Am I drinking too much? 8 signs you may drink too muchMy Profile

  • Alicia
    8 May 2015 at 9:41 pm

    We should be able to go out and feel safe. I don’t feel safe in our small town walking alone at night.
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  • Alicia
    8 May 2015 at 9:41 pm

    We should be able to go out and feel safe. I don’t feel safe in our small town walking alone at night.
    Alicia recently posted…This garden path I’m onMy Profile

  • Ashleigh - mymeow.com.au
    10 May 2015 at 11:53 am

    So sad we feel like this. I started to spook myself the other day walking home from my bus stop, thinking someone was following me. It is always good to be vigilant albeit sad.
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  • Ashleigh - mymeow.com.au
    10 May 2015 at 11:53 am

    So sad we feel like this. I started to spook myself the other day walking home from my bus stop, thinking someone was following me. It is always good to be vigilant albeit sad.
    Ashleigh – mymeow.com.au recently posted…The Baby DecisionMy Profile