Then why does the CDC say that violence against women is an epidemic? It is lower than it’s been, but that’s only because it was so fucking horrendous before. Hence, why I recommended starting with talking to older women. The CDC says 1 in 3 women (and 1 in 6 men) will experience some form of sexual violence in their lives.

“When we think of violence against women, for instance, we understandably think mainly of other countries, where the degree of violence is much higher,” Steinem is quoted as saying in an Oct. 1, 2014, Associated Press story. “But what is also true is that if you added up all the women who have been murdered by their husbands or boyfriends since 9/11, and then you add up all the Americans who were killed by 9/11 or in Afghanistan and Iraq, more women were killed by their husbands or boyfriends.” Politifact says this is True

In the first 24 hours of #MeToo more than 12 million people used that hashtag and told their stories on Facebook alone. But you know what, I don’t need any of those statistics to tell me what my life has been like, and to have heard the same thing from literally every single woman I’ve ever talked to about the topic, which is a lot of them. And I’m middle-aged, so it’s not like I haven’t had decades to collect this data first hand from actual women and a few men. I know what the world is like because I’ve lived in it and talked with other people who have lived in it. I don’t need external “experts” to tell me what I know first hand.

So why don’t you stop stalling and evading and go actually talk to 20 women? You can go ask 20 men the same question if you really want to put your money where your mouth is. Ask them with a real desire to obtain actual data, not by inserting your preconceived notions. Make it safe for them to really share. If you were ever brave enough to actually do that, it would open your eyes.

  1. Ever groped -either by a stranger or someone you knew, like a co-worker or family member? A huge number of women have been groped in public, me included. Incest is a much bigger issue than most people realize.
  2. Ever had someone use force, coercion or otherwise disregard your express wishes in a sexual situation?
  3. Ever had someone say something sexually explicit in front of you or to you for the purpose of humiliating you?
  4. Ever had someone insist on showing you explicit images, such as magazines or pornographic movies against your wishes?
  5. Ever had someone expose themselves to you?
  6. When was the first time any of the above occurred? For most girls, it starts at about age 10 before they are even actually into puberty.

Dispelling cultural myths with research-driven stories. My favorite word is “specious.” Not fragile like a flower; fragile like a bomb! Twitter @ElleBeau

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