This woman’s outlook totally discounts things like power dynamics and what happens to women at least some of the time when they tell men to stop. Sometimes they get left alone, and sometimes they get shot in the face, or slashed with a knife, just for saying “no.” Women who speak up in the office often get branded as bitches or as being hard to work with. A woman wearing shorts in public doesn’t give men license to hassle her. There is a huge difference between noticing someone who is attractive and acting like she is there for your benefit and enjoyment.

This doesn’t mean that women bear no responsibility for their own safety or as advocates for themselves, but I know this type of woman like Karen very well. She hates the idea of feeling weak and imagines that she would handle all of those situations so much better, so much stronger. It’s a way of distancing herself from the notion that something bad could happen to her that she has no control over.

I have an acquaintance who was raped at gun point. A large percentage of her friends then went on to tell her how that would have never happened to them. It’s a defense mechanism, but it doesn’t make it kind or right.

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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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