Keep telling

Like many women, I’ve experienced harassment and even violence in the workplace. The time I experienced violence was about 15 years ago. And I didn’t get help. For a lot of reasons. I don’t want to talk about those reasons here. I want to talk about the advice I would give to my younger self – and my future self, in case she should need it – and all of you…

Don’t keep it to yourself. Even if you’ve told someone and they didn’t believe you or they didn’t do anything about it, tell someone else. And if they don’t believe you, tell someone else. Even if you’re telling someone who is not at work, tell a friend, tell a neighbor, keep talking until someone wiser, more resourceful than you, can help you figure out what to do with it and, at the very least, can comfort you.

I say this now because I now recognize that I have the right to be safe, strong and free, and that we all have these rights. I have compassion for myself and everyone else who has had their rights violated. Over the generations a lot of work has been done, by women and for women, to raise our consciousness, educate us about our rights and empower us to raise our voices and make ourselves heard.  I’m thankful to those feminists, activists and artists who went before me for speaking up in their strength, bravery, solitary, compassion and love.  It is in this spirit that I also speak up now: I matter; you matter; we all matter. Look out for yourself; look out for each other.