I am art, not an object.
I'm getting really fucking tired of this social inequality between men* and women. It could be that I've reached the year mark of being in the service industry, which is known for it's culture of degradation, or maybe my patience has been chipped away over time, little by little, to the point where I can no longer keep quiet.
I am expected to "hack it" in a man's world. This often means putting in more work for a lesser result, keeping quiet when I see or hear disrespectful actions or stories (or being expected to take part), and in a nutshell, leaving my morals and dignity at the door just so I can enter it. Why is it so widely accepted that we develop the thick skin so we can fit in with the people who gave it to us in the first place? Why do we have to put up with your low expectation of us, when you could just be better; When you could see me as your equal?
Under the same umbrella, what gives him the right to elaborately lick his lips and look me up and down in the middle of the street? Who gave this other guy the okay to dance his hands in the air to outline my figure and ask how I do it? This objectification is not your right. However you identify yourself, you don't have the right. It is a privilege you should have to earn to sexualize me. We can be confident. We can be working it. We can be owning a look. We can be and wear whatever the hell we want. All bodies - every body - should be seen as a unique piece of art to be nurtured, appreciated and admired, not made to feel as though it's here for your pleasure.
I have fortunately been blessed in my life to be surrounded by real men who support me, lift me up and respect me. I've been blessed to be surrounded by strong women who know the plight but rise above it. And chances are if you've come to this post, you are one of those people. And I thank you for being in my life. Because I know that there are so many women out there being constantly put down by these *adult boys. I get small doses of it and it's enough to drive me mad.
I'm done accepting the abuse as default. There is no conclusion here, because I'm just getting started.