I follow scatx on twitter, and so tweeted a lot today about how she is constantly “calculating” what her risk of being raped is at that given moment. It inspired this post from me, but it also made me think of how “calculating” I do.
I live pretty much on my own now, I have a roommate, but she’s gone more than she is here, and I do all my errands by myself. I can’t count the number of times I’ve locked and than relocked the front door, or checked closets even though I am far too old to be looking for monsters. I check the backseat of my car before I get in it. I walk with my keys between my fingers on the way to my car, I own a tiny knife that’s attached to my key ring. I walk faster and don’t respond when I’m cat-called. I scan my surroundings before walking through a parking lot. I don’t take the elevator if it’s just a man standing in there. I walk faster when a man is walking behind me. I try not to get stuck in rooms with a man I don’t know very well. I could go on and on and on and on.
The worst part is that most of this is futile, if I am going to get raped chances are is that it will be by someone I know and trust, not a stranger. But rape culture is so ingrained in us, it’s such a fundamental part of being female, that we will continue to devote time to “avoiding” rape. As if anything we do could limit our chances.
It really scares me when people make excuses for rape jokes, especially when men make excuses for rape jokes. It says to me that they don’t understand what their female friends, sisters, wives, daughters, and mothers go through daily. They don’t understand how exhausting it is to constantly be vigilant and watching.
If they don’t understand that, if they can’t process that part of rape culture, then lord knows they can’t process what it’s like to be an actual survivor of rape.
I’m exhausted. I’m exhausted from the watching, the calculating, the jokes, and the excuses. I’m tired and I don’t want to deal with it anymore. I want to be done. I want Tosh and his white dude-bro supporters to spend one day in our shoes. I want them to understand how tiring this fight can be. It’s not about free-speech or comedic license, it’s not about satire or not having a sense of humor. It’s about spending each day constantly thinking of how to survive, and not wanting anyone to make light of that.
So fucking tired.