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Gropers – And Not the Fish Kind

Aunty Slut is tired of hearing about groping. This week alone I’ve had three questions from girls wondering what they can do to stop being felt up in town. I’m sure they teach the difference between good touching and bad touching at primary school, but it appears most of the boys weren’t listening.

A lot of the time, it’s scary being female. The reality is that is if people want to have sex with you, and don’t accept ‘no’ as an answer, there is nothing you can physically do to stop them. We rely on people to respect our personal boundaries- to recognise that we are human beings too. And that’s why when you comment on our bodies or grope us in town, it’s not ‘a bit of fun’, it’s a direct threat- and it happens all the time. Trying to choose something to wear when I’m going into town is a nightmare: I tend to walk the line between wearing whatever the fuck makes me happy and being harassed, groped or otherwise dehumanised, or wearing something ‘safer’ and feeling like I’m not being true to myself and letting other people’s behaviour control me. I’ve been felt up in short shirts, I’ve been felt up in jeans. Ladies- there is no winning by changing your behaviour- YOU are not the one in the wrong here.

A recent study found that objectification, sexual harassment and abuse are considered just a part of life by young women and what the actual FUCK? It found that those behaviours are so ingrained into women’s experiences they don’t even view them as particularly unacceptable or inappropriate anymore. That girls trivialise their experiences of sexual harassment or assault because they’ve been conditioned to think it’s just ‘boys being boys’, or the price you pay for going into town. It’s one of the reasons so many rapes go unreported- girls have been grabbed so often they think that sort of thing is normal.

Well it’s not normal- it’s fucked in the head, and Aunty Slut wants it to stop.

Sorry to burst your bubble, but Aunty Slut does not believe for one second that all men are somehow inherently sexually predatory and that they can’t control their base behaviours. In fact, the number of dudes causing a problem here is quite small- the bigger issue is that no one does anything about it when they see it.

Ladies, it’s very easy to say ‘don’t let them get to you’. It’s easy to say ‘fight back’. It’s easy to say ‘cover up a little’, ‘stay in groups’ or ‘make sure you’re always in town with a guy mate’. But there is only one thing that can stop you from being groped.

If guys stop fucking groping you.

So I’m not going to address the questions put to me by ‘Frustrated’, ‘I just want to dance, ‘Don’t Touch Me’ and the rest of the women that have emailed variations of this question through.

I’m going to address the douche-nozzles doing the groping.

Dear 10% of Guys in Town,

When I put my skirt on tonight, I didn’t do it to elicit attention from you. I did not choose this top so that you can appreciate my breasts. I did not put this make up on so I can look pretty for you.

None of me has been packaged for you this evening.

So take your sticky, entitled hands off me.

Even if I’m in town looking to hook up. Even if I’m wearing something so short you can see my underwear. Even if I’m only wearing underwear- I am not asking to be groped.

Next time you go to sexually assault someone- and I’m calling it what it is- think about how you would feel if you saw someone doing it to your mum, or your sister, or your girlfriend. Or think about how you would feel if some guy rammed his hands down your pants and grabbed your balls. Threats and sexual assaults are not ok, or funny, or cool. Stop doing it.

Girls- when guys grope you, cause a SCENE. I mean it- scream, shout, wave your arms. Point out the weak douche bag that touched you to everyone. Get the piece of shit thrown out, or if you can’t, shame him so much he won’t want to stay. You might feel embarrassed- but that’s what he’s hoping- that you’ll be too cowed to say anything. If everyone starts hitting back against this shit, it will stop.

90% of Guys in town- you can make the biggest difference here. Peer pressure (or whatever you want to call it) has its uses- so let’s make sexual assault really fucking uncool. When you see your mates, or other guys feeling girls up without permission- hit them up about why it’s inappropriate. Help the women around you- you’d be surprised at the results.

10% of Guys in town- keep your hands to yourself. Just because I’m in a public place does not mean I am public property- no matter what I’m fucking wearing.

Enough already.