I remember being in a meeting at a company I used to work for where people were making jokes about a presentation on sexual harassment. None of it made sense to me, and I certainly wasn’t laughing. Why were they were joking about something so serious, chuckling about it, and doing so in front of their boss? Well, actually, he was cracking jokes too.
In what world is it appropriate to make light of harassment? I wondered what would happen if I was harassed while at the company. Would I be taken seriously if I decided to report it? Would they make jokes about me behind my back? Would I get fired? Luckily, I wasn’t sexually harassed on the job — but not everyone is so lucky. Continue reading Sexual Harassment Is About Mental Health, Not Only the Workplace
I remember what I was wearing: A blue tank top with a picture of a peacock, jean short-shorts, and flip-flops. I remember the weather: High summer, sweet grass scenting the air and the sun just beginning its slow descent to the horizon. I was walking down a country road, lost in my thirteen-year-old daydreams, when suddenly —
A car horn split the air with its grating clamor. A group of men in the car waved their hands and heads out the windows, hollering at me.
It felt like I jumped a mile. My body flooded with shock. Fear. Self-consciousness. The moment before, I was at ease in my space, my body, my summer daydreams. Now, my sense of peace was ripped away like a wax strip torn from the heart. Continue reading Here’s How Street Harassment Affects Women’s Mental Health — and How We Heal