Lots of people are feeling unsafe because of what is happening in the world, especially in the US, right now. However, things are not getting worse....they are getting uncovered.
You can see Senator Kamala Harris's commendation of her courage here:
And it is awful that the initial response of the Trump administration was to tie the hands of the FBI and that President Trump with all the power of the office that his job has, has framed her disclosure an act of "politics and anger" on the part of the Democrats.
So what do I think and what has this got to do with resilience and hope?
I think that when people cross the line behaviourally , they sometimes don't consciously recognize it because they have internalized messages and role models and entitlement to the point that they are so disconnected from themselves that they have become disconnected from how their behaviour impacts on others. They are SO disconnected from their bodies and their feelings that they don't know that they are real and that other people are real. Have you noticed the number of times that you hear of all of the women being raped in villages where armies invade? That's my point. You have to disconnect from your feelings to be able to kill..... so it leaves you open to not feeling the impact on you or them when you rape....
This hasn't just started now. This has been going on for centuries. Women are socialized to disconnect from their voices and that there is a 'learned helplessness' that this is just the way it is, and men are socialized to disconnect from their feelings and their heart and be excused for their behaviour because 'boys will be boys'. In the broad sense. There are lots of women speaking up now and lots of men listening and not abusing power. However, our language still places the blame for sexual assault on women.
If you are a woman I hope that you:
- do something to get your anger or rage out of your body (run, draw, write, chop wood, anything that doesn't include hurting yourself, someone else or damaging property)
-give yourself affirmations that you are safe, that you matter, that you deserve to be heard and treated with love and care
-find a man to talk to about your experience who is willing to hear about how misogyny and abuse of male power has impacted upon you (they're out there.....I've met them!)
- mentor a young girl and teach her how to think and speak for herself
- expect and teach young boys that they can have their feelings and that they need to learn to cooperate and treat all people like they matter
If you are a man I hope that you:
- have the courage to admit that you have been born into privilege that you didn't earn and that everyone deserves to be treated like they are real and they matter
- listen to a woman about her experience of what it is like for her to be a woman in a society that openly elects sexual offenders to powerful positions without diminishing what she is saying or trying to teach her to 'just not be defined by it'. Just listen and validate her and tell her she didn't deserve it.
- have the courage to recognize and admit your mistakes around misogyny (abuse of male power against women) to save YOUR self-esteem as well as support and make amends to the women in your life
- have the courage to challenge men's attitudes towards women when women are not around (this is possibly the hardest and most important)
-mentor young men about how to be a man that can be in touch with his own feelings and values all people because that is ultimately how you value yourself and affirm
-empower young girls that they are more than how they look to a man and to speak up and fight for equality.
Loving yourselves and each other is where we all need to get back to. Remember, things are not getting worse, they are getting uncovered.