Some time ago, Adam at amodelofcontrol.com got in touch with me as a few recent experiences and conversations had made him realise how little he’d known of the harassment many of his fellow female music fans experienced for the crime of Being Women In Public Spaces. He asked if I would help gather stories from my blog followers to help him write a piece aimed at encouraging other men to understand the scale of the problem, and think about what men can do to help change the culture.
I leaped at the opportunity to help women’s voices be heard – as a former singer in a metal band (yes, the “rockstar” is the one out of four that I managed to achieve, albeit briefly) I’ve faced my (un)fair share of harassment both as a performer and a gig/club goer, and have also experienced the downright soul destroying experience of trying to talk about it only to be shut down; told I am over-reacting, exaggerating, complaining about nothing, not being flattered enough and all the other sorts of things women get told when we talk about the crap that happens to us, apparently because some men can’t treat women as humans deserving of either respect or bodily autonomy.
So we put the call out. More than 100 women responded, and some of the stories were harrowing, to put it mildly. I was at one point concerned for Adam’s mental health as I was pretty sure he wasn’t prepared for how awful some of the stories were. Trooper that he is, he read very single one, got very angry and the blog piece grew.
Head on over to amodelofcontrol.com to read the blog, and a list of many of the stories shared with us – but please do be warned that some of the stories may be triggering for PSTD sufferers and/or victims of sexual assault. Both Adam and I offer huge and heartfelt thanks to all the women who took part and shared their stories.