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ayrendal January 14, 2022

I must have been under a rock, because I have never heard the stories of how this man begat his two meal-tickets…er children. And I’m sincerely hoping that I’m not the only person in the world who believes he should have been jailed for what he did to the girls’ mother. 

Removing her choice to take contraceptives is akin to rape. He not only disrespected her stated choice, he deliberately undermined it. I will be watching *very* closely for reviews of this film - if his actions are not called out & derided for what they are - I will be protesting as loudly as possible. Even though it is way too late for Venus’ & Serena’s mother, and the girls deserve all the happiness in the world, their father’s actions cannot go unnoticed. 

We have to use this example to help women who might otherwise be trapped in the same, or similar situations in the future. 

ayrendal December 9, 2021

This story could’ve been written by and/or about me, minus the “actively trying” phase. There was a period while I was married where we actively didn’t try to prevent becoming pregnant, but there was no determined decision that we’d start “this month”. 

Turns out that his extracurricular activities - and there were a lot of them, aided by opposing work schedules - means the 7-year itch turned into the 7-year unhitch, so I’m retrospectively even more glad we never got pregnant.

I was never a clucky type, never made googly eyes at friends’ babies and had maybe a week when I realised I was transitioning into menopause where I hoped I’d “made the right call”, then because it stopped even bothering me in the space of days I was pretty sure I was OK with my choice.

And now in my early 50s I look at people on TV and work out when something was made and how old the baby on screen would be now, and what I was doing when whatever it is was made and what I’d either have given up or changed if that kid was mine - and I’m *always* happy it’s not. 

Congratulations to everyone who has kids, and wanted them. But I’m not one of you. Never was, and thankfully now, absolutely never will be. 

ayrendal December 9, 2021

Stories like these that mirror the terror most of us feel at the prospect of being pulled over when we’re alone indicate that more education is needed in how we should be handling these types of situations.

For example, is there a specific request, or phrase, we can use to indicate to officers that we are extremely uncomfortable but don’t want to offend them/risk triggering the situation that terrifies us - the stop getting out of control and/or abusive. Are we simply just supposed to say “I would like a female officer to be present before X or Y”? Can we ask that the remainder of the “encounter” take place at a police station, and if so, are we allowed to drive ourselves there, or must we (always?) submit ourselves to the officers’ custody? Are we allowed to ask these questions? Can the officers present refuse to acquiesce to our request and force us to do X or Y anyway? 

That level of education on our rights - and responsibilities - would be as invaluable at high school as sex education.

ayrendal December 9, 2021

A bit horrified that people needed to be “reminded” to back off when it came to a friend deciding not to have a drink. 

It should not matter if it was the first or fifteenth drink - “no thanks” should *only ever* be followed by “water, lemonade, juice?” not a stacks-on “go-on, one more won’t hurt!”

That pressure could be enough to send them over the edge again into a binge they can ill afford, mentally or physically - or both. The slightest pressure to drink is akin to pressuring someone into having sex. It should never happen.