This post deals with sexual assault and might be triggering for some readers.
We need to talk about men.
I am a teacher. At school, we teach about toxic masculinity and how harmful it is to both women and men.
I am a parent of two boys and one girl, an aunt to several young adults and friends with many young people.
Watch: Explaining Consent With Dinner. Post continues below.
We’re raising our boys to be respectful, own their emotions and still be a strong person. Yet we don’t know what they are doing.
Every time domestic violence or sexual assault hits the news, we hear the cry ‘it’s not all men,’ and this is absolutely true.
Unfortunately, it’s a lot of boys thinking they’re being men whose assaults go unreported from shame on the girls’ behalf, stigma attached to being drunk and ‘wanting it’, no proof and the slut shaming from both boys and girls when young women call out friends for sexual assault.
I am not talking strangers.
I am not talking about young men the girls barely know.
I am talking about friends.
On the beach at night, drinking, smoking some weed and singing with friends. Friends I had gone to school with – it was someone’s 18th not long after graduation.
I got cold. A ‘friend’ suggested I go with him to his car to grab a jumper. I was pissy, not pissed; but I was cold.
Sitting on his tail gate, he pushed me back, tried to kiss me while shoving his knee between my legs. I pushed him off and ran back to the group. Said nothing.