Being a writer and blogger I put quite a big part of my life on the internet. My posts are often very personal and in response to that I’m lucky to have had a great outpouring of love, brilliant advice and made some amazing friends. But it’s not all good, a big portion of the responses I get to posts and tweets about feminist, political or controversial issues are negative, disgusting and occasionally threatening.
There’s been the stupid responses of being called ugly, stupid, a liar “dyke” and even a feminist like thats a bad thing. Along with dick pics those are the things that I can brush off. But it never stops there. I’ve been told to kill myself, “get raped”, had my personal contact details shared and had threats of rape and violence. All for daring to speak my mind whilst owning a vagina. Those are awful but the one that has always stuck with me is being sent my own photograph with cum on. I’ve even had disgusting comments from other “feminists”, such as being called a disgrace to women and feminism for daring to agree with a well known dinosaur in the movement.
And those things above were just some of the first to come to me, The name calling and rudeness has happened in every variation possible in most cases. I know that there’s a lot more that I’ve blocked out.
The worst part is that I’m not alone in this, in fact if you’re a woman reading this chances are you’ve had the same experience in some way. A couple of weeks ago I sent out a request on Twitter for women to tell me their similar experiences, I got near 100 responses and all were saddening. Below are just a few*:
-“Have you actually ever been raped or did someone just look at you wrong?”
– Been told I’m wearing too much makeup, and also not enough, thus proving women can never win
– Been told I’m a disgrace to women everywhere
– “Calm down love, don’t you worry your pretty little head about it. Let the big boys take care of everything. ”
– When saying I won’t be silenced, had a guy imply he’d prefer me to use my mouth to give him a blow job.
– “You aren’t a lesbian, you just haven’t met the right man yet”
– Rolling eyes, and, “I’m too young and don’t know any better.” Sometimes full grown men scream at me.
– “No man is gonna want to fuck you y’know? Not with the feminism shit!”
– “crop your profile pic chin up because seeing boobs seems like you’re using them to get hired”
-“Why are you so angry all the time? You just need a good dicking, that’ll calm you down.”
– That I must be on the rag
-By the same person as well! “You deserve to be raped but nobody would bc no man could get hard around you”
– “You’re not asexual, it’s just that nobody want you, fat ass”
– “You’re only a feminist because men dont find fat women attractive”
– Was told my first ever blog post (about being a feminist) gave someone cancer
– Was told, when pointing out that revenge porn is appalling, that I’m jealous that they don’t want to wank over pics of me
And even as that discussion was happening I was sent dick pics, told I was lying and accused of only standing up for white feminism.
Nearly everyone who responded had been also called a liar, sent dick pics, sent death and rape threats and comments about appearance, These are the things we get on a regular basis because we speak our minds and won’t be silenced. These aren’t isolated incidents, and these things hardly ever happen to men with the same opinions.
Something I wasn’t expecting however, was the great sense of solidarity and community that emerged between these women that had experienced such awful things. That saddened me and warmed my heart at the same time. This just reinforced for me how great women are and how we will not be scared into silence by the most disgusting people on the Internet.
*names and usernames removed to protect users, can be added at their request