Humbled

The #MeToo campaign has been eye opening for me. I thought myself well aware of the prevalence of sexual harassment and assault against women (and men). I was wrong.

As my social media feed continued to be filled with heartbreaking post after post (some with sickening stories, others with no details at all), the weight of it brought me to tears. So many people that I knew (many very well) had been victimized. I felt angry, horrified, disgusted, ashamed. Trying to figure out what to do or say was overwhelming. Any words felt forced, and writing them seemed more like “well at least I’m not THAT guy” than an honest acknowledgment. Even liking the posts seemed an empty gesture, though I did continue doing that throughout the day because it felt necessary.

I promised myself again and again that I would continue to speak out, call attention to actions, teach my children better,  be the sort of human being who joined others in fighting to end abuse.

I still wanted to do more.

Towards the end of the day a good friend of mine made a simple, perfect, and poignant Facebook post. He wrote: I believe you.

Those three words summed up everything I’d been trying to expound on all day (and perhaps most of my adult life). It should be obvious, but somehow it isn’t- Believing  victims of sexual assault is critical.

I wanted to go outside and shout that sentence over and over. I believe you.

I settled for copying my friend and posting those words on Twitter.

And because they are important, I wanted to share them with you all as well.

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About fenster

There are some who call me, Tim?

12 responses to “Humbled”

  1. jmh says :

    Thanks, Ryan. You’re a good man.

    When I was assaulted last year, you stood up for me and defended me. It made all the difference in the world, and I’ll never forget it. Thank you.

    • Liesbet says :

      I do remember that awful time, jmh, and it was because of Ryan mentioning something about it on his blog, that I found your blog and wanted to be there for you as well. It seems like a long time ago now, but I’m sure (and sorry) that those events are still fresh in your mind.

    • fenster says :

      You’re most welcome. I was glad to do it, but wish wish wish wish wish it had not been necessary.

  2. Liesbet says :

    Sometimes an “I believe you” or other kind of acknowledgement means the world! You are the nicest guy, Ryan, and it shines through your blog and Facebook posts.

  3. artistpath says :

    Thank you for this post. And thank you for believing in all those who posted #me too. We must grow and learn as a people and become better, do better.

  4. Ellen @ The Cynical Sailor says :

    “I believe you” are such powerful words. You’re one of the good guys, Ryan. Thanks for posting this and sharing for all to see. It’s people like you that really make a difference.

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