• Dara Kountz

#Metoo Does It Matter?

So, while I was taking a long hiatus from blogging, the me too hashtag started. This grew into women telling their stories which has led to the chaos and scandals rocking Hollywood.

Personally, I’ve been staying on the sidelines in all of this…which may seem odd since I’m incredibly open about my history as an abuse victim. I’m, also, open about the sexual harassment I endured after divorcing my abuser and working in retail.

So, if I’m so open about it, shouldn’t I be putting the hashtag on my social media as well?

I could…but I don’t see the point FOR ME. That capitalization is important because I want to be very very clear that I do not judge anyone for either participating or not participating in the me too movement. It is each person’s choice and neither choice is wrong.

For me, I didn’t participate because, as I’ve said, I’m very open about my history. I felt the me too, in my case, would be redundant because everyone I know already knows about me. Not all the details, I don’t inflict those on anyone unless they ask. But, still, I’d already said me too a long time ago.

I have been watching the movement and the Hollywood shake-up with interest because I’ve been watching the conversation.

The conversation I’ve seen makes me hopeful. There are still the factions that say the victims are lying or exaggerating or demand the victims justify waiting, all those judgments that have always made it so hard for a victim to speak up.

However, I’ve seen more conversations that support the victims. Conversations about how did this happen? What could have been different?

I’ve seen men step up and say, ‘I saw it, I suspected it, I should have stepped up and said something’.

I’ve seen men asking concerned questions. How could a man do this? How could they get away with this abuse of power?

Most importantly I’ve seen people across the lines of gender, age and position unite to say ‘This has GOT to STOP!’.

Having the conversations, getting this into the open, that’s worth a lot. That’s a big step. Because abusers don’t do well when the victims finally step out of the shadows. All those lies, all that gas lighting, all the laying the foundation to keep the victim isolated and feeling alone and helpless, all that starts to break down when brought into the light.

So, whether you’ve stepped forward or whether you’re still in the shadows, not strong enough yet to break free, you’re not alone and, slowly, the areas of safety are spreading.

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