Let’s Talk Offense

We break in our regularly scheduled fitness journey (currently working on my 40th birthday retrospective) to get something off my chest.

There’s a lot of talk right now about sexual harassment and assault, and there is a defense people are just “too sensitive”. I hate that term. I hate it as much as I hate the term “snowflake”. These are used by people who have no excuse for their bad behavior and want to put it back on the person they are arguing with or about, and it’s the best insult they can come up with. When I hear someone use this deflection I automatically discredit their argument because they obviously know they are wrong and grasping at anything.

I have been called too sensitive at times, which is laughable because to know me is to know that it’s pretty damn hard to offend me. Real hard. And that is also part of a problem that I’ve had to work on. Just because it doesn’t offend me, doesn’t me that it won’t offend you…. Everyone’s line is in a different place. Mine is different than yours, and both of ours are different from the next person. And you don’t get to tell me where my line is anymore than I get to tell you where yours is. We are all different people, but our bodies, our emotions, our thoughts, are our own. Telling someone they shouldn’t be offended is like telling someone whom to love based on your emotions.

“Back in my day we didn’t have everyone running around whining about this..” yeah, I know. That’s because people were powerless over their abusers. This doesn’t mean that people were tougher back then, those who stand up are a lot tougher because they are risking everything. Only now are we at a point where we are siding with the accusers. No longer pointing the finger of doubt at them asking what their angle is and why they would target the poor defenseless man (or woman) in power.

Ive been that powerless girl. I was in an emotionally and verbally abusive relationship for six years. I didn’t speak up. I had a college professor tell me when I dropped his class that I would continue to get an A if I allowed him to continue to grope me. I didn’t speak up. I had someone that I had known forever, both of our families had known each other for years, try to force himself on me. I got away by chance, but I never spoke up. Not because I wasn’t offended, but because I was scared. I was scared of retaliation, scared of being labeled a trouble maker or being too sensitive. There were a couple of people I did say something to. Close friends that I could trust with “my” secrets, they both basically said the same thing, and it was akin to “boys will be boys”.

This “too sensitive” crap has been an insult for far too long. All it’s telling the world is, “I know I’ve behaved terribly, and I shouldn’t have done it, but I’m going to put the blame on you so I don’t have to face the fact that I’m a terrible person”.

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