I Am Tired

I am tired.
I am tired of feeling frightened, anxious, on alert when I leave my home.
I am tired of being watched, invaded, engaged by men who invade my space, look me up and down, and make sexual comments to me in the guise of a “compliment”.

I am tired of the misogynistic names/terms/labels.
I am tired of women being categorised as “girls, ladies, spinsters, sluts, whores, slags, prick-teasers, frigid, nymphos, Lolitas, Ice Queens”.

I am tired of playing defence – of protecting my physical and mental safety against the ever-present demands of men.
I am tired of justifying my need for privacy by men who push, who demand, who NEED to know/feel/see more than I am prepared to give.

I am tired of hearing internalised misogyny from women – who blame women for their experiences of male violence.
I am tired of seeing these women bend and shape themselves into the role that men expect from them, whilst harming their sisters.

I am tired of the endless coverage given to misogynists, rapists, rape deniers and apologists.
I am tired of the click bait mentality in the media – when did morality become extinct? Why is she a “slut”? How did she “provoke” him? WHY are you giving airspace to this abuse?

I am tired of hearing and seeing so many stories about male violence.
I am tired of knowing that so many of the women in my life have experienced abuse, rape, domestic violence, harassment, stalking, ritual abuse and child sexual abuse.

I am tired of explaining that the men that raped and abused me did so because they wanted to and that it was not my fault.
I am tired of reminding myself that I am not to blame for male violence: I wasn’t as a child and I am not as an adult.

I am tired of the blame, shame, humiliation, degradation, loathing, sneering, abuse and hatred that survivors of male violence experience.
I am tired of the many ways in which we internalise this harm.

I am tired.
I am tired of seeing no end to victim blaming, rape culture, sexualisation and male violence.
Patriarchy, I am tired.

Aren’t you?


20 thoughts on “I Am Tired

  1. Oh Lordy though isn’t it tiring? It’s bloody EXHAUSTING. And whatever we do, we’re in the wrong.
    Warn other women, and it’s seized on as a way to blame women who don’t *heed* such warnings, who have the audacity to live our lives,sure in the knowledge that whatever we do, it ain’t Schrodinger’s vagina.
    It’s a neat switcheroo, using our un chosen biology against us, and then making our warnings about their behavior,into license for that behaviour – cos hey,we were *warned*.

  2. Tired, worn out, worn down. It’s wearing and wearying and utterly relentless. But, there is a glimmer of hope. So many blogs have sprung up, people have been given a voice they never had before. And people, like you, are speaking out, making it clear they are not prepared to put up with it any more, and, importantly, letting other people know what’s going on, that it’s part of a wider pattern, that they aren’t isolated in their own experience. All this gives me hope that future poems will read “I am elated” or “I am suffused with life” rather than “tired”. False optimism? I hope not.

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