Why Girls Don’t Go Out Alone

As a girl, I hear guys make fun of my fellow women and me all the time for going everywhere in packs. Why can’t we go anywhere alone? The bathroom is right there, why do we need someone to go with us? When we give them an honest answer, that we feel unsafe, we are met with a variety of responses. Sometimes they laugh, sometimes they get offended, and very few seem to understand. Of course, they don’t understand, and how could they? When a man has to pee, he doesn’t think twice about walking to the bathroom, so why can’t a girl just go?

Tonight, I was reminded of why not. I wanted to go out, but my girlfriends weren’t feeling it up to it, so I went. I met up with a few people, went to a bar to meet up with more friends. I hadn’t had anything to drink, but one of my good friends bought me a drink and another friend shared his with me. These are two men that I know well and trust. I had one shot of UV and two sips of a mixed drink, so I was very far off from drunk. But I couldn’t expect these boys to stick around, and before I knew it, I was alone, surrounded by people I didn’t know in a very crowded bar trying to fight off an anxiety attack. So why don’t we go out alone?

We don’t go out alone, because we stick to our guy friends like glue, because we know other men respect other men more than they respect women. We don’t go out alone, because we do not feel safe when we can’t find our friends. We don’t go out alone, because guys think it is okay to rub up against you without an invitation. We don’t go out alone, because we feel vulnerable when we are surrounded by guys we don’t know. We don’t go out alone, because our guy friends forget that we don’t like to be by ourselves. We don’t go out alone, because when our guy friends do forget, they leave us alone. We don’t go out alone, because when our friends leave us by ourselves, we panic and become hyper aware of everyone around us. We don’t go out alone, because when we try to leave, guys grab our arms and tell us to smile, as if they are doing us a favor. We don’t go out alone because guys think that is acceptable to grab us by our ribs and press their faces between our chests. We don’t go out alone, because when this happens, no one says or does anything. We don’t go out alone, because when this happens, we somehow feel like it’s our fault.

The next time you think it’s funny that women travel in packs, maybe you should think about why we don’t feel safe alone. Think about what your fellow men do to make us feel unsafe.  Maybe not all men, but enough men to make us feel like we can’t go out unless we have a group to go with. Maybe not all men, but enough men to make others feel that this kind of behavior is acceptable. Maybe not all men, but enough men to make all women feel like these things are our fault. Maybe not all men, but too many men. But I guess the important question is- what was I wearing?

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To My Mom

This post is for my amazingly beautiful and intelligent mother. She is the most important woman in my life, and I love more than anything in this world. She’s been my best friend since day one, and there is no way I could get through this life without her. I can never put into words everything she means to me, but I’m going to try my best:

You are so unbelievably strong:

Life has thrown so much at you, and you have handled them all valiantly. You have never life knock you down, and you have fought for everything you have. You have been forced to make hard choices that many will never face in their lives. You have endured more than your fair share of hardship. You have been to Hell and make, but you have never let anything break you. You haven’t let life steal your smile, your humor, or your love and kindness. You are the strongest person I know, and will always be my rock.

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You are the funniest person I know:

You make me laugh harder than anyone else can, and there is never a dull moment with you. Your sense of humor is contagious, and you are the only one who gets my sense of humor because I get it from you. Even on my darkest days, you can make me smile and laugh until my stomach hurts.

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You are so beautiful:

As beautiful as you are on the inside, you are even more beautiful on the outside. I’m so jealous of how gorgeous you are, and I love when people say we look alike. I know you don’t have the most confidence in your looks, but I think you are 12. You are the prettiest woman I know, and I wish I had a little more of your DNA.

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I could never do what you do:

I don’t know how you managed to have a child at 20, work tirelessly, manage a household, and still make time for your kids. They saying being a mom is a full-time job, but you deserve overtime for how much you do. I can’t imagine taking on the responsibilities you had when you were my age, and I know I could never do them as well as you did and continue to do. You are like a superhero, only better. Not even Wonder Woman could do your job. I appreciate everything you have done for me, especially raising me to be the person I am today and accepting me for who I am.

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I look up to you:

I admire you more than anyone else. You are an amazing role model to have. I have looked up to you my whole life, but now so more than ever. You are the type of person everyone should aspire to be. You are kind, compassionate, honest, funny, smart, and a million other amazing things. I will be lucky if I end up being even half of the woman you are, and I hope I can be half as good of a mother as you are.

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You have a great sense of style:

Your wardrobe is fantastic! You know how to put outfits together better than some fashion designers. You always look so well put together and fabulous. From your great hair to your amazing shoes, you always look absolutely fantastic.

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You have amazing cooking skills:

As I have grown into an adult and moved away from home, I realize how much I took your cooking for granted. No matter how much I try to replicate your meals, they never taste quite as good as yours. Your made-up recipes always turn out mouthwatering, and your seasoning skills are out of this world. I wish I still had you cooking my dinner for me, but at least you did your best to pass your skills on to me. I will never forget the first meal you let me make. The way you helped me lay all the lasagna noodles just right, and let me do the cheese completely on my own. Or the time I made that awful chicken, and you ate every bite. You taught me one of life’s most essential skills, but I will never be able to cook as well as you. I swear you were a chef in a past life, because your food is the best thing I’ve ever tasted.

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I miss you:

While away from home, I miss you a lot more than I let on. I get homesick for you, because I miss you so much. You’re my best friend in the world, and you understand me in a way no one else can. There are times when I call, just because I need to hear your voice. Talking to you always makes me feel better. I love the adventures we go on, and a lot of times I miss living at home, just because I miss living with you.

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I’m so proud of you:

You have done so much for other people, especially your kids. You have made tough and scary choices. You have gone through so much. I am so proud of you for all of that. I’m proud of you for being so strong and brave, for working so much, and for being the best mom in the world. I am so unbelievably proud to call you my mom.   

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I love you:

With everything I have, I love you. I love you more than words can say. I know I have trouble showing it sometimes, but I hope you have never doubted it. I know a lot of girls drift apart from their moms during the teen years, but I could never do that. I love you too much to say hurtful things to you. I would go to the ends of the earth for you, because you have shown me so much more love than I deserve. You have been there for me every step of my life. I don’t know what I did to deserve a mom like you, but I’m so happy to have you. I would not be who I am today if it weren’t for you. You always let me be my own person and make my own choices. You have supported me in everything I’ve done, even if you didn’t like it very much. You have given me more than I can ever hope to give back. I love you so much, and I can’t wait to make more memories with you.

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I know this post isn’t enough to express how much I love and appreciate you, but I hope you know that I do. I’m the luckiest daughter in the world, and I don’t know what I would do without you. Thank you for raising me. Thank you for teaching me. Thank you for working so hard. Thank you for being my rock. Thank you for supporting me. Most of all, thank you for being you.

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100 Reasons

I haven’t written poetry in a very long time, however this little beauty was inspired by Lady Gaga’s song, A Million Reasons. This was also quite personal to write, but I also found it very therapeutic. Poetry is not my usual forte, but I think this one turned out quite well.

I have 100 things I want to say to you, but 101 reasons not to say anything.

I have 100 reasons to trust you, but 101 reasons not to.

I had 100 reasons to stay, but 101 reasons to run.

I have wanted to text you 100 times, but I’ve had 101 reasons to put my phone down.

I have 100 reasons to want to see you, but 101 reasons to stay away.

I have 100 reasons to cry over you, but 101 reasons to keep my eyes dry.

I have 100 good memories with you that occupy my mind, but 101 bad ones that still haunt me.

I have 100 reasons to fight for you, but 101 reasons to lay down my sword.

I had 100 reasons to believe it would work out, but 101 reasons to stop kidding myself.

I have 100 reasons to still care about you, but 101 reasons to wish I didn’t.

I have wanted to go back to you 100 times, but I’ve had 101 reasons to stop myself.

I have 100 reasons to let you walk out of my life, but 101 reasons why I don’t want you to go.

I have 100 reasons to be angry with you, but 101 reasons I can’t hold onto that anger.

I have 100 reasons to hate you, but 101 reasons why I can’t.

I have 100 reasons to just let you go, but 1 reason I can’t: I still miss you.

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Why We Need Feminism

Recently, I have been doing a lot of research on feminism in my spare time. What I found was disturbing, because I could not believe how many people, men and women alike, were against feminism or thought that we didn’t need it. Why? How on Earth could anyone possibly be against women equality? Why are so many people discrediting it to make it a man’s issue? The main argument I saw against it? “If women want equal rights, I should be able to hit a woman without consequence.” So, that’s where your concern lies? You want to be able to physically hurt someone without consequence? Why aren’t more people seeing the problem with this? Newsflash friends, THIS IS ALREADY HAPPENING! So here is my list of reasons as to why we need feminism:

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Because we do not learn about great women in history in textbooks We don’t learn about the female scientists who made NASA’s first trip to space possible. So many people have never heard of Hedy Lamarr, and when you Google her, the first thing that comes up is about her acting career, and not her work on developing a radio guidance system for torpedoes in WWII. We only learn about Cleopatra’s romances with Julius Caesar and Mark Antony, but not about the work she did in Egypt. Because women are missing from our history books.

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Because men don’t text each other that they got home safe As a woman, I often text my friends that I made it home when I’m walking there late at night. When my friends leave my apartment, I make sure they let me know they made it home. My girl friends tell me to text them when I get back, but my guy friends don’t, because girls understand the risks of walking home alone at night.

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Because women are blamed when they are raped, and are taught how to change their behaviors to avoid it. Because they are expected to apologize to their boyfriends when they are raped. Because young men who rape women are given lighter sentences so that “their lives are not ruined,” even though he ruined a woman’s life when he raped her. Because often times when girls are raped, the first thing they are asked is “What were you wearing?” Because no one is expected to be ashamed if their house is broken into, but everyone is expected to be ashamed of being raped. Because rape is the only crime in which men are able to defend themselves by saying they couldn’t resist. Because women live off a rape schedule without even realizing it, when they do things to protect themselves like pretending to be on the phone, carrying their keys in their hands, and checking the backseat of the car before getting in. Because when people speak about their rape, such as Kesha and Lady Gaga, they are called liars. Because there are women who are physically mutilated, such as breast ironing, so try and protect themselves from being raped. Because rapists are innocent until proven guilty, but rape victims are liars until proven truthful.

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Because men have no answers to the question of “What do you do to avoid getting assaulted?”, but women have an endless list of answers to the same question. We see keys as a potential weapon, we never set our drinks down at parties, and we avoid eye contact when walking down the street. Because the “pretty girls” are taught to expect to be assaulted, but “ugly girls” are taught to be grateful for the attention when it happens to them. Because I do not know a single woman who has not been groped, assaulted, and/or pressured into sex by a man.

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Because men are constantly telling women what they should do with their bodies. Because there are so many people that want to force women to carry an unwanted pregnancy to term, but no one wants to force men to take care of the baby they put inside that woman. Because people honestly believe that making abortions illegal is going to stop women from having them; it will just make them more dangerous. Because people don’t understand that people have different beliefs about when life begins. Because women are put down for aborting a cluster of cells, but no one is put down for not wanting to be an organ donor. Because women are expected to apologize for getting pregnant when their partner doesn’t want a baby. Because no one should be forced into a life they don’t want.

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Because it never crossed my mind as a kid that I should look like Barbie. That Barbie has had countless male dominated careers, and has the slogan “Be who you want to be,” but all anyone can talk about is her body. Because we make girls feel guilty for liking dresses, pink, and glitter.

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Because images like this are all over social media, but there aren’t any of men. Because we forget that these images are of a real person with feelings. Because we are taught that the worst thing a woman can be is fat. Because men are most concerned about meeting someone fat online, but women are most concerned about meeting a rapist or a murderer. Because fat is used as a synonym for ugly. Because when a woman describes herself as fat, she is automatically degrading herself, instead of describing herself as she would be if she said she was short. Because a woman can be fat and beautiful at the same time.

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Because women are made to feel bad about everything. If they are smart or not smart, if they wear makeup or they don’t, if they drink Starbucks, if they have sex or they don’t have sex, if they like dresses or if they don’t, if they don’t want kids, if they don’t want to get married, if they have short hair, if they show emotions or don’t. Because when a woman does anything that is considered “masculine,” we are called lesbians. Women are made to feel ashamed for every life choice they make, and men have made it impossible for us to win.

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Because males can buy their contraceptives anywhere and have no judgement for it, but women need a prescription and a “reason” for wanting them. Because everyone talks about how using birth control is immoral, but no one makes that argument about condoms. Because tampons and pads are taxed as luxuries and not necessities. Because it is a women’s fault if her contraceptive fails, but not the men’s fault when his does. Because I should be able to be on birth control if I want without having to get permission from my doctor to be on it.

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Because I am tired of being referred to as someone’s daughter, someone’s sister, someone’s wife, as someone who belongs to a man, instead of as my own person. Because I don’t need anyone’s approval to live the way I want to. Because I am my own person, and I belong to me.

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Dear Mr. & Mrs. Obama

As we prepare to say goodbye to President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama, I decided to write a letter expressing everything I would say, given the chance to meet either. It’s no secret that I love the Obama family. I feel that they are the classiest family to ever grace our White House. Disclosure: Please understand that these are my opinions and thoughts. You may disagree, but I will not tolerate hate on my page against me or anyone else.

Dear Mr. & Mrs. President Obama
I would like to apologize on behalf of my fellow Americans. You’ve faced more blind hatred during your time in the White House than any other first family, and you have done so with grace and class. You did nothing to warrant such disrespect, yet you accepted it with your heads high. I feel you are one of the best first families of all time.
I would also like to say thank you. For the first time in my life, I felt that my president saw me as a person. Thank you for working so hard to ensure all Americans had access to health care. Thank you for supporting the LBGT community, and pushing to legalize their right to get married. Thank you for not cutting funds to Planned Parenthood and understanding how many women desperately need it. Thank you for helping to protect victims of sexual assault. Thank you for ending the War on Terror. Thank you for supporting college kids, and helping to lighten the burden of student debt. Thank you for caring about our environment. Thank you for caring about children’s futures and working to lower obesity rates. Thank you for avoiding scandal for eight years, for raising your daughters into beautiful, intelligent women. Thank you for making this a better nation for all.
You helped to remind all of us that the first family are people who have fun, make mistakes, and feel emotions. Michelle Obama has shown me the type of woman I want to be. Barack Obama has shown me how important it is to care for all people. Both of you have shown me what a good person looks like. I know many disagree, but they cannot change the deep admiration I have for the both of you. I wish there was a way for you to remain in the White House because it is heartbreaking to see you leave.
Politics aside, I’m terrified of what will replace you. I’m terrified for people of color and for people who are not Christians. I’m terrified for the LBGT community and for the disabled. I’m terrified for women. I’m terrified of entering the work force during his presidency. I’m terrified that people are using him as an advocate for hate and violence. But no matter how terrified I am, it is nothing compared to the sadness I feel. I’m sad that we took so many steps backwards this election. I’m sad that hate and anger won. I’m sad that I have to be terrified. I hope that we, as a nation, can be become better.
Thank you both for all you have done. You will be missed greatly. I am proud to have called you my president and first lady.

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Newest Novel Attempt

As much as I love sharing my thoughts with all you lovelies, I feel as though I have been neglecting my other blog categories these past few months (year?). Therefore, I thought I would share my latest attempt at a novel. As they all do, this one has started off really well, as I have been managing to keep the writer’s block at bay so far.

This one was inspired by a very personal situation I went through this summer. My uncle was kept in a medically induced coma following a horrific car accident, in which he was severely injured and burned. During his month long stay in the hospital, we always wondered whether or not he could hear us talking to him. We never found out, because we unfortunately lost him before he was ever waken up.

This story is from the point of view of a nineteen year old girl in a coma. She has no memory of how she ended up in this state. She cannot move nor speak, however she can hear and feel (not pain of course). Her memories are hazy, and she often finds herself slammed with memories when she realizes who a person in the room is. Here’s a small exert from what I have written so far:

It dawns on me for the first time to wonder where the hell I am, and why I can’t make my body cooperate. I try to open my eyes again, but still no luck. I am left alone in the darkness of my own mind, and I can’t escape. I hear beeping all around me. I must be in a hospital. I think, putting the puzzle together. But how the hell did I get here? I try to think back to before the dark, but all I remember is the fierce sting of pain.

I start to panic. How am I going to get out of here if I can’t move? I can’t even open my eyes or call for help. Why can’t I move?

“You can see her now,” I hear the woman’s voice again, but it sounds far away. I wish I could reach out and grab it. I wish I could let her know that I hear her. I hear the sound of someone shuffling slowly into the room.

“Presley?” I hear a quiet voice, barely above a whisper. It sounds unsure and is dripping with fear. It sounds familiar, but the owner of the voice is just out of reach in my mind. “Oh, Presley,” the voice sighs with remorse. “What happened to you?” I could ask the same thing. I feel warm skin on my hand. “Your hand is like ice,” the voice says right before I feel warm breath on my hand. Who the hell is this woman and why is she blowing on me? I want to yank my hand away and demand to know who the hell she thinks she is, but I am powerless in this broken body, so she keeps on blowing.

She leans forward to plant a sloppy kiss on my cheek. Some water drops onto my face, and I assume this strange woman is crying. As she pulls back, I the smell of vanilla mixed with sandalwood assaults my nose. Suddenly, the black disappears, and my mind is reeling with memories. A woman with honey blonde hair and a warm smile pulling me into her arms. The same woman kissing a scrape on my knee as I sit on a sidewalk. The woman singing to me softly while I drifted off to sleep. Her voice rolling over me in waves of calm as she sang ‘Take my hand. Take my whole life too. For I can’t help falling in love with you.’ I know that smell. I know that voice. I know whose smile that is.

I still have a long way to go on this one, but it’s an exciting start! Nothing is better than the thrill of hatching a new story idea, and beginning to put that story into words. I sincerely hope I am able to keep up the progress and finish this one.