We Are Not Here To Be Pretty

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I’m supposed to be taking a FB break but today I just can’t. I’ve read too much from women who are so overly identified with Patriarchy that they think that women who have been raped or abused should just shut up and get over it, slap the guy, or something.

And there are also all of those #notallmen men, talking about how they should have grabbed more asses while they still had a chance.

And last night, Martina and I watched Wind River and I knew what the movie was about and wanted to watch it because of the topic, most of my accidental Anthropology degree was due to my intense interest in Native American culture but still, I went outside and prayed like a fire goddess for all Native women and those who have been murdered, raped, and the utter lack of care they’ve gotten in this New World, that is their Old World and has been forever. I offered tobacco into the wind, for them, for the prayers, for the old god/desses who I call out to.

Sometimes the pressure to be pretty is too much and it tells a story of what women are taught about our value. It tells a story, too, about how we can never actually *be* pretty enough to satisfy this fucked up world we live in.

I’m also posting this for my cousin, who shared a photo of herself that she didn’t think was pretty. You are an amazing woman. Don’t let anyone tell you any different.

WE ARE NOT HERE TO BE PRETTY.

It’s Not Your Job

when your little girl
asks you if she’s pretty
your heart will drop like a wineglass
on the hardwood floor
part of you will want to say
of course you are, don’t ever question it
and the other part
the part that is clawing at

you

will want to grab her by her shoulders

look straight into the wells of
her eyes until they echo back to you
and say
you do not have to be if you don’t want to
it is not your job
both with feel right
one will feel better
she will only understand the first
when she wants to cut her hair off
or wear her brother’s clothes
you will feel the words in your
mouth like marbles
you do not have to be pretty if you don’t want to
it is not your job

“it’s not your job”

Caitlyn Siehl

And a bit more, from the article linked here.

“Women are victims

  • One out of every six American women have been the victims of an attempted or completed rape in their lifetime (14.8% completed rape; 2.8% attempted rape). A total of 17.7 million women have been victims of these crimes. (Prevalence, Incidence and Consequences of Violence Against Women Survey, National Institute of Justice and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 1998)
  • In 2002, seven out of every eight rape victims were female. (2002 NCVS)
  • 75% of female rape victims require medical care after the attack (U.S. Dept. of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics, 1994)
  • While about 80% of all victims are white, minorities are somewhat more likely to be attacked. Lifetime rate of rape/attempted rape (women) based on 1998 NVAWS:
    • All: 17.6% (approx. 1 in 5)
    • White: 17.7%
    • Black: 18.8%
    • Asian.Pacific Islander: 6.8%
    • Am. Indian/Alaskan: 34.1%
    • Mixed Race: 24.4%

Men, too

  • About three percent of American men — a total of 2.78 million men — have experienced an attempted or completed rape in their lifetime. (Prevalence, Incidence and Consequences of Violence Against Women 1998)
  • In 2002, one in every eight rape victims were male. (2002 NCVS)”

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