Did I have a good time?
After so many incidents last week, I found something that is very common. I do not have the privilege of happy memories. You may ask “What does happy memory mean?” For me, a happy memory is when I go about enjoying little things in my daily life without it being tainted by systemic patriarchy, misogyny and rape culture. For example, remember the last time you dressed up, wore your favorite heels, went out with your friends to have a fun time and you were cat-called. Or remember the last time you went out to dine alone, and you had to shift seats because the constant gaze of a man made you uncomfortable. And what about that time you were drinking and having fun with your friends and some dude thought that it was okay for him to relentlessly pursue you even if you have said no multiple times. We avoid getting into trouble, brush it off, go about our business but do we actually ever forget it.
When I sit back and think about all the times I was happy and satisfied, I have a small smile in my face. When I recount my stories I will do it fondly, but when I come to the part where I was harassed or made uncomfortable, that smile changes into frown. I have a problem with that. Why is that our stories of having fun or just living and breathing is tainted with how we were harassed and despite that we had a good day? Why? Why? I listen with envy when my male friends recount their stories of adventures with such pure joy and fun and there I am with so many stories ending with “despite that creepy weirdo, I had a good day!”