I was never raped, but when I was 11, the son of a family friend copped a feel whenever we were…
Zelda Pinwheel

I was never raped… …but I’ve had to fight my way from being copped-on by a male colleague at college when I was 19. He was older (about 21 or 22) — and he decided that I was readying my shot at a pool table…he could just grab a piece of my butt while I was (supposedly) not paying attention. I felt him brush my hand against my butt (and we were the only two people playing at that table, so I know he had plenty room to walk around me). I told him to watch his hand — he laughed. I tried my shot again — he brushed his hand longer. I got real mad, so I marched over to him — and demanded that he stop messing with me. He laughed again. He tried it a third time… …I punched him in his stomach. The fight was over — so were our weekly pool games. After that, a few male colleagues kept a sizable distance away from me whenever we played pool.

I’m not totally advocating using physical retaliation toward someone who is invading your space. But if it’s required— then it’s your right to protect your space and dignity by every (reasonable) means necessary. My father taught that lesson to me and my younger sister (he himself having two older sisters to protect from some “negative dudes in the ‘hood”). It’s totally OK to defend your sexual dignity as you see fit — from negative males and females alike. Rape is physical, emotional, social, and spiritual in brutality. You don’t need to take it meekly — fight with no apology for the offender’s potential pain.

I approve this message.

Like what you read? Give Wanda Herbert Romain a round of applause.

From a quick cheer to a standing ovation, clap to show how much you enjoyed this story.