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Let’s Play a Game That’s Not Really a Game

You’ve seen all those “Let’s Play a Game” posts – the Internet’s version of “Have You Ever?” They ask you to look at various statements about your past deeds (or misdeeds, as it were) and assign yourself a score.

What would the #metoo version look like? I wondered.

So let’s play. All are welcome. Calculate your score and reflect on it in light of not just current events, but for many women (and some men) lifetimes of events across millennia.

Here’s how it works. Give yourself as many points as you damn well please for every statement that is true for you:

  1. Been cat-called in an unwelcome and unreciprocated way.
  2. Been told not to go out alone at night.
  3. Been told not to park your car near a van in a parking garage.
  4. Been told to hold your keys in your hand in case you need to defend yourself against an attacker.
  5. Shared a social media post about new tactics sexual predators use in order to inform your friends.
  6. Thought about whether what you’re wearing might make you unsafe.
  7. Got a dog for some measure of protection against would-be attackers in your home or in public places.
  8. Told a friend to watch or hold your drink so no one would drug it.
  9. Been called a derogatory name for not responding to someone’s unwelcome advances.
  10. Been called a derogatory name that is specific to your gender.
  11. Worried about your friend’s safety when he/she starts dating someone new.
  12. Been told, even as an adult, to go to the bathroom in pairs because it’s safer.
  13. Had “what to do if…” conversations with your child or sibling in regards to attempted sexual assault or rape.
  14. Been groped in a sexual manner, without your consent.
  15. Been scared when you’ve been out alone in a semi-private or secluded area, even in broad daylight.
  16. Said no to a sexual advance and then had to say it again. And again.
  17. Read an article about how to please a member of the opposite sex.
  18. Been overlooked for a promotion because of your gender or gender identity.
  19. Been propositioned at work.
  20. Been followed around in a public place.
  21. Been afraid to walk past a group of people for fear of harassment.
  22. Read comments by people who are NOT in your situation giving your opinion about how they would respond in your situation.
  23. Received unwelcome lewd emails or texts.
  24. Been in a situation where you feared a sexual assault or rape.
  25. Been threatened, directly or anonymously, with a threat of a sexual nature.
  26. Had legislation about your body passed without your consent.
  27. Been made to feel shame because of your sexuality.
  28. Been told it doesn’t count because…
  29. Been threatened if you did tell.
  30. Been told no one would believe you.
  31. Been told not to tell.
  32. Been told it was your fault.
  33. Been told you shouldn’t have put yourself in “that situation.”
  34. Been called loose.
  35. Been called a prude.
  36. Been called a slut.
  37. Been called a tease.
  38. Been called a whore.
  39. Been called crazy.
  40. Been told you shouldn’t have drunk so much.
  41. Told the truth, the absolute truth, only to have people refuse to believe you.
  42. Forgotten details about sexual assault and been told you must be lying.
  43. Kept silent about things done to you against your will because you feared you would be shamed.
  44. Kept silent about things done to you against your will because you feared you would be blamed.
  45. Kept silent about things done to you against your will because you feared no one would believe you.
  46. Kept silent about things do to you against your will because you feared speaking out.
  47. Kept silent because you were drunk.
  48. Kept silent because you were scared.
  49. Kept silent because you were ashamed.
  50. Kept silent because your attacker was popular.
  51. Kept silent because your attacker was rich.
  52. Kept silent because your attacker was powerful.
  53. Kept silent because your attacker was a trusted friend.
  54. Kept silent because your attacker was family.
  55. Kept silent because you thought you should have known better.
  56. Kept silent because you didn’t want to think about it ever again.
  57. Kept silent because you couldn’t prove it.
  58. Kept silent because you had been abused before.
  59. Kept silent because of your religion.
  60. Kept silent because you thought you deserved it.
  61. Kept silent because you hated yourself.
  62. Kept silent because you didn’t want your parents to feel like they failed.
  63. Blamed yourself for something that was not your fault.
  64. Been creeped out by someone’s suggestive comments.
  65. Been betrayed by people who were supposed to keep you safe.
  66. Been told to “relax” by someone who offended you with their actions or comments.
  67. Been called “too emotional” or something similar, because of your gender or sexual identity.
  68. Been asked to accept that “Boys will be boys” is a valid defense of rape and assault.
  69. Been expected to accept outdated patriarchal notions of power and privilege at the expense of your personhood.
  70. Had microagressions directed at you because of your gender or sexual identity.
  71. Been talked over by a person in a position of power (or assumed power) over you.
  72. Received unwelcome comments or a sexualized nature about something you were wearing.
  73. Had someone refer to one or more of your body parts in a sexually inappropriate way.
  74. Seen an ad where your a person of your gender was presented (literally) as an object.
  75. Seen an add where a person of your gender was being sexualized to sell a product.
  76. Had your concerns about your body dismissed by a person in a position of authority.
  77. Watched a cartoon where someone of your gender was hyper-sexualized.
  78. Seen a Halloween costume that presented a common career in a one-sided sexualized way.
  79. Been told to “smile” whether you felt like it or not.
  80. Been called “baby,” “honey,” “sweetheart,” or some other term where doing so was diminutive or inappropriate.
  81. Been led to believe that reporting a sexual assault was not worth the consequences.
  82. Dressed down so that you could avoid attracting unwanted attention.
  83. Had a friend (or stranger) confide his or her story of sexual assault or rape to you.
  84. Been told you’re overreacting about something you believe warrants further investigation.
  85. Stayed awake at night tortured by thoughts of sexual assault.
  86. Formulated a fight-or-flight plan when you were in a situation where you felt sexual assault was a possibility.
  87. Been led to believe that someone else’s life, well-being, and future was more important than your own (not including your children).
  88. Been silent when you thought you should say something.
  89. Changed your clothes because you were concerned that you might give the wrong idea.
  90. Been told to be more modest.
  91. Been told to act more in line with the cultural expectations for your gender.
  92. Been silenced when you did say something.
  93. Been attacked for speaking up.
  94. Been attacked for not speaking up.
  95. Received threats for reporting or threatening to report a crime against your body.
  96. Been told that something you’re wearing is “too short,” “too tight,” “not short enough,” or “not tight enough.”
  97. Felt powerless to do anything in the face of power structures that prevent any real consequences from being doled out to perpetrators — especially well-connected, rich, white perpetrators.
  98. Been assaulted.
  99. Been raped.

Experienced something just as damaging but didn’t appear on this list of 100 because there are, quite literally, too many to list.

#whyididntreport #metoo #believethem

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