Everyday Victim Blaming

challenging institutional disbelief around domestic & sexual violence and abuse

Blamed for my assault

In a recent twitter discussion with @everydaysexism i shared how i had been sexually harassed and then assaulted as a school child by a man on my route home aged 13 and that the street harassment from men where ever i went has never really ended.

I am 33 now so the last 20 years of my life have been under male gaze. A man instantly tweeted at me that i needed to take some responsibility for all this because i was an "attention seeker" for having a purple streak in my hair.

Irrespective of the fact i was sharing childhood sexual assault, he made me entirely responsible for it and could not accept that I could dye a little bit of my hair for any reason other than to want men to rape/taunt/harass/threaten me. I apparently ask for it and must "love it".

So there are men out there who sit and wait for survivors to speak out to slut-shame and slap them down. And yes, you'll notice that my "attention-whoring" hairstyle in my thirties is retroactively responsible for the actions of a man 20 years previous when i had no colour in my hair as a 13 year old school child. Some people will go to any lengths not to place liability firmly at the abusers door.



We do NOT give permission for posts published as personal experiences to be reproduced, translated or otherwise published elsewhere. We will not contact people who submit their personal experiences on behalf of journalists, bloggers or other third sector organisations. These testimonies remain the intellectual copyright of their authors and must be treated with the ethical guidelines used by academics for research involving human subjects. Our full guidelines can be read here.

Comments are currently closed.

One thought on “Blamed for my assault

  • Liz says:

    There are a lot of people who take the easy way out by blaming the victims of abuse rather than placing the blame where it belongs At the perpetrators door.
    One of my tweets to Everyday Sexism attracted a man who just wanted an argument and to lecture me on what i said about Italian patriarchy. And tried to tell me things that i already know. When i tweeted that i know more about that subject than him (due to half my family being Italian) he STILL insisted that he knew more than me.
    People like this will do anything to try and silence women who speak out even if its just anonymously online.

    In your case he was placing the blame on you retrospectively. He was gaslighting you. This is a technique that is often used by abusers.
    I think you are brave to speak out. Wear your purple streak with pride because NONE of it is your fault. xx