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NICKI KINICKIE
writer & housewife blogging about life

DIARY OF AN ESSEX GIRL NOW LIVING IN NORFOLK. TALKING HONESTLY ABOUT LIFE, MOTHERHOOD AND MENTAL HEALTH.

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Wednesday, 12 December 2018

Women Shouldn't Have To Live In Fear.

Grace Millane, British Backpacker, Travelling alone, Staying safe, Living in fear,

My daughter is four years old and one day will be an adult.

That thought petrifies me a lot in many ways; I dread the day she no longer thinks of me as the centre of her world or tells me I am her best friend. I dread the day she no longer asks for cuddles and kisses and wants to sit on my lap while watching her favourite TV show or film.  I dread the day she begins keeping things to herself or has friends I may not know very well.



I dread her discovering social media. I dread the day she stops being the sweet, innocent little confident thing she is today and begins to be influenced by the world and people around her.

However this week all of those worries have taken a back seat. This week, in light of the tragic headlines, I can't help but be petrified by the idea of her setting off to explore the big wide world alone.

I want Savannah to do so many wondrous things with her life and intend to encourage her to do so. I would love her to travel the world and see some of the breathtaking wonders this planet has to offer. After leaving college I plummeted myself into a job I didn't really want because I didn't know what I should do next, before you know it I am 34, married with bills and stuff to pay for and a child in tow. It goes by in a blink.

When - and indeed if - Savannah settles down I want her to feel as though she has experienced a huge helping of what life - and the world - has to offer beforehand. I want her to feel fulfilled. Whether she does or not is of course down to her, she may decide instead she wants to pursue a career or dream of starting a family. Who knows. But should she want to go off on an amazing adventure to explore this weird and wonderful and beautiful world we live in she should be able to do so without the fear of being attacked, raped or murdered.

All of us should.

More and more young people than ever before are taking gap years to travel and that shouldn't stop. They should feel safe enough to travel whether it be alone or in a group and not fear that something untoward is going to happen to them.

Women should be able to meet up with a new love interest found on a dating app and not feel afraid to do so. Women should be able to walk home alone from a night out without carrying their house keys in a clenched fist with the biggest protruding between their fingers 'just in case'.

How women choose to live their lives, choose to dress, choose to spend their free time or choose to travel DOES NOT warrant them being attacked. If you as a male think it is OK to take advantage of a woman on her own or that what a woman is wearing means she is 'up for it' then the issue lies solely with YOU not her and you seriously need to reevaluate your way of thinking.

No one has the right to touch someone who does not wish to be touched.
No one has the right to make assumptions based on a womans actions or outfit.
NO ONE HAS THE RIGHT TO ATTACK ANOTHER HUMAN BEING.

Women - and men - have the right to feel safe.

Please, let's start talking more and calling others out on bad behaviour especially regarding mens views on women. Most men are great but there are some with a skewed view on how women should be treated. Decent men; call them out when you hear these arseholes talking about women in a derogatory way. Know the difference between banter and something else more sinister.
Women, let's stick together and tell each other where we are going, give each other rides when we're stuck and devise codewords for if we need to raise the signal for help.
Bars and restaurants should offer precautionary measures for their patrons that find themselves in an uncomfortable situation.

Women shouldn't have to live in fear and they certainly shouldn't be shamed for following their dreams and living their lives how they desire. I sadly doubt we will ever live in a world safe enough to not worry but we can still work bloody hard to try make it safer just by helping each other.

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