I always remember growing up and being the one to stay home while my brother went out at night and my dad telling me, “It’s dangerous for you to be out at night so you’re not going.”
I always tried explaining to him that if it was dangerous for me it was dangerous for my brother to be out as well and my father’s response was always,
“Yeah, but you’re a girl and your brother is a guy so he can defend himself because he’s strong and you are not.”
Growing up in a Hispanic household my parents, mostly my father, were always strict with me. They were afraid if I was to go out I would never come back home to them.
But now that I am 21 years old and look back at all the things that I have been through and I have come to realize that my parents sheltering me did me no good. I, like many females, have been through it all regardless of all the safety precautions that I tried my best to take.
I never went out by myself unless it was to work, where I was sexually assaulted, which is a “professional” place to be. I’m sure if I had grown up to learn to defend myself, like my brother, I probably would have had different outcomes from situations like the one I was in.
We cannot let others shelter us by telling us we can’t do certain things because were “weak” or because we are “females”.
I’m tired of hearing others tell me I’m soft, brittle and delicate. I can be much more, I can be tough, I can be strong and I can be a female while I do so.
How many times do we have to hear sayings like, “You shouldn’t be walking or traveling alone,” or when I go to the gym and a guy sees me going towards the lifts, “Oh hey, let me put that down for you, you might hurt yourself,” after I’ve done it myself so many times before.
Most parents at times disregard that while they are trying to protect us they are doing us harm. They are gently causing us to lose what could make us strong and taking away our freedom of expression.
Women can do anything that men can, we can lift ourselves back up with our own hands. We can be whatever we want to be, a lawyer, a wrestler, a bodyguard, a police officer, a chef and so many more.
Society should stop sheltering females and be aware that they are only making us more vulnerable and instead they should encourage us to be stronger, brave and express ourselves.
I’m not saying they should let us do as we please but acknowledge us with the real world instead of trying to keep us away from it.
Let’s stop sheltering.