We can say no
There is a cultural change in progress. It is messy. Men are learning to see the patriarchy they have been privileged to live in. Women are learning to no longer be subjects of sexual and predatory practice.
It is very early days in this change. It is a super complex situation. I am under no means attempting in this short blog to address all of the complexity, the nuance, the legitimate suffering that occurs on both sides.
What I know is that a very first step for all of us to learn is to speak up to the inappropriate, as soon as an inappropriate event has occurred.
Inappropriate use of words, of touch, of gesture or innuendo. We can say no, this is not acceptable to me. Indeed we must say no at this point. For to not is to endorse in silence the move to a higher order of transgression as acceptable.
In Syntropic World we call this a commitment to clean communication. We, as individuals, take responsibility for our own boundaries, our own charged experience, most importantly when the charge is very small, well before it becomes significant.
A bully will only bully someone who can be bullied. A bully rarely picks on someone who has greater physical or ‘being’ strength over them.
To say no, or to point out a patriarchal, dominating gesture, often spoken or acted out through a level of unawareness, as not acceptable, is to be a part of the change.
It is also to set a boundary. We do not have to do this through abusive language, for abuse, even of language and gesture, begets more abuse.
As the person saying no, we might be prepared for a backlash.
Be prepared for this.
For to stay silent is to be complicit.
We need to take responsibility for our compliance in these situations. We can also learn self defence, a choice to have some level of response and confidence when a situation gets out of hand.
*I am deliberately writing this as a non-gendered piece.
Photo taken March 21st 2021
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