Sexual assault isn’t a topic I cover very often on my blog. As our daughter continues to grow up, it’s a topic I do think about more. My wife and I have taken our kids all over the world. We want them to view the world as a smaller, more inclusive place. It’s our belief that by spending time in other cultures they won’t view things such as race, religion or sexual origins as reasons to think less of someone. At some point, my daughter will be old enough to travel on her own. I’m a bit of a helicopter dad, always wanting to protect my kids from the dangers of the world. There is a point in every parent’s life where that just isn’t possible any longer.
Talking About Sexual Assault
I read a great number of blogs on a daily basis. Jessie on a Journey is published by a woman who may not post as often as some of the bloggers in the travel space. However, she covers subjects that interest me from time to time, so I’m always curious when one of her posts pops up in my feed. Jessie recently talked about sexual assault on her blog. She shared some personal (scary) experiences that she had while traveling.
I’ve never been the victim of sexual assault. Even though sexual assault can happen to anyone (man or woman), my sense is that it happens much more frequently to women than men. I have not researched statistical evidence of this, though I imagine the numbers would frighten me.
The Final Two Pennies
I can’t say for certain I’d feel the same way about Jessie’s post if I didn’t have a daughter. I’d like to think I would. But, I think that’s immaterial to the reason I’m writing about her post today. Sexual assault is a very real thing that has lasting implications, scars that the casual observer can’t see. It’s something no human has the right to do to another human.
On top of sharing her own harrowing experiences, Jessie lays out some resources for people who are a victim of sexual assault. If you think you have nowhere to turn, you’re wrong. There’s always someone there willing to help you.
If I were to sum up my two pennies today, it would be advice for my daughter when she leaves on that first solo trip without her family. It’s easy to say, “Be Careful”. There’s more than that. It’s my job as a parent to make sure I teach you ways to be careful, to avoid situations where you might be in harm. As well, it’s my job to make sure you know how to protect yourself if someone does try to harm you. And, it’s my job to make sure you know that if you’re ever in the position that someone tries to harm you, it’s not your fault. We’ve still got some time for me to make sure you have those tools. But, time has a way of slipping away from us. Jessie’s post is a reminder that I’ve got more work to do.
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