i have trained in martial arts for around 9 years. i know how to use a bokkun (wooden rod) to fight. i am a bodybuilder. and yet, despite all of my physical precautions, i still cannot bring myself to do anything more than give men on the street the finger when they make kissing noises, when they honk their horns at me, when they call out. people seem to think ‘defending yourself’ will help. it hasn’t. my intelligence hasn’t helped either. i’m a member of a website where i help people to learn english, and i constantly get harassed by older men asking me about my virginity, about if i want to send them pictures. none of my good qualities and hobbies have protected me from misogyny and i cannot pretend they do any longer.
I am from developing third World country with hard sexism in it. If I am not marry till 23 here people will be sorry at you. If I am not have kids till 25, I will be old maiden and people will have decry me. If I study programming people will decry me and send to sell. If I learn new languages people will ask why it’s important to me and advice me to marry. If I study in Uni, boys will advice me to stop study and to find a good husband. If our women’ media teach us how to be good wives and mothers and no words about career. If you have not so much chances to emigrate to the West coz of many visa limitations. But I decided to live a live that I want despite of gender biases. I will do what I want and I will marry when I want. P. S. My country isn’t Muslim.