This is an important thread, sweetie. I'll ramble a little bit, too, ok? :P
First of all, I have had friends who were physically breathtakingly beautiful who definitely had to endure the mistreatment spoken of in above posts. Not only that, but members of their same sex were disgustingly jealous and hateful towards them, too. However, this kind of lewd mistreatment happens to people who are "not beautiful". (and I struggle with even typing that, because beauty comes from the heart and soul....I have a really hard time with labels.) One girl that I remember so clearly from school was teased mercilessly and called "ugly" by our classmates. She was in the awkward preteen stage, very gangly and thin with long arms and legs, really bad acne, and her hair had a huge cowlick in the front which would never cooperate....to compensate, her mother kept her hair cut very short. She had no self-confidence; and my heart aches to remember her and her torment and her fears. She rarely would make eye contact with anyone. I spent a lot of time at her house, and I can remember her brother was such a pig....he grabbed her inappropriately, hit her all the time, made comments about her breasts....one time he pelted us with M&M's hard enough to hurt...he was such an ass. But it wasn't just her brother....the boys at school liked grabbing her too or making sexual comments. It was as if the mean comments about her physical appearance wasn't quite enough, they had to try to be even meaner to her, so they went after her that way too. She eventually grew up, her mother took her to a determatologist and got her acne under control, her hair grew....but the thing is, she was never "ugly". I always saw beauty when I looked at her. My feelings didn't change when people started saying that "the ugly duckling had become a swan." She was still the same person, and so were the morons who tormented her.
Ok. Thinking about this from my own personal experience....I can remember being a teenager sitting at the dinner table, and my breasts being the topic of conversation. My mother was jealous of me in many ways, and she always made a big deal of really ridiculous things. She always pointed out my breasts....which really are not spectacular, btw, they're just everyday average breasts....and pretty soon in the family, it was something to joke about, talk about, tease me about, and my stepfather to drool over....my breasts seemed to take on a life of their own. This apparently gave him or any of his cronies free license to grab or touch my breasts any time they wanted to. I always dressed in oversized shirts and jeans....always trying to minimize and draw attention away from my body. It didn't matter though, and it didn't help to save me from being the object of sexual comments or abuse, not at all. At this time in my life, my stepfather also would make me put on heavy makeup, very short skirts and high heels and go out out with him to a restaurant or bar, as if we were a couple. I noticed that certain men always grope or feel or whatever innapropriately...the only difference in wearing baggy shirts and jeans or the short skirt outfits was the comments. I got a lot more disgusting comments, dressed in his whore outfits. But it seems to me that the segment of the population that gropes, feels, and forces themselves on others and makes these types of filthy comments, will do it no matter what. Also, a few years ago, I starved myself...literally....and lost 70 pounds. I did it in 5 months. I was tired of being overweight, yet afraid that once free of my "fat shell", I would attract unwanted attention from men. In my personal experience, I didn't really notice a difference, except for one pervert's comment to me in a store when I was wearing a summer dress with spaghetti straps....otherwise, I didn't notice a big difference in the way men treated me. My personal belief is that sexual predators do not only go after those who are physically beautiful. That's only my opinion. I do know how it feels though, to want to hide so you're not noticed. But in my own experience, there doesn't really seem to be much rhyme or reason to the thinking of a sexual predator.
And also, I have also had the great joy of knowing that there ARE men out there who are wonderful....loving, caring and compassionate...they are not all scumbags. I have been very blessed, as I know some of you have, with wonderful guy friends.
This is all just my rambling. This is a great thread for all of us to think and work through how we feel about these issues.
Lots of love,
(Edited by Natasha at 11:06 am on April 10, 2002)