You will be called a whore.
You will be degraded verbally in the most obscene way possible.
This is to silence you. Because you are doing everything right. You may be standing up and speaking out for what you believe to be unjust. This is what you should be doing! You are not Ariel. You are not a princess. This life is not Disney.
Do not ever give your voice away to a man, to a government, to someone other than yourself. Let no one speak for you.
You will be called a bitch.
You will be called ugly.
You are neither of these things. You are intelligent and beautiful. Even well-behaved women are called sluts. And stupid. And ugly. Do not hide behind “good girl.” There is no such thing.
Do not let them crush your spirit.
The men we celebrate on pedestals with bronze busts and libraries were philanderers: Ben Franklin, Thomas Jefferson, JFK, Bill Clinton.
Hillary Clinton was called ugly, a ball-breaker, a bitch.
Bill Clinton has been called the best president the democrats have ever put on the ballot. He was the uniter, she was the bitch who didn’t know her place.
Even a woman broke up the Beatles.
And that slut Eve doomed us all with Original Sin.
Let no one stop you from controlling your body. That too is your right. We (not me, not your grandmother or your great-grandmother but the women before them) fought hard for that right.
Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. wanted African Americans to be judged on the content of their character, not the color of their skin. I, likewise, want the same for you. I want you to be judged by the content of your character, not your vagina. Not your uterus. Not your lipstick color.
When they call you names and wound you, it is because they are scared. Scared of your power. Do not let it stop you. Quiet you, take a step back, not fill a prescription.
Because if they do scare you, they have won.
They have won your acquiescence to whatever they want, which is in direct conflict to what you want: independence.
I support you, I will fight for you, I will love you, and I will lead by example. I, too, have been called a slut, ugly, a woman who didn’t know her place.
And, like the long line of women before me I refuse to let it break my stride, hold me down, or quiet my intentions. The world is wide open to you. It is there for your taking. Reach out and grab it. And brush your shoulder off.