Boys Will Be Boys

“Boys will be boys”, they say

As if somehow their biological makeup is an excuse that allows them to comment on my cosmetic kind

As if what hangs between their legs allows them to get in between mine

Because that’s just what boys do

They can’t help themselves

And what happens when those boys become men twenty years my senior?

Must I still accept it, appreciate it?

That a man thinks I’m attractive enough to bark at me as if I’m nothing more than a piece of meat?

It must be those animalistic instincts kicking in again.


“He had mental problems”, they say

As if the man that killed six girls at a university did not act out of blatant misogyny

As if we can deny that being a woman is becoming increasingly dangerous

Because we have to make up excuses as to why we can’t go out with a man

If we say we simply don’t want to, he may respond with ending our lives

What happened to that self-proclaimed “nice guy”?

Must we teach boys to expect rewards for being a decent human being?

And that that decency should only last until their advances are refused?

That’s a learned behavior, not an instinctual one.


“In ten years, you’ll be wishing for that kind of attention,” they say

As if I’d ever want to feel again the way I do now

As if I actually enjoy the pressure of the pepper spray clenched tightly in my fist as my friends and I walk to our car

The prickly feeling on my neck as another guy comments on my bikini at the beach

The shivers sent down my spine as some pervert whistles from his open window

That’s what I’ll be wishing for?

Not for the safety of the next generation of girls after me?

For the comfort of the teenagers who simply want to go out in public without being catcalled?

Because their instinct should not be to accept this harassment. 


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