The #MeToo movement is not only about women and girls. Men and boys have suffered sexual assaults, sexual abuse, harassment, and intimidation.
Here, men are sharing their pain.
#MeToo – “From ages six to 12, my seven-years-older brother solicited my participation in sexual touching, mutual masturbation, nakedness. Secrecy was sworn.
“The results: Shyness as a kid in school, never feeling part of anything. Seeking similar experiences with my friends and rejected.
“I turned to alcohol at 13. It was difficult to date girls. When I married, I had lots of barriers in sex, only went through the motions.
“Career unfulfilling, difficult with authority - unless I held the reins. Separated. Quit job, abuse "remembered" all within days. Went to Alcoholics Anonymous, still sober after 13 years.
“Stuff that still dwells: A blurry line between the feelings of Like, Love and Lust.”
#MeToo – “I was around age five. A friend's dad was dropping us kids off from an outing and asked me to wait in the car. Once alone, he started to very creepily rub my leg while talking to me.
“He kept rubbing higher and higher up my thigh... it makes me shudder just to remember it.
“I was in shock. I remember feeling like puking.
“Thankfully, I somehow knew that this was wrong and perverted and before he could react or stop me, I got out of the car faster than I've maybe ever moved and ran into my house.
“I never told my parents about this.
“The memory has never gone away.
“He never showed up again.
“When older, I always worried about what his daughter might have gone through...
“I simply can't imagine what all these people, mostly women, must go through in their lives after they've been abused/assaulted/raped outright, when for me, this memory has stuck with me my whole life.
“My son is only six months old, but I will teach him over time how to respect others in this way.”
#MeToo – “I had more than one babysitter (females, ages 16-19) who touched me inappropriately or made inappropriate sexual comments, some of which I was too young to really understand.
"This is our secret," was what I was told.
“I was embarrassed and uncomfortable. It led to a lack of trust with babysitters.
“My Grade One teacher had a few of us boys over on Saturday mornings for tutoring.
“She was an older, very trusted woman. Yet she broke that trust, again with inappropriate touching, discussing our genitals, and watching us when we went to the bathroom.
“None of this conduct was ever done at school. I was uncomfortable, embarrassed.
“One of the boys told his parents and got punished for lying. They didn’t believe that teacher would do such things.
“I never said anything except I kept telling my parents I did not want to go. Eventually they listened.
“I was in the hospital when I was almost 13. A group of doctors came into my room, discussed my case, and left.
“A woman doctor returned, closed the curtain around my bed, put her finger to her lips (shhh) and proceed to "examine" (fondle) my genitals.
“She told me to lay quietly. When her name was called she told me not to say anything and quickly left.
“I realized several years later that she’d molested me.
“I had a hard time for YEARS being examined by a female doctor and even avoided needed medical attention because I seemed to re-live that experience.
“It goes back to the molestation.”
#MeToo – “On behalf of two men who can’t write their own stories, this was sent by their sister:
“I have two brothers who both committed suicide - one intentional, one by alcohol abuse - who were molested as altar boys by a Catholic Priest.
“As the youngest in the family, I was shielded from this knowledge until recently – many years after they died.
“It makes me physically ill to think of my brilliant, beautiful, dimpled, blue-eyed brothers being led like lambs to slaughter in the Church.
“I hate my parents for ignoring it and covering it up. I blame them for not getting my brothers the help and therapy they deserved so they didn't make such bad choices in their lives when they were adults.
“My father, 91, still sits in the front pew at Catholic Mass every Sunday.
“Sadly, my brothers aren't around to tell their own story.”
Tip of the day:
The pain of sexual assault and abuse knows no gender.