I don't do all these things in order to keep myself safe. I do them so when the seemingly inevitable occurs, maybe less people will blame me for it. Maybe it will be the "right" kind of rape or assault or harassment, then.

I'm talking about all the lies told to us about not going out alone at night, or never drinking in public alone (or even never getting drunk, period), never wearing headphones or talking on our phones when we are out, dressing modestly...those kinds of things. If only I were a "good" woman, bad things wouldn't happen to me. It's my fault I get so much shit at work, I chose to work in a male-dominated field.

I know others have expressed the same sentiment before, and much more eloquently, too. I just never had it really hit home until today. I think before I always at least pretended that doing these things made me safer. Now I no longer feel it's true.

But I keep doing them. Because if I don't and something happens, I know not only will others see me as culpable, but I will too.