Part 22: CES Letter Polygamy & Polyandry Questions [Section C]
by Sarah Allen
Before we dive in, I want to talk about something personal. When I originally wrote this post, it was with a very heavy heart. A few days before I sat down to write it, a woman who was a former acquaintance and coworker of mine—a part of my larger friend group at that job but not someone I was particularly close to personally—was abducted and murdered by a man we vaguely knew, another coworker of ours from a different department. Obviously, I was pretty shaken by all of that, and that friend group and I were shocked and devastated. She was a very kind, generous woman, and she will be missed.
The reason I’m sharing this personal information is because this is the part of the Letter that starts getting a little more vicious with its allegations of mistreatment and abuse of women. As a woman myself, I find these accusations particularly offensive when compared to actual violence toward women, such as what my old coworker suffered that week.
I have been sexually harassed in the past at school and at work. Over the years, I have been catcalled. I have had multiple customers hitting on me while I’m just trying to do my job. I have had men get mad at me when I declined to date them. I have been followed by strange men on the street, all the way up the block to a corner market and then all the way back down into my hotel, to the point where I had to get the front desk clerk to get rid of them for me. I had a complete stranger fixate on me over a Facebook post, find my personal information, and call me at all hours of the day and night. I have been forcibly kissed and groped in an elevator by a stranger in a foreign country where I had no way to fight him off. And I am no supermodel. I am an introvert who blends in with the crowd. Most of you wouldn’t look twice at me if you saw me walking past because I don’t stand out. Even my name is so blandly generic that you can’t Google it without further information. But even I’ve had my fair share of mistreatment, and I know many other women who have had similar experiences.