My Schedule Is Full

Senior Editor: Ashlyn Richardson

Women are busy. Women wake up each morning, go about our routine, and suit up to take on whatever day has in store for us. We go to work, we go to school, we take care of ourselves and the people we love. Women are busy. But despite how busy we are, there is one constant in our lives: the small adjustments we make every day to ensure our schedule is perfectly sound, to ensure our day ends with the same peace it began with. I am not talking about the schedule that starts with a blaring alarm and ends with us tucked safely in bed. I’m talking about the schedule we create for ourselves in order to ensure we do not get raped. The schedule that guarantees our lives are not put in danger. The schedule people have forced us to create so that we do not fall victim to the evils of the people who take advantage of 1 in 7 women. This is rape schedule.

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Anti-rape poster, courtesy of Creative Commons 

The feminist theory of rape schedule is real, it is living, and it is breathing. Women must restrict and alter aspects of our lives in order to quell the innate fear of sexual assault we have. Armando Alvarez, a senior at Woodstock High School was asked about if he noticed the changes in women’s lives they make and he said, “Honestly, I never noticed it. I do know that women’s lives revolve around their objectification though, so it makes sense.” It does make sense. It makes sense that our days start with the contemplation of outfit choices, wondering to ourselves if the little bit of skin will draw too much attention and proceed with silent prayer as we walk to work or school and cars speed past while the anonymous voices shout, “Hey baby, let me see a smile!”  It makes sense that we walk to our cars with our keys clutched in our hands like daggers ready to strike, and quickly pick up the pace when dark figures appear in the shadows. It makes sense that we sit alone or near other women when traveling on public transportation, just trying to get to our destination without having a sweaty groin rub against us. It makes sense that we walk home from bars and clubs in large groups as if we are hyenas ready to pounce. It all makes sense because it is our reality, it is our life. Each day, we take subconscious measures to avoid rape, to avoid the brutal assault on our well being that cannot always be combatted. As Jessica Valenti, a college student and writer said, “We take precautions. While taking precautions is certainly not a bad idea, the fact that certain things women do are so ingrained into our daily routines is truly disturbing.”

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Viral tweet of a quote from signs at the women’s march, courtesy of Twitter

Unfortunately, this is how women must live their lives. We must constantly be on guard, constantly be alert, constantly be award. Makayla Powell, a senior at Woodstock High School, said, “As a high schooler, I obviously don’t feel scared going to school every day because I’m surrounded by people, but if I ever go out to Atlanta or go to the mall, I know I can’t go by myself. I know the risk I’m taking.” Its sickening. The fact that women must alter their daily lives in order to avoid being preyed upon by people who see them as objects is the norm. We go through each day of our lives with the thought in the back of our head that we must avoid what every woman fears the most. Rape schedule is what each women live by. It is reality. It is life.

Comments

  1. Doris M. says:

    It’s even hard to escape people making sexual comments online, which just reinforces the rape schedule even more.

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