Reportedly, over 53% children in India face sexual abuse. Unfortunately, most cases go unreported because of social stigma, lack of awareness and societal pressure. Often, children don’t realize they’re being abused till later stages in life when they become fully aware of child sexual abuse.
Everyday sexism, a project started in 2012 by a British feminist writer Laura Bates, catalogues everyday instances of sexism experienced by women across the world willingly shared by them with Bates. On April 21, Everyday Sexism started a hashtag on Twitter #WhenIWas and many decided to open up about experiencing child abuse. The stories are shocking.
“When I was 6, my dad use to touch me in ways I wasn’t comfortable with & wouldn’t stop when asked because he said my body belonged to him,” said one. It’s been found out that most children are abused at the hands of the people they know.
#WhenIWas 12 I was chased down the street by 2 fully grown men who “just wanted a kiss”
— Rochelle (@rochelleasquith) April 20, 2016
#WhenIWas 17 I was told in court that theres no way I was raped as I wasnt deemed attractive by my rapist. Tell me we don’t need feminism.
— am (@_xalana) April 19, 2016
#WhenIWas 15 I was raped on the beach by a guy I had a crush on. My friends watched from the car & didn’t do anything. I blamed myself.
— Roxy Lange (@RoxyLange) April 19, 2016
#WhenIWas 16 on a school trip I was drugged by a man at a hostel. He attempted to rape me. Police said I was old enough to know better.
— Lydia Hulme (@EllesieBean) April 19, 2016
#WhenIWas 16 i didn’t know how i was supposed to tell the boy on the bus to stop touching/groping me. i didn’t know that i could.
— sailor mourn ⚰ (@detricotage) April 19, 2016
#WhenIWas 5, I was sexually assaulted till I was 8, by a close family member. Still overcoming it and trying to be okay.
— Leeah the Spoonie (@POTSiePrincess_) April 19, 2016
#WhenIWas 7, I was sexually assaulted by an older boy and my school tried to suspend me for taking it to court
— cail (@caileyisdead) April 19, 2016
My 1st memory of street harassment: #WhenIWas 8 a cyclist veered 2wrds me to scare me,made a lewd remark, sped off. I’ll never 4get the fear
— Anna MM Vetticad (@annavetticad) April 19, 2016
#WhenIWas 17, I was raped by my first boyfriend. My school found out and tried to expel me.
— Ana Mardoll (@AnaMardoll) April 19, 2016
#wheniwas 8 my swimming instructor insisted he would help me learn how to float by holding me between the legs @EverydaySexism
— Luna (@mentalexotica) April 19, 2016
Though, there are many NGOs in the country working with children on the ground level to educate them on good touch and bad touch, there is still a long way to go to get people to report such cases in India.