Until the late 15th century the word ‘girl’ simply means a child of either sex. Boys, where they had to be differentiated, were referred to as ‘knave girls’ and girls in the female sense were called ‘gay girls’. Equally a boy could be a ‘knave child’ and a girl a ‘maiden child’. The term ‘boy’ was reserved for servants or ‘churls’
So proud and excited to announce this new project I’m running: “I Believe You / It’s Not Your Fault.”
It started with a group of women writers talking about the stories we hear from our daughters and how similar they are to the things we went through (and, often, still do): being harassed, being groped, being raped, being stalked, being demeaned, feeling confused, feeling alone, blaming ourselves. Why is there this idea, we wondered, that adolescence and adulthood are distant and discrete? Why do kids (of all genders) have to feel alone when there’s an army of adults (of all genders) out there who’ve been through the exact same shit?
How do you get through to kids in small towns, kids with shitty families, kids being bombarded with oppressive ideas, kids taking their first steps into destructive cycles, and tell them, “I believe you, it’s not your fault, I’ve been through it too”?
"Could we write letters?" someone asked. And so we are.
Our goal is to be a resource, a wall of solidarity, and frank, relatable safe space for teenagers dealing with the perils of adolescence, particularly rape culture and all its trappings. Our contributions so far have blown me away. Every single one of them is an absolute powerhouse, and I can’t thank our brave, brilliant contributors enough.
Friends: I would love it so much if you would follow the blog, share it with young people in your life, and think about contributing yourself! There’s a ton of information (submission guidelines, etc) on the FAQ page.