Kim's Blogs

Boys Will Be Boys


 

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~I was one of the few girls in middle school who developed breasts way too early. Large breasts. Woman breasts. Breasts that boys gawked at, pointed to, and giggled about.

 

I know this is absolutely true, because one afternoon as I was standing in the lunch line at West Junior High, I overheard B.B. talking about me. Clearly and crisply, I heard Sisto, big boobies, and she’s really easy.

 

Still, writing this today, evokes the sensation of horror and humiliation. To make things worse, I pretended I didn’t know what he was talking about and continued being friends with him. I mean, isn’t that the way boys talk anyhow? Doesn’t that mean they like you?

 

Look, after all these years, I remember. I’ve written about these same sexual, demeaning comments in past essays.

 

She’s. Really. Easy.  ( definition, ‘she’s really stupid.’ )

 

What does that mean; a 12 year old girl with breasts will give away her body, her soul, her virginity?

 

I started to wear a Calvin Klein jean jacket to school to cover up. Even on 80 above summer days, I utilized the blue material as protection to stop the teasing, the staring.

 

Boys will be boys. This is how they behave, so I was the one who had to change.

 

When I looked in the mirror, I didn’t see who I should’ve been, who I desired to be. The poet. The writer. The brain.

 

I saw an imposter, a phony, a plastic girl who was adapting, or trying to adapt to the hostile environment she was in.

 

 

I. remember.
 

Now, you may be saying to yourself, “Come on, man, this is middle school. So what. Who cares what happened back then. Kids are resilient.”

 

The thing is, it’s still happening. MORE. And often. And every single day. Read the newspapers. Listen to the news. It’s happening with our own Presidential Nominee.

 

“Grab them by the P*ssy.”

 

Oh, well, boys will be boys, right? We will adapt, right? This is locker talk, right?

 

Wrong. Wrong. Wrong.

 

At my 20 year reunion, I saw B.B. standing with a group of guys near the mini bar. My hands started to sweat, my heart beat faster. I could even smell West Junior’s waxed floors, the old text books.

 

 

As I walked past them, I semi smiled. I had nothing to say to any of them. Not now. Not ever.

 

“Hey, Sisto,” B.B. yelled after me. “I see you still have big boobs.”

 

I kept walking, my heels clicking on the tiled floor with purpose and deliberation. I then turned around as I never did in middle school and said,

 

“And I see you’re still an asshole.”

 

—Dear, Reader, this is a true story about finally using & finding my VOICE. And now I can’t stop. I will never stop. Have you experienced a B.B. in your life? If so, have you confronted him/her?


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52 Comments

  • Reply
    ladyfi
    October 21, 2016 at 8:59 am

    Burn! And good for you – saying ‘Boys will be boys’ or ‘Girls will be girls’ (about bitchy women/girls at school – is never okay as it’s expressions like these that excuse such behaviour and allow it to carry on…

  • Reply
    Trish
    October 21, 2016 at 9:00 am

    Proud of you- bullies suck! Xoxo

  • Reply
    Tammi
    October 21, 2016 at 9:32 am

    as one of “those girls” myself in middle school, I know what this feels like. I wish I had your courage. You are my new hero… for this and so many reasons 🙂

    • Reply
      My Inner Chick
      October 22, 2016 at 7:20 am

      You do have the courage.
      Don’t you know that already?! xxx

  • Reply
    Debbie D.
    October 21, 2016 at 10:32 am

    You tell’em, Kim! That was a great response. The asshole never grew up, did he?

    • Reply
      My Inner Chick
      October 22, 2016 at 7:21 am

      Nope,
      I’ve come to the conclusion that many people never change. x

  • Reply
    Minnesota Prairie Roots
    October 21, 2016 at 11:19 am

    Bravo to you, Kim, for calling B.B. out, for naming him as the jerk he was and still is today.

    “Only middle school” scarring can last a life-time. I know. I was bullied. I have written about it, too, but not as pointedly as you. Maybe it’s time I did.

    • Reply
      My Inner Chick
      October 22, 2016 at 7:22 am

      Write about it.
      it allows others to tell their stories, too! xx

  • Reply
    Liz
    October 21, 2016 at 11:31 am

    Brava! Way to speak the truth.

  • Reply
    Barbara
    October 21, 2016 at 12:24 pm

    I think the best thing to come out of this election, aside from getting the first woman president, is shining a light on this insane rape culture and sexual abuse. Awareness is key and everyone, whether they agree or not, is aware now of how bad it has been and still is.
    xob

    • Reply
      My Inner Chick
      October 22, 2016 at 7:23 am

      Still is.
      If we all stand up, speak out, rise up…
      we can change the world! x

  • Reply
    DAWN
    October 21, 2016 at 1:22 pm

    Hope he was satisfactorily mortified.

  • Reply
    Alina
    October 21, 2016 at 1:33 pm

    I definitely can relate, it was the most horrifying thing that happened to me in middle school. I’m 29 years old and I still am self conscience about the size of breasts… nice post.

    • Reply
      My Inner Chick
      October 22, 2016 at 7:25 am

      Alina,
      Isn’t that horrid…
      that we need to still be self-conscience about the size of our breasts?
      It really pisses me off.
      Miss you. x

  • Reply
    Jodi Aman
    October 21, 2016 at 1:59 pm

    So glad you sad that!

  • Reply
    Elephant's Child
    October 21, 2016 at 3:01 pm

    Yay you. And his big mouth is bigger than your breasts.
    Sticks and stones will break my bones but words will never hurt me is an out and out LIE. Who of us doesn’t wear the scars from vicious words. Decades later.
    Hugs.

    • Reply
      My Inner Chick
      October 22, 2016 at 7:26 am

      LIE
      Lie
      Lie
      Words are more Powerful than Fists.
      Xxx

  • Reply
    nan @ lbddiaries
    October 21, 2016 at 4:51 pm

    While I can’t go back and confont the many guys I’m telling about on my blog from my past starting with that boss I had at 15 who exposed himself to me, I still win now. Why? Because I can talk about it knowing I did nothing wrong, each and every time.

    The only person who knew every story was my mother. I just tucked away and ignored every incident until the poison of it boiled out of me years latet as I told Alpha Hubby about them. They also came out during a session with my life and health coach. MAN did the incidents dig their claws in back then. How interesting that BB apparently hadn’t changed at all!!

    • Reply
      My Inner Chick
      October 22, 2016 at 7:26 am

      I’m so happy you found Alpha Hubby, Nan! 🙂 xx

  • Reply
    Peta Kaplan
    October 21, 2016 at 5:52 pm

    Well done!!! I applaud you for not just swallowing the taunts years later, but for taking action and giving it back! Yes!

    I agree that taunting from school days can linger with us for decades. As young children we are all impressionable and vulnerable. One cannot underestimate the damage.

    As the country moves forward to having it’s first woman president ! hopefully positive change in attitudes towards women will evolve and have a “trickle down” effect.

    Peta

    • Reply
      My Inner Chick
      October 22, 2016 at 7:29 am

      Peta,
      I remember in school if a boy punched you
      in the arm- it meant ‘he liked you.’
      The beginning of DV, belittling, & looking at girls as ‘less than.’
      I can’t believe we all fell for that sh*t.
      Anyhow.
      Yes, a woman president.
      Crossing my fingers! xx

  • Reply
    Angie@Angie's Recipes
    October 22, 2016 at 12:50 am

    Awesome that you said it right to his face!! And what’s so bad about having big boobs? I wish I had them….
    Have a great weekend!
    Angie

    • Reply
      My Inner Chick
      October 22, 2016 at 7:30 am

      LOL.
      at that time, I DID’NT.
      It took me a LONG long time
      to become comfortable inside my own skin and
      Boobs! x

  • Reply
    Kim Gagnon
    October 22, 2016 at 9:43 am

    Good for you Kimmy!!!
    Love and miss you!!💋

    • Reply
      My Inner Chick
      October 22, 2016 at 10:02 am

      Miss you, too.
      Life is just too fast, right? xxxx

  • Reply
    Dad
    October 22, 2016 at 12:33 pm

    I ‘m glad what you said to that jerk, sometimes when you open your mouth, you show how stupid you really are. He was same person even after 20 years )STILL A JERK).
    LOVE YOU
    DAD

  • Reply
    Marie Kléber
    October 22, 2016 at 2:13 pm

    This is the best answer ever Kim!
    I hate when people are saying “they are just boys” or “it will pas”. It doesn’t.

    Much love Kim. Glad you found your VOICE!
    xoxoxo

  • Reply
    Balroop Singh
    October 22, 2016 at 8:40 pm

    Kim, at the age of 12, we don’t know how to react, what to say and whom to share with such sentiments. Insensitivity sticks to some males as they take pride in it! We must hurl it back at them whenever we meet them after growing up. Love you dear friend. You are awesome.

  • Reply
    Mandy
    October 23, 2016 at 1:27 am

    Kim, what an arsehole BB (Big Bully) is. Urgh! You probably find he is one of those who secretly has the hugest issues who takes it out on others. What an idiot!
    Love and hugs to you darling Kim. I am slowly prepping for my trip to Kenya and London. Wish I could meet you in London.
    Have a beautiful week friend.
    🙂 Mandy xoxoxo

    • Reply
      My Inner Chick
      October 23, 2016 at 6:46 am

      OOOOOOO, I so wish I could meet you, my sweet Mandy…
      for wine and conversation! xxxx

  • Reply
    Lisa Thomson
    October 23, 2016 at 4:03 am

    Good one, Kim! Yes, I was called ‘slut’ and c**k tease. I didn’t even know what those words meant. Something else, decent men are disgusted by this talk. Men like DT are an embarrassment to their gender. So glad you had that chance to put B in his place!

    • Reply
      My Inner Chick
      October 23, 2016 at 6:47 am

      Together…
      We can CHANGE the Universe!
      You already are, sweets! xxx

  • Reply
    Debbie
    October 23, 2016 at 9:14 am

    It makes me sad, Kim, to hear that you had to go through such mortification. I know it’s not comfort, but my sis had the very same “problem” yet, even then, she was “mouthy” enough to put the nay-sayers in their place. Good for you, finally finding your voice, dear!! Nobody — man or woman — should have to undergo such talk!

    • Reply
      My Inner Chick
      October 23, 2016 at 9:24 am

      Women are objectified every. single. day.
      This was just one story out of many.
      Don’t be sad! Be happy I’m strong enough to tell my story and use my VOICE))))!!! xx

  • Reply
    totally Caroline
    October 23, 2016 at 12:14 pm

    I was terribly bullied all through middle school, and even though I’m an adult now, I know it effects who I am today. I never had an opportunity to confront anyone, nor do i wish to. I was not objectified, but i was made to feel very inferior and ashamed. They were some really tough years for me.

  • Reply
    Marcia @ Menopausal Mother
    October 24, 2016 at 6:38 pm

    Kudos to you! I’m so proud of you for standing up to that jerk! I suffered much of the same crap, especially in high school, but mostly for my height ( I was always the tallest one). Kids are so damn cruel and not all are resilient. The nasty comments about my size still haunt me to this day.

  • Reply
    Chris Carter
    October 24, 2016 at 7:45 pm

    OH YESSSSSSS!!!!!! What a total asshole… wow wow WOW. I’m more appalled that he would say that to you as an adult than even the crap he pulled as a kid. Shame on HIM. And these men and BOYS are EVERYWHERE. And.. This happens EVERYWHERE to SO MANY young girls and women. Oh gosh, I’d really have to think through ALL the times I felt violated, disrespected, dismissed, negated, used… to name a few.

    I’d like to go back and say the same to all of them.

    I am so freaking HAPPY you called him out and you keep using that voice LOUD AND CLEAR…

    And we all will join you… WE MUST.

  • Reply
    Jeri
    October 24, 2016 at 7:57 pm

    I never think of what to say to the BB’s in my life right away. The comeback always comes to me when it’s too late. Maybe I will get my BB moment on of these days…

  • Reply
    PorkStar
    October 24, 2016 at 8:18 pm

    Ha! Awesome response, you rock!

  • Reply
    solidgoldcreativity
    October 25, 2016 at 2:15 am

    Hi Kimmy. The Landmark Forum is all about this. These pivotal moments, some overt like this one, some tiny and insignificant, that occur to us from the age of about 3 to early adulthood. What they have in common is that we decide something about ourselves, about the world, and then we live out the rest of our lives through these decisions. The decision you made then, or in an earlier incident when you were a little girl, was about not being smart/being stupid. In my BB-type incident, the decision I made was “I don’t belong”, and when I look in my life that decision is everywhere. xxx

  • Reply
    Annette Connelly
    October 26, 2016 at 11:37 am

    HA! Good answer! I hope he felt small, embarrassed and convicted.

    I’m considering confronting my ex husband by writing him a letter. If I were to call him well, he’d just hand up on me.

    Little Chickie

  • Reply
    Kisha Ward
    October 28, 2016 at 6:14 am

    Whoo!! That was one of the best responses you could’ve given. You kept it classy while still giving a bully a piece of your mind. He sucked then and still sucks now after 20 years..wow!

  • Reply
    Sandra Garth
    October 28, 2016 at 3:12 pm

    B.B. sounds like a lame excuse for a man and I’m so proud of you for handling him the way you did. You are an angel and inspiration to so many. Thank you in big ol gigantic bunches!

  • Reply
    Anna Johnston
    November 13, 2016 at 4:41 pm

    Oh Gawd… the memories of that time at school & the way we felt we had to adapt to cope with boys harassment hey, & then I turned around & followed my love of all things food, events & hospitality & yet so much of those first 4 years of chef apprenticeship time was putting up with, coping, finding hard arsed sassy girl back chat to those crazy sexist male chefs who I guess never progressed much at all from their school days, emotionally & socially. Over it I am…..!!!
    Well done you for such a great come-back girlfriend.

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