The Beauty Of “Me Too”

This is Day 20 of my Write 31 Days series for 2017: 31 Days of Kintsugi.
For an index of all the posts in the series, please click here.
Also linking with Five Minute Friday, where the prompt word is “discover.”

friends(image courtesy of Sanja Gjenero, rgbstock.com)

If you’ve been on social media at all this week, I’m sure you will have seen several posts containing the hashtag #MeToo.

For those who may have missed it, it started with a tweet from actress Alyssa Milano, following the allegations of sexual harassment made against the film producer Harvey Weinstein:

“If all the women who have been sexually harassed or assaulted wrote “Me too.” as a status, we might give people a sense of the magnitude of the problem.”

It certainly did- in the space of two days, over 12 million people had shared these words, and of course this is likely only a small proportion of those affected as many will choose not to share or feel unable to do so.

While it was Alyssa Milano’s tweet that caused it to go viral, the “Me too” movement was actually begun over ten years ago by the activist Tarana Burke.  (You can read more here.)

I love her description of the impact of these two simple words:

“On one side, it’s a bold declarative statement that “I’m not ashamed”…  On the other side, it’s a statement from survivor to survivor that says, “I see you, I hear you, I understand you, and I’m here for you, or I get it.””

Whether we’re talking about sexual assault and harassment or another topic, who doesn’t love to hear those two words, especially when they have shared something difficult?

How amazing is it to discover that you’re not the only one?

I saw the power of these words on a much smaller scale too earlier this week.  I was leading at a discipleship conference for teenagers.  A significant proportion of them had come by themselves, knowing no-one, and some found this quite a challenge.  One of the most beautiful moments was at dinner one night when one girl spoke up and said, “I want to make friends, but I’m really introverted and I find it hard.”  Straight away a chorus of “Me too” echoed round the table, and I could feel several of the teenagers begin to relax as they suddenly discovered they were not alone in their struggles.

In a culture that tries to hide brokenness it is not easy to show our scars.  It is not easy to admit that we have been sexually assaulted, or that we struggle with making friends.  Those things are not beautiful, and it’s easy to convince ourselves that no-one wants to see or hear.

But while there is no beauty in the situations themselves, there is amazing beauty to be found when one brave person has the courage to open up and show their scars and others stand with them saying “Me too.”

Suddenly we discover community and we no longer feel alone- we are seen, and we are understood.  Our brokenness no longer seems like something shameful which must be hidden at all costs, because we see that others are broken too.

Shame recedes as what was hidden in the darkness is brought into the light; courage grows as one by one we speak these words of power and stand against the darkness; hope rises as we see that we are not alone, and a beautiful work of Kintsugi is created before us.

It may not fix the issue or change the world, but it can let us know that we’re not alone.

We may not have all the answers, but we can move forward together

 

31 Days of Kintsugi button

Crystal Twaddell      Grace & Truth : A Weekly Christian Link Up     

Faith on Fire | lylidunbar.com

 

22 thoughts on “The Beauty Of “Me Too”

    1. Thanks, Chloe! It is scary. I knew it was a massive issue but it seems even bigger than I thought. I was surprised by how many people posted me too. At least it has raised awareness and hopefully made some people feel less alone. Xxx

      Liked by 1 person

  1. A well-written post on our collective brokenness. Lesley, I love your description of shame receding into the darkness as issues come to His light. Yes to “hope rises” too. Have a blessed day. I am your neighbor this week 🙂

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  2. Yeeeeeeeeessssssss. The backlash against #MeToo was stunning. I saw people accuse the participants of being whiny and entitled and, weirdly, minimizing the impact of harassment and assault. Another case of, “Share your story, but not like that!” Makes me shake my head.

    We need open, honest, healing community. We need to know that we aren’t alone in our struggles. #MeToo may not have “fixed” anything, but, as you pointed out, it was a way of reaching out, of letting people know that they aren’t alone. And that’s a good thing.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Love this, Lesley. I have so ‘me too’ things from the bad places, but I treasure the positive ones.

    I always enjoyed getting up early to see the sunrise – to witness that magic couple of seconds when the corona flamed above the horizon, just before the sun’s limb appeared.

    One day I saw a neighbour doing the same thing. We didn’t exchange words, or even a wave, but it was a nice, shared ‘me too’ moment.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That’s a great point, Andrew. The positive “me too” moments are amazing too! There’s something special about shared experience whether it’s good or bad.

      Like

  4. How freeing for so many to be courageous and wise. Anything kept in secret will in turn become a prison. Loved how powerful encouraging words are…

    Liked by 1 person

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