I always noticed that look and what it meant. You know the one that men give you that lingers on your body parts that stick out or jiggle as you walk. The body parts that our parents made sure we covered. That lingering look they gave us that usually came with a slight smirk that looked innocent to others that might just glance quickly but to us it made us feel naked. These men making sure that the minute we were within their vicinity it bore into our space even if they were a few feet away. These men making sure that they were acknowledged through our uncomfortable side eye. We knew who these men were, what they wanted to become in our lives. Predatory in every way with no intention of becoming nothing more than a hurt. No more than wanting to dominate our spirit. Us, subjected to these feelings just from their stares. Our instinct telling us that their intentions will never be good. That at all costs, no matter what we are never to be alone with them. These men who usually are married, with children, hung out around our elders inner circles. We knew that they wanted to do things to us that not even their wives would allow them to do.
I grew up my whole pre-teen life with THOSE eyes on me. It made me go through body shaming, it made me want to stifle my voice so I won’t be noticed. It made me question myself and asking what I did wrong. Misconstrued my definition of trust, it confused my perception of what love was supposed to be. It put the word protection in a whole different light. These men instilled fear at an early age. They proved to me that elder men were never to be trusted. It embedded in me that men are never to be trusted when you are by yourself. It took away from self worth because if there were no states there was no love when in all truth there was no love. It made me not understand the difference between lust and love. So I tell you men all the same thing- DONT LOOK AT ME