No one is safe Perspective Special projects

Men have a crucial role in preventing abuse

Bilge Nur Güven/YJI

ISTANBUL – I opened up to my friend about the abuse my ex-boyfriend had put me through last year.

Today I saw them getting in a car together and going to a cafe.

It hurt.

I had trusted my friend in hopes that he was decent enough to cut ties with our once mutual friend.

Gotta blame myself for expecting good from humans, right?

If you identify as a man, you have a responsibility. 

I have met too many “nice guys” who would, and I quote, “never treat a woman that way.” 

These same “nice guys” then go on to enable their “bros” by not speaking up. By not being against it. By laughing at rape jokes. By calling each other “gay” in a negative context. 

By continuing to be his friend even if they know he’s an abuser.

So, you’re a guy who doesn’t harass or rape women.

But do you speak up when your friends make a sexist joke? Do you condemn your abuser friends? Or do you continue enabling them?

If so, you’re just as bad.

If you are a man, you have the responsibility to speak up.

Because people will listen if a man talks.

Bilge Nur Güven is a Senior Reporter with Youth Journalism International.

This article is part of the No one is safe project about sexual assault around the world. It is being published in five parts of six article each on Mondays and Thursday, beginning Nov. 29, 2021. For links to the published project, click below.

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