This year as my family takes a breath and rest, I am reminded of the number of people for whom the holidays are anything but a break. I’ve heard too many stories over the past two months of people for whom family gatherings were full of sexual harassment, sexual assault, or sexual assault. And because it’s family, they are expected to gather and they are expected to be grateful even while suffering abuse and harassment.
Family isn’t always safe. Holidays aren’t rest for everyone. In our culture of sexual assault, sexual harassment, and sexual abuse, downtime is much too often a window for abuse.
Even as I am grateful for the number of people who are talking and discussing what they have experienced in hopes that we can reveal the depth and breadth of our culture of sexual harassment, sexual abuse, and sexual assault and change it, my heart is still heavy for those who will experience more abuse in the midst of the holidays. If we take a break from talking about how we can do better, how we can be better, then we aren’t helping. We must remember, especially in the midst of the holiday, that there is still so much work to be done.