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Girls & Women

#WhenIWas: these powerful stories prove how early sexual harassment starts

Women have taken to Twitter to highlight the reality of gender inequality and show how sexism and harassment starts.

Sharing stories via the hashtag #WhenIWas, women of all ages have opened up about the experience of growing up female in an unequal world. 

The hashtag was sparked by the Everyday Sexism Project, founded by British feminist Laura Bates to ‘catalogue instances of sexism on a day to day basis.’ In the four years since its creation, the Everyday Sexism Project has become a rallying force against the sexism that hides in plain sight.  

From appalling violence to offhand insults, the stories revealed by #WhenIWas are a stark reminder of the need to continue this mission. Here’s a selection of the tweets: 

What’s harrowing is how ‘normal’ some of the experiences seem, because so many women share similar stories. Too often, women's voices and experiences are dismissed or denied. #WhenIWas is powerful because it shines a light on the painful instances that go unreported.   Building solidarity amongst all those who have experienced misogyny or sexual harassment at any point in their lives, these stories are a reminder of why the fight for gender equality in all areas must continue.