What great times we are witnessing.  Women all over the world have finally gained their voice, and the whole world is listening.  The #MeToo came as a roar, and rippled as  an opera song.  Loud, so loud, that many groups of people from different walks of life had to roar back #MeToo.  The sound of it echoed louder and louder as more women joined the movement, and added more frightening scenes to the horror movie that did not spare, rich, poor, young, old, famous, common, or ordinary victims.

While I acknowledge and hail to all these women, their experiences, their silent pain, their suffering, the price they had to pay and the horrors they had to go through, today I want to also praise and talk about the #NotMe.

#NotMe!? Who are these women?

These are the women, who did not undergo the horrific ordeal of being raped or sexually harassed, because they decided to pay the higher price.  Today, I feel like praising the #NotMe women who were fired from their jobs because they just opposed a sexual predator, knowing the dreadful consequences of losing their jobs.  Aware that their children will be hungry, that their parents will not believe their story, that society will outcast them, and that no one will stand by them, they still went through the fight.

I hail for these women who said to the sexual predator: “damn you, damn your promotion, damn your salary raise, damn your bonus, damn your movie, damn your road to fame, I will break your arm, break your neck, and break your soul if the thought crosses your mind again”, before his hand can even reach their soul’s sanctuary.   You are my #NotMe.

Today, I praise all the women, in prisons all over the world, for answering back to their predators at first alert.  If you have injured him, if you have killed him, if you have disabled him, while defending your honor, your freedom of choice, your right of consent, no matter what you have done to him, in my eyes you are my hero.  In your prison cell you are more free then all the women out there in the world imprisoned by their guilt, shame and hidden stories behind closed doors.  You are my #NotMe.

Today, I praise the wives who, did not stay silent and endured the harassment at first alert.  The women who filed for divorce irrespective of the lurking gossips, the eyeing crowd, the outcasting burden of society and friends.  I thank you for standing up for yourself, I thank you for your courage, I thank you for taking responsibility for your children, for your values, for your beautiful self.  You inspired me in 2010.

Today, I praise the actresses who stopped their predators at first alert and said to them: “damn your movie, damn your Oscar, damn your fame, I am not meeting you in your hotel room, my hotel room, or any room that your perverted mind can think of”.  You have won my oscar, you are my #NotMe.

I thank all these women, because you are the true heroes who stopped normalizing insanity,  who stood up against women degrading, and who shielded others from suffering the same fate.  Thank you for breaking the silence with your NO, for claiming back your power, for standing up for yourselves instead of aching in silence and watch others take the bait.  You stood up for the entire humanity, not just for yourselves.  You created the possibility of fighting back.

You all might now be jobless, prisoners, divorcees, traumatized, underdogs, unappreciated, uncredited, with one less oscar or trophy on your shelf, but you remain my heroes, my role models, my sisters in crime and my #NotMe.

A.K.