When was the first time you were sexually harassed? For some, a single memory sticks out, and for others, there are so many that they all run together in a blur of traumatic moments forever linked with physical and/or psychological trauma. Recently, women had the chance to share these stories online when the hashtag #PrimeiroAssedio began trending in Brazil, followed by #FirstHarassment in the U.S.
The impetus for this outpouring was a slew of perverse tweets directed at a 12-year-old girl on a Brazilian installment of MasterChef. According to the BBC, when journalist and feminist activist Juliana de Faria noticed the vile messages, she began sharing her early experiences with harassment. The Twitterverse soon erupted with other women following suit, documenting and describing the ways these unwanted interactions impacted their lives. Once English-speakers took note, they added to the growing number of women speaking out against this unfortunate rite of passage that occurs the world over.
Publicly addressing these experiences is not only cathartic for women who do so, but also helps to raise awareness about how commonplace sexual harassment (and rape and sexual assault) truly are.
Here are 10 tweets revealing the first time women were forced to endure sexual harassment.