On the heels of International Day of the Girl and now, Safe Schools Week, there is no time like the present to launch #dontshowme.
Please excuse the missing apostrophe in “don’t”. If you are not already aware, there is no punctuation within hashtags.
WHAT IS #DONTSHOWME?
First, picture this (no pun intended) – two middle or high school aged kids huddled together before first period over a phone, gasping at the sight of a leaked photo of a half naked classmate. Cue drama. Rumors of the girl who had sent it, to a boy she thought she could trust, had spread virally a few days before in a group text, and now someone had the actual photo (now we’re talking distribution of child pornography). Fast forward to a crowded hallway filled with whispers of the “sexting” and “can you even believe its”. This devolves quickly into snickers of “what a slut”, “she’s a whore”, and worse. Soon, many have happily jumped on the free wheeling shame-wagon with nary a thought as to what the victim of such a personally humiliating betrayal might be going through. Between facing family, friends, law enforcement, school administrators, teachers, and anyone who lives within a ten mile radius, it has to be hellish.
Sexting Facts: Girls are more likely to be asked to share an inappropriate photo before their first kiss. It is happening in every school district in every city in this country and, I’m sure, around the world. The shaming that follows is devastating and sometimes deadly for the person whose trust has been shattered.
GIRLS: Anyone who would ask you to share an inappropriate pic is a) not worth your time and b) not to be trusted. I can promise you there is a 110% chance the photo WILL be shared. every. time. Don’t do it.
What if, instead of joining in the humiliation of fellow human beings, girls, sisters, you decided to stand together in the name of self respect and respect for others? Even if it happens to be someone you might not like very much, to simply say, “Don’t show me.” when someone really wants to show you, is a powerful statement. It could save a life. What if you took a minute to think, “hey, what if it were me?”. Thinking that anything like this will never happen to you is a dangerous thing. As a parent I subscribe to this rule: Never say, “my kid would never…”, because any kid might. We never know what the right person could talk them into.
GUYS: Adopt a #dontshowme attitude and show your respect for girls. Bonus, you’ll earn some major that-kid’s-a-gentleman points from the ladies.
My speaking season began last week and the first two groups of girls immediately understood the importance and power of this message. #Dontshowme is now spreading across the country and around the world with students and educators taking the dare.
JOIN THE #DONTSHOWME CAMPAIGN: Round up your friends, students, team, crew, squad, whoever- and take the #dontshowme dare! Share your own pics via Instagram, Facebook or Twitter, using the hashtag. Don’t forget to tag me @jjcannonauthor so I can see!
Thanks for stopping by,