Over the past several years, we’ve all witnessed the rise of the #MeToo (or Me Too) movement. The #MeToo movement is a social movement directed against sexual abuse and sexual harassment led by survivors.
Knowing what the #MeToo Movement is all about is only the beginning; it is equally as critical for people to understand what can be learned from the #MeToo movement. This means shining a light on sexual violence, common themes associated with sexual violence, and disrupting the systems in place that perpetuate this issue.
When it’s all said and done, the lessons of the #MeToo movement are critical to dismantling sexual violence and the themes which allow for it to thrive.
The continued, ongoing patterns of sexual violence are what ultimately engendered the rise of the #MeToo movement. For far too often, one of the common themes associated with sexual violence has been power… or rather, massive power discrepancies.
Many people involved in the #MeToo movement have come forward with their own stories of surviving sexual violence in the past. In many of these stories, a person with power utilizes their power in explicitly harmful ways and survivors are often afraid of speaking up due to threatened loss of their jobs, status, connections, and sources of livelihood.
The #MeToo movement is about empowering survivors through empathy and strength in numbers. For so long, sexual violence and mistreatment have been dismissed or disregarded. With the rise of this movement, there are many high-profile celebrities and politicians that are starting to be held accountable for their actions and are facing ramifications for the first time.
One of the biggest and most important lessons that has been brought to light through this movement is just how deeply it affects marginalized people and marginalized communities, and the prevalence of sexual harassment in the workplace. Additionally, the hashtag #MeToo has been a call to action for many men to intervene and speak up in workplaces where harassment is taking place.
The #MeToo movement is about survivors speaking up against shame and stigma, standing up against sexual violence, and ensuring that anyone who tries to perpetuate this mistreatment is held fully and legally accountable.
The #MeToo movement has played a vital role in society over the past several years. It’s brought attention to some taboo subject matters that must be addressed for the betterment of everyone in society.
The horror of sexual violence does not go away simply because it’s not talked about. The #MeToo movement has proven this, in addition to helping so many survivors get justice.
With all of these benefits of the #MeToo movement, it’s important to know how therapy can be of value. Therapy goes hand in hand with mental health and helping people overcome challenges and trauma from the past, including that which involves sexual violence.
One of the most significant benefits of therapy is how it helps people to understand, face, and overcome trauma. This is not always easy. However, with the support of therapy, survivors and others can begin to make a change. They can also understand that any bad experiences they’ve faced in life do not define or diminish who they are.
Therapy is a powerful asset for the #MeToo movement because it helps people understand that they can live a good life, even if bad things have happened. This is a critical message, especially for people going through rough times and needing a listening ear.
The #MeToo movement does an amazing job at letting survivors know that help is here and they’re not alone. Therapy further reinforces this point to survivors, no matter where they may be in their journey.
After experiencing sexual violence or other trauma, it is not uncommon for survivors to feel completely alone. This can trigger depression, loneliness, feelings of isolation, etc. Thankfully, with therapy as reinforcement behind the #MeToo movement, those who have survived sexual violence can know that help is available. This can make a major difference in so many lives and increase the odds of someone seeking help.
It’s a given that therapy can be immensely beneficial to both those involved in the #MeToo movement, survivors, and other people who have experienced trauma in their pasts. However, it is also critical to remember that not everyone can access therapy or feels ready for therapy.
For these reasons, mental health solutions outside of therapy need to be made known. Shining awareness of mental health solutions existing outside of therapy ensures that everyone can have support, regardless of where they may be in their life’s journey.
The value of a strong, loving support system cannot be overestimated for mental health. Countless studies have shown that close bonds with other human beings can help people better weather trauma and other challenges. A good support system also reduces the likelihood of experiencing depression and other mental health issues exacerbated by loneliness.
We all need to have good, loving people in our lives who care for us. Having reliable loved ones to trust, talk to, and confide in makes all the difference in the world. It impacts both interpersonal relationships and the relationship that each individual has with themselves.
Just like having a strong, loving support system, practicing self-care plays a huge role in the quality of mental health. So often, it can be easy to get caught up in work responsibilities, commitments to others, and different matters. However, self-care should always be a priority.
There is a saying which notes that one cannot pour from an empty cup. This means that if someone is burned out or completely drained, they won’t be in the position to do anything at all. Making self-care a regular lifestyle habit can go a long way, especially when it comes to mental health.
The value of the #MeToo movement for survivors, society, and the world cannot be overstated. As such, BetterHelp stands in support and solidarity with the #MeToo movement, survivors, and the work to hold perpetrators of sexual violence accountable. Additionally, we have worked with ‘me too.’ International to donate over 350 months of therapy to survivors, as well as monetarily sponsoring Survivor Leadership Training through this organization.
Read below for some reviews of BetterHelp therapists, from survivors of sexual abuse.
“Heather is an absolutely wonderful person, let alone therapist. She genuinely listens and hears what I am saying; she provides legitimate and grounded advice. I have made great strides in healing my mental health and providing a really great foundation for my future mental health. She has helped me with my anxiety, stress, and trauma stemming from sexual abuse and family relationships. Overall, I would highly suggest working with Heather.”
“Brandon is sensible, compassionate, supportive, and will explore all options to improve your current situation. I’ve worked with Brandon for almost two months, dealing with multiple symptoms (trauma, sexual abuse, relationship, violence, low self-esteem, anxiety, depression, etc). He’s never judgmental, nor rushes me into any subject I am not comfortable with. It took me few sessions to open up, but he’s been patient and changed my perspective in therapy. Through this journey, I was able to analyze my self, the reasons behind my behaviors, and how to alter my thought process positively. I am still in progress of self care & healing, yet I can say I am at a better place today than years in my past. I came in as a skeptic and converted into pro-therapy.”
Survivors and anyone else in need of mental health care are free to contact BetterHelp at any time here.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
What started the Me Too movement?
Though the #MeToo movement didn’t really reach the masses until around 2017 in light of the sexual abuse cases against Harvey Weinstein, it was actually founded in 2006 as a local grassroots group by social activist and sexual violence survivor Tarana Burke. She coined the term as a simple way to offer solidarity, empathy, and support to those who had experienced or experience sexual harassment, abuse, and trauma. As a young woman, Tarana was a youth worker and often listened to difficult, heartbreaking stories from children, some involving sexual violence. As a survivor herself, and after hearing one child’s particularly painful story and being unable to respond in an effective way due to her own trauma, Tarana committed herself to helping to provide empathy, resources, support, and safe spaces to survivors of sexual violence, particularly black women and children who are often underrepresented.
How has the Me Too movement affected the workplace?
The Me Too movement has changed the dynamic of many workplaces for the better. Survivors, women in particular, have felt empowered and safe enough to voice sexual abuse and sexual discrimination issues in the workplace. This has spurred discussions, battles, and measures to help other issues such as working toward closing the gender pay gap and increasing job security in the face of things like speaking up or even having a baby. Through the Me Too movement, many flaws have been found in workplace settings surrounding policies to protect employees from workplace violence, including sexual harassment and abuse.