As a little girl you were told that your emotions were too extreme. You’ve got to put a lid on your feelings!

You must learn to curb that temper of yours,

they said.

It was natural to you to resist this repression. So you got angry and emotional about this too.

But this, of course, was not well received.

The adults soothed you saying ‘laugh and the world laughs with you, cry and you cry alone,’ like they were dispensing some profound wisdom.

Being a little girl of 6 years old, you saw that your displays of emotion were unattractive, vulgar; that people soon stopped listening.

Being a little girl of 6 years old you didn’t want to be excluded, left behind.

So instead of just feeling angry and emotional, you internalised the judgement of your elders and began to feel angry and emotional and ashamed.

Shame was the lid you crafted to seal your feelings.

But you never really let your anger go, and now we need it more than ever.

I’m angry at grammar and diction: the word ‘man’ to describe the human race; the convenient evasion of an active agent in the phrase ‘violence against women’.

I’m angry that we have to pay to bleed every month; I’m angry that I can’t walk home at midnight with my tits out if I feel like it.

I’m angry and disgusted that some 30 y/o short dude in a tank top thought it was okay to come up to me and tell me that my being on a run in tight fitting clothes was the equivalent to him getting his dick out.

I’m angry and disgusted that boys and men attack women by sneaking up and shoving their hands up them, and that this happened to my mother and my best friend.

I’m angry and ashamed that it had to take a white woman’s murder for this country to wake up to police brutality, and for how this makes women of colour feel.

I’m angry that 97% of young women carry around pain and trauma as a punishment for existing in the female form; I’m angry that my dad once told me this is the best time to be born a woman.

I’m angry that the men in my life have said so little. I’m angry about this and so much more.

I’m angry now about different things to what angered you at 6 years old, but the anger is the same.

I’m saddened that the women you had to look up to raised you on the toxic combination of oppression and privilege with which they were conditioned: I’m angry that my mother still tells me I shouldn’t get too angry.

And I wish someone would’ve told you that you only have so much anger because you have so much love.