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In our society, despite the long years of war and the ongoing bomb attacks in our streets, it is our own people who are the main cause of violence against women.

Whether they are young, teenage, or old, people in our society bother women in various ways. My society imposes so many limits, it looks like a jail to me. I am a prisoner day and night. In my society a woman doesn’t even have the right to wear her favorite dress. She can’t wear the outfit she most enjoys. If it is colorful, stylish or graceful, people stare at her and make fun of her, using their bad language. It’s very hurtful to us to have to endure this.

We don’t have the right to advocate for ourselves. We are not supposed to speak or laugh loudly even among our women friends. If we laugh or talk loudly people call us whores and say we are calling attention to ourselves by being loud. They think women should speak softly and just smile.

Our women are not safe from being bothered when they go outside. We are afraid day-by-day of what new event will happen. Sometimes a man will come up and walk beside me, or he will block my way and annoy me by hand or his tongue. He tries to make me his victim, physically and spiritually. He harasses me with his jokes and tries to touch my body in crowded places.

These are shameless people. We women can’t prevent them from bothering us. We want to rescue ourselves from these people and society. But I don’t know how. I don’t know what is the solution.

Day-by-day we get discouraged because we lose our liberty. These situations are the main cause of depression and fear. Women become frightened by our own society.

Most Afghan women suffer from these problems and they resent being in this situation. It is like when a person wants to kill someone with a low dosage of poison for a long time. It kills a person gradually. Women like me are a sacrifice to violence. Society must join hands together and pave the way to end violence against women.

By Beheshta