On the Ugly Duckling Phase

Everyone has an Ugly Duckling phase. I refuse to believe that some people go from cute kids to good looking teenagers to gorgeous grown ups. Just downright refuse to believe it. Because the thought makes me cry. Everyone should have at least a year, if not even just a month, where you clearly don’t know…

On Feminist Selfies

‘Selfie’ is the official Oxford Dictionary Word of the Year 2013. And according to the sometimes-alright-but-mostly-incredibly-narrow-minded-and-the-epitome-of-‘white-feminism’ site that is Jezabel, selfies aren’t empowering, but rather a cry for help. While there’s some merit to what they have to say – that selfies teach young girls in particular that their looks are incredibly important – they…

How We Prevent Sexual Assault Simply Isn’t Working

*Trigger warnings: rape, rape culture, sexual assault* Last week, the Royal College of Physicians of Ireland hosted a series of talks and workshops to mark National Sexual Health Awareness Week. I had the privilege of attending the talk on sexual assault called ‘Preventing violence: From Information to Transformation’, given by ClÍona Saidlear of the Rape…

Dear 15 Year Old Me

I’ve never met someone who looks back at their teenage years with fondness, nor have I ever met anyone who spent their teenage years thinking they were gorgeous and hilarious and utterly brilliant. I’m pretty sure being 15 is shit for everyone, at least to some extent.  But there are a few things that I…

USI ‘Say Something’ Report

Yesterday, the USI launched the Say Something report, based on surveys taken by students in Irish third level institutions earlier this year. The survey looked into students’ experiences with harassment, stalking, violence and sexual assault, focusing largely on their experiences while on campus. One of the main issues with harassment and assault is the lack…

On Irish Abortion Legislation and ‘Lapgate’

Last night, after a 21 year long wait, X-case legislation was passed in the Dáil at 127 to 31. However, it’s not law yet – it still has to go through the Seanad and the President’s office. While this is a momentous occasion in Irish history, and a step in the right direction for women*’s…

On the ‘Rally for Life’

Today, I went to the counter protest for this year’s Rally for Life, despite really not being in the mood for it and the heat being something terrible for a stereotypical pale Irish women like myself (my foundation shade is ‘Siberia’. Wish I was kidding). Unlike the anti-Youth Defence protest which I went to last…

On Sisters

So yesterday my little sister had a bit of a sappy moment on the bus and said I was an inspiration to her. Yeah, even though I have about 2% of my life sorted out and I’m an unemployed Arts graduate living at home. And a vegetarian. Like, why I would be an inspiration is…

On Elevatorgate

A friend asked me on twitter why women often feel uncomfortable at purely atheist/secular conferences, and then remembered the Richard Dawkins – Rebecca Watson ‘elevatorgate’ from 2011.   At an atheist conference, Watson had been talking about how shitty it is that women get sexualised at conferences like this. She was then hit on by…