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I have to take a thousand different precautions to keep myself safe – but these are useless if men are free to use women’s spaces

It matters to me because as a woman I have to take a thousand different precautions to keep myself safe – but these are useless if men are free to use women’s spaces. Before lockdown, I hadn’t been to my nearest city, less than an hour away, for several months, because the last time I went there was a man in the public toilets in the central library. I don’t know where else to go to the loo safely!

It matters to me because women’s opportunities are precious. We’ve fought hard to get them.

It matters to me because as a girl, me and two of my friends campaigned to be able to do woodwork at secondary school. We won, and the three of us excelled at it, carrying on with it for 5 years and passing an exam in it. Moreover, two years later, instead of girls doing cookery and boys doing woodwork, everyone had a term each of cookery, woodwork and metalwork. I’m really proud we helped bring about that change. But if we did that today, we might well be told we were really boys and be pressured into transitioning. I never wanted to be a boy – but what aboout my parents? Did my father really want a son?

I was vocal on twitter until my anonymous account was closed. While I was there I tried to engage with people who were open to discussion – not easy on twitter, and it did get quite stressful.

I have joined the local ReSisters group.

I have started having conversations with “woke” family members  – it took me months to build up the courage and find the words to do that.

My twitter account was closed.

Sue, Low paid, invisible yet apparently essential