Everything should probably be Cara Ellison, actually.
"One girl picked up my notebook once, looked at a story I was writing (I think I was reading Anne Rice at the time so it was probably long, flowery sentences about aloof men I was yet to meet and fall in love with) and she scored it all out and wrote ‘GROSS’ on it, whereby another psychological terrorism campaign was probably launched. It took me eight years of constant secret writing after that to show anyone what I’d written ever again. I still write long, flowery sentences about men, only now people seek me out and pay me for the privilege of publishing them. If no one had ever acted this way towards me, I would have published stories at seventeen. If I’d had an ounce of confidence left by the time I left school, I’d have at least shown an adult something I had written.
All of these psychological tortures are tortures that society itself still enacts upon women as fully grown adults. The bullies become everyone – advertising, randos on the internet, and media especially – apart from the people who can see the Matrix, those who sometimes deign to make a kind effort to pull you out of it and show you the code. Once upon a time it was probably put in place by an accidental patriarchy, but now this machine just rumbles on by itself, and women as well as men enforce the idea that a woman’s appearance is fair game to constantly police, that her sexual status is incredibly important (Mrs vs Miss until Ms) to speculate on and ridicule her about, to use it to undermine her ability to be thought a professional at any stage. Some women are still trapped in the high school maliciousness of competition, so much so that they might always hate those women who are content with themselves.
I never liked girls growing up. I had a little brother and no sisters, my brother was my best friend, and the girls at school treated me with contempt. I wanted to be a boy, because everyone admired boys, and everyone let them do what they liked. I had to learn to inhabit my body and like it. I had to learn to forgive women. I had to learn to forgive myself for being born a woman."