Last night, all-round feminist queen, Abbie Chatfield, posted to her IG stories to tell her followers about the death threats that she still receives one year on from The Bachelor. She followed this story up with a post of some of the messages that she has received during this time, with many causing the reality star to fear for her life.
Celebrities, and often women in general, often receive heaps of super shitty messages and comments, for no reason. People calling them sluts, bitches, fat, and every other kind of heinous, derogatory word that you could come up with for a person. Let’s be real – it’s now worse than cyber bullying, it’s flat out abuse.
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Fuck this. Fuck these people. Fuck you if you’ve ever messaged anyone something even close to this. This is why people commit suicide after being catapulted into the spotlight by a TV show. Am I grateful for the bachelor? Yes! Does ANYTHING anyone does on these shows warrant this? FUCK NO. These are just 10 of the messages I’ve saved over the last year, I have a whole google drive with HUNDREDS of DMs that I’ve kept to use for something actually good in the future. Threats of violence, name calling, threats to my safety and general snide comments still happen a year on. Whenever I post stories about this, I get well intentioned DMs saying “don’t worry about it babe!” “Block and delete!” “You need time away from your phone” “these troll accounts have no life!” While you may think this is the logical answer, to ignore, to hide and to just block, it simply does not work. You block one account, another pops up and you have no track of who is who. It gets to a point where you recognise the usernames because of repeat offenders. You can’t ignore threats of violence, and attacks on your character. I shouldn’t have to get off social media, and if I didn’t use socials for a day each time someone messaged me something like this, I would be on socials 2 days of the year. You think these accounts are just fake accounts? No. These are people’s parents, daughters, friends. Most of the accounts are people who have a seemingly normal social media presence. One sent message may help with your crippling insecurity and help you project, but your message is a droplet in a waterfall of insidious online torture. At one point I was scared to be recognised in public, for fear of my safety. I still get worried when people ask for photos with me that they’re going to say something to hurt me or take a photo with me and joke about me with their friends. This isn’t a joke. This isn’t fucking funny and This isn’t fair. I shouldn’t be falling asleep worried someone will break into my apartment and strangle me. I will not blur out names because if you’re brave enough to send it via a DM, be brave enough for everyone to see. If you know any of these people in these messages, confront them.
What gives someone the right to say such horrible things to someone they don’t even know? And is there a bigger issue at play here?
‘Nice Guys’ That Aren’t So Nice
Self-proclaimed “nice guys” are some of the most entitled people walking the planet, they’ll try to make you feel guilty by using the argument “but I’m such a nice guy”
Don’t be a “nice guy”https://t.co/VlZki7SHYr
— Anonymous (@YourAnonNews) June 14, 2020
You may be sitting there thinking that when women get these kinds of messages, it’s usually from men that they’ve rejected on dating apps. You know the ones. The ‘nice guys’, who then tell you that you’re a fat, ugly bitch and they didn’t want to date you anyway.
In Facebook groups that I’m in, some women have made it a game where they share some of the worst, most horrible messages that they’ve been sent by men. These are always sent after a guy has complimented the woman and expressed that he wants to take her out again. When they’re told that the girl isn’t interested (in really nice ways, might I add), that’s when it becomes gross and hurtful.
For Abbie Chatfield, some of the DMs that she shared were from men, and these were pretty violent. Like one guy who said in an audio message “If I ever got the chance, I’d strangle you to death”, and another who said “I’d punch you in the jaw and knock you the fuck out”.
The thing is that this type of language directed at women is almost normal to me now. I expect to get these kinds of messages sent to me and/or my friends at some point in our lives. And that scares me. We shouldn’t be thinking that this is normal, and it needs to stop.
Women Putting Other Women Down Is Fkd
So, it’s definitely extremely common for women to get these kinds of messages from men. But honestly, it’s also just as common for women to be the ones slut-shaming and putting other women down too.
Most of the screenshots of DMs that Abbie shared in the post were from women, and were just as awful. “DIE IN A HOLE YOU SLUT”; “I would kill myself if I was related to you”; “I hope you never find a genuine relationship because that’s exactly what you deserve”. These are just some of the messages sent to Abbie by women.
Abbie is just one reality TV star to talk about the nasty, and violent DMs they receive, and occasional death threats. In 2018, fellow Bachie ‘villain’, Cat Henesey, talked about the death threats and messages of encouragement to kill herself that she had been receiving since leaving the Bachie mansion.
It’s scary that these women don’t feel safe because of the actions of people hiding behind screens. Even in her IG post, Abbie said:
“I still get worried when people ask for photos with me that they’re going to say something to hurt me or take a photo with me and joke about me with their friends … I shouldn’t be falling asleep worried someone will break into my apartment and strangle me.”
That’s just fucked up. This is NOT how women should be treating other women. We get enough of that shit from men. We have to stick together.
Not Everyone Likes Everyone
I’ll be honest here. When I first saw Abbie Chatfield on The Bachelor last year, I didn’t like her, and neither did my friends who watched the show. Even knowing how much producers manipulate footage and people to get the outcome they want, I still believed what I was seeing on the screen. That she wasn’t a nice person. The same thing happened with Keira Maguire after Richie’s season.
But then a few months ago, I listened to Abbie’s podcast. And my god, was I wrong about her. I believed the narrative that the producers were trying to sell me on. I’ve said to my friends recently that Abbie has helped to bring back my energy as a woman, and I’m so glad I found her podcast, even if I was a bit late to the party.
Even if you don’t like Abbie Chatfield, or Keira Maguire, or anyone else on TV or in real life, that doesn’t give you or anyone else the right to message someone with such horrible and violent comments. No one deserves that kind of shit.