I am an optimistic woman. But it was worse than we thought.
Just over a year ago, I published "A Letter to Young Women, in the Age of Trump." It came together in a rush the week before the election, fresh off of the Billy Bush tapes, and I figured I should memorialize the lessons from Trump's candidacy before he was defeated and would exit stage left. (Ha!) The net of it was: the work we women have to do to fight for real equality was more than we had thought; and I shared some hard-won lessons on how to move forward.
Fast forward a year.
The revelations of the past few months demonstrate that sexual harassment in the workplace has been way worse than we thought. And so it cascades from there, that there is likely more gender discrimination and gender bias than we thought. And so it has been harder than we thought, damn it, for us women to get ahead in business.
Yes, I experienced harassment when I was climbing the corporate ladder, and so did a number of my friends. But, you know, I worked on Wall Street, so I sort of figured it went along with the territory. And then as I moved away from Wall Street and into entrepreneurship — and heard and saw similar stories there — I figured it was Wall Street and Silicon Valley. So two industries, very male-dominated.
And then came Hollywood. And TV. And radio. And start-ups. And, of course, government.
But also Matt Lauer? Charlie Rose? Two men we invited into our homes in the morning. We thought we could trust them. Is there a greater trust than with the people you drink your morning coffee with?