The woman behind the Everyday Sexism Project has revealed that she has been “bombarded” by rape and death threats since starting it five years ago.
Laura Bates said that she woke up to a “brutally graphic rape threat” a week after she had opened the online project.
This was just the beginning, she said, as men online sent her messages about torturing her.
“The threats continued to flood in. The sheer tenacity was startling. Who were these men… bombarding a woman they had never met with detailed descriptions of how they would torture her?” she wrote in the Guardian.
This abuse eventually led her to seek professional help.
“Somewhere around the time I received a death threat alongside the claim I was a ‘dripping poison that should be eradicated from the world’, I started seeing a counsellor,” she wrote.
In the piece, Bates also detailed some of the “hundreds of thousands of testimonies” that the project has received from ordinary women over its five year run.
“A nine-year old who had received a ‘dick pic’. An elderly lady who had been assaulted by her late husband’s best friend. A young black woman refused entry to a nightclub while her white girlfriends were waved through. A woman in a wheelchair who was told she would be lucky to be raped.”
Laura was writing to mark five years of the project, which she launched in April 2012.