Famous women from across Turkey share personal stories of ‘violence’

Famous women from across Turkey share personal stories of ‘violence’

Banu Tuna / Hakan Gence – ISTANBUL
Famous women from across Turkey share personal stories of ‘violence’

Famous women from across Turkey have shared their personal “violence stories,” describing their own experiences, ideas and advice on the issue of violence against women.

The stories were shared through the hashtag “BenDeŞiddetGördüm (I was subjected to violence too), as part of an initiative kicked off by daily Hürriyet to mark International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women on Nov. 25.

Popular actress Deniz Türkali wrote that she had been subjected to violence at the hands of her father.

“This violence was not welcome at that time, but violence against women was not perceived as it is today. We can see proof of this in the films of that period,” Türkali said, adding that she often feels under threat in public areas in Turkey.

“I feel it, like every woman. There is only a small number of women who can say they have never faced violence. But there are some things that are not named because they are simply considered normal,” she said, also stressing the importance of feminists organizing women.

Fellow actress Perihan Savaş wrote that she was subjected to violence at the hands of her ex-husband.

“It is not just about beating. It also the violence that humiliates you for making a bad meal,” Savaş said, noting that the cinema sector in Turkey has long been male-dominated.

“For a long time women’s films were not made and now there are no women’s films either. Often sexuality is at the foreground … [During shooting] there is also major psychological pressure. For example, the leading actor may be describing a role to woman while the director is there, and the result is what he wants,” she added.

“All women should work and earn their money. Families should strive for the education of their daughters rather than just finding a husband for them,” she wrote.

Former Turkish top model Deniz Akkaya said she was beaten by her ex-boyfriends couple of times.

“I complained about them to prosecutors ... But even then I was trying to make excuses, thinking that the man who did this to me must have been marked by what he experienced in the past,” Akkaya wrote.

She also added that she found the media guilty for its method of reporting stories about violence against women.

“Society is already male-dominated. Media reports often give the impression that women have gone through what they have because they deserve it. But whatever the reason, women cannot deserve violence. Even if a woman is cheating on her husband or even if she is 100 percent wrong, she cannot deserve violence,” Akkaya wrote.

Actress Mine Tugay wrote that she was recently subjected to violence by a minibus driver in Istanbul.

“I felt terrified and helpless … When I looked at the man punching the car window incessantly, I could not see him as a human. He was trying to beat me like a slave. This same man would probably go crazy if the same was done to his mother or sister,” Tugay said.