"Police have arrested an Austin massage therapist accused of improper photography. Austin police investigators have confiscated a computer . . . that contains 120 files of his clients, and police say they may contain pictures or video of women getting dressed and undressed before and after massages."
Whether or not I'm involved, it certainly has me a little freaked out. And it has me thinking.
See, there was something odd that happened during that massage. I was laying on my stomach. I was already covered with a drape below the waist, but my back was bare. The massage therapist said, "I'm going to do some abdominal massage now. Do you want your breasts covered or uncovered?" A little embarrassed, I said, "Covered." He made sure I was covered, then and for the rest of the massage.
Now, I'd never had a massage therapist ask me that before. It seemed weird, but I hadn't had a lot of massages. I figured it was normal. I thought about asking other women if they'd ever been asked that, but I was embarrassed, afraid I'd look like a prude.
Of course, now I realize how silly that was. Yes, it was a strange thing for a massage therapist to do. My instinct told me that. And I should never be afraid to bring up something that makes me uncomfortable. Isn't that what I'll be telling my daughter?
I'm angry and sickened and while I hope I'm not involved, I know if I'm not it means some other woman is. The pictures are there; I just don't know if I'm one of the unlucky ones or not. Either this suspect or someone else (since he's still presumed innocent) appears to have grossly violated the privacy of many women. It's disgusting.
But here's what I'm determined to take away from it. If I'm uncomfortable with something that could possibly be inappropriate, I want to say something. No more convincing myself that something wrong is actually normal, just because I'm embarrassed. If I'd complained to management, maybe this would have been stopped a lot earlier. I know nothing about it is my fault, but I'm ready to be proactive in the future. I, and the women around me, deserve to be protected.