Appalachian Ohio, Athens GA, Atlanta, Berkeley, Baltimore, Boston, Chicago, Columbia MO, Des Moines, Fredericksburgh VA, Jacksonville NC, Los Angeles, New York City, NYU, Philadelphia, Palo Alto, Portland ME, Richmond VA, Rutgers University, San Francisco
When I was in 8th grade (a couple of years ago) there was this guy who was obsessed with me. He wouldnt leave me alone, he would look down my shirt when I was on the stairwell, he just made me feel uncomfortable. Then one night he was chatting me on facebook and he told me how messed up his life was. Not knowing what to say, i told him i was sorry i didnt know how to help, and he responded “i want you to say you will go out with me.” i told him no, and he threatened to kill himself if i didnt.
Regardless of how you may feel about the “sexy ________” costumes that are worn by many women on Halloween (or the Saturday before it), it doesn’t give four men in a green Chevy Blazer the right to yell, “Nice ass!” to every single female they drive by.
I was standing waiting for the bus at the bus stop and the guy walks up to me. Starts asking me if I am a model and if I have money. Kept asking me how he looks. Touched my shoulder a couple of times. I decided to get on my phone with my mom to try to get him to stop interacting with me. When we got on the bus he started doing it to some other girl.
I missed the bus after my late class. which was the last bus for another two hours. I decided to walk the three miles home on a Friday night. as I passed one of the bars a man and his friend walked passed me then decided to yell in my face hi! and when I didn’t say it back they got more aggressive with their language. I was 500 feet from my apartment so decided to continue to ignore them and get home as quickly as possible.
I am so glad to find this group! It helps to identify that this sort of harassment is real and should not be expected to be taken as “flattery.” I have experienced this crap since I was 12 or 13. Once I was with my sister and cousin (aged 11-13) walking down a road at night in a rural town and these guys in a car yelled out at us. We thought that it was over but then we saw them turning around to follow us. As we were crossing a driveway, they pulled in and we ran into these woods as fast as we could and luckily they didn’t follow us further.
Once I was on vacation with my family when I was 13 and we were eating dinner. This creepy old guy at a different table, who was with a woman by the way, made eye contact with me and waved. My dad asked if I knew the guy and I was so embarrassed I looked down. The guy made a pouting face at me. I felt so uncomfortable for the rest of the vacation that I didn’t even go swimming.
This sort of harassment has continued throughout my life and has always affected my feeling of safety and empowerment and I’m in my 20′s now. Since it’s been nice out it’s gotten worse and men have been honking a lot at me lately. I always return to that feeling of shame when I was so young.
Now I currently work with the typical men that would be street harassers. Constant comments about hot women and liking to watch porn and women working out in yoga pants. I’ve talked to my boss about it and she did a sexual harassment training. It’s been a struggle to stand up to these guys and I feel like I need to keep the peace and just work with them. We are doing stressful work and you would just think they would know better. It’s a complete culture of machismo and misogyny I am finding.
Strangely enough this sort of harassment doesn’t just happen to adult women and this can be very traumatic to girls just trying to grow up.