While doing my regular grocery shopping, a man who was passing by in the same aisle said quietly to me, “You look beautiful. Your husband is a lucky man.” I was flattered and smiled and said, “I guess he’s really lucky, I’m divorced.” I just kept walking and continued my shopping. I encountered him on another aisle and he asked for my phone number, which I declined to give. Two weeks later, shopping at the same store, I encountered the same guy again. Clearly he didn’t remember me, because he used the exact same line on me again – I didn’t feel flattered this time and realized I’d been played the first time. So I just said, “Yeah, I get that a lot,” and walked on. This time I also encountered him on another aisle again, he asked for my phone number again, and as I was declining he moved even closer to me and KISSED ME ON THE LIPS! I was too shocked to respond at all and just immediately left the store, just abandoned my cart and left. I wish I had reported him to the management. I’m sure he harassed other women in the same store. Oh, months and months later I was leaving a completely different grocery store on the other side of town. Would you believe that same guy was walking into the grocery store and he once again told me that my husband is a lucky man as we passed.
I wanted to red flag Townsville, Australia as a big city for street harassment. It’s a city with a country vibe, a large local army base full of irritating alpha male types and very little to do…so this kind of behaviour is often seen as a right of passage for the males of the town.
The worst experience was when I and a friend were going home from the river after a day swimming and were walking on the pavement parallel to the highway. Some car full of guys actually slowed down, climbed half way out of the window and smacked my friend’s ass as he drove by in his truck. She was teeny at the time so the smack toppled her over onto her knees (grazing them quite badly) and to which they reacted to by hooting and saying “nice ass” before driving off. We didn’t get the licence plate in time to do anything about it and I’ve always been a bit bitter about the situation because we just had to deal with it in the only way we could – we just stopped walking that route home completely.
Seeing us as walking boobs and legs is just a way to pretend we’re not people, we’re not deserving of respect and we don’t have rights to our own bodies. It’s utter bullshit.
I was sitting with my boyfriend outside of the movie theater, I leaned in to give him a kiss on the cheek when a group full of teenage boys drove by in a truck and yelled at me “Suck his dick!” I glared at them and told them to fuck off. I’m sickened that I was degraded so quickly.
This week, Hollaback! was featured by Fast Company, the Knight Foundation, and The Atlantic. Deputy Director, Debjani delivered the National Campus Safety Awareness Month keynote at Old Dominion University, training for the Class 9 of Hollaback! sites began, and we tabled at a Gotham Girls Roller Derby bout.
Heres’s what the HOLLAs Around The World have been up to!
Hollaback! Czech was a supporter of the international “To Russia With Love KISS-IN” this past Sunday.
Hollaback! Boston is part of a coalition for gender and racial equity and they launched their vision statement at a press conference this week. They also posted a recap of the Goddess Walk in Brooklyn.
Hollaback! Gent had a fundraising bake sale in partnership the Ken Gallucio Cup 2013 tournament (a Lacrosse European tournament), and they also entered a think tank led by City Hall about street harassment directed at LGBT individuals.
Hollaback! Halifax has been providing backup and support to the women’s centre at Saint Mary’s University after video of a pro-rape chant at frosh week went viral. The women’s centre has invited several of their community partners, including their local Hollaback, to join them in rising up, raising their voices, and taking back their campus. They even got a shoutout on TV!
HOLLA and out!
-The Hollaback! Team
Was leaving club at Champs Elysees at 2-30 am this spring. I was crossing road when guy came behind trying to make conversation, where i’m from etc. I ignored him, he continued annoying, i said loud that will call police if he not back off. He laughed and then put his hand on my shoulder and then took it back (creepy, because no police there at night), and then i saw his eyes, he was on drugs, his eyes were like glass. I was not dressed provocative, It’s just C.E. is full of freaks at night!!!!
My first experience with street harassment was about nine or ten. I have always had broad hips and large breasts which made me appear to be older, Ever since then men always go out of their way to honk their horn, follow me as I walk home and say I have nice ass. One day I was sick and needed a bottle of ginger ale. I decided to walk to the corner store in shorts because it was hot and half way there 4 cars honked at me. I turned back, changed my clothes and put on a long pair of pants and a sweater (No hips, no curves, no nothing showing in the hot heat). Still another 3 cars honked their horns at me. Women should not be objectified and judged like an item on an auction list and shouldn’t have to limit themselves in the way they dress to accommodate and hopefully repel creeps like them.
Again on the bus through Rusholme, this time after a night out. I often get the bus home when I’m sober. A guy gets on and again chooses to sit opposite me on an empty bus, tries speaking to me which I ignore and get up to move seats. He grabs my behind so I started screaming at him so the bus driver made him get off the bus. I wish I could write down all the verbal incidents but there are so many it’s disgusting, my response now is to frown at them in disgust or shout back angrily, sick of it.
I was sat on the bus on the way home from work and felt a guy sit on the seat across the aisle from me. I picked up a weird vibe from him but I didn’t look up because I could sort of tell that I he wanted me to somehow? Anyway after about 10 minutes he taps me and passes me his phone and said read this I glanced at it and read enough passed it him back and he said no read it or I can read it to you so I took the phone took a photo passed it back and gave him a dressing down so everyone saw.
One late night I was on my way home from work and was waiting on my next bus. As I was getting off the bus I took to the terminal I failed to notice a man had said something to me because of my earbuds in my ear. I quickly realized the man was following me.
I ignored him. I sat down on a bench and waited. The man shortly approached the bench I was sitting at and sat down. He then continually tried to initiate conversation with me even after I politely told him I was not interested.
He said things like “You’re are so beautiful.”,”You have a nice body.”, “Can I have your number? Can I give you mine?” He continued to move closer to me while asking questions while I was clearly uncomfortable. He even at one point touched my shoulder, put his face directly in my face and said “You different, not like other girls.”
Finally my bus came and I was relieved that I was free of him. But then I noticed him getting on the same bus I was. No big deal. That could’ve been a coincidence. But as the bus ride went on I noticed he wasn’t getting off. I live a ways away from my bus terminal and usually late at night I’m one of the last people on the bus. So I get on my phone in a panic that I’m being followed and call my mother. While I’m having this panicked conversation with my mother I get closer to my home. A block away from my apartment there is a gas station and after hearing my panic my stalker gets off the bus and a walks straight into the gas station. On the route to my home there were numerous gas stations on the way for this man to have gone into. I don’t know for sure if he was following me but I don’t know many people who travel across cities late at night just to get to a particular gas station. It was one of the most terrifying and violating situations I ever experienced.
I’ve been walking my young daughter to school in the morning, as the new year just began. Each day, either on the way there, or the way home, a man all but breaks his neck, eyes nearly popped out of his head to STARE at me as I stroll along trying to convey my disapproval with glaring back at him. What’s worse, is that this nonchalant pervert does this while driving a carload of his own children to and from school! Today, the sixth day of school, the disgusting halfwit drove up behind us, and involved his boys with catcalling from within the protective womb bubble of his car! My little daughter was so confused, “Why are they yelling at you like that mommy?”
“Because he thinks he can get away with it, and unfortunately, some men were brought up believing women are really soulless sex objects, incapable of being fully human, outside of unwelcome sexual objectification”
I didn’t knock on the door to have words with his wife/girlfriend or whatever either oblivious or uniformed female counterpart he managed to deceive into thinking he was even remotely worthy of being called a man (or simply prey on the fact she was born into a society where women are expected to put up with it to prevent a rape, murder, or worse… accept the myth that men were created this way, and that this shockingly prevalent societal crime is somehow normal). So, I took a picture of the license plate on his red Toyota Camry!