I was walking through student housing neighborhoods on my way home to my apartment. I was with another female friend and we passed a house at the same moment that five males came out the front door. We were talking and only glanced at the noise, but one of them shouted “Hey sluts!!” to us.
I instinctively turned around to say something but realized a reaction is what they were seeking. So I turned back around and we kept walking. They continued to shout things at us: rude, insulting comments.
I do not care if they were sober or highly intoxicated – it is not an excuse. Who do these people think they are? How could someone possibly think they have the right to speak to a stranger in such an offensive way? The worst part is that that one word will stick with me forever. I am sure they have forgotten about it and will never think about it again. But I will not forget. How it felt to be talked to in such a way. They don’t know me. How dare someone speak to another human being that way. It infuriates me that we live in a world like this.
I am so angry at these monsters that think they can treat women this way. And what’s unbearable is that their goal of seeking control is sometimes, it works. Every time this happens to me, I plan a new route, or avoid going out late at night. When I do this, they have gained control over public space by removing my comfort and feelings of safety in that area. How do I stand up against this while still being safe? I am so incredibly frustrated.
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