Mads’ Story: “I had no idea what to do…Now I do”

I’d just finished running, so I was in nike shorts and a t shirt. It was pretty cold outside, but I couldn’t be bothered to put on a sweatshirt because I didn’t want it to get all sweaty, so I just walked up to the store in my running clothes.

I got to the intersection and stood there waiting for the light to change, and this white van pulls up and stops at the stoplight. It’s a white construction van from a well known construction company. The guy must be at least in his thirties, and he calls out, “You look a little cold. Do you want my jacket?”

I literally just stood there speechless and very confused. For the first couple of seconds, I thought, “Is he trying to help me? Do I say no thanks? What…?” Then, I realized he was catcalling me, a fifteen year old girl, and…I walked away without saying anything.

It didn’t really make me feel anything at first. Later, though, on the walk home, I began to steam. I felt dirty and gross and objectified and I was pissed. At this random dude who was at least twice my age and at myself because I didn’t do anything. I had no idea what to do.

Now I do.

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