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I work in a mostly male dominated industry. I am also an out lesbian. Because of this, my coworkers think it is okay to completely demean women in front of me. They have a thing where if a “hot” girl comes in the store they yell out a code word so everyone will know. It is disgusting, sexist and pathetic and I called them out on it.
Rather than respecting me as a woman and thinking about how disrespectful it is to all women when they behave this way, they got mad because I don’t do it too!
Really? I told them that women do not go out into public to be ogled over and talked about by disgusting men. It is sad that we can’t even go to the store without men being perverts and refusing to see what is wrong about it. The fact that when I walk home from work I get at least ten honks, as well as whistles and catcalls is horrible, infuriating and sickening. I am not an object.
My girlfriend and I were going to buy liquor when we heard the people in the apartment above the liquor store having a party. They made a joke about our appearance when we walked in and when we left with our purchase, one guy yelled, “Want to party?” We both said, “No thanks. ” He yelled, “Don’t be a bitch; I was trying to be nice, bitch!” I told them to eff off, but I shouldn’t have to be harassed because I’m a lesbian buying a product below an apartment.
Some drunk guys walked into me (I was stationary, just standing and chatting with friends) and called me a lesbian (as if that’s an insult), and called me a bitch and told me to suck his cock. I, perhaps, reacted strongly and walked after him half a block shouting obscenities at him. He did not expect that reaction and scampered away. I’m not saying that was the safest thing I could have done, but he definitely tried to get away from me.
I never had too much of an issue with street harassment on my campus until I lived in one of the dorms along a busier street. As soon as the weather got warm, the harassment started. I would get annoyed and tell my friends about the instances, but then didn’t think too much about exactly how frequently this was happening. After telling a friend about one particular instance, her response was “AGAIN??!” And that’s when I started keeping count.
I was harassed every day that first warm week of spring. And then several random times outside of that, including a guy in a car turning onto my campus who yelled “fa****” at my friend and I just because we were standing and chatting on a street corner.
What’s almost worse than the harassment is the fact that I want to respond (and have studied how and done research projects on street harassment), but I’m always too afraid that the guys will retaliate physically. I end up feeling so frustrated and helpless in the face of this thing I want to help stop.
Male passenger in a moving vehicle yelled derogatory names for a homosexual at me.
This guy in front of me on the bus in Minneapolis loudly, repeatedly demanded attention from a lady across from us – then aggressively hit on her. She very politely declined to talk with him, so he called her a lesbian – and poor, because “rich women like me.”
Walking to my Y when a man at a bus stop on 16th and 50th NE started screaming at me and calling me a dyke, telling me to suck his dick, and that I deserved to be raped. Because I walked past him. I kept walking and called the cops, but he was gone when they arrived.
Two guys with a balcony and a megaphone host “17th and Pearl Live” in which they street harass anyone who walks by.
I live nearby and hear everything they say, including calling girls “sluts” and “whores” and telling pairs of men “hey you two guys should fuck”
I was called a faggot in front of Randall Library at UNCW.
As I attend school in downtown Cincinnati, I understood that it wasn’t always a pretty place. I’ll be adding more stories of things that I have experienced and witnessed, but here’s one that was my first.
It was August and still hot on the streets so I wore what was comfortable, shorts and a t-shirt. After leaving school for the day, I headed to the library to meet a friend.
Heading down the street, I noticed the occasional security guards from numerous companies and felt pretty safe. Out of nowhere, a black pickup truck pulled up next to me.
The man in the front seat leaned out and yelled, even though he was directly next to me,”How about you get in and we’ll show you why two is better than one.”
Instinctually, I took off, dashing down the street as his friend yelled,”DYKE BITCH!” out the window.
When I reached the library. I didn’t tell my friend a word of what happened. I regretted not speaking up sooner and blaming myself for the harassment. Even the school dress code told me that I was a distraction.
Street harassment should not be the norm for young girls.