I’ve been sitting in a park, crying on a bench under a tree, for the good part of an hour. A young man a few blocks away did something that shouldn’t evoke this level of response in me. He made dog yapping noises at me. He was good, at first I thought it was actually an annoying Pomeranian. When I start to frown he said, “Come on, at least I got a smile out of you.”
I immeditately responded by telling him he didn’t, that he should never do that to anyone ever again, and how what he was doing wasn’t nice. It felt weak against his and his friends’ laughter. “Yeah but it was funny!” It was to them. “Hey babe I’m a bad boy!” – he shouted to me as I kept walking.
I was so irritated that a few moment later I walked back, to tell them how horrible it felt to have someone do that to you. I honestly didn’t think he knew. He had walked off, so I continued on a few blocks. What happened next I didn’t really understand. I began crying, stomach tense and short of breath. It was as if years of being called at and put into situations I really didn’t want to be in with my body were pouring out of me. My body, at times, had not felt like it was for me. It was for others to look at, to judge critically or to enjoy. They knew nothing of how it gave me scarlet fever once for a month, or how I was so grateful that it stayed strong as I led a rock climb for the first time in ages, just a week earlier. They didn’t know that I can dance, or hate running, or how yoga can be painful if you don’t do it regularly. They like the shape, the size, the color… These are such meaningless things to me, unless something’s out of reach.
I don’t know the best way to stop this invasive behavior. I feel very weak against it. I think slowly, personally, by responding as best I can to demoralize any street caller’s actions is the best route for me. The next time you find yourself commenting on an actresses’s weight or appearance when the situation really calls for her skill, remember the last time you were cat-called. The next time you wear something you don’t want to wear, to please others, remember to keep your own power. Your body is for you. It is for no one else.
I was cat called for the first time in my life today. It was only a small incident, two men walked past me and one said “you alright beautiful” and leered at me. But when I got home I cried for 10 minutes. I felt gross, dis guested and so, so angry. I am 14. 14, and a feminist and this kind of behaviour makes me feel angry, frustrated and afraid. I said nothing, I just walked away but I wish I’d said something. I was just afraid it would escalate. This has made me want to stop wearing shorts, look less attractive etc. because I never want it to happen again. I just wish I was strong enough, physically and mentally to challenge these people.
I was walking out of work and as I was walking towards my car a man was walking in the other direction. As we crossed paths, he said “looking good ma” as he looked me up and down.
No shit I look good. I don’t need you to tell me.
Some people yelled a lot of sexual derogatory comments when I was on my way to a job interview.
I’m 13 and I’m thickly built. At school, i get everything from cat calls Tomas’s grabbings. One day in particular, a boy came up to me and whispered, “you’re gonna ride my d*** like you ride a roller coaster. Once you go black you never go back baby.” I believe it doesn’t matter your skin for one, and that is was completely un-appropriate and disgusting, especially for our ages.
I was in a beach area walking with my parents, when a bunch of college aged guys in a pickup truck hollered in our direction and sped off. It was embarrassing since my parents were there otherwise I would’ve told them to shove it.
I work in car rentals at an airport, a man on the upper level to where my desk is yelled to his friend (standing 2 meters away) ‘Oh f@&k, car rental chick is alright’. He then preceded to yell down to me, asking ‘give us a smile, sexy’. Ironically this happened just a few hours after I submitted to launch a South Australian Hollaback website.
I was out walking my dog around 7:30AM while wearing a knee-length dress. As I approach the street corner, I feel something touch the back of my leg. I whip my head around and see a young man with a backpack pulling a phone away from the hem of my dress. I’m stunned for a moment. He walks ahead and I start to realize what he was doing.
I shout after him and give him a look of anger and confusion. He tries to brush it off. He tells me I’m beautiful and asks if I have a man. I’m still just in awe that he thought this was acceptable. I tell him to leave me alone and he speeds off. Should’ve taken a picture of him.
While walking down the street with my friend we were stopped by the group of three men. One of them groped her. Also, the verbal harassment took place. After we escaped from them they were following us and screaming humiliating phrases. We run into my friend’s house to be safe.
I was walking from my college to a Taco Bell down the street, and this guy shouted out of his car window “Suck my dick!!” Obviously my first response was to chase him down so that I could blow him.