Story, Verbal

z. beck’s Story: “How does one go about combating this unacceptable behaviour?”

Locked my bike up in its usual spot outside the home of a dog I walk. Some guy on the sidewalk was crossing the street in the same direction I was. He sat on some steps on the far side of the street, and I passed, just going about my day. He called out “Hey!” in a low tone. I figured he was just saying hey, as people around here often do in passing, or was making an attempt to beg for money (which happens so often I do tend to ignore it/pretend I didn’t hear). When I didn’t respond, he added “I want to shove my c0ck in you.” I was shocked and thrown off. I’ve been whistled at before, but never victim to verbal attacks like this. He further added “I have to punish you” in an even softer tone.

I hurried to my destination and sat inside for about ten minutes, hoping by the time I went out again to walk the dog, he’d be gone. Thankfully he was.

This happened at an intersection across from a school, which makes it even scarier. I’m trying to find a way to report it, but I didn’t even get a look at him.

My biggest concern is being too afraid to respond in a reprimanding way for fear of being physically assaulted as a result. So how, then, does one go about combating this unacceptable behaviour?

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30+

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Assault, Verbal

Bonggirl’s Story: “I felt like I was being watched”

In July 2010, while returning home at around 7:30 pm, I felt like I was being watched.

I realized that these were the same people who always seemed to hang around that place when I returned from my Language studies at the nearby institute. That particular night, I had walked a little forward to catch my bus home. The area was dimly lit and no one was around. There were three men. They started to sing and cat call. I turned around to confront them and was chased and later stabbed with a throw knife. I had to run for my life and I barely made it out. Fortunately, there is a police box very close to that place now. But there are countless such dingy and dark alleyways in our city where people keep harassing women, making them feel unsafe.

It is not about wearing clothes since in our city, most women wear salwar or saree anyway. The fear also arises because mostly who revolt are either beat up badly or in worst cases, shot or stabbed. People are afraid of raising a voice or even share their stories. I feel that if the support behind these harassers is destroyed, our city’d be much safer.

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39+

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Story, Verbal

HOLLA ON THE GO: Drive-by harassment

Group of guys shouted at me from their car as they drove by.

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25+

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Nonverbal Harassment, Stalking, Story, Verbal

Bristolian’s Story: He refused to leave her alone

This man followed me around the boot sale, leering at me and trying to catch my attention. When I told him to leave me alone he started calling me “fat cow”. This was in front of my mum, boyfriend and several other people. I then took a photo of him, and as a response he flicked me with a hose and called me “piggy”.


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53+

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homophobic, Story, Verbal

HOLLA ON THE GO: “Pride in the Park is a day we all should be able to enjoy”

Pride in the Park is a day we all should be able to enjoy.
Some out of state people showed up to prance around with signs and verbally attack Pride-goers.
One man, bible in hand decided me and my friend looked homosexual and proceeded to keep asking why we look as we do. “WHY ARE YOU DRESSED LIKE THAT?!? ARE YOU A HOMOSEXUAL?!?”
They harassed many people present and even brought a bullhorn. So you travel states just spread hate in the name of your god? Logical…

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28+

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homophobic, Stalking, Story, Verbal

Glenda’s Story: “Of course it was terrifying”

I just moved to Las Vegas about a month ago to pursue a performance career, I am a fire dancer.

I finished my shift at Paris casino (handing out voucher tickets for the Eiffel Tower experience), and was walking back to the MGM where I parked my car. For those who don’t know what the Vegas strip is like, 11am is no quiet time. Every part is brightly lit up and there are hundreds of people.

As I’m walking, this tall man comes right off my left side behind me and says, “Hey girl, how are you? What are you up to?”

I give him that “oh haha yeah you think I’m cute thanks I’m gonna keep walking bye now smile” and move away from him. I’m sure you ladies know which smile I’m talking about.

He says, “What, you afraid of guys? You afraid of me? You don’t wanna talk to me?”

And, in the same ‘aha yeah sorry I’m just on my way please excuse my rudeness’ fashion, I say, “Sorry, I just don’t talk to random guys I don’t know”. I’m doing that dismissive smiling thing because I’m conditioned to brush guys off gently, to not anger people, to make it seem like I’M the rude person for not responding.

He snaps.

He starts screaming at me at the top of his longs, chasing me for about a block as I try to get away from him as fast as I can.

“FUCK YOU YOU FUCKING GOD DAMN UGLY SLUT, FUCK YOU!!! FUCK YOU!! YOU FUCKING UGLY CUNT WHORE, I’M GONNA KILL YOU, YOU FUCKING UGLY GOD DAMN SLUT! FAGGOT! FAGGOT! YOU’RE GONNA GET RAPED, I HOPE SOMEONE RAPES YOUR FUCKING UGLY ASS, YOU FUCKING DISGUSTING SLUT! FUCK YOU! FUCK YOU! FAGGOT, FUCK YOU!!!!!!”

….and so forth and it just got more angry and colorful from there.

As I’m getting away as fast as I can I’m shouting “Leave me alone! Get away from me!”

I dive off into a food court and hide as soon as I feel like I have enough distance, but I don’t know how far behind me he is because he was screaming so loud I couldn’t gauge the distance very well.

Thankfully there was a police officer in the food court and he was kind enough to call in a couple of security guards to escort me to my car.

I was shaking and crying and I felt ready to puke. Of course it was terrifying. I didn’t know if this was gonna be the one guy that instead of responding with the usual, “Whatever, you’re ugly anyway” that happens when I refuse public advances, he was going to be the one that had a knife or a gun. Because YES that happens to women and YES women have died when they refuse cat call advances.

This is the outfit I was wearing.
Yes I’m flipping off the camera in the photo. I’m angry. I’m angry that this person felt he could treat me this way for simply NOT WANTING TO TALK TO HIM. I’m angry that this is not an isolated incident, that women all over the world experience this every day.

I’m tired of being scared outside. I want to feel safe and free. HOLLABACK.

I've got your back!
66+

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Story, Verbal

Ashley’s Story: Car Creeper

The other night, I was standing on my porch when a man stopped his car in front of my building. He said something that I couldn’t make out so I asked him to repeat it. When he said it the second time, it sounded like he said “Please tell me your middle name.” Confused, I asked “You want to know my middle name?” He shook his head and replied “No. Please tell me you are good in bed. Like, you ain’t got a boyfriend or nothin?” I told him that I do, in fact, have a boyfriend. He sat there for a few seconds and then sped off in his car.

I've got your back!
29+

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Stalking, Story, Verbal

Kk’s Story: “The last thing I wanted was for the situation to turn violent”

I was traveling in Paris, making my way to the Eiffel Tower one bright afternoon. I was looking around, trying to make sure I was going the right way, and, as a result, I made eye contact with a man that was walking past me on the sidewalk.

A few minutes later, he had turned around and caught up to me. He followed me. I was nervous, trying to be polite yet distant while he tried to engage me in conversation. On the way back to the underground, he grabbed my hand and tried to kiss me.

I moved away from him, told him to stop, but he just laughed and kept walking beside me. We were in a part of the park that was virtually empty, so, even though I told him to leave, I didn’t want to stay where I was, with no one else around, until he did.

All the way back to the underground, he continued to try to touch me. I tried to push him away, but didn’t want to strike him. The last thing I wanted was for the situation to turn violent.

Finally, I made it back to one of the main stations, walked over to the police booth and stayed there until he left. Some people have said I should have expected it, traveling alone… Like the unacceptable behavior was mine. But what makes it okay for him to harass me, touch me, stalk me? Why does walking somewhere on my own in broad daylight mean he’s not to blame?

I've got your back!
50+

one comment 
Nonverbal Harassment, Story, Verbal, youth

Rose’s Story: “…even then I was aware that catcalling was wrong.”

i live in florida and go to the beach frequently. earlier this year i went with my aunt’s friend and her two children, aged 4 and 7. we were on a stretch of sand next to the highway so we could leave the spring breakers alone because it was too crowded on the beaches further down the island. some young, college aged men came driving down the highway in their car with penises drawn all over their car and honked at me and my aunt’s friend, yelling things like “nice asses” i was 15 at the time, and even then i was aware that catcalling was wrong. i wanted to say something but they drove away too quickly

I've got your back!
32+

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Story, Verbal, youth

Natalia’s Story: “… why would they say that to a 12 year old”

The first time someone catcalled me I was 12. I always considered myself as fat and ugly, back then was no exception.
I was wearing my school’s uniform (a shapeless dress that helps my self-esteem by making me look even more fat than usual) and a big jacket. I was walking. Near my house, some guys were reconstructing one of my neighbors’ house. When I walked next to them they started to whistle and say things like “damn, can I play your guitar?” (I had a guitar with me). It was the first time anyone ever said something like that to me, I was confused because I didn’t understand why would they say that to a 12 year old and someone who looked like me, also I felt distressed, scared that they would do something to me and since I told my dad to pick me up from school.
Now this year, at the age of 14, I constantly get catcalled by old, desperate men. They disgust me, saying things like “you shouldn’t be walking alone girl, lot of bad people out there” or implying that they want to take me. The last time I directly stared at the man and said “excuse me?” with a raised eyebrow. He froze and didn’t say anything else. I’m ready to give the finger or laugh at the face of the next man who does this. Lately I miraculously haven’t been harassed, something I find great, and I hope it won’t happen again but in a world like this I can’t think it will stop.

I've got your back!
35+

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