Public Harassment: A man over six feet tall approached me…

A man over six feet tall approached me inside a department store, on the second floor where there is furniture sold. He asked if I worked there, and I said, No. He then began to follow me walking downstairs, asking if I had any family in the area, if I had just moved, if I was Chinese, if I was buying a mattress, if I was a student, etc. I stopped responding and walked to a different part of the store on the first floor, continuing to look for home decor items. I realized this man was following me through the store, continuing to ask questions.

I eventually got out my pepper spray, waited for a bit until I felt that he was gone, and made a plan that I would talk to the security guard to see if he was gone. I was disturbed because I couldn’t be totally sure I wouldn’t be followed home.

I’m feeling mostly angry, because this isn’t the first time that a man has followed me. I want people, especially shorter, smaller women, to feel safe wherever they go, and it sucks that this isn’t the case.

I guess I mostly want people to know that if in the moment that they’re feeling scared, they don’t have the right words or right actions come to mind right away, it’s okay. People around can help. I will be on the lookout for these kinds of incidents happening to others around me, and I am sure others are too.