January is Stalking Awareness Month. Most people who are stalked know the person stalking them and the average duration of stalking is 1.8 years.(1) Here are helpful resources:

Brief stalking by strangers in public is also a big problem and one that is very scary for the women being followed. I’ve read close to 200 stories involving women being followed and stalked in public by strangers, including the following two stories:

“I was stalked by a strange man one day in a shopping center, when I was out with my friend. He would just appear in front of us several times, leering at us very aggressively. I started laughing because I was so nervous, and we entered a store and asked for help from the woman clerk. We called my friend’s mom as soon as we were in the store so she would pick us up as we were afraid of staying in that mall.”

“I was once followed home from the subway by two men making sexually explicit comments and suggestions. I ignored them until one grabbed me from behind, at which point I turned around and started to scream profanity at them. That convinced them to leave, since it was crowded. No one came up to offer assistance, or see if I was ok afterward, and I felt ashamed that people saw it happen.”

Have you ever been followed or stalked? If so, how were you able to get away? Do you have any advice to share?

One Response to Stalking

  1. Linda says:

    After making a comment about how “smoking cigs was so stupid” to a man who was smoking in his car, as he was driving by,(he had his window down, and heard me), he turned around in the shopping center and asked if I had made a comment to him. I immediately turned around and headed into a store. He drove very slowly, and looked into the store window, leering at me, and probably getting a better look at me. I stayed in the store for a few moments, and then left for another store. After 5 minutes in that store I decided to get back to my car and leave, and that’s when I spotted the man in the direction of my car. I actually had to hide behind a pillar on the sidewalk to wait to see if he would go into a store, which he did. I RAN like hell to my car, and as I was going out of the shopping center I see that he’s back on the sidewalk, looking for me. I turned my head the other way, and hunkered down in my car, and I don’t think he saw me. Geez! After this kind of run in, I will never voice my “two cents” about smoking ever again. I was so scared for the next few hours, and had trouble sleeping that night. This guy was 30 something, and very clean cut, wearing a suit even, and driving a newer car.

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