“He tried to drag me along”

My stories are pretty tame compared to others. My advice below is what is more important to publish. I was standing at a street light and a group of men in there 20’s walking past. One man put his arm around my neck and asked me to follow the group. He tried to “drag” me along but I shook him free. I was shocked because this was in broad daylight with plenty of people around. Some men have no shame anymore.

Like you say in your home page, there needs to be a cultural shift so women are not treated like sex objects. Everyone needs to be taught the lesson of respecting ourselves and others in primary and secondary school. But with the media, internet, music saturated with women as sex objects, this is pretty hard to change. But things we can all do is fight advertisers and the media to stop showing sexist advertising and to ensure we censor the web to get rid of porn. Porn, girlie clubs, prostitutes are degrading to women.

Also, if women want respect, they can’t dress like prostitutes. One simple thing women can learn to do is NOT dress sexy in public. I see many young girls now wearing skimpy clothes including dresses so short they barely cover their bum crack. Honestly, how can you expect men or women to respect you when you dress like sex is on offer? “Dress with respect” is the motto I would be graffitting everywhere. Women can dress pretty, classy but not sexy and definitely not slutty. The golden rule of thumb is the more flesh you expose and/or the tigher the clothing, the more sexy/slutty you look and hence the more respect you will lose. Just remember, dress like a sex object and you will be treated like one.

– anonymous

Share your street harassment story today and help raise awareness about the problem. Include your location and it will be added to the Street Harassment Map.

[Blog admin’s note: Just want to state my belief that the way a woman dresses is NOT an invitation to harass or assault her or to treat her disrespectfully. Dressing “like a prostitute” is not an invitation to be harassed and women who are sex workers deserve respect and should not be harassed or treated poorly either. Men harass women wearing all types of clothes and even some women who are veiled get harassed. Changing how women dress is not the answer to ending harassment – ending the socialization of men to think it’s okay to harass and ending a culture of disrespect for women is the way]


16 Responses to “He tried to drag me along”

  1. Golden Silence says:

    Also, if women want respect, they can’t dress like prostitutes. One simple thing women can learn to do is NOT dress sexy in public. I see many young girls now wearing skimpy clothes including dresses so short they barely cover their bum crack. Honestly, how can you expect men or women to respect you when you dress like sex is on offer?

    I have to disagree. If not dressing sexy is a deterrent, then how come women in burkas, women in business suits and women in big parkas get harassed? It has nothing to do with how you’re dressed, it has to do with men wanting to control women.

  2. BearBear Avenger says:

    Wow…… I don’t know if I’m more appalled at your post or the group of guy’s behavior. I don’t know about you, but burlap sacks are definitely not in my wardrobe. And it definitely has nothing to do with the way you dress. There have been plenty of times when I have been harassed just plainly clothed….a hoodie and baggy jeans….so scandalous, right? Although I do agree with the statement about media’s involvement. If I can’t dress the way I want to because of some idiots actions then “they” might as well have won.

  3. Jeff says:

    Golden Silence nails it, but I’d like to tack on that telling women not to act or dress in a certain way, “or else” is putting the onus to prevent violence on them, rather than the men which is where it belongs. It’s not women’s fault if they’re harassed or attacked no matter how they dress, it’s the fault of the men who are the harassers and attackers.

    Also, to back up GS’s point: http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSL1732581120080717

  4. b says:

    When I lived in Boston, I got yelled at all the time—even after I gained weight and started wearing granny clothes (literally, they belonged to my gram before she moved into a home). It’s never had anything to do with what I or any other woman chooses to wear. Disrespecting sex workers on top of dissing women’s choices is just compounding oppression.

  5. michelle says:

    Even if you ARE a prostitute and you are wearing the most scanty outfit in existence, you do not deserve harassment.

  6. Emily R. says:

    I agree with the responses here! When it comes to the prevention of sexual harassment (and sexual assault and abuse), the only person with the power to absolutely ensure that harassment doesn’t occur is the harasser him/herself! Blaming the victims of harassment and abuse doesn’t address the underlying issues, and really, perpetuates the myths in our culture(s) that allow harassment and abuse to exist in the first place.

  7. nycthinker says:

    I want to play devil’s advocate here and just assume that the original poster was angry when she wrote this and was speaking from that anger. I agree that the type of man who would harass a woman doesn’t care how the woman is dressed, but to say that women who dress provocatively are completely blame free is a little silly in my opinion. I know I’ll get flamed for this but when a woman wears tops so low cut that her nipples are practically out *and* skirts so short that we can see whether they wax or not, she’s going to get harassed.

  8. tiredofvictimblaming says:

    nycthinker, you say “I agree that the type of man who would harass a woman doesn’t care how the woman is dressed,” which is true. We are harassed no matter what we wear. But then you immediately contradict that by saying a sexily dressed woman who is harassed is not completely “blame free.” We are harassed no matter what we wear, really and truly. The onus is ENTIRELY on men to not harass us, no matter how we’re dressed. What about when we go out in clothing that isn’t considered provocative, and are harassed? What’s the “solution” then? To not go anywhere? Or just not anywhere alone? Or at night? What we wear is beside the point. We are harassed because we are women, plain and simple.

    And while we are talking right now about harassment and not rape, it’s worth noting that your erroneous belief that we share some blame if we’re “provocatively dressed” (a subjective concept, it’s also worth noting, because one person’s “sexy” is another’s “normal”), is exactly the type of response women get after they’ve been attacked: “Well, they shouldn’t have attacked you, BUT you shouldn’t have been wearing that/been out alone/been drinking.” Men really can keep from harassing or hurting people if they choose to, regardless of others’ behavior or dress. That some choose not to is NEVER our fault, not in the slightest. It is theirs and theirs alone.

    Statements like yours, that place some of the blame on women’s dress or behavior, are the kind of statements that make girls and women afraid to speak up.

  9. Golden Silence says:

    I think the girl in this story is taking her anger out on the wrong party. She should be mad as hell at the harassers, not at how women choose to dress.

  10. Wow. Great dialogue. I agree that it doesn’t matter how you dress. Believe me I’m 51 and dress in sweats most days and it still happens. I believe it is about men thinking that they CAN do this! So they DO!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  11. nycthinker says:

    I knew I’d get that type of response, but what can you do? I want to ask a serious question to all of the women here who have an issue with my statement about scantily dressed women. Are you trying to tell me that you have never seen a women dressed in the way I described and not thought “what a slut” or thought that she was going to get harassed walking down the street that way?

    You can say all you want that women should walk down the street wearing anything they want, and whether or not I agree with that statement is not the point. The point is that we don’t live in that kind of world. We live in a world where some men will harass women, regardless of what they are wearing, so why give men an excuse to behave like the animals that some of them are.

  12. Jeff says:

    nycthinker, the reason why some women have those thoughts is because they’ve internalized the patriarchal attitudes towards women.

    Saying “we live in a world where men harass” is giving them the excuse they need to do it. It’s lowering the standard for them, and treating them like uncontrollable machines that have no choice in how they treat women. Again, don’t blame the women who are harassed for “giving the men an excuse,” blame the men who are doing the harassing.

  13. Golden Silence says:

    Were the prostitutes and other scantily-clad women standing by egging the men on to grab the woman in this story? No. So how come the blame’s being put on them for what the men in this story did? The anger is seriously misdirected.

  14. Colette says:

    The last time I was harassed I was wearing a winter coat, a hat, a scarf, gloves, and dark sunglasses. Well yes, and pants. A small part of me, the part that wasn’t pissed, frustrated, upset, etc., was amused. It was just such obvious proof that it doesn’t matter what you wear if some fool wants to bother you. Maybe *business* is just slow in winter for harassers.

  15. ak says:

    This anontmous is full of it. If I walk by someone smoking crack, I don’t need to take their pipe away from them and smoke it myself. If a woman is dressing sexily around me and flashing lots of flesh you don’t need to take it upon yourself to harass her or try to rape her. There’s always this lame ‘dress like a nun’ argument and it’s like oh yeah? Well how do you explain the grown women, the children including little children and the senior citizens who get raped and groped who don’t dress like their Pamela Anderson or whoever? Please.

  16. Margaret says:

    It doesn’t matter how you dress. I used to get harassed all the time while wearing modest clothing. Besides, sexy is a very subjective term. I like to look pretty, and, while I don’t show a lot of skin, I think I look pretty sexy. Does that mean I’m asking for harassment, rape, groping, etc? Making excuses for harassers is never a good idea. I have a sex drive that is through the roof, and I manage not to harass or rape anyone. If I can do it, anyone can do it.

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