“I just don’t know what else to do”

Well here’s another update of my experiences with street harassment. It’s a shame that I need to post these ‘updates’ so often.

Since my last story, I have been harassed several times. All are pretty minor but again the affect it had on me was more than trivial.

1) This happened the day after I was called ‘fat’ by some silly little boys (see ‘look how fat that girl is‘ post) I was going up to my boyfriend’s house, but instead of walking, I took a taxi. Yes, I took a taxi because most of the harassment I get happens when I’m either walking to or from his house. Today I just wasn’t in the mood. Yet I still coudn’t escape it. When the cab drove up my boyfriend’s street, the work men who had leered at me before were there again. And they noticed me in the taxi. They all looked at me and watched as I got out of the car. Then I saw that they were grinning to each other. I did the same thing as I did the last time, give them the middle finger. I was fuming inside though. I couldn’t even catch a cab without being harassed in some way!

2) It is not just men who harass. Sometimes girls or women can be just as bad. And to prove this, I was snickered at and called a ‘minger’ by some girls as I walked back home later on. My boyfriend told me that some girls had also laughed at him when he walked out of the shop. We believe they could be the same ones.

3) This Saturday, I had just nipped out to grab something to eat (I was staying in a guest house) and whilst walking back, a middle aged man sitting on a bench shouted, “Hi how are you?” I stopped in my tracks and confused, asked him if he was speaking to me. “Yes, I was asking you how you are” he responded. I said that I was fine and he then asked me my name. I gave him a fake name before he asked if I could come and sit with him and have a chat. I politely explained that I was in a rush to get home before speeding off. When I got back to the guest house (I go there often and am friendly with the family) I told the wife what had happened. She then told me that a similar ordeal happened to her daughter earlier on that day! Two men had bluntly asked her for sex.

4) This again happened when I was walking to my boyfriend’s house. Two men were walking on the opposite side of the road to me and were both staring and grinning at me. I scowled at them and I think they noticed I was intimidated because they kept looking back and chuckling.

So those are my recent experiences. All in the period of two weeks.

I have tried everything. Ignoring them, responding to them non verbally e.g. middle finger, a ‘look’, verbally e.g. “grow up and have some respect”, avoiding places where I’m more likely to be harassed, using transport to get to places instead of walking to avoid being harassed, changing what I wear. But nothing works. I now use a different route to get to my boyfriends house which avoids the main road and near the shops. I am losing weight because of street harassment. I just don’t know what else to do.

THIS HAS GOT TO END.

– Clarice

Location: North Cornelly. Wales

Share your street harassment story today and help raise awareness about the problem. Find suggestions for what YOU can do about this human rights issue.

2 Responses to “I just don’t know what else to do”

  1. These assholes are harassing you because they either want you to be under their control or they are trying to guard the streets as their “male territory”. If you try to change yourself to please them, or if you stay out of that territory, they win. Whatever they say about you, always know that not everyone thinks that way. They’re probably insecure about themselves and need to put someone else down to boost their own egos. Changing yourself will not stop the harassment, and even if it did, you shouldn’t have to do that. You have just as much of a right to be in public as anyone else.

    They’re bullying you because they’re insecure about themselves. Whenever they harass you, either ignore it or say something back to them relating to their insecurity. If the harassment becomes more serious (following, won’t leave you alone, etc.), threaten to call the police. If they still don’t stop, call the police.

  2. Golden Silence says:

    I agree with Concealed Weapon and I have the same sentiments as before—changing yourself is not going to stop the harassment. They’ll find something else to pick on or harass you about. I’m thin, and the harassers have called me a “skinny bitch,” “scrawny bitch,” etc.

    Hard as it is, it’s about not giving these men’s words and actions any worth or value. It’s about feeling confident about yourself regardless of your size and appearance and not letting these harassers win.

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