Parking Lots, Verbal

New submission from Akirah

Today I was sitting in my car, waiting for my husband. A man I did not know approached my car and attempted to open the passenger door, which really startled me. Thankfully, it was locked and he was unable to get in. I could hear him apologize and say that he thought I was someone else. I didn’t pull down the window, as I didn’t feel safe to and I assumed he would walk away when he realized I wasn’t who he thought I was. Instead, he continued to try to engage me and open my car door. When I motioned for him to leave me alone, he would not. After thirty seconds of this, my husband came outside and told him to leave me alone. Only then did he start to walk away, but he did linger a bit. He also stared at us while we drove away. It was pretty darn creepy and given that I’ve had a past experience with sexual assault, I felt pretty triggered.

Why do some people refuse to respect the space of others?

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7+

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Verbal

Anonymous’ Story

I was walking from my car to an apartment that I am interested in renting, when a man passed me and said “Hello, beautiful young lady.” I chose not to respond. He repeated himself, raising his voice. I chose to remain silent. I kept walking, but he turned around and yelled, “Damn, you can’t even speak? That’s some Black-on-Black sh*t.” After the apartment viewing, I was nervous to walk back to my car.

I can speak perfectly well. You have no right to insult me. I am not obligated to accept or tolerate your verbal harassment. No woman, same ethnicity or not, should not have to feel intimidated by you just walking to and from her car, or anywhere. You have no power over me just because I am a woman.

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8+

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Verbal

Nicole’s Story

I have been catcalled a half dozen times on Butler street in Lawerenceville. “Hey beautiful”, “how you doin sexy”, “nice ass”, and “how are you beautiful” are some of a few of the harassment I have experienced. I experienced two catcalls in under a minute yesterday. I seriously hate it. It’s so hard being a woman.

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11+

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Parenting, Park

Anonymous’ Story in the Park

I was in a neighborhood park with my 2 year old daughter. There were a group of teenage boys playing a game on the courts on the other side when we got there. I noticed a man slowly ride his bike through the park, making eye contact with my a few times. It made me uncomfortable, but I shook it off, I wasn’t alone. About thirty minute later, the group of boys finished their game and left. As soon as they were gone, the man on the bicycle came from around the corner and sat on the swing next to the one I was pushing my daughter in.
I am a social worker, I am pretty comfortable in uncomfortable situations. But I could feel my heart racing. He started with “hey, baby. I see you don’t have a ring.”
I am actually married, but that isn’t the point. I don’t like jewelry, so I don’t wear my ring. Whether or not I am paired with a man should have no bearing on the security I have or the respect I am given.
He went on to say he lived in the neighborhood, and asked me several times for my address so we could “hook up” when my daughter was sleeping. It scared me, I felt cornered. He was blocking my stroller, and I was trying to find a way that I could leave without turning my back.
I told him that I wasn’t interested, and he said that if I could have a baby with one man, currently, I wanted him. I kept telling him that I wasn’t interested in him, that I just wanted to enjoy a day in the park with my child, and that I was not discussing it further. Finally, my little girl started to fuss in the swing, I told him that she needed a nap, right now. He offered for me to go to his place, which apparently was close by.
I told him no, that I was meeting someone at my house and needed to leave. He asked again for my address, and I told him no, that he was being inappropriate, it was not okay to try to pick up a woman at the playground who clearly had expressed the desire to be left alone.
I took the longest possible route home on foot that I could, circling my block before I felt safe enough to go home. I haven’t been back to that playground. I drive to take her to different, more populated parks. I hated feeling trapped with my child there. I hated that he wouldn’t back off. I hated knowing that he had been waiting for the other male bodied people to leave so I would be more vulnerable. I hated that I had felt safer with the teenage boys playing basketball than I did on my own.

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29+

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Verbal

Anonymous’ Story

The first thing I need to tell you is that I’m thirteen. I was taking out the trash because that was one of my chores. When I opened my garage door, I saw these two guys walking down the street. One looked 17ish and had no shirt on, showing his chest, and the other was about 20 and dressed sloppily. They saw me put the trash in the garbage bin and when I turned around the 20 year old said “hey girl” really loudly. I looked at them but didn’t reply.  I sped back inside my house and shut the garage door really fast.

It was scary for me because I felt like they would walk up my driveway and physically harass me. I am also scared they might come back. I haven’t told my mom because all he said was “hey girl”. But then again, I am 13 so I kind of have a reason to be scared.

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19+

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Parking Lots, Verbal

Anonymous’ Story

I received a simple “Hey cutie,” and was looked up and down while walking into the gas station. In a brief moment of bravery, I yelled back to his car, “Treat women with more respect than that.”

He came back into the station moments later and said something like “How bout ugly then?” He went back to his car. I paid for my goods and he then asked, “Is that better?” Honestly I don’t know.

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10+

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Work

Anonymous’ Story

At work, one of my few female coworkers informed me of a comment about me that a man who comes by my work almost on a daily basis said to her. He told her “she looks like she works at a strip club.” I dress appropriately to work, and I like to look nice. There is nothing in my appearance that suggests that I work at a strip club.

There are not many women who work with me, or come to my place of work. Men like this are one of the reasons why. I feel I can’t reveal my name here or discuss this with my manager because the man who said this is a valued customer ($$). What a screwed up world this is.

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13+

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Verbal, Walking

Kathryn’s Story

I was getting out of my car with a bag of fast food, right near my house. A man was walking toward me and said something like “yes girl hey girl, oh it’s lunch time, you look very nice” I just said thanks and was starting to walk towards my door. He turned around and stopped me and started “…I just moved here from California and…”. I cut him off, realizing what was happening, I told him I had no cash, sorry. He said “I just wanted to sell you this”. He had some kind of device in his hand, it looked like a battery charger or something. I told him I wasn’t interested and I walked away. I went to work, and when I was leaving work, my boyfriend was waiting for me. He asked me why my gas cap was missing. I firstly assumed it had happened when I was in South Side the night before, but when I got home I saw it laying on the ground. I didn’t hit anything and I never leave it open. It was cleanly ripped off with no other damage on my car. I can’t be sure it was the guy, but I am pretty certain, as my neighbors are all friendly and I have never had anyone damage my car where I live currently.

I've got your back!
11+

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