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(Quick comment- I live in Reston, Virginia, so this is the nearest Hollaback location to me, and I wanted to share my story with people who live near me and experience similar things, possibly even from the same people.)
On a run in my neighborhood today, a man in a car passing me wolf whistled. As a minor, (I’m only 14!), it was my first negative experience of such a kind.
It made me feel unsafe to be running alone because I knew other people with more physical power (a man in a car) were looking at my body sexually, and I could do nothing about it, even if they chose to pursue me further.
I am also deeply disturbed to realize that even as a minor running in a family community, I can be made to feel unsafe.
I want to end street harassment because it makes me feel unsafe and unhappy, and that is no way for any person to feel!
A group of six men walking toward me on my way to work all started whistling and saying crude things, when one man said, “I’d love to eat you for dinner tonight!”
I went into the convenience store to grab a soda. As I walk in I notice that the guy at the counter leaves the counter and follows me to the fridge. I grab my drink and glance over, figuring that perhaps he forgot something. When I glance over he is messing with something in a book bag. This was strange so I walk away quickly to the counter. Sure enough this guy follows me and stands next to me. While I’m paying he continues to mess with something in his bag. I look over and realize it’s a video camera!!! As I’m waiting for the transaction to end, I know what he is going to do. I knew he was just waiting for me to turn around to leave so that he could film me walking to my car. I thought maybe I was being paranoid, but after I got my receipt I turned to leave but then abruptly turned straight back around. Sure enough- there he was video camera aimed right at me. I palmed the camera down and shouted “what the f#$* is wrong with you?” And he just gives me a blank look before pretending not to speak English. I looked at the store clerk, but just blank stares from everyone. I called the police but he was long gone. I felt sooooo angry for the rest of the day. One of the worst part was having other people around do/say nothing. Everyone was just starting at me like “oh no- what is she going to do” and in my head I’m screaming THIS IS NOT OK!
As I was walking home from class a man in his mid 30s approached me. He stopped me and said “damn you got a nice rack” and I told him to shove it and leave me alone. As I started to walk away he grabbed me by the shoulder and called me a cunt who couldn’t take a compliment.
Walking from my car to my friends apartment across the street one car going one way “you fat ass!” “who do you think you are” other car comes from other direction “hey sexyyyyyy”
I was walking the two blocks from the cornerstone to my apartment when an older man ran across the street yelling “Miss! Hey miss!” He came up behind me and grabbed my shoulder to turn me around. When he saw me up close he looked confused. “I thought you were a woman,” he said as he quickly walked away.
Mail carrier near a local park, constantly touching me and following me on walks, pulled down the front of my dress and told me I shouldn’t have so many tattoos if I don’t want him to look at them. Constantly knocking on my door for 5-10 min at a time. Yelling through my window if I don’t answer.
A man yelled animal noises at me out of a moving vehicle.