The Everyday Sexism Project exists to catalogue instances of sexism experienced on a day to day basis. They might be serious or minor, outrageously offensive or so niggling and normalised that you don’t even feel able to protest. Say as much or as little as you like, use your real name or a pseudonym – it’s up to you. By sharing your story you’re showing the world that sexism does exist, it is faced by women everyday and it is a valid problem to discuss.

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I’m out with a male friend at the local pub. The table over is having an obscene conversation causing me and my friend to giggle. Then they start directing it towards me, and my friend is still laughing. They say things like ‘i can show a blonde girl like you how to squirt, come here’. I feel disgusting. Like I’m doing something wrong. Dressed in shorts and a t shirt, no makeup and a ponytail. My friend doesn’t help or stand up for me, not that I should need it, but please don’t just sit there and laugh


I was out to dinner last night at Chuy’s my local favorite tex mex restaurant. My two dinning companions, my friend Kevin Murff and my husband Patrick. Every time our waitress addressed my dinning companions they were referenced as sir. Every time I was referenced I was called sweet pie. I was there to eat with my friend and my husband. This sweet pie nonsense has stuck with me all day and night. When in a professional environment all people need to be addressed at the same level. Sir and Mam would have been fine. I am of an age to have mam make me think who me; however it is the correct form of address event though it is a festive dinning establishment.


I am getting into a local train with a group of friends in the gents(or general) compartment. I am surrounded by my guy friends who kind of try to protect me from other men trying to touch me. In all the fuss as i try to get myself in, and its rush for the train, two men from both the sides get their hands through me till my boobs and press them. I screamed, i didn’t knw what to do, i couldn’t see their faces, i was terrified, only for others to think that i was terrified of the rush.


Not just one instance, but I’ve started to notice how frequently men interrupt me and my (female) friends. It is as if whatever we have to say is less important than what they have to say. I’ve also found that most women do not protest when this happens because we have also accepted that our words mean less.


I have a stalker. Incidents began several years ago with what I would describe as tampering, the bolt on a garden gate being lifted up 90 degrees; the top support for a down pipe (at first floor level) being moved round 90 degrees, the face of brick work being cleaned off etc. I reported this to the police and was told by the police man who attended that I “wanted to believe that there was a problem”. Several years on I moved house because of concerns, and again the bolt on the rear garden is lifted up 90 degrees, but this time brick work is being chipped into and pieces of metal have been gratuitously embedded in brick work front and rear of my home etc. More recently I wrote to the police about potential witness but the police claim that my recorded delivery letter was not received by them – despite their signing for the letter on receipt. More recently, two police officers made a surprise visit and asked to see “recent damage”. After spending sometime viewing the damage I was told by the male officer that this was “wear and tear”. It was only after they had left that I realised that they had not offered to give their names and I had not thought to ask. Subsequently, a card bearing the crime number was put through my letter box, no name, date, contact details. My life has changed significantly – it’s not just about trying to come to terms with being stalked but I find the attitude and practice of the predominantly male police officers difficult; and their complaints procedure opaque.


my boyfriend beat me up and left me when I was pregnant, then again im white and this always happens


Had a bad flat tire, not one I could repair myself. Took the car to our local garage here in France. Turned out it was time to replace two other tires too. Mechanic suggested I call my husband before deciding whether to go ahead with replacing all three. GRRRR.


I live in a country where, when it”s someone’s birthday, it’s tradition for them for buy the round at the bar or to bring in some cake for their colleagues etc.

So the other day, I remembered a colleagues birthday and, though I don’t really like this man because of his rude behaviour and constant tantrums and dishonesty, I decided to be kind and wish him a happy birthday.

He promptly responded by telling me to “shut the fuck up. I don’t want anyone knowing so I don’t have to buy anything for them”.

Later, I saw him simpering “thanks yous” with male members of management who, being in charge of his records etc, knew it was his birthday already. For that day and several days after, he would go out of his way to glare at me and be even ruder than usual to me because he was too dim to work out that they knew his birthday from employment records, not because I told them.

He behaved like this for the same reason he’s usually shitty towards me; because he thinks as a woman I won’t speak up about it and that I wouldn’t be taken seriously even if I did. He treats our female colleagues in the same manner while he simpers and panders to our male colleagues.


When I accidentally fell and hit my head at work, I was taken to the Hospital Accident and Emergency Department. I was wheeled into an examination room in a wheelchair by a male healthcare worker. I’m not sure if he was a male nurse or a paramedic, but it was his job to examine my injuries and determine whether or not I was fully conscious.

My head was throbbing and it was incredibly difficult to concentrate. My memories are very fragmented because I felt sick and the fluorescent lighting was painful on my eyes. My memories may be slightly different to what actually happened. However, I do remember him smiling (he was very friendly and trying to be kind) and calling me “my dear”. I shrugged this off as a cultural thing at first. He had a distinct accent and I cannot be sure if he was from an Eastern European country or not. I have nothing against people coming to work here from those areas and many of them do brilliant work. Again sorry if I have got the nationality wrong, but I felt really sick at the time. Clearly this man was responsible for helping to save many lives, an honourable and responsible job.

He gave me an eye tracking exercise to do which was really difficult given that my frontal lobe had just been knocked for six against a wall. This part of the brain is responsible for focussed attention and sadly, my eyes were wandering all over the place because it was so difficult to concentrate.

He said something like:
“Look into my eyes my dear.”

I told him that I was trying my best to maintain eye contact, but that it was really hard (given my physical constitution). I apologised to him for being rude and being unable to maintain eye contact for any length of time.

He grinned said something like:
“My darling you are not rude. If you would please look into my eyes I have a very handsome face.”

I could be wrong (due to my fragmented memories), but I think he called me some endearing phrases like “nice girl”, “sweetheart”, and other things. Not horrible explicit things, just very gendered chivalrous things. I think sometimes he was having a joke, but I just felt too sick to get it. It just seemed weirdly at times like his bedside manner was as if he was trying to chat me up even though we were in a hospital.

He didn’t inappropriately touch me or attack me at all. He was being professional and gentle (taking my blood pressure and so on). I was grateful that he was taking the time to examine my condition and determine whether or not I had concussion. I suppose he thought that he was trying to treat my injuries in a gentlemanly way.

I couldn’t really protest anything he said because he was smiling, trying to be nice and trying to help me (also my head was too bashed about for me to even think straight, let alone enter into logical arguments). It was only when I thought about situation when I had recovered from my injury later on that I began to wonder:
“Did he really say those things to me or did I dream it all?”

I think that if I’d had my full wits about me at the time, I would have said something to him about the words he was choosing to use. However, at the time I was felt too sick, hurting and tired to argue. He was a professional and I was in a difficult situation so I had to trust that he knew what he was doing.

Please understand that I have nothing against men who dedicate their lives to helping the community or nurturing others. In some cultures, people use very familiar language towards each other. So what someone in one culture might call “benevolent sexism”, another a person in a different culture might call “being nice to women”.

I also have vague fragmented memories of having fainted on a day out on another occasion and not being able to open my eyes. I heard someone say:
“There are very handsome men here to help you. They would like to meet you very much. Open your eyes and you can see them.”

Sadly, even the promise of “handsome men” first aiders would not make my eyes open. I must have been driven back in the car because I woke up at home in the driveway.

I really really hope I dreamed this episode also. I cringe even thinking about what they said to me now.

I have attended First Aid Classes and was never instructed to tell women casualties to open their eyes to see “handsome men” in order to wake up. Perhaps because this was because I was a woman and not a man trying to live out his damsel in distress rescued by a knight in shining armour fantasies?

Again, I may have got this all wrong or my memories may be really poor, but I remember other times when I fainted when I was told that a “handsome man” had come to rescue me. I don’t get where this whole “sleeping beauty”, “swooning damsel in distress” mythology comes in. I thought that I we lived in the modern world and not Medieval Europe.

One time I had fainted because it was hot at school and collapsed in the corridor. I was not wearing a corset at the time and was not swooning into a “handsome” male teacher’s arms. One silly girl even asked if I’d fainted in his arms or if he had kissed me or given me he leather jacket to wear to keep warm. She spread this very embarrassing and daft rumour around for a while, which meant that I had to deal with silly comments from other people later. I explained that I had (very unromantically) collapsed on the floor due to heat exhaustion and staggering along been assisted by a male member of staff who took me to sick bay. There was no romantic swooning or anything inappropriate involved at all.

I am not lesbian or bi, but I wonder how non-heterosexual women who’d fainted or hurt themselves would respond to the requests:
“Open your eyes to see these good looking men.”
“People say that I am a handsome man, look into my eyes my dear”

My guess is that they wouldn’t be very happy, but then again I cannot speak for people whose experiences I haven’t lived.

Sometimes I wonder if I am being over sensitive or paranoid about all of this, after all, there were men who helped me in emergency situations and said such things when I was helpless to argue.

Some men do behave in protective ways towards women and do save lives. The question is what is professional language to use and what language is too overly familiar?