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.

If you prefer to e-mail me at laura@everydaysexism.com I can upload your story for you instead. Follow us on Twitter (and submit entries by tweet) at @EverydaySexism.

Add your story:

Soph

My parents are divorced, now, and I don’t see my dad anymore, of my own choice. But when when my parents were still together, I remember my dad would get home from work, sit on the sofa and watch television, almost everyday of the week. My mum didn’t work so he expected, when he got home from work, that all the dishes would have been cleaned, the clothes would have been washed and the whole house would have been tidied. Then for dinner to be cooked and laid on the table once she had picked up my brother and me from school. In theory, it sounds easy enough for her to get all this done in one day, but that’s just theory. There are so many more little things she has to do and everything takes time. If any of it wasn’t done my dad would say: “Well what the hell have you been doing all day?” as if she had been sat at home twiddling her thumbs.
Married women with children who don’t go to work are often called ‘Housewives’. But personally, that doesn’t make sense. She isn’t married to the house, is she? Though equal rights have come far from when women couldn’t even vote (in some countries they still can’t), there is still this expectation that men have of women and of their wives. If a wife is a stay-at-home-mum then she has chosen to look after her children, the future of this world, than to earn money. Many men still think, “Well I earn the money for this household so I don’t need to do much else.” But that isn’t right. That isn’t being equal partners.
This condescending outlook is part of the reason my parents aren’t still together, and part of the reason for many other couple’s divorces. Most people have normalised this behaviour so it is often overlooked, especially in the man’s perspective who doesn’t think he’s done anything wrong. But it is the women who notice it, get fed up of it, and stand up against it. Yet when they do, they are seen as nitpicking at the cracks in the relationship, like they’re almost trying to create a problem.
I wish this didn’t happen. I wish that women, or even people in general, were not stereotyped or judged for their gender. When I say I’m a feminist, most people think I’m a ‘bra-burner’ or that I’m ‘bias to the female gender’. It’s like people don’t even know the true meaning of feminism. If a guy was a feminist, he wouldn’t be questioned on how he must hate men. Yet many people would ask, “How can you be a feminist if your not female?” I think feminism is underrated and not enough people talk about it, openly. The feminist movement is quite a slow one at that as there is always going to be someone who disagrees and with such things as female chauvinistic pigs, it seems rather hopeless. I think there should be lots of safe places online and IRL for people to talk about these issues, otherwise nothing is ever going to change. Awareness is key, and I just don’t think there’s enough of it.

An angry teen feminist

I’m 15, and I remember clearly one of the most infuriating cases of sexism I have experienced so far in my life. I’m standing in a queue outside a shop with a friend at lunch time, and two boys behind me start saying “I dare you to grab her ass” and laughing. These boys are in the same year as me at my school. I was afraid, confused as to who the comment was directed at (my friend or myself?) and I was shaking. Turning to my friend, I silently asked her if she was okay and if she wanted to leave. She shook her head and so we stayed. The comments prevailed, and my friend (she’s gay) was upset at some of the homophobic comments that they were throwing our way.

Once we had bought our lunch, fuming, I turned round to face the boys and said “You should shut your mouth, neither of you have the right to say these things. Until you (i pointed at one of them who was overweight) stop eating so many doughnuts, tubby, and you (I pointed at the other, who suffered from acne) get your spotty face cleared up, don’t either of you talk s**t about anyone again”. I recognise now that what i said was derogatory and is something I would be embarassed to ever say now, but in the moment it felt fantastic and I didn’t know how to react properly. They were left speechless and my friend, though badly shaken, was smiling. Since then, neither of the boys have made another comment towards either of us. I didn’t recognise it as sexist at the time, all i knew is that it was wrong. A year later and I’ve learned so much more about feminism and I’m so thankful for pages like this for letting people open up about their sexist experiences. May we all continue to support and help one another ♡ Sending Love to you all, An Angry Teen Feminist xx

Fiona

Someone sent an email to a group dsitribution list at work that started “Gents”. Almost 50% of the people receiving the email are female.

daisy mee

sitting waiting for a train, well dressed man on phone complaining about trains- it was easter break- very well spoken, a half smile of commiseration towards me. He began chatting about the problems with the trains and then bugger me I found him frequently, surreptitiously staring at my tits!! a 70yrs old man staring at my tits, their all at it?

FeministHelloKitty

Not really a huge issue, but whenever I was upset at school my male teacher would always ask, in a shy hesitant sort of way, if it was because of my “period” arrrgh!! As if that is the only thing a teenage girl could ever be upset about! Never mind if I am falling behind with coursework, had no sleep because my sister kept me awake having an all-night tantrum for the fifth time this week and I have classmates who would make the characters of Mean Girls look nice! Someone should explain to teachers that there are literally thousands of things in the world more upsetting than a menstrual cycle!

Maria

I work as a freelance copywriter and got hired to do a project at a bank. I was assigned a visitor’s parking space, a privilege that employees apparantly did not get. During lunch, someone jokingly insinuated I only got the parking space because I am a woman.
Furthermore, one of the employees​ I had to work with, continuously referred to me as ‘his girlfriend’ when introducing me to other employees.
On another occasion, the project manager received an email from an employee about a copywriting request. This personen asked whether ‘his copydoll’ couldn’t write the needed content. The project manager thought this was hilarious and when I told him the next day that I was not amused, he said that it wasn’t meant disrespectfully and that I shouldn’t make a big deal out of it. There were ‘little’ incidents like this every day (not always concerning me but other women).

Anon

I see my young sons express themselves through music, song and dance at home but feel unable to do so at school because their male sporting friends would laugh at them.

Jodie

Today my male colleague explained to me, a female, what it is like for a woman when they have sex for the first time. “It is more intimate for a woman” he says.

Why thank you male colleague for explaining to me what sex is like for a woman, for I would never know.

Louise

Where do I start? Oh my goodness, in most areas of daily life you will find sexism. I have applied for many jobs in the past, yes many, where I have been told that I would not be able to perform the work because I am female. Bear in mind that my current profession is a heavy mechanical trade, and I have worked in labouring jobs most of my adult life.
Now come across the “you only got the job because you are female” attitude. Hasn’t changed in the 22 years I’ve been in the workforce.

Jane

I live in the UK where a women was on the radio last week claimed that there’s no sexism in the UK anymore because gender equality is enshrined into law….I hope she’s reading right now.

Today, whilst driving to the shops there I was involved in an extremely minor traffic incident travelling (a minor scrape at 5mph) on the way into the underground car park. The other driver followed me in, I parked up where there were a number of spaces expecting him to park next to me in order to review the damage to determine if it needed to be an insurance job; he didn’t and instead parked across the way.

I got out to review the damage (minor scratches that will polish out) he checked his car out then came over to look at mine as started to offer my details for the insurance he challenged me and accused me of being reckless so I asked why he was parked on a no parking zone in an oversized vehicle, then he flipped and completely changed his attitude and he started pacing up and down screaming ‘people like you should not be driving, you’re the ones that cause all the trouble and shouldn’t be allowed on the road’ the insinuation being that ‘people like you’ meaning ‘women’.

He became increasingly aggressive continuing with saying that I was stupid and incompetent because I was a women, that not only did I not need to retake my driving test, I shouldn’t be allowed to drive at all. It was at this point I realised I was alone, in an unlit underground car park albeit in the middle of the day with an increasingly aggressive well built older man all because I was involved in a minor traffic accident that he’d already admitted caused no damage to his car. Thankfully as I started to think about how to escape another lady appeared and stood between us and asked me if I was ok and started to talk directly to me ignoring him, when we removed the attention from him he moved on after a little bit more verbal abuse.

I explained to her what had happened she laughed and said ‘men like that usually get aggressive because the you’re right and you called him out on it; he was mentally transferring his fault onto you because he could not even consider being wrong to a group in society that he hates’ and she was right; because I was one born one of the 52% he considered the lesser sex, that I had correctly challenged him he could only resort to aggressive, abusive behaviour.

I still needed my shopping but I could not risk him coming back with others to damage me or my car so I drove off in floods of tears and sat in the next car park until I pulled myself together. I got my shopping came home, all I want now is a large G&T but I’m paranoid he’s arrogant enough to call the police and I just can’t risk it. So, on the last day of my week off from work I am sitting on my sofa watching every car come past drinking tea until 5 until I can have a glass of something stronger to calm my nerves and to raise a toast to that women who was just passing by but chose to get involved and made me appreciate that I did not bring this on myself.