Tag Archives: Public space

Mk

I’m walking my dog outside my apartment and a man appears. He asks what type of dog she is. After I answer, he repeats my answer and asks again. Then he asks if I’m single. Obviously it wasn’t about my gorgeous dog but his insecurity about his masculinity.

Charlotte

I crossed the road and walked towards my car. A group of young males shouted at me “you going to go get f****ed you dirty b****h.” This was followed by “MILF”. I did nothing to these young people. I just crossed the road.

Jaz

In highschool, I was the only girl in the woodshop class. Everything I did was automatically held to a lower standard by my teacher. When talking to the class, he would slowly repeat basic instructions while looking at me as if I was too stupid to understand the first time, and should I do something well, I would be met with comments of “that’s pretty good *for a girl.*”

Catcalled

When I was only 7 years old, I was running through a college campus, racing my mother. When I was waiting for her at the end, two middle-aged men on skateboards passed by me, calling out, “Nice!” and whistling at me. Now, I’m nine years old, and I constantly face these types of things at school, and everywhere in general.

A

A couple months ago, I was on the bus when a grown man came onto the bus and sat down a couple seats behind me. I had my earphones in and didn’t notice him at first. I did notice when the man got up and sat down the row opposite where I was sitting. He kept staring at me and I tried to ignore him but he just kept staring. Not that it matters but I was wearing sweatpants and hadn’t washed my hair in 3 days. When the bus came to my stop, I got up to leave and so did he. He attempted to block the entrance to the bus but I ran towards the back entrance. When he saw me run, he reached forward and grabbed my butt in his hands. The moment I felt his hand I ran even faster and disappeared in the crowd, always looking back to see if he was following me. I was 15.

Jax

I was waiting for the train on a platform with only one entrance and exit. A large man comes down and starts advancing towards me saying things like “have you ever seen those movies where a large man fucks a tiny girl” and “how would you like to act one out”. I was so very scared and could not leave. No one else on the platform said anything and visibly withdrew when I tried to sit next to a family hoping for some sort of break or protection. Luckily the train came very quickly and I was able to board without him following. Why didn’t anyone say anything? What planner designed a space with only one exit that could be easily blocked and wasn’t visible from the street?

Holly

I was in a high speed car crash and was rushed to hospital. Doctor inserting my IV into my arm while I was being tested for life threatening injuries said to me “you have hairy arms for a girl…that’s okay though, I like that. I know lots of guys who like hairy arms”. I am 19, and was close to death. he was 40+.

MJP

My partner (male) has worn glasses since he was five, and I have worn reading glasses for the past three years. Last week we both went in for our eye check and needed our prescriptions modified. He said he’d have the new prescription fitted into his existing lenses, but also needed a separate pair for reading now – so the saleswoman said she should be able to get the same frames from stock if he was OK with that. No fuss; no sales pitch. I said I’d have my new prescription put into my existing frames, and instead of a ‘Sure; not problem.), I got the spiel about how my frames were no longer fashionable and wouldn’t I like to check out some of the new designer frames that might be more flattering to my face shape, or a colour that might suit my skin tone better, and even (this one floored me!) could make me look a few years younger! Yes she meant well; and yes she has commission on sales to make, but no pitch to the bloke who wears glasses every waking moment of his life, and a pitch based on looks and fashion to the female who only wears them when staring at a computer screen or reading a book!

Claire

As a 30-y-o- female customer at two different Bunnings Warehouse stores (hardware chain in Australia), harassed by same male, ~70-y-o employee in the space of a week. First time he touched my back when pointing to where I could find padlocks. Next weekend, at a different but nearby store, same man touched my shoulder and upper arm twice when my partner (male) and I were asking for some help in the paint section. Third time he went to reach for me, I took a step away from him. He also read out the name of a shade of blue paint (that just happened to be on the same colour-card as the colour we wanted), “teeny bikini,” and noted, “mmm, that’s interesting”. I’d bet my house that he would not have done this to a male or an older female. It made me feel angry and powerless.