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 own and run a manufacturing business, and attend trade shows with my husband. He is not involved in the business in any way other than as a sounding board for me and my ideas. 90% of the time, male exhibitors will ignore me and talk to him about my business, even though I introduce myself as the owner, ask them questions and answer theirs, and my business cards only have my name and details on them. I have then received follow up emails from these salesmen – to my email address – with his name as the recipient. I have also received sample packs to my business address with his name on them. I have never had a female salesperson do this. Absolutely infuriating.


Was on the tram. A man hemmed me into the corner of the seat. I thought that would be it. Then he put his hand down my trousers into my pants. I froze and couldn’t even speak. It was only when the tram stopped I got myself up and away. I’m angrier at myself for not doing anything than I am at him.


I was admitted to hospital when I was 21 because I’d just been diagnosed with diabetes. I was very scared and upset and alone as I was at university. Whilst I was in a cubicle on my own in just a gown a youngish doctor came in and asked if I’d had a breast exam yet. I said no and he examined me and then went away without saying anything. I realised later that I’d been sexually assaulted but it was a good while after and I didn’t know his name. That was 26 years ago and I’m so angry about it still and wanted to write it down.


This anecdote is much lighter than most on here but is an example of unconscious sexism. I was stopped at a routine police roadblock recently for a licence check (common and normal in my spacious and quite rural country). The middle aged, male traffic officer asked what town i was coming from and the city i was heading to , which is usual. After i told him, he quipped ‘thats a long way just for shopping!’. I then informed him of the actual purpose of my trip – to give a presentation at a conference. There was a pause…’oh…good luck ma’am’. I can only hope that the encounter might make him think twice about jokingly presuming what women driving long distances alone are doing. Could he have asked the same of a man?…sure, but i doubt he would have!


I was the only female member of staff in a meeting attending to deliver project management support. The man chairing the meeting said that no one would need to take notes because “Jess will just take the minutes” I thought “no she won’t” and left my pen on the table for the duration.


I was in a meeting at work with a researcher in Engineering. My colleague spent 40 minutes of the hour long meeting explaining to her how her own invention worked. The same colleague would message me in meetings to define words he thought I wouldn’t know.


A younger colleague in his mid 30s has for 5 years been excused of behaviours such as bullying, intimidation, incompetence, bad judgement and insulting clumsy rudeness…very often with a slight smile from manager and shrug (“He’s young” / “He needs to learn” / “He lacks confidence in himself which is why he overcompensates”.) Now despite this all I see him still being indulged and mentored by two older male colleagues. Watching them in meetings together is like watching three male dogs wrestling and playing. Not for one moment have I exhibited similar behaviours, I do my job, take initiative, am professional…and unmentored, and generally ignored and/or talked over in meetings. Somehow, I am at a loss to explain it, he continues to be given more responsibility.


Man here. I was in Glasgow, on Buchanan Street, walking past the Victoria’s Secret lingerie shop. Some promotion was on, women in lingerie in pissing-cold rain (I am not judging this as it was something I observed by chance). I walked by, thinking they were quite brave enduring the weather, but was shocked to see men my age crowding around, leering and taking photos on their phones. FFS. The women were doing a job and did not deserve public lechery or voyueristic photographs taken.


Constantly having to hear my mum use the phrase “don’t be such a girl” when she has two daughters. Using that phrase not only suggests it’s a negative thing to be seen as feminine, but also shames boys for exhibiting anything that society views as traditionally feminine. What she means is coward or wuss, but she chooses to say “girl” instead.


Growing up I was told that girls can’t throw as well as boys because their arms are designed for “holding babies”