When I was in the early stages of pregnancy and suffering terrible morning sickness I developed a migraine at work. It got so bad I had to catch a taxi home. During the ride the driver noticed me rubbing my temples. He asked what was wrong and I mentioned I had a migraine. He assured me it was nothing serious like a brain tumour as women did not habe brains.
When I got a tattoo on the back of my neck that was visible to everyone the Assistant Principal at the school I work at walked up behind me and slapped me across the back of the neck. He said, That’s for being an idiot and getting a tattoo.” Another male staff member who was present at the time said, “You can expect to be bullied if you’re stupid enough to get a tattoo.” I thought long and hard about whether I should report the AP for what he had done and decided that I didn’t want to ruin his livelihood, so I did nothing. To this day this person still makes derogatory comments about me and my tattoos. His latest comment was to refer to me as a skank for having tattoos. I really wish I had done something about it that very first time.
When I was 20, I tried to buy a car from a second hand car dealer. he wouldn’t let me buy it because it was a manual, and I’m female. I asked to test drive the manual, to show I could drive – he refused, and tried to get me interested in an auto. I advised him that if he didn’t let me look at the manual car, I’d buy a car from his direct competitor. He reiterated – women should only drive automatic transmissions. I went across the road and bought a manual car from his competitor, as promised.
There was this trend going around where people would put the names of three girls on their Instagram story and rate them according to their attractiveness, how likeable they are etc. Rating people like they are objects to be used as people wish is not okay. My name appeared on one of them, and I let the person know that they should stop what they were doing because no one should need male approval to feel validated and worthy. The person completely disregarded what I had told them.
I was 19 and getting the train home after a 12 hour late shift at work. I looked around the carriage carefully to make sure the people around me looked safe. I dozed off against the window and woke up to find the guy next to me had his hand up my work uniform and was trying to put his hand inside my underpants. I was in such shock I just stood up and walked out, I think I even said “excuse me”. People saw what he did, but no one said anything or asked if I was okay. After the initial shock, I burst into tears of fury and rage that this arsehole thought he could do this, and also fury that no one stood up and helped. That was 30 years ago it still makes me angry. I still feel vulnerable and unsafe and avoid public transport.
I was with my little brother at Bunnings. When we were on our way back to the car a bunch of older guys started cat calling me- saying what they wanted to do to me. I didn’t hear all of it but my little brother told me what they said. I felt disgusted and ashamed. Was what I was wearing too slutty or was I walking with my hips swaying too much? I felt sick. And everyone says that sexism doesn’t exist- not in Australia anyway.
When I was born my mum got post natal depression. She said it was because I was a girl and she didn’t want me to go through what she went through. The day I turned 14 my mum didn’t leave her room. Later she said it wasn’t my fault it was hers because she was 14 when she was raped and no one did anything about it. She couldn’t bear to have the same thing happen to me, she was afraid of me turning 14.
I am 30 years old and have four year old daughter. I took her for ice cream to local night markets. A group of drunk guys were standing outside. As we were waiting to cross the road, one of the guys said to my four year old child. Tell your mummy I want to be you new daddy. All of his drunk friends laughed.
No joke, got barked at today by two professional looking guys as I was walking back to my car after work. When I reacted with disgusted I got aggressively sworn at and shouted at…
In year 11 of high school we each had a short interview with our headmaster to tell him what we wanted to do as a career and what subjects we were choosing for the HSC. Every single girl was told she should consider nursing, like his daughter, and every single boy was told he should consider engineering, like his son. Accordingly I then decided to pursue science.