I don’t think I realised how big this problem is until recently. I am 25 years old, I see myself as self-confident, smart, attractive, sexy and beautiful woman. In school I guess I didn’t feel it, because I didn’t feel my female power and confidence as much as I have it now.
Few weeks ago I was walking back home from seeing my mum it was a day time 3-4pm and I was wearing short jeans skirt and t-shirt with top (which is totally normal outfit but not for me anymore), there were 2 men standing at the bench and I saw how one of them was staring at me. I tried to avoid his eyes because I hate situations like this and I try always wear headphones and pretend that I don’t hear all these comments which men say to me sometimes, especially when I am in skirt or in skinny jeans. So he grabbed my hand and tried to stop me, it was so disgusting. I wanted to vomit. Since when men decided that they have a right to touch ANYBODY ? Especially female and especially at the street. It was a daytime, kids were playing 10 meters away. The worst part is that I couldn’t even answered to him, I hated myself for silence. When I get back home I asked myself “Should I have try to fight with him or what? Why is this so normal”. The same day later I was walking to shop and car was beeping and stopped whilst I was walking. Why do they do it?
I live in Moscow, its a busy city and because of constant rush and lack of time I used to wear very comfortable clothes no highheels, no dresses, rarely I wear skirts and when I do I already know that something like this can happen and it so sad that I became NORMAL. I bet if men were grabbed at the street or wolf whistled themselves they would had a better understanding of women.
If I want to be beautiful somedays for myself, not for anyone else and wear not my usual jeans and sneakers but maybe shorts or skirt or dress why should I always have a fear that I might get touched, grabbed or that another car will stop and will try to “bring me wherever I need”. That isn’t the society I want to live in, it isn’t the place where I want my kids to grow up in future. I believe that we can do better.
So after this accident I was really disappointed and I remembered all similar experiences I had. When I was around 18 yo I saw a man masturbating at the street during the day and people were just walking by, like no one saw him. Few times I was touched in the club and when I was younger I used to excuse these accidents thinking “this is club, its fine, maybe people are drunk there”. Last year, I was walking home and 5 years old boy slapped my ass. It was shocking and again I was paralysed, couldn’t properly react, few seconds later I said something to his mother but she didn’t say anything to him. It just a little boy, why would he did it? Was it because he watched it in the cartoons, the treatment to females? Or same thing happened in his house? When I was 20 I was grabbed by my hand and followed for few mins in Paris whilst I was travelling.
Public transport is a separate issue. I am just sick of it but I dont want to wear always neutral clothes from now only because some men cannot control themselves or because they are so ignorant and pathetic. I don’t want to be scared every time I wear a shorts or short skirt/dress. But this fear still exist. I really hope this issue will gain more attention and in few years or in few decades there will be less women facing this everyday sexism.