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.

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Bella

I was sitting with my friend outside of school. We were chatting when this guy (probably 15/16) came up to us and started flirting. It was awkward for the both of us considering we were 14 and this was a first for us, so we just replied with ok and nodded.He continued complementing us and we continued answering dryly.It was really uncomfortable so I told my friend to leave and she agreed. He got mad and began insulting me saying that the compliments were directed at my friend and that I was ugly and should go away. While we were walking away he began yelling at my friend how he didn’t get her number and calling her baby and how I’m a dumb bitch ruining everything. It was really uncomfortable and the things he said lowered my self esteem and made me feel awful and ugly. I know it’s probably not true but it still hurts.

H

Me and my friend were drinking together and quickly got very drunk. We ended up meeting two guy friends and stayed with them for a while. I don’t actually remember most of the day because I got too drunk and blacked out in the end. But before I got home we ended up in one of their friends houses where we had sex. I dont remember having sex with the guy at all and I would never have done it if I was sober. He wasn’t drinking either and I was obviously in a state I could barely talk or walk. Anywya after it happened he wanted us to be more Than that, but I told him it was a mistake and I was very drunk and he started attacking me saying “I’ve heard you always get with people and then just blame it on being drunk”. This really bothered me but what bothered me the most was him bragging about it to his friends and then they would bring it up to me not even knowing the full context. A year later and I’m going out with someone from the same friend group. I love my boyfriend but he can be a bit naive at times (he once said something along the lines of you can’t get raped by someone you’re in a relationship with?? Yes you can??) anywya one day we were talking about the incident and he says to me “you know you weren’t raped right?” I’m not saying I was or I wasn’t but I was way too drunk to give consent to someone who was SOBER so why does my boyfriend who wasn’t even there think he has the right to determine what happened to me.

N/A

I work for a supermarket and when I moved to university I moved stores so that I could carry on working during the term. When I arrived at my new store I soon realised how different things were. They would purposely put me on tills for my 9 hour shift purely because I was the only woman on shift. My manager and other staff members referred to me as the ’till girl’ and saw that I was only capable of serving, despite working for the company for 3 years previous and doing a variety of different roles. It was humiliating and insulting that they immediately saw me as less than purely because of my gender. They often played on this and when i brought it up they would only change things for a little while and then revert back to how it was. On the off chance I was ‘allowed’ to work stock they would only let me work toilet roll or health and beauty because it was light and they thought that anything else would be too heavy for me and I would be unable to do it. It was extremely insulting and highlighted the subtle prejudices that often go unnoticed by even the perpetrator because they think they are acting in your best interest and are ‘protecting’ you/

Hannah

When I was 15 me and two of my friends were waiting for a bus while two men in what looked like their 30s persistently asked as to get in their car to go to their apartment down the road. We kept refusing and told them we’re only FIFTEEN but they kept circling around telling us to get in.

Mary

Long ago my parents decided that their sons would be given a substantial down payment on a home, but, since it was the husband’s job to provide a home, their daughters would get nothing. 15 years ago I found out that my late father had illegally signed our names on to properties as a tax dodge that didn’t work. The remedy was gifting us the property, but instead of gifting entire properties, everything was divided by 10 – the number of children. My brother’s death left odd proportional ownership and, like my father, my brothers are slumlords. It has taken me ten years and two lawsuits to get through the courts to get my name off these properties the only legal way, either by having them buy me out or trading ownership or forcing a sale whereby I get the proceeds from my share. I got to the end where they were to come up with money or force a sale and the female judge decided to lecture me in front of my family. First she said she wouldn’t force a sale, “Yes, that’s illegal but if you want to spend another $150,000 on appeal I’m sure you’ll win.” She continued for 8 minutes lecturing me on the importance of family and how I was betraying womanhood, the American family, and God. She told me, “I hope you open your heart. Until then you won’t find a husband.” My lawyer objected, but she shut him up. “You can appeal if you want.” The pandemic closed the courts and, once opened, the appeal was denied.

orni

I’m from Romania and it’s impossible to not know how normal is domestic violence here. The sexism I grew up with, the violence in my family and other families… It’s just unimaginable how many women are beaten up by their husbands, fathers, brothers, uncles, even sons in a Christianity dominated country. Why? Because it’s believe that the women purpose is to take care of children, to cook and to obey her husband because she’s the devil. For real. My religion teacher told us that and even asked why we, girls with dreams, want to be doctors, engineers or lawyers when we should just stay in the kitchen and take every slap our future husbands will throw to us. My story it’s more related to the time I was younger. I remember I was 6 years old when one of my cousins slept at my home. My parents let him sleep with me (I think he had around 16). In that night my father came and caught him with his hand in my pants, in my most private parts. When I was 10 years old, another cousin put me and other girl from our family (who is 2 weeks older than me) to suck his dick… This are things I personally don’t remember very well, but I know they happened. Now, I’m 17 years old and I’m doing school 60 kilometres away from my home. Now I don’t experience any assault since I don’t really have a nice body and I’m 1,80 meters tall so I can easily defend myself if something happens. But that doesn’t mean everything is good. I just felt so different and ugly because of the way I look and the way people act around me. I don’t know if I should be relieved or sad that a guy who slap every girl butt ignores me and that’s frustrating. But I’m certainly happy that I’m not assault in anyway and that everything works good for me now.

R.

when I was in 10th Grade one of our teachers kept giving us statements from the 19th and 20th century about woman being worth less than the man and that the job of the woman was giving birth… he also made jokes that the life of a woman kann be summarized as kkk (I´m German) Kinder, küche, Kirche or children, kitchen and church. he gave girls worse grades than boys and often downplayed our achievements. but the worst thing was, that he kept saying and implying that all girls and woman are masochist so that they are trained to give birth.

Shalvi

1. I was walking back home from work in the evening when a guy on a motorbike smacked my ass from behind really hard, then drove on 10 meters, stopped and grinned. I was too tired and shocked to say anything and he left before I could get his license plate. From then on whenever I walked on the street, I would turn around if I heard a bike behind me. 2. I had just completed high school and cycling with my sister in a university campus when a guy on a motorbike started riding next to us and started masturbating and saying we were so pretty he couldn’t control it anymore. We screamed at him and he took off. 3. My boss always made comments on how immoral it was for women to have guy friends, to drink or smoke etc and he thought that healthy family structures were being destroyed because women had started working. We had respectable debates a couple of times about such topics and needless to say I didn’t like my boss very much. I used to work hard and would also put in extra hours at work when needed. Out of the blue one day my boss asked me to marry him and I was absolutely shocked. I said no and he told me to take my time to think. I explained to him that I didn’t need time, that we were incompatible and so different and after all the disagreement we had had how did he think I ever liked him like that. Over the next two weeks he tried to change my decision, told me I was at fault for his feelings because I put in extra hours at work and he thought I wanted to spend time with him and said that we could compromise, and I didn’t understand what a great person he was and how much he loved me. When I told him no he asked me to resign.

Amy

Abused by my dad since I was young till I was 15. Told “little girls should be seen or not heard.” apparently it’s a joke not funny. Called “bossy, know it all, too loud.” he found it funny to say he could sell me in Egypt in exchange for camels. My uncle believes that women are naturally more extroverted and that’s why they are not suited to science. I got horns honked at me the other day for wearing shorts when running. Some friends of me complaining about girls showing to much skin.

*

The other day I received an email inviting me to give a talk at a big conference. The email went on and on about the lack of representation of women at such events and that’s why he (the sender) decided to organize a session with only women. Nothing about the topic of the session or why I’d fit in well as a speaker. How wonderful to hear that He wants to have me in His session, not because of the quality of my work but because I am a woman. And of course, even though I’ve been giving invited talks (and organizing sessions) at said conference for the past 15 years (and he is a recent graduate who has never even attended the conference), I am so happy this Hero is willing to Rescue me.