workmen

Jo

I recently had the decorators in to paint my wall. I always try to be polite and friendly, so I would chat to the guy a little bit. Unfortunately, as is often the case, if you are friendly with men then they start to cross the line of what’s acceptable behaviour. He started asking me my age, asking me if I was a good cook, saying I had a good body, so in the end I went from being friendly to ignoring him, I couldn’t wait for him to get out of there. I don’t care what his intentions were, men should realise what a vulnerable position women are in when they live alone and rely on inviting a man into their home for a service. They are at work and shouldn’t hit on their clients in this way, in the same way a teacher shouldn’t hit on their pupil or a doctor shouldn’t hit on their patient. They are essentially keeping a woman captive whilst making her uncomfortable, it’s not acceptable.

Charlie

Have been living in my new house for only a few weeks, and to catch the bus to work or go to the shops I have to walk past this car wash, no way to avoid it. At first I thought the guys working there were just being friendly to new neighbours, but since then I’ve been catcalled and ogled every day. They don’t even make any attempts to hide the fact they are staring at my breasts, bum and legs; it’s like they assume it’s their right to do it and they know they won’t receive backlash. I told my partner how it makes me feel dirty, unsafe and uncomfortable even going out for milk and bread and he suggested I call 101 or report them to Trading Standards. I don’t think that would get any reaction, because I’m just a woman and this is guys being guys. I can’t keep complaining about it because I’ll just look whiny and stupid but I’ve been severely sexually assaulted before and being believed/taken seriously is something I can’t take as writ.

Tori German

Hi. My names Tori and I’m from the Uk. I’m 17, and I’ve never really realised that sexism was still relevant until about a year ago when I started getting comments about my body, specifically my “lack of tits” quote from a person in my high school who said that I couldn’t draw nudes because “I have to have tits before I could draw them”. That was when I really started noticing. I’m a young artist, who’s Inspiration is nude women. I love to do nudes because everyone is unique and a piece of art and I love to recreate the individuality of that person onto canvas and paper, but now that I’ve started branching out into the art world, people (specifically men) have told me that it isn’t right for a lady to be doing nudes. That I should ” stick to drawing kittens and flowers”. Or that my art wasn’t erotic because there was to much “emotion” on my muses face. Just last week, workmen who were doing power lines next to my college yelled degrading things about my body ” nice Pusey, shame about the tits though” to each other. I was less than a meter away. Another time the same crew shouted at me “hay baby, wanna hang out at my place, I’ll show what it is to be a woman.” I feel horrified and scared. Sometimes I feel like I’m not a real woman because my chest isn’t largely endowed or that men don’t respect me because I’ve not got large breasts or I’m not tall. I feel like they don’t respect me because I’m intelligent, that they see my worth, not how much I can contribute to society but how good a f*** I’d be. Don’t get me wrong, I know not all men are like this, but the male members in my family say just ignore them, don’t take it personally. Your a grown women now, you have to expect it. I just feel like I’m not respected or acknowledged because I’m a woman. Does anyone else feel like this?