Times I Have Been Afraid of Men Approaching Me in Public
That stupid "how to approach a woman wearing headphones" article and ensuing backlash have made me think about the times when I have been approached and how ridiculous and/or terrifying they have been.
- •Out at the bar with friends/coworkers when one guy (an acquaintance) follows me around and keeps trying to whisper in my ear and touch me. I remind him that I'm engaged and not interested. My friends tried to distract him but he will not stop.I end up sneaking out of the bar in the midst of some tall guys and literally run to my apartment two blocks away. He follows me home and attempts to get buzzed in no less than nine times before calling me four times and leaving me angry voicemails.
- •Walking to the grocery store with headphones on and a guy on the street asks me for money. I ignore him (thinking the headphones would give me somewhat of an excuse).He screams at the top of his lungs what a c*** I am and that if he saw me again, he'd show me what it was to respect a man. I can only imagine what that involved.
- •Walking home from the bus stop during daylight hours and a man stopped me and wouldn't let me pass until I took my headphones out to talk to him. He proceeded to say, "I just couldn't let a honey like you walk by without telling you that yo ass is better than Texas."I said, "Okay," put my headphones back in, and kept walking. I heard him yell something about taking a compliment and appreciating admiration before getting to my building.
- •Out to a happy hour with my work team and a drunk guy approaches me. He tells me how hot I am and wants to know what I'm doing later (ugh). I'm sitting at a table with coworkers so I explain that I'm with friends. He proceeds to call me a "stuck up fucking cock-sucking bitch" and many other charming things.My boss gets up and tells him to back off. Drunk guy pushes boss. Drunk Guy's friends rush over and get him under control. Boss yells at them to get him out of here and to stay away from us. I am shaking at the table this whole time.
- •On the bus at rush hour, standing room only. Scruffy guy next to me rests both his hands on the support bar, thus boxing me in between him and the wall with nowhere to goI punched him in the stomach and moved to the back of the bus. He got off at the next stop. This is easily my most terrifying moment on public transportation.
- •I have had men approach me in public to say "Hey, I like your jersey" or something along those lines. I have said "Thanks so much!" and moved along without fear.
- •The main reason I wasn't afraid? These guys never touched me. They didn't invade my space. They just spoke to me, and if I ended the conversation, they let it go.LETTING IT GO IS SO IMPORTANT.
- •They didn't think I owed them anything because they had spoken to me.
- •The sense of entitlement I have encountered is astounding and frightening.
- •Men complain that they can't approach women without being labeled as a creep. How about you think about the way you're approaching these ladies?
- •Because EVERY👏🏼SINGLE👏🏼WOMAN👏🏼I👏🏼KNOW has had experiences like the ones I have listed above
- •And you wonder why we're afraid.