I have been harassed on the street many times, but this is my most recent story:
Last night, I was waiting outside a pub for some of my friends, and I was harassed twice within ten minutes.
Guy #1 came up to me as I was waiting for my friends, and started commenting on how I looked “gorgeous”. He got right into my personal space, and was easily 50 or older (I’m 23 – not that that matters!) I told him that I was waiting for friends, and wanted to be left alone. He eventually walked away (slowly) but kept turning back, and saying things like “But you look so gorgeous! I know I don’t look as good as you…” I stayed where I was, and made a point of looking straight ahead, and checking my phone to show that I was not going to engage further.
Guy #2 came out of the bar I was waiting outside of with his buddy (both were in their forties). I heard him say “LET’S ASK THIS BEAUTIFUL LADY”, and I braced myself, as I knew what was coming next. He came up and asked if I had a lighter. I told him no, as I don’t smoke. He replied with “I can see that, if you did, you wouldn’t be nearly as hot.” I told him (coldly), “I’ll keep that in mind.” He went back to his friend, and although I couldn’t hear them, it was clear that they were talking about me.
My friends arrived, and we went into the pub. And two tables away from us was Guy #1! For the first five minutes, he just stared at me, smiling. I was with a group of six people, so I felt fairly safe, but still uncomfortable. Why do they think leering at another person is okay?
Neither of these are horrifying situations, but I didn’t want to talk to either of these people, and as a result, came across as rude. I don’t owe them my time or attention, and I know this, but I hate that I have to be this way just to feel safe in my own city!
Location: Calgary, Canada
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