It is a very unfortunate reality that if you are a woman and you choose to walk down a street, some men will feel the need to yell, honk, or whisper aggressive things in your ear. According to stopstreetharassment.org, “87 percent of American women between the ages of 18-64 had been harassed by a male stranger; and over one half of them experienced “extreme” harassment including being touched, grabbed, rubbed, brushed or followed by a strange man on the street or other public place.”
These assaults have been dubbed “catcalls” but there is nothing cute, friendly or cuddly about having lewd and derogatory exclamations hurled at you as you try to make your way down the street. Catcallers appear to believe a woman’s mere presence on the street gives him the right to comment on her appearance or anything else.
Some of our lovely BUSTies have shared some of their most memorable catcalling experiences and we want to hear yours to! Comment below to share your street harassment story.
Maggie: “It doesn’t matter where I am walking, what state I’m in or who I am with, I feel as though catcalling is universal. Here is fun one from Midtown. I was making my way down a crowded block back to my internship after running an errand. I had a bunch of alcohol in my hands for an office party and wasn’t looking where I was going. Some guy I hadn’t even noticed said, “NICE LEG.” (Unclear if my left or my right leg was particularly alluring to him.) I turned around and shot him my most menacing look and to that he responded much more loudly than necessary, “I SAID NICE LEG! WHY DON’T YOU SMILE?!” I was repulsed and just started walking more quickly only to brush past a doorman who whispered “Mmm mmm mmm” in my ear. Because clearly he knows every woman loves being treated like a can of Campbell’s soup. I got back to the office feeling exhausted and dejected from that catcall one-two punch.”
Erika: “I’m always kind of surprised by what men call me…I get ‘Snowflake’ and ‘Blondie’ a lot (and got ‘Red’ a lot when I had red hair) as well as the usual ‘Baby,’ ‘Sexy,’ Bitch.’ My scariest catcalling story was when one man followed me for about ten blocks as I was walking home at night, muttering vaguely threatening things I couldn’t quite hear…I went into the first open store I saw (a little pizza place) and waited in there until I saw him leave. My funniest/favorite catcalling story is when I was walking home early in the morning (#walkofnoshame) and a man shouted some typical catcall at me — some “Hey baby” thing, I can’t remember — but when I ignored him, he must have felt really hurt because he started shouting “PAY ATTENTION TO ME!!!!” Those words, for real. “
Courtney: “I was driving to a funeral wearing wearing a black dress, I guess my car was low enough to see into the drivers side, an guy in an18 wheeler whistled and blasted its horn, which made me jump and swerve a bit, they did it again, I sped up, they must have radioed the other 18 wheeler ahead of me because as soon as i drove past him, he also blasted his horn. Scared the shit out of me.”
Now we want to hear your catcalling expereince! Please share your story in the comments!
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