I saw this article shared on a friend’s Facebook today:
And it made me think.
I know a lot of girls who could’ve written this article.
I’ve been cornered in bars, been called a tease for being friendly, been yelled at in the street, felt uneasy about walking past a group of men, just last month a guy yelled out his car window at me while I was walking to the train station on my way to stampede – I was wearing a denim skirt from the gap, a nice shirt from H & M, converse shoes and a cowboy hat…clearly that was an invitation to yell at me while I waited to cross to road.
Not that it actually matters what I was wearing.
When it came to the first guy I slept with I was reluctant, nervous, and unsure but still went through with it. A few weeks later his friend announced to a room full of my friends and theirs, ‘Hey, isn’t that the girl whose virginity you took and she got blood on your bed?’. He was pointing at me and I immediately gathered my things and walked out. The guy I’d slept with said nothing and was staring at his shoes as I went by.
I never saw him again.
One of his friends, who witnessed the announcement incident, would later go on to punch him in the face over it a few months later.
When I was 12, an old man walked up to me in a crowded HMV store and asked where he could find ‘Sex on the Beach’ and then smiled at me. I pointed to the singles chart on the opposite side of the store where the CD was and where he would’ve had to walk by to get to me.
When I was in Italy, a guy spent a portion of the night banging on my locked hostel door, yelling he wanted to have sex with me. I was sharing a room with three other girls I didn’t know and we were all in bed with the lights out trying to sleep. It was awkward.
In Paris, while sitting with my mother, her boyfriend and my best friend at a bar (on high bar stools), the guy sitting behind to me continually brushed his hand against my ass and back. It was lunch time and the bar was practically empty. When my friend and I announced we were going to look at art in a store across the street to my mother, the man slowly trailed behind us as we left. As I looked at the art, I could feel his stare burning into me. We stayed in the store so long, the man finally got bored and left just as my mother burst in looking for us. The bartender had become concerned when he saw the man get up and follow us, had watched him enter the art store after us and had mentioned it to my mother that she should go get us before anything happened.
I had a guy once walk up to me in a bar while I was sitting with my friends, look me up and down and ask me ‘who I was trying to f*ck’ because I was wearing a nice sweater, shorts and tights.
I’ve been followed by a cab driver yelling prices he would pay to have sex with me at me while I was walking home from a bar alone. I’ve had a guy walk up to me and ask for a massage…while I was in a mall waiting for The Canadian One to come out of the washroom. I was once in a class with an older male instructor who had a penchant for touching girls on the shoulder or lower back when speaking to them. And at X-Fest last year, I had my ass grabbed by a guy walking past me for no other reason other than I was standing there talking to my friend and he was walking past.
I know girls who’ve been raped.
I know girls who’ve been dragged into dark alleys and managed to escape.
I know a lot of girls who could’ve written this article…
…and those are all sad things to know.