These women are offering help to others who may have been in a similar situation that sadly is far too common.
The fact that harassment towards women is still common is disheartening and honestly, quite frightening.
More women are coming together to share stories as well as tips on how to protect themselves. One thing you should always remember is that it is never your fault and harassment of any kind is never okay. You have the right to feel safe in public spaces just like anyone else. Remember to “trust your gut” and learn about strategies that can help you feel safer.
If you've ever had the unfortunate experience of dealing with a hassler, harasser, or stalker, here are some ways to keep you protected, as told by other women. They also offer tips on how you can help others who are being harassed.
To all teen girls: if you are ever being followed or hit ion by a strange man when you are in public, walk toward an older woman you see and say loudly, “Mom! A strange guy is hassling me. He won’t leave me alone.” Every one of us has been there. We will be there for you.— RetroCrone (@RetroCrone) January 30, 2022
I used 2 books in my bag 1 night when I was walking home w/ groceries. Laugh if you like; but books are just blocks of wood when they're in your purse.— TheCornerTabernacle🇺🇦🌻 (@CornerTabernacl) January 31, 2022
I defended myself w/ a paperback. I hit a bully on the top of his head w/the spine. Drove him to his knees.
Blocks. Of. Wood. 🙂
1950s. 9 yrs old. Weird guy following in car. Pulls over, starts to get out. Walked up to strange house, thank God unlocked. Sweet old lady locked door. Now I try to be her.— Janice (@Janice4343) January 31, 2022
1980s. 17yo. Car ran out of gas, I started walking to a pay phone, a car w/ 2 dudes kept driving past me, over & over, then pulled up & asked if I wanted a ride. I point to the nearest house & said "no thanks, I'm already home" & they sped off. (It wasn't my house.)— Jewelsmith 💎🎮🏰🚀🎶 (@AuthorJLHilton) January 31, 2022
And us Grammys are pretty fierce too!— Denise Savage 🌎☮️ (@autumnsgrammy) January 31, 2022
When there was no one else around I used to pretend to be on my phone & VERY insanely angry at the imaginary person on the line. I'd threaten graphic violence, act like I was in charge & someone was in DEEP shit, the psycho kind. I watched creepy men change their minds real fast— Callipygean Caledonian (@CallipygeanC) January 31, 2022
I was waiting for the bus one evening when a guy was randomly screaming and running about and acting very intimidating. A man from across the road came over with his big dog and stood close by until my bus arrived without saying a word, just a kind nod. Super thankful.— Anna (@AnnaLofberg) January 31, 2022
Emily May, the Co-Founder and Executive Director of Right To Be, a nonprofit that works to end harassment, told Bored Panda, "Our Stand Up Against Street Harassment Training offers three strategies to use in response to harassment: assess your safety, reclaim your space (optional), and practice resilience. Proven ways to reclaim your space include setting a boundary, asking someone for help, or documenting your harassment." She also noted that "there is no such thing as a perfect response to harassment, it's their responsibility not to harass you. Taking time to find a sense of safety inside yourself, educate yourself about the issue, share your story, and learn how to intervene on behalf of others are all key parts of the healing journey."
Blizzard of 78-our town dumped all the snow in the park behind my house, every kid in town was there playing. I noticed a small green car, following us for days. Not a single adult wd take me seriously.— MissKris ~#Plague_Rats & magats need not reply (@aWeeG3) January 31, 2022
So I took my new camera, marched up to the car, started taking pics-he bolted
And don't worry about being rude! If you're uncomfortable, you don't have to answer anybody's questions, you don't have to be polite, you don't have to be nice, and you don't have to worry about hurting their feelings. You don't owe any stranger anything.— Babynurse in Colorado 💙 ✡️✌🏻👩🎓 🌎🌈✊🏿🇺🇦 (@babynurse350) January 31, 2022
This advice saved an acquaintance’s daughter from a perv in the park. She got the attention of the police. Turned out he was wanted for kidnapping.— Digitile Lizard Person 🐝🇺🇸🇺🇦 (@thelaurakoski) January 31, 2022
We teach our kids to be polite and respect adults, so give them *permission* to be rude if they’re afraid.
Also, we were never told this when young before data collected on crime. A female private investigator said said never allow yourself to be moved to another location if confronted (even with a weapon) as your chance of survival plummets. Fight, scream, resist.— Sammy Lawrence (@SammyBytes) January 31, 2022
My dad was sightseeing in Wyo and a young girl walked up and said "Dad I've been looking for you!" And they walked together for over 1 hour. Turned out she felt she was being followed. When dad left he made sure she made it to her car, followed her to a gas station, said goodbye— ReBecca ✌💙 🌊 🔆🌎🐕🦋🙂 (@Beccadatwitt) January 31, 2022
When I was a kid, maybe 10 or 11 years old, I was walking with my younger sibs in my neighborhood when a white van drove up slowly just out of my line of sight. I immediately went to a neighbor's pit bull puppy. The creep took off as I said loudly, "We're home now Maddie!" Dog=👼— Iara the Velociraptor (she/her) (@Warriorfeather) January 31, 2022
This is true sisterhood. ❤️— Susan Too (@susanetoo) January 31, 2022
Representational Image Source: Getty Images | ljubaphoto