Let’s talk about harassment, baby

Hey all, sorry my blogging day keeps changing! As I adjust to various things in my life and new jobs ( I got one! yay! ) my daily schedule keeps changing. I’ll try to blog on Monday’s for now because I don’t work Mondays, and hoping you’ll still follow me.

It is officially summer weather. Or in the peg it is. I was outside today and it’s almost +30 (degrees C ) here in May. Which is one thing I love about winnipeg. ( I tend to hate on my city a lot but the fact that we have a gorgeous summer is one thing I LOVE )

But things like street harassment, cat calling, whistling, oh those I could do without. Now I know that these are things that happen in every city obviously. And yeah I’m going to talk about it, and yeah I have opinions on it if that makes you uncomfortable well it probably should.

When I lost a bunch of weight ( in my mind it was a bunch it felt like half of me ) was when I first started getting cat called or being harassed more than I ever had when I was bigger. I was not used to this. The thing no one seems to tell you when you’re bigger is that sometimes it’s a shield against that kind of harassment. Now I will also say that is not always the case and sometimes no matter what your size you’re going to get harassed because people are assholes. But this is just in my experience, cause this is my blog.

How do I know when it’s summer outside officially in winnipeg? I start getting these harassments. I get yelled at on the street, from cars, in person, pretty much if I’m ever outside and walking somewhere it feels like I am fair game.

This happened to me again today. Someone, a man, whistled at me from his car. Oh cars. Ways to feel like men ( or anyone ) can harass women and not have to deal with any repercussions because at that point you’ve already driven off and feel really secure in your masculinity for telling me I’m attractive without actually having to talk to me. While also totally demeaning me at the same time. Great. Again, this is from my point of view and how I see it.

How do I deal with it? How do women in general deal with this? How does anyone deal with this? I’m constantly stumbling upon people that are shocked and feel appalled that this happens to other people because it’s never happened to them. Honestly in one way I don’t deal with it. What would be the point in me getting upset and yelling at the car who has already driven off because they can’t hear me anymore. In person it can be different and I can yell at that person or walk away or do something.

But from the months of May- September it kind of becomes part of my daily life. No, it doesn’t happen daily. Obviously. But for some people it might. And some people this kind of harassment happens all the time and I’m not sure what to do about it. And I don’t know how to handle these situations because in some ways, they feel out of my control.

Sure I could like make a thing about not dressing inappropriately but you know what? I shouldn’t have to. It was warm outside today and I was not wearing something I would even consider scandalous. But also it shouldn’t matter if I was. I was wearing a romper. I was hot. It was like almost plus 30 outside. Am I going to change my summer outfits to wear longer things just so I don’t get cat called? So then I can boil under the sun? Absolutely not. And it might happen anyway, regardless of what kind of outfit I’m wearing.

These situations happen to me as well as other women I know. It’s possible that it happens more to women than men but I’m not going to make that judgment call because I’m not out taking statistics on this thing. Who’s to say that it doesn’t happen to men as well and they just don’t talk about it? Or any gender? Men, women, transgender, neutral, or anyone under the sun.

Whenever I get street harassed I vent on my facebook. My dad being the sweet person that he is commented saying just once I’d like to be with you when this happens and people will see another side of me.

But that is the thing. This never happens when I’m with other people. It certainly never happens when I’m hanging out with other men. I was hanging out with my guy friend all morning and this didn’t happen. It was only when I was walking home by myself in broad daylight that it happened.

I don’t have a solution for not getting cat called, for not having people yell at me because I do refuse to compromise what I’m wearing because in my mind then I’ve given up my power. And I let someone else have that power over me and I’m so not doing that. I’ll say that when I have to walk home late at night I grip my keys tightly in my hand so that if anything happens I can hopefully jab that key into someone and make them think twice about doing anything. But I don’t carry pepper spray, despite how often I’ve thought about it.

It makes me upset that as much as I feel like an independent, strong woman that this little thing makes me feel small. Like I should cover up my body and not walk tall. It makes me wonder if I had a boyfriend or someone to walk with me all the time that these things wouldn’t happen. But I don’t like feeling that way.

Whenever my girlfriends and I go out and we’re getting home in way of not a car I demand that they text me when they get home. I don’t care if I sound like an over-bearing mother. I want them to be safe. They’ve started doing it for me as well and it’s a reassuring way of knowing that at least one person counts on you getting home safely.

For the most part I just ignore the harassment I’m not saying this is a good or best way to deal with it obviously. But not responding makes me feel like I didn’t let them win.

I’ll leave you with some Demi Lovato who I’ve been jamming to all day. Girl makes me feel confident a.f. when I listen to this song and hopefully you feel that way too.

 

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s