Guys, please stop harassing women

August 3, 2010 at 11:08 AM | Posted in Boys! Boys! Boys!, Don't be a Dummy, I have had enough, Love, Dating & Relationships | 8 Comments

I can be unreasonable at times, I freely and generously admit that, especially when it comes to men approaching women on the street. I would rather it never happen but I don’t expect everyone to  be a genius think like me, but if you do decide to cross that line, tread carefully, men. Very, very carefully.

If you want to “get to know her”….It is your responsibility to make her feel as comfortable as humanely possible. YES, YOUR RESPONSIBILITY.
In the words of Phaedra Starling: “…The first thing you need to understand is that women are dealing with a set of challenges and concerns that are strange to you, a man. To begin with, we would rather not be killed or otherwise violently assaulted…So when you,a stranger, approach me, I have to ask myself:Will this man rape me? Do you think I’m overreacting?” Bottom line. She doesn’t want to get raped. You don’t want to get maced. I personally would choose, the latter but as a woman I am forced to deal with the plausibility of the former.

Consider the time, place, and your actions.
Approaching a woman after hours on a dark street is not conducive to an easy number exchange. Some may ask well why is a woman even on the streets at these hours. Fair enough. But I don’t think having an X chromosome warrants a 9pm curfew. It’s unreasonable and downright sexist to suggest women should feel terror-stricken if she has to leave her home after it’s dark. I digress. Consider the time. Night time near an alleyway? Just keep it moving, I am telling you right now it’s not going to happen. While she’s on the phone? No sane woman will end her phone call to speak to a strange man who is commanding she tend to his needs and not her business. This is just ludicrous.

Expect her to reciprocate what you’re doling out.
You come at her crazy, expect an equal or greater crazy response. My bet’s on crazier.

She doesn’t have to say one blasted word to you
You. Are. A. Stranger. Repeat. Meditate on that phrase. We learned in kindergarten, to not speak to strangers and this still applies to a certain extent even into adulthood. Why does she have to speak to you just because you spoke to her? Human decency? Sure. But it’s her prerogative.

Talk to her not AT her.
There is a MAJOR difference between these two.

NO can never mean yes
She rolls her eyes. She doesn’t respond. She walks faster. Let it go. You win some, but you just lost one. Keep it moving. There is no reason to give chase, because…

Being chased is downright scary
I was walking home one afternoon and I saw a car out of the corner of my eye slow down. At first, I thought the car was parking but then my instincts told me better. This man was following me. He turned down my block as I looked ahead. He rolled down his window, spitting his buffoonery as I walked past my house. My heart was in my throat. If I was scared, I didn’t show it but truth is, I was. He ended with his diatribe because of my unresponsiveness and sped off. If someone could kindly tell me why I deserved to be terrorized in broad daylight I would surely appreciate it.

There is never ever a need to turn into that Wolf cartoon whose eyeballs pops out of head screaming “AH-WOO-GA” anytime you see a remotely attractive woman pass by

Consider this: you can walk around shirtless freely but a woman can be ogled to degradation in a business suit? No woman you are actively trying to “get to know” should feel like a rack of ribs. You look like an overzealous caveman and she looks like a person who just flagged down the cop at the corner. As aforementioned, the woman should feel as comfortable as humanly possible. Eyes dripping with lust is not synonymous to comfort.

Just be a human for chrissakes.
Women like humans. Oh. And cookie dough.

Related: Guys, don’t do this
Related: The stupid bs some guys do

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8 Comments »

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  1. […] And yes it is abuse. Harassment is abuse. […]

  2. Amen.

  3. And stop honking at me when I’m walking to the store. That is not a compliment or whatever it’s supposed to be. I didn’t even see your face.

  4. I’m just curious. Where is the ideal location for a man to approach you if you prefer he would not do it on the street?

    I hear you on getting raped and all, but fyi the guy you allowed to talk to you at church could be crazier than the one that approached you on the street. You just never know… sad truth, but everyone needs to pack mace these days.

    I was primarily raised by 3 women, plus I have some sense so I’m proud to say I have never yelled “Aye shawty” at a women across the street, nor have I ever honked or whistled at one. I hear you on the after hours thing, but if I say a simple “Hello” to a woman in broad daylight where they are plenty of witnesses, it won’t kill her to say hello back. If she doesn’t want to say any more than that, you’re right it is her prerogative and I will leave it that.

    “She doesn’t respond. She walks faster. Let it go.” lol – I dig.
    Also proud to say I’ve never experienced this.

    • I wouldn’t say there’s an “ideal” there’s just better choices. Social settings for one. Approaching in a non-threatening way. Making a joke first. The street is risky. No, it won’t kill the woman to say hello, but she doesn’t have to and you shouldn’t expect her to. It was your free will to say hello and it’s her free will to say hi or not. You don’t know what anyone is going through at any moment in time so a simple “hello” may not be so simple after all. I don’t agree with that notion that a stranger on the street MUST respond because you wanted to say something. It sounds brash but it’s reality. Maybe I’m just not in the mood, maybe my mind is elsewhere. Maybe I just got harassed by a guy I simply said “hello” to and he took it a step further.

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