I had a shitty experience tonight. Just went down the road to my local shops to get a few things (read: ice-cream) and threw on the first outfit I could find (e.g leggings and a dress). When I left the car I also grabbed my big slouchy cardigan, as I knew I would be in the frozen food aisle. Yes, the clothing is pertinent.
So, I've got my basket, wandering along, and I hear this 'phwoar', followed by a 'mhmm, yummy' and then as I walk past 'psst' (hot noises) and realise that the guy re-stacking the shelves thinks that it's perfectly acceptable to sexually harass someone minding their own business doing their shopping.
Which is great, because now I feel gross and unsafe and uncomfortable in the supermarket that I go to all the time. Thanks so much. Ironically I could tell the other guy stacking shelves also felt uncomfortable- but of course, he didn't say anything.
This is the crux of the whole shitty problem friends- women cannot do anything, regardless of how mundane, or in any type of clothing, regardless of what it is, without some asshole leering, and bystanders doing nothing.
And he clearly felt comfortable enough to make me feel completely creeped out and unsafe, because he was secure in the knowledge that he would get away with it, which he essentially did in the moment, mostly due to shock.
Once I realised it was what it was I gave him my wtf? face, muttered 'don't be a creep' (probably not loudly enough) but I felt super upset, so I chased down his manager and complained about him. To the manager's credit he didn't blow me off, but apologised 'I am really sorry that happened to you' and then said he would talk to him about it, walking in that direction.
And I was so grateful that he did take me seriously, but really, how fucked up is that? That I could be worried he would blow me off? Also fucked up- I was pissed off with myself for wearing the dress I was wearing, because it was reasonably fitted, and then annoyed that I let him bother me so much. But here's the thing- we always have to think about what we are wearing. We always have to think about if we are safe. Every single woman on this fucking earth is conditioned to be afraid, and times that by about a billion after you have actually been assaulted.
Ironically I was shocked by it tonight. Mostly because it was a fucking supermarket for chrissakes, like really?? What does he think is going to happen? I'm going to be swept off my feet next to the chicken nuggets and take off my clothes? What the fuck?!
And now I don't want to go back there, because I don't feel safe. IN THE SUPERMARKET. That's insane!
And of course, men think you are over reacting, and hell, maybe I am, but that is because it happens to us E.V.E.R.Y.WHERE and ALL THE DAMN TIME. And it all serves to make us generally feel unsafe, and on high alert, because apparently nowhere is safe, not even the flippin supermarket.
Ugh. I need a shower.
heart - break