- This topic has 36 replies, 8 voices, and was last updated 5 years, 9 months ago by Kate.
I don’t live in a city and I don’t have any real advice. But, Fed Up, I wish you could get yourself a pair of noise-cancelling head phones and the loudest, most piercing foghorn you could buy and just blast them when they start.
I suppose you could buy a walking vest that says DON’T APPROACH ME, like a service animal.
Honestly though, I think your best bet is not to speak to them. Try not to think of them as threatening, instead think of everything coming out of their mouth as a disgusting fart. Maybe that will make things feel less stressful for you.Just MaxMarch 2, 2018 at 11:52 am #741406
A couple of months ago my aunt and I were on our way to Penn Station in NYC to pick up a friend. This was a very cold day in Dec. when I was wearing full winter gear: hat, long coat, scarf, etc. Nothing about my long coat is form fitting: it’s as straight as a ruler, and down to my knees.
We were on 34th St. and 7th Ave. when a homeless, almost falling down man started towards me asking me to, and I quote, “suck my nipple.”
Now, I’ve been getting catcalls since before I even knew what a catcall was. I’ve been working in NYC for years and have heard many, many variations of catcalls. I have to say though, the “suck my nipple” one was a first.
Anyhow, I ignored it. What else could I have done, really?
Yeah, it is uncomfortable, and that crap messed me up a bit when I was a teenager. But now I know better. This would be a different response if it was someone I knew, or at work, or something like that. But a random stranger on the streets? Ignore.LisforLeslieMarch 2, 2018 at 11:56 am #741409
It’s been said before that men fear women laughing at them and women fear men killing/hurting them.
So I don’t recommend “fighting back” and escalating the situation. But if you must, then I suppose the best way is to humiliate them with tiny dick jokes.
Good god, it’s not a compliment, it’s an insult. “Spit or swallow?” Christ. That’s saying, you’re not good for anything but being jacked off into. It’s the way really inadequate men make themselves feel manly by putting down a woman. And following that with “you’re beautiful?” WTF? Like that’s supposed to make it better?
LW, you ignore the gross assholes. Seriously. No reaction at all. That’s a comment in itself: “You’re not worth my attention.”
To put it another way, a guy on the street telling you you’re beautiful is simply saying what he thinks will get you to talk to him. He may or may not even think you’re beautiful, he is just trying to get your attention.
There’s a guy on the street in Boston who always says something like, are you afraid to shake a black person’s hand?? EVERYONE takes it personally and tries to prove they’re not racist so they stop and talk to him. I fell for it once, but since then I’ve seen him a dozen times, saying it to literally everyone. I told him to cut the shit and stop saying that, as it’s really rude, and now he doesn’t say it to me. I’m not saying do this to catcallers, the point is just, these people are trying to get ANYONE’s attention, and “you’re beautiful” is just a tactic.JuniorBMarch 2, 2018 at 12:22 pm #741415
Back in the late 1980’s, I lived in a neighborhood with a substantial gay population. I’m a heterosexual guy and I loved living there. But one time a couple of guys looked me up and down in an obvious manner as I walked by. It made me somewhat uncomfortable- not because they were gay, but because I felt like an object. A little later I it dawned on me that women endure this EVERY DAY.
While I’m sure there is a small minority of women who enjoy receiving remarks from strangers, please guys CUT THAT SHIT OUT.
Oh, and I like the earbuds idea and overall ignoring these assholes.
I used to work with a guy who would literally say “you’re beautiful” to any woman he came in contact with everyday, knowing that 1/100 would answer and he’d verify she had low self esteem…I’ll let you imagine the rest.
Even though these women knew what his MO was, they were so desperate and thought so little of themselves, they’d go home with him.
He wasn’t a cat caller, though. Just a jerk opportunist.Fed UpMarch 2, 2018 at 1:26 pm #741421
“You need to learn to not be offended by someone being kind and god forbid wanting to get to know you. It isn’t harassment for a stranger to say you are nice looking.”
Ugh. This exactly the kind of BS I am so sick of being told. Like I should be grateful to hear that a stranger finds my body attractive.
Is IS harassment to make unwanted comments about someone’s appearance, regardless of how “kind” your wording is. A woman telling me she likes my scarf or a friend telling me I look gorgeous in my dress makes my day; a strange man leering at my body and hissing “beautiful” makes me want to vomit. I don’t want to get to know the kind of man who walks around offering up his opinions of women’s appearances. I want to get to know the kind of man who respects women enough to realize that’s inappropriate because they might not want to hear it. Just because some women feel good when a strange man tells them they’re beautiful doesn’t mean all women should feel this way.
We should all keep our opinions of other people’s physical appearances to ourselves unless we know with certainty they’re welcome.