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The Everyday Sexism Project exists to catalogue instances of sexism experienced by women on a day to day basis. They might be serious or minor, outrageously offensive or so niggling and normalised that you don’t even feel able to protest. Say as much or as little as you like, use your real name or a pseudonym – it’s up to you. By sharing your story you’re showing the world that sexism does exist, it is faced by women everyday and it is a valid problem to discuss.

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#63825 Anon 2014-07-11 17:57
In one lesson at school today,I heard more than 10 rape jokes,mostly by the boys.I am 13 years old.If that's what they're like aged 13,I am truly worried at what they will be like in they are older.Rape culture sickens me.Also,in the 4 years I have had sex education at school,not one lesson talked about consent...
 
 
#63824 bec 2014-07-03 02:28
Sexism has been a part of everyday life for me since adolescence. Here are just a few of my experiences:

At a party I had drunk too much and went with my female friend to a quiet place to rest. A guy walked into the room, lifted my dress and penetrated me with his fingers. I was very drunk and tried to move away but he followed. My friend was able to push him away thankfully and stop it going further. I did not report this and at the time did not think it was rape, my idea of rape was a predatory stranger forcing sex rather than a friend of a friend not obtaining full consent. I was 15, and shockingly I still feel as though I would be blamed for putting myself in that situation even though that violation was completely uncalled for.

On another occasion I was plied with alcohol until I was almost passed out and then taken into a room. I was a virgin and this was extremely upsetting, I cried throughout. I was only 13 and the guy 18, I had no idea of the danger I was in because I was with friends. No one stopped it even though I was crying loudly. I was put on the back of his mates bicycle and ridden home with blood dripping down my legs when I was sober enough.

Another occasion when walking to school an old man (around 70) tried to call me into the bushes and told me he knew my brother. He told me to come back again at 6pm but I instead told my mum. He watched me walk to and from school sporadically for a few weeks but I never saw him again after that.

When I was about 20 I was walking along a popular walking path and a man was sitting in his car masturbating, within clear view of all the joggers/walkers. I was disgusted and took his number plate but never reported it regretfully.

Around the same age my drink was spiked and I lost all recollection of the evening despite only having 2 drinks. After going to the hospital the next day I was told nothing could be done, they didn't even have a brochure or a nurse that could speak to me about what I could do. At this age I was much more aware of my rights to my own body and wanted to report this behaviour. I attempted twice to report it to the police but both times I was put through to numerous departments and hung up on.

None of this behaviour prepared me for my husband, whom I married and had a child with at 23 & 24 respectfully. Once I was perceived as his possession he proceeded to emotionally abuse me by putting me down on a daily basis, sabotaged my friendships where he could, isolated me from my family in a small town, all the while physically abusing me. It was a very confusing and difficult thing for me to understand because I had married this man, had children with him, and had loved him.

I have become a much stronger woman after these experiences in life, particularly my marriage. Despite these instances, I don't feel that all men are predatory or sexist, but the men that aren't need to stand up and advocate for a woman's right to be respected and not treated as an object of mens desires or possession. This behaviour is much more endemic than we like to admit and my story is sadly not unusual. In this shortened snippet of my life I may have painted a picture of a rebellious troubled teen but I was a normal well adjusted girl experimenting with alcohol, just like my male friends - none of whom were ever exposed to the threat of rape because of having one too many drinks. If ever they were I would never have blamed them for putting themselves in that situation. This kind of abuse can happen to anyone and is never the victims fault - women also need to understand this.
 
 
#63823 Colleen 2014-05-30 05:11
I was passed out drunk at a party last year and a boy there took advantage of me and ended up raping me. At school, everyone was making jokes about me and calling me a slut because "it was my fault i was so drunk. We need to teach men not to rape and stop blaming the victim.
 
 
#63822 Lucie 2014-05-21 18:27
I remember at school when I was perhaps 14 a boy in my year was being inappropriate to my best friend in class, she was embarrassed and getting fed up with him stroking her arms and "flirting" with her unwantingly, I offered to switch seats with her thinking he wouldn't try it with me but he did. He kept touching my arms and neck, anywhere near my chest in the classroom in view of everyone. I told him to stop it and to shut up with what he was saying. I thought it would stop after the class was over but then several instances after he would say things about my breasts. during lunch break I was alone and walked passed him and his friends. He kept saying inappropriate things to impress his friends and as I walked passed him he groped my bum and as I turned to swot him off he grabbed my breast. Him and his friends all laughed. I was very upset, being so young and never experienced being touched in that way. I found my friend and asked her to come with me to see my mum who worked at the school at the time, even though I was upset she wouldn't come with me. After lunch I was due to have swimming class and the boy was also in the same P.E class as me. I was terrified of the thought of being around him in my swimsuit incase he tried anything else. I went to my mum crying and told her what had happened, she took me to my head of house and told him how the boy had been harassing me for weeks and I was scared of being in swimming class with me, I didn't want him to see me in my swimsuit. My head of year took him out of the class and gave him detention. But I was never asked again later if the harassment had stopped.
 
 
#63821 Em 2014-05-20 21:35
I was a early developer, and was wearing my first bra by the time I was nine years old. Once I started the secondary school, it's hard to not be noticed when you're pretty much the only girl in year 7 with boobs. This was when the torments really started. Rumours spread pretty quickly that I was a slag, and a whore and every other name under the Sun. I could deal with the comments at first, because I could just ignore them, as they simply weren't true. It was in year 7, that I had my first experience of proper victimisation in the form of grossly inappropriate touching, and a threat of rape if I told anyone what these two boys in my year 7 maths class were doing to me, which was horrifying and terrifying, and just plain nasty.

After year 7 ended things seemed to die down a little bit until I was about 15 years old, and I went on my first blind date with a guy that a "friend" had hooked me up with. Throughout my teenage years I was never really that interested in guys, I always considered my education to be more important, but my friend was insistent. I went along and things seemed fine, then things started to get heavy and I really wasn't ready for it. I tried to over power him, but he was 19 at the time (which I didn't know), and he was significantly stronger than myself, and if it wasn't for a black labrador that came jumping through a hedge chasing after a ball, that guy would of raped me. It was absolutely terrifying, nothing can prepare you for how scary it is. I later found out that the only reason why this guy agreed to go on a blind date with me was because my "friend" had told him that 1) I had big boobs, and 2) about my so-called slag reputation, so he deemed me to be a "easy lay".

Again after this things died down again, and it wasn't until I was 17 that I had any kind of experience of sexism again. At this age I got my first job working at a waitress. About a year into this job, I was started to get harassed at work, mostly by the customers, slapping my bum, wolf-whistling, and making crude remarks. I was able to tell my boss at work, and he was able to get them barred.

Nowadays I don't get comments made at me, and if I do I speak out. It's not needed nor wanted, and it's not okay!!
 
 
#63820 Claire 2014-05-07 07:56
When I was at secondary school it was quite normal for the boys to grope the girls. One day, whilst walking up the stairs to my next class, one of the boys put his hand up my skirt and groped my vagina. When I told a passing teacher he said "Oh well, boys will be boys".
 
 
#63819 Jayne L 2014-04-22 14:49
Someone I know recently moved in with his girlfriend. We went over to see the house and have dinner. There was a pornographic calendar up in the kitchen. His girlfriend has a 6 year daughter who lives with them. How is it okay that she is subjected to this hideous objectification day in day out?
 
 
#63818 Avalon 2014-04-22 14:21
A few years ago, when living with my last (now ex) boyfriend, a door to door seller came to our house. He was very aggressive and obnoxious, and became quite rude when I refused to buy what he was selling. Despite me telling him no, he kept on talking, completely ignoring me and just raising his voice (to the point where he was shouting) as I closed the door on him.

A few days later, a girl came selling the same product. She was nice and polite. I asked her if I could sign up and then change my mind when the follow up call came, and if she would still get the commission from it if I did that. When she said yes, I happily signed up.

The next day, agro-seller comes back. I politely inform him that I have already signed up with another seller. A nice girl who hadn’t shouted at me, ignored me or try to steamroll over my objections. He starts screaming his head off, asking who this b*tch is, saying he’s gonna punch her in the face until her own mother can’t recognise her and kill her. I tell him that I have no idea and that even if I did, seeing his attitude, I wouldn’t tell him. He starts to threaten me, saying that if I don’t tell him, he’s gonna start with me. I start closing the door, and he starts pushing it open, still screaming at me. Throughout all of this, he’s with a girl who is just standing there, looking bored.

I managed to close the door, with the threat that I was calling the police. He says he’s coming back the next day. When my boyfriend gets home, I tell him about it, and he tells me to call him if the dude shows up the next day (he worked just down the street)

Sure enough, agro-seller returns the next day. I call my boyfriend and he heads over. My b/f was 2.12m tall and weighed about 150kg. As soon as he sees the seller, he asks what’s he doing there. The seller quickly quiets down and mumbles something about the wrong door before scurrying away.
 
 
#63817 Bubbles 2014-04-22 14:14
I was helping my dad wash the car on a warm day when our neighbour drove up and said " oh what a good little girl (I was 17 ! I know I'm small for my ages but common ), what do you say mind give mine a wash ?" ... I just glared at him and gave him the finger. thinking back I should of hosed him down really.
 
 
#63816 F 2014-04-22 14:09
Me and a group of female friends were on the bus home from college. A group of boys were sitting a few seats in front. They noticed us, and proceeded to discuss loud enough for us to hear which of us they would have sex with. A few of my friends were deemed too 'ugly' while a few were told that they would 'definitely get it'. All of this was discussed as if we had no power to decide who we would like to have sex with, and as if we existed purely for the boys to choose between as sexual objects.
 
 
#63815 cause your girls 2014-04-22 14:07
my friend and I were posting some video's about a game we played and we asked if they people could give us advice on how to edit better. and we got an offer to join a group and they would teach us stuff, I was a bit curious so I asked what was good and they plainly answered with " we don't care about your talents we just want you because you're girls it'll be good for our image to have girls on the team". I promptly declined the offer and then they got aggressive and the name calling started, it got so far that I had to block them.
 
 
#63814 OcO 2014-04-22 14:04
Watching Vikings with my Dad, and a man rapes his brother's wife; the whole scene only lasts about 10 seconds and neither the victim nor the rest of the characters seem to be particularly perturbed by this event. As I look away saying "oh for f's sake, how has this been happening since the dawn of time and still nothing has been done about it?" Dad suddenly says "well she shouldn't have talked back". I'm left wondering whether or not this is a joke, and if he could possibly think it's funny. He said something similar once when the rape issue was addressed on a different TV show. I don't believe he thinks this is right or appropriate, but he makes the joke anyway. What strikes me is not that someone would make these jokes despite NOT being sexist in general, but that your average, educated respectful man (with two daughters) in his 50s has obviously had this acceptance of sexual violence and male dominance so ingrained in him that it washes completely over him, and it's considered normal. I often catch him singing Robin Thicke (I admit it's a catchy song but come on) and remind him it's totally misogynistic, and he agrees, and goes off on a tirade about how music these days is very violent and kind of misses the point in my opinion. I know that deep down, they would both be very understanding if I reported to them that I had suffered sexual assault or abuse or violence; they would be outraged, appalled and horrified. Why then make little of this in passing remarks designed to offend? It's as if that's what "the cool kids" are saying and people need to join them because they can't beat them. This is so dangerous; people feeling they have to stoop to the lowest common denominator or to degrading women just to make themselves fit into a group of bigoted and ignorant males. It just allows this culture to pervade.
Another thing that strikes me about it is that my mother doesn't express any sense of outrage at these blatant sexist outbursts of his. Perhaps the Catholic upbringing has a lot to do with female servitude, exclusion from work and particularly the upper echelons of any society. I'm sure volumes could be written on this (and already have been).
I hate rape jokes, they really touch a nerve for me. People who make jokes about it are obviously those who have never known anyone who has experienced it; are unaware of the psychological scars that don't heal, the self-blame, the shame and disgust that victims can feel. The threat of violence other than rape is never quite as hard-hitting from man to woman because the powerlessness of the woman before the man is not implied so much by this; the sense of superiority is absent for the threatening man. It is a deliberate play on someone's vulnerability. And furthermore it silences those men who are also victims of rape, by labelling it as a crime that men inflict solely upon women and not on each other. There are many misconceptions surrounding this I think. And once people's eyes are opened to the extent to which "casual" sexism has permeated everyday culture, perhaps people will be brought to thinking twice before passing comments about rape and making sexist jokes "for a laugh".
 
 
#63813 Wiser 2014-04-22 13:31
Several times I've been a much younger woman in a mixed group and have been frankly embarrassed by older men utterly ignoring women their own age, and even women five or ten years younger than them, (but still older than me)who are enthusiastic, intelligent, up for a chat and meeting not to mention more accomplished than me in order to all talk to me at once. And I DO mean ignoring, not answering when spoken to, not making eye contact.
The first time I was aware of it, I was about 19 and engaged so not remotely in flirt mode - i was a bit naive and genuinely couldn't work out what had happened to the group dynamic, that the older women and older men (all late twenties and thirties) weren't seem to be getting on when i thought they have so much more in common as they all seemed old to me - but that I was getting loads of attention that I didn't really ask for. I'm well aware that women aren't perfect and some people are dreadful regardless of gender, but honestly I've never seen it the other way round. Never seen thirties women pointedly ignoring five smart single men their own age in order to fawn over an engaged boy of 19.
Now I'm older myself - 40 but in an area where lots of women are in their sixties and noticing the same thing ! Plus ca change....

I do hope the next generation of males will be less age obessive, as they would probably get a better response. Ignoring your own age group looks a bit sad, and even if you chat to with a younger woman it shouldn't be a badge of honour, or bragging opportunity. Just be open and friendly and try to connect on interests, it makes for a better relationship.
Yesterday though I met a man whose partner is older than him, so there are a few who don't care. But honestly, most men seem to care ALOT about age.
Just a small point I know. Not a big deal in this harsh world, might be too trivial to print, but thought id mention it. We could all be happier if we sorted these little things.
 

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