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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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#60109 H 2014-06-17 13:10
Spent the night with a boy I had a crush on. I woke up to him sexually assaulting me with his hands. I curled up, trying not to cry. I never tell anyone because I know they will never believe me. I know that I will be put on trial. Worst of all, I blame MYSELF for "letting it happen".
I didn't realize that spending the night gave him the right to touch me without my consent, while I was asleep. Because it doesn't.

When I refuse to have sex with a male friend, he accuses me of being a tease.

When I reach high school and participate in track, I am accused of taking steroids because I run faster than the boys. Boys on the team speculate about my sexuality. Some ask if I am a lesbian. I didn't know it was any of their business.

A boy sticks his hands down my pants at a party while I am trying to sleep. I don't know what to do so I just lay there hoping he would stop. He didn't. Eventually I got up and left. I blame myself.
#60108 F 2014-02-21 21:07
Yesterday the handy man came round to fix our shower, I was quickly catching up with him before leaving for uni and he said that he had just put silicone around the shower, so I said 'Does that mean I can't use this shower?' and he said 'no, but you and me can share the one upstairs'. I told him I was really not impressed when he said that but he just laughed at me.

The same evening I was cycling at around 9p.m. to a friends house when a few young boys playing on the street threw something across the road which almost hit me, I sharply braked then carried on cycling, the young boy (maybe 8-9 years old) shouted after me 'Suck my dick you bitch'. I am 22 years old and was shocked to hear this coming from such a young child!
#60107 Greg Tomkins 2014-02-21 20:41
I was at school today, making posters for geography revision. I took the card and attempted to start making the poster, when my own teacher (female) said "Greg, give it to Hannah, boys can't make posters". So because I'm male I can't be decorative now? I didn't even bother replying. This is something that happens regularly. It MUST stop.
#60106 Olivia 2014-02-21 20:37
I've been living out of the country, with my boyfriend, for the past year. When my dad calls, he always asks if my boyfriend is taking care of me. I know he means well, and wants to know that I'm ok, but I have a PhD and have lived away from my parents for over four years now. I'm pretty confident that I can take care of myself.
#60105 Amelia 2014-02-21 19:43
I went for a jog a few weeks ago on a Sunday afternoon and as I was coming back onto my road I was faced with two big bulky men with cans of beer in their hands. They were totally staring at me and I was scared/angry. I asked them if there was something I could help them with and when they replied with a scathing look and made a remark in another language I said if they didn't need my help then they could stop staring at me and I went into my house. I felt SO shaken up afterwards that I spent all evening crying my eyes out scared they would come back for me or brick our living room window. I suffer from anxiety so perhaps that reaction may be extreme but I suffered all day just so they could feel empowered and intimidating. It has got to stop.
#60104 Sofia 2014-02-21 19:29
I'm 17 and I live in a somewhat larger city in Germany and i deal with strange men telling me I'm "too pretty to be alone" on a daily basis and I've learned to ignore it, but this morning I was waiting by the station on my way to school and this man told me in broken German that I was "so, so beautiful lady" and i smiled and thanked him and turned away because that's what I've learned to do and he grabbed my shoulder and turned me around and said he wasn't done talking to me, and told me to kiss him. I yelled at him and told him to get the hell away from my. Thankfully that's when my train came. It wasn't even 8am yet. What a way to start the day.
#60103 Anon 2014-02-21 19:05
I was one of the leaders on a university caving trip for beginners to the sport. As we were about to go underground, a man in the group thought it would be acceptable to ask why I wasn't "teaching dance or something". Funny thing to say to someone responsible for your safety as they lead you into a cave system.
#60102 Kate 2014-02-21 18:29
I don't care if you "mean well." I don't care that your "just trying to make a girl happy." I don't care that "my face would look so much better with a smile on." What I care about is that you felt the need to block me on the street as I was walking to my car. What I care about is that you felt you could tell another woman that she "needed to smile." What I care about is that your hand that held your girlfriends hand tightly as you yelled back at me to "lighten the fuck up," when I asked you to leave me alone.

How dare you feel so entitled to direct what I should do with my face. You do not have a say in what I do with how I present myself, in public or in private. My body is my own and was not affecting you -- until you decided to make it.
#60101 Esther 2014-02-21 17:55
I am one of 3 women who sit on the upper management team, there are 22 men.
During the last upper management meeting we were discussing the top priorities for our business for 2014.
My business sector has been identified as one of the top 3 priorities, so there is a lot of focus on my dept., and requests for us to support other teams to deliver their goals. In the meeting, 25 people in the room, the Chief Sales Officer (1 level above me) turns to me and asks "Esther, how are you going to prioritise the country and departmental needs with those of your own department..... Oh and I am sure your husband and kids also want to know when your going to be able to prioritise them too... Hahaha"
Everyone laughed along, and I was so flummoxed, I failed to come back quick enough with a witty put down, but I hated the fact that he inferred that by having a family and running my team I would not be able to juggle the business needs effectively.
At no other time has a man been asked how they might handle the work/home balance in the meetings.

Just wish I could have come back with "well Andy I am sure your wife and kids would also like to know when you plan to fit them into your busy schedule too... But focusing in work........" Etc....
Next time I shall be prepared.
#60100 Esther 2014-02-21 17:31
At work today I was discussing with a male colleague the need for our retail stores to have better visual merchandise skills, I suggested that perhaps we could run a workshop to train the teams on key ideas.. "But there are no girls in the team to send on the course" he exclaimed "visual merchandising is a girls thing, we can't expect the men to learn those types of skills"
#60099 Natalya 2014-02-21 16:29
I work at Argos and one time at work I saw this conversation between my manager and a customer. The customer was a woman of about 65, she had bought a large but not very heavy vacuum cleaner. My manager was going to carry it out to the woman's car.

This is not a big distance. The woman started saying " Oh no a woman shouldn't be carrying things like this! Especially if she's pregnant! Isn't there a man available to carry it?". My manager stated that she was not pregnant and no, there were no men available to carry a 7kg vacuum cleaner. The customer actually seemed upset at the idea of my 5 ft 3, slim female manager carrying her purchase to her car.

I was really not impressed! If my manager says she can carry it, then she can carry it! She ain't lying!

And she did carry it to the car...with ease...
#60098 Patty 2014-02-21 16:21
My 20 yr old stepson regularly makes sexist jokes toward me. After 5 years of his dad and I trying to impress on him that it is wrong, how much it hurts, that I myself have been sexually assaulted and to stop, he continues to make these comments. He gets ablittle better and then slips back again. I have tried it all - joking back, letting him know it hurts and is not ok, making quips back, ignoring. At this point I react angrily and am at a loss how to proceed because on top of it his dad gets protective and would never choose me over his son. I hate this sexist stuff and I hate being in a position of having to leave but that is what is before me.
#60097 Anon 2014-02-21 16:08
My brother is getting married and we were discussing what his fiancée might wear. I revealed I had thought (should I ever get married) I might wear a suit, because I think the expense for something I can only wear once is a little extravagant, and I feel more comfortable in trousers. He sighed and said I would be turning my wedding into a "pointless feminist statement".
Told a female friend about this conversation and her only comment was "Are you a lesbian?"

Feminist statement or not, the comments above demonstrate that it wouldn't be pointless. I despair.

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