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Wednesday, 3 December 2014

CAT CALLING

I'm not a feminist.

I am not paranoid or afraid.
I am not skeptical, analytical or senile.

But after a particular incident, I can see why 'cat calling' has such a bad rep and why so many women are trying to position others to see what it does to us.



I know I am not alone in saying that I never understood cat calling. I never really understood why it had so much coverage in the media. I knew it would be annoying and that it sometimes happens in bad neighbourhoods, but in the northern beaches at 9:30 in the morning- I suddenly experienced cat calling for the first time.

I wasn't dressed provocatively, nor was it a time of day that is particularly unsafe.
I was in a suburban area, walking to work and entering my local mall.

The following words were expressed from a man several metres behind me, please excuse the foul language on my page- this is only to show the full extent of what this man was yelling at me.

"I want to tear you in half"
"Oi you, you little slut, you filthy mutt, when I catch up to you, I'm going to pull the hairs out of your head"

At this point, I turned around as I was not aware that it was being directed at me.
When I turned around I noticed that this man- although delusional/drunk, was already pacing towards me.
Luckily, I was not alone at the time.
An elderly lady was a few metres in front of me, but was ignoring the situation just as I was doing a few minutes prior.

Instantly, I felt insecure, afraid and my heart started racing.
I was in danger and for the first time in 19 years, I was faced with a situation I had no idea how to handle.



"Don't you fucking ignore me you stupid little stuck up bitch"
"Keep ignoring me, it just makes me want to pound you harder"
"Walk faster, I like the chase"
"Im coming for you, you filthy cunt"
"Let me taste you little girl, You cunt"

Toxic words in a public area.
Never have I experienced such a foul violation of my own security.
Usually, I would have liked to have thought that I am strong enough to hold my own ground against someone like that.
But you never really know how you are going to react once you are in that situation.

I always thought about situations, if i was to face someone who may rape me or violate me, that I would be able to defend myself.
And not saying i didn't defend myself, but it's hard to remain strong after you have had words like that thrown at you.

I felt him running, and by this time, the woman in front of me had turned around, run towards me and grabbed my wrist.
She just looked at me and said we need to go.

As we started running, it became obvious to me that if this lady was not around at the time, I could have found myself in a position i may not have come out of.

We ran into the mall and told security about the man and the incident.
He never followed us into the mall, but for the rest of that day and continually now- I am so paranoid and anxious.

Although he never physically did anything to me, incidents of such linger.
His voice still plays in my head and I can feel him whenever I am walking alone.

It isn't fair and although this may sound like a winge or rant blog- I want it to come across as a warning.



I was lucky- very lucky.
Many women don't get that luck most of the time and incidents like mine- progress into something worse.

Even when you think you are safe, in a safe location or time or you think you are out of harms way- you should never presume that you will always be okay.

It seems unfair to think that we can never fully relax when we step outside our front doors- but after such a huge reminder- I never want to be caught off guard again.

A lesson for me- and a lesson for the girls reading this.
Please- always stay alert, calm and collected.

I never had it happen to me- and like I said- although it didn't become physical, it has still left a foul taste in my mouth and my stomach becomes empty when I relive that morning.

It happens to the best of us, but we are not alone.
Cat-calling happens, it may seem funny, or exaggerated, but after experiencing it first hand, I would like to bring attention to the fact that it is probably the most damaging and torturing experiences I have had to date.

Thats all for now x
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