Friday, August 29, 2008


Have you ever seen a complete stranger experience street sexual harassment?

She handled it before I could help out and didn't seem to want help. Got down from the bus soon afterwards, I think.

What made you react in the way that you did? ( Please give an account of what occurred.)

I watched and waited to see if she would speak out. Because there is no point trying to make trouble when the person being molested chooses to ignore it. She did speak out and complained loudly and got the man kicked out of the bus and got down soon afterwards. I watched the whole thing. Got over very fast, once she started making a fuss.

I think a lot of people knew what was going on and they were waiting to see what she was going to do about it.

Have you ever experienced street sexual harassment or 'eve teasing' and been supported by the public? Did they help? or show support? if yes, in what way?

I have been supported by the friends I was travelling with. I have been helped by strangers also, in very unobtrusive ways. I remember when I was nineteen and had got very wet in the rain. I needed to take the bus back home. I was wearing a very thin cotton top and had only a small bag to hold in front of me, so I tried to stay hunched but I could also see that many of the men in the bus were staring at me. The girl on my left was travelling with a young man (I think they were both in their early twenties). The guy was standing in front of her and she must have said something because he suddenly moved very slightly and I found him standing in front of me, blocking the view. He himself looked straight ahead at the horizon for the rest of the journey. Luckily, I reached my destination before they did. I've always (mentally) thanked him for his resourcefulness.

I've had people stare at me. I've had one or two unknown girls support me while a crowd looked on.

It's a horrible feeling, almost like you're being judged, because it was YOU who did something wrong.

How would you like public to react?

I would like vociferous support and I would like people to state clearly that such behaviour is not acceptable. I would like the molester to be publicly embarrassed. I don't need him to be taken to a police station -- so far I've not had to face situations that have needed such extreme measures, thank god -- but I would like him to know that women/girls travelling on their own are not helpless and unsupported.

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