Dear cat callers in the car,
Thanks for the compliments! It was so nice to hear everything you’d like to do to my body. The added graphic details made it so much better! I felt so good about myself afterwards, I was shaking from happiness and wanted to run into one of the closest houses just to tell them how nice you are. It was so nice of you to turn around and keep following me almost the whole way home! The company was great! I especially loved it when you called a frigid bitch because I didn’t reply. You are so right. I should have been more grateful since you and your friend took the time out of your day to all but stalk me from your car while paying compliments to my body and giving great mental images. Oh, I promise I will try to smile more since apparently it would make me prettier. Do you really think it would? You kept calling me sweet cheeks and baby – doesn’t that mean you already think I’m pretty? The comment telling me I’d look better with my head buried in pillows has made me a little confused …
Let’s cut the crap shall we?
First and foremost, I am okay. There was no physical damage and I was just shaken up but otherwise unharmed.
For those who didn’t get it, I was being sarcastic. No woman is going to thank you for making her feel utterly uncomfortable in her own skin. Because guess what? Let me fill you in a small secret. We don’t like it. We don’t ask for it and we sure as shit don’t find it complimenting.
You and others like you who think it’s all good to cat call and make suggestive gestures to women are the reason most of us are scared to walk home in the dark. Or walk with our keys between our fingers. Or why our parents beg us for a confirmation text or call that we arrived safely when we step outside our house. It’s not pleasant; you’re not doing me “a favour”. You’re being an arsehole and a poor excuse for a man and before you say “oh it’s just a little cat call”, let me tell you that there is a massive difference between a simple cat call and basic sexual harassment. A line which some seem to ignore.
I know I’ll probably get a lot of backlash from this from people saying its tradition or it’s just for fun or I should take the compliment. Calm down, they’ll say. Stop standing on your soapbox they’ll say. It’s just a compliment, why are you complaining? You must be one of those people who likes to put trigger warnings on everything and gets butthurt at a male sneezing … Let me tell you why I shouldn’t and don’t “just take the compliment”.
CASE IN POINT:
“Why don’t you smile? You’d look prettier!”
“Mmmmm Shake it baby shake it all the way over on my dick!”
“You’d be so pretty on your knees! I’d make you feel real good.”
“I’d love to pound that ass and see how far you can take it.”
“Look at her! She’d take it all the way. Isn’t that right sweet cheeks? You look like you’re a dirty bitch.”
“You have really long legs … they’d look great wrapped around my neck.”
“Let me show you how a real man fucks baby.”
“When I am through with you, you won’t ever move again.”
“Bet I can make you scream in more ways than one.”
This, and other vulgar remarks, is what I got yelled at me. By two strange men in a car who followed me almost all the way to my house. I was walking home from dropping my children off to school. I was wearing long pants, boots and a baggy jumper. There was no skin on show, no sign indicating that I wanted to be harassed. I could have taken the comments just fine if they didn’t turn their car around to keep going while driving so close to the pavement, I honestly thought I was going to be taken. And that fear is real.
The amount of kidnappings and rapes and murders has and still are, steadily climbing over the years. We have more sexual abuse and harassment than ever before. Funnily enough, we are still stuck in a ‘rape culture’ and there are fair too many people still too scared to say anything which assholes like these guys know. “Catcalling isn’t the same as rape.” No you are right, but it still leaves a mark. It’s mental abuse and sexual harassment. Plain and simple. So no, we are not going to “take the compliment” anymore.
Do you know how that feels? That fear? No? It’s not a game to us. It’s not fun or wanted or needed. We don’t ask for it no matter what we are wearing cause fun fact people: women don’t dress just for you. I had my hand in my bag gripping my keys just waiting for it. And no, I am not exaggerating. Welcome to real world.
Calling me vulgar names because I gave you the finger makes you look even more pathetic. I don’t need you to make my day. I don’t need any man to make my day. I make my own god damn day your self-centred wankers.
How would you like it if a girl suddenly started yelling at you? You’d feel complimented for the second before it starts turning nasty and it does … it always does. “Hey babe nice ass I can’t even tell you how much I wanna bang that.” “Hey babe, why don’t you move that dick over my way and I’ll show you how a real woman moves?” “You’d look so pretty on your knees.” “What’s the matter baby? Can’t take a compliment? Frigid dick.” “Don’t have the loving of a good woman?” “You should be thanking me for paying a compliment/ attention to an ugly thing like you.” “You can thank me while on your knees all night long” “I’m going to break you for the next girl.” …. yeah bet everything’s not a joke or compliments now huh? I bet you men would love it if some strange woman came out of nowhere and grabbed a fistful. “But you’ve got it out so that must mean I can touch.” Those excuses just sound better and better. And you know what? I am sure men get harassed just as much as women. It’s not pleasant for anybody who goes through it. It’s scary and enough is enough.
People laugh and joke and say that we are making a big deal out of nothing. It’s not nothing. It’s not us trying to get attention. It’s real, it’s creepy and we are over it. Why should I take something I don’t want and not argue back? Why am I the bad person for sticking up for myself? Why are there double standards? Why is it that there’s still assholes who think that’s okay?
Don’t you have a mother? Sister? Daughters? Partner? Would you feel okay knowing someone out there is yelling the same comments at them? Why is it okay for you to harass someone else’s daughter, mother, partner, sister? Think about that before you start cat calling at the next woman.
Because cat calling is for pussies and enough is enough.