I am very lucky to have never been raped. However, I have my share of sexual harassment incidents.
I don’t usually go clubbing (and this is one of the main reasons why) but I decided to give it another go. On the walk there, a guy – in a group of both guys and girls – yelled out to me, “Look at those titties! Those tittieeeeess!” I wish I was making this up, because it looks so corny I wouldn’t blame you if you thought I was exaggerating. I started ranting to my friends about how fucked up it was that guys felt so entitled to catcall, and one of my friends laughed and asked why I was so angry.
I was trying to enjoy dancing with my friends, but I was distracted by two men standing against the wall, watching the people dancing. They looked like wolves: they were scanning the mosh pit with extreme focus and in such a predatory way I felt terrified. It’s hard to enjoy yourself when you know there are men there looking out for women to take advantage of.
Then, a little while later, a guy grabbed my ass.I whirled around and there were two guys, one of whom had been drunkenly trying to dance with my friend. I screamed, “What the fuck?!” to them, and they just kept pointing to each other and saying, “It wasn’t me, he did it!” like they were little boys caught doing something wrong in the schoolyard.
I have a friend who goes to clubs regularly, but never drinks. One night, she decided to do a social experiment. First, she made her way through the mosh pit, looking and acting completely sober: staring straight ahead, moving with purpose. No one touched her. Then, she made her way through again, this time pretending to be really drunk: staggering, unfocused eyes etc. She was groped by basically every man she passed in the crowd. If you don’t find this terrifying, I don’t know what to tell you