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Last spring, while subwaying to my co-op placement, a man got onto the subway and since there were only a few people on the subway, I had my bag on the seat. The man hovered over where I was sitting, waiting for me to move my bag. Me being naive and too friendly moved my bag, without suspicion. I guess I should have realized there that a 30- something man wanting to sit beside a 16- year-old girl was wrong, but I just naturally thought he liked sitting at the back too. Not far into the ride he started asking me questions, like what tea I was drinking, and I replied thinking it was just commuter small talk. Then he started asking me where I was going, why was I alone, did I have a boyfriend, and why wasn’t he here with me. Then I realized he was beyond drunk at 1pm and began getting scared. I finally lost it when he kept asking me after I was clearly ignoring him, “Don’t you want a man in your life, like me?” and “I’m not trying to hit on you but you’re such a good girl,” over and over again. I told him he was making me very uncomfortable and continued to ignore him. As soon as my stop came I got away as fast as I could as I was so scared he was going to follow me. I really regret not getting up and moving as soon as he walked in.
Submitted By: Lauren
Location: Bloor -Danforth Subway line
On my way to the subway after work, as I was passing by Rexall at the corner of Church and Wellesley, a man approached me. He got right up in my face, maybe an inch away and said, “Kiss me, Kiss me”.
It all happened so fast, I could not figure out an escape or a rebuttal besides to tilt my head away and keep walking.
All I could do was cry, though I was not touched. I’ve never felt worse in my entire life.
Submitted By: Diane
Location: Church and Wellesley
I was sexually harassed on a Go Transit bus to Toronto. One of the scariest experiences of my life. Luckily, I got away from the harasser and was able to snap a picture of him. He touched me while I was sleeping and I woke up right away and changed seats. Please keep your eyes open and stay safe!
Submitted By: Anonymous
Location: Go Transit Bus to Toronto
I was on the York University campus one evening, where I attend university, walking from a TTC bus through a parking lot to get to a car I had rented for the evening. I was walking with a friend, another female. As we were walking, I happen to look up and make unintentional eye contact with a male walking toward me. He says, “Hey!” I’m caught off guard. I look back to see if I know him, he’s still staring at me and yells, “Can I have your number?” My friend asks, “Do you know him?” I say “No..” He yells again, “Can I have your number?” I call back, “Go to hell!” He replies, “Hell? More like go to heaven, mmm!” I keep walking, he keeps yelling for my number and I yell back one last time, “Leave me alone!”
He’s laughing. Still yelling for my number. I was completely, fully rattled. I’m at my university, my school, a place where I should feel safe. And suddenly I don’t.
I’d be lying if I said I felt 100% safe on the campus before then; I’m always looking over my shoulder if I walk anywhere alone at night.
Now, though, I’m never going to walk anywhere alone. Because if someone had the nerve to do that while I was with a friend, I shudder to think about what they’d do if I was by myself.
And, to discard the whole, “what were you wearing?” question, I was totally covered by a winter coat. Neck to mid thigh.
Submitted By: Elizabeth
Location: York University campus
Eight years ago I groped a woman. We were talking and I spanked her on the butt playfully… She grabbed my hand away and told me off.
Her strong reaction made me re-think my actions. If she had not spoken up I might have done it again, but I have not done this since. What can I do to help?
Submitted By: N. H.
Location: Yonge and Bloor
Yesterday, outside the Food Basics at Parliament and Wellesley, my girlfriend was walking home and some creepy stranger tried to lure her into his apartment, and was very pushy about it and followed her on her way home even after she told him no, and to leave her alone, a bunch of times. Eventually she got rid of him, but he was very determined to get her into his home, and thought that calling her beautiful and alleging that he was a “good guy” would pursuade her. Creep city.
Submitted By: Jessica
Location: Parliament and Wellesley
On the evening of Monday, July 28, I was heading for dinner with a girlfriend on Roncys. We didn’t have a place in mind and as we walked and talked we decided to head to the Roncy Pub – she had been there before and the food was good, so we went in.
We were greeted by a typical server and took the booth closest to the front door. A few moments later, the same server came over to us and completely interrupted our conversation by reaching forward and grabbing my right arm with both his hands. I have tattoos on both my arms and apparently this was an invitation for him to touch me? I was too nervous to tell him to fuck off but this made my friend and I visibly uncomfortable and we made no eye contact with him. He then forcibly made us shake his hand to get our names after introducing himself (His name is ‘JAMIE’ and he is a bald douchebag). After attempting to make awkward small-talk with us while we ordered and waited for food, we decided we needed to eat and leave ASAP.
While still waiting for my friend to finish her meal, I finished my drink and he came over to ask me if I wanted another. I politely said, “No thanks, I’m fine” to which he responded, “You’re more than fine, don’t sell yourself short.” UM, NOT OKAY DOUCHEBAG.
We demanded the bill and attempted to pay as quickly as possible when he once again became fixated on my tattoos. This then sparked an argument between him and my dear French-Canadian friend where he said discriminatory/borderline racist comments about Quebecers. As we attempted to leave he once again forcibly made us shake his hand. We left and I wanted to vomit.
Ladies, PLEASE AVOID JAMIE AT THE RONCY PUB.
Submitted By: Kara
Location: The Roncy Public, 390 Roncesvalles Avenue
My boyfriend and I (I’m of a biracial Asian background and my boyfriend is Chinese, this detail matters) were walking across Spadina Street from the Kensington Market to buy a case for my Mac at the Chinatown Center.
As we were about to cross the street, a man in a 2003 Camry yells near the intersection “Hey Beautiful!” As anybody would upon hearing a loud noise, I turned to see the direction in which it was coming from. I was still pretty startled and assuming he was cat calling another poor girl when he called out again, “Yeah, you with the orange bag! Why you with a ch***?!”
I was so mortified when I realized I was the woman he was trying to call out to, and the person he was hurling abuse to was my amazing and loving boyfriend.
I’ve been home a couple of hours now, and have tried to process it with my SO, but it still makes me feel so powerless. Street harassment sucks.
Submitted By: Gabby