Location: Connecticut & L St NW, Washington, DC (Farragut North)
Time: Night (7:30pm-12am)
I was leaving a meeting around 8pm and headed towards Dupont. The moment I stepped out of the building, I noticed two men walking in front of me. I was in a rush to get somewhere, so I walked past them, and I suddenly heard their conversation getting louder. They were talking about me–commenting on my looks, my body, and what frightened me most, how I was walking away from them. They started commenting directly at me, asking why I was walking so fast and trying to get away from them. I crossed the street, and they eventually went in another direction, but I kept an eye out until I made it to my next destination.
I’m usually not afraid when men harass me on the street, mostly just irritated. This, however, was one of the few times when I not only felt threatened by their words, but could sense their amusement towards my fear.
As someone who advocates for women and public safety, I wish I could say that I had the courage to stand up for myself, but unfortunately, my fear of “this could get way worse” trumped all of my frustrations, and so I just kept walking.
Submitted 10/30/14 by “K.”
Do you have a personal experience with gender-based public sexual harassment or assault? Share your story to help raise awareness about the pervasiveness and harmful effects of street harassment. All submissions are posted anonymously unless otherwise specified.
If you experience or have experienced sexual harassment on the DC Metro system: Whether the event is happening at the moment or occurred months ago, we strongly encourage you to report to Metro Transit Police (MTP): www.wmata.com/harassment or 202-962-2121. Reporting helps identify suspects as well as commons trends in harassment. You can program MTP’s number into your phone so you can easily reach them when needed.
If you need assistance in coping with public sexual harassment or assault, please contact the DC Rape Crisis Center (DCRCC) 24/7 crisis hotline at 202-333-RAPE (202-333-7279).