How A Night Out in DC Means A Night Full of Street Harassment

How A Night Out in DC Means A Night Full of Street Harassment
How A Night Out in DC Means A Night Full of Street Harassment

Just how many times do you have to say “no?”

By Lindsey

A few months ago, my friend Janine and I went out in Dupont.  I had a great time eating, drinking and dancing, but there were definitely certain things I could’ve done without.

When I got on the metro a guy got up and moved halfway up the car to sit right behind me. Cute? No. Threatening? Yes. And then a guy on the red line asked me if I wanted to get a drink with him. What? I stood three feet away from you for two stops – and you want to get drinks? You don’t even know my name.

And to the guys who asked what we thought of their muscles and then told us if we got in their cab they would show us how they use them. NO. Dude, I’m just trying to get a beer and some food.

After dinner we headed to the bar and grabbed drinks. We were talking on the rooftop at Public. It was nice. Until two guys came up and started to dance close to us. To avoid them we shifted to the right. But then they came up behind us and asked us to dance – once, twice, three times. And each time we said no – and then finally walked away to get another drink. Standing at the bar we realized – they followed us! STOP. We made a quick escape and picked up yet another gem. He proceeded to follow us around for the rest of the night; it got old fast.

I just wish guys had more respect for me than to grab my thigh or grind on my ass.

Downstairs they cleared out the couches so we started dancing. And it was fun! Minus the guys who tried to grind on our asses. Thanks, but no thanks. And the one who thought it would be cute to try and put his hand up my skirt as he walked by. FUCK OFF. Plus the one who started yelling at me when I said I didn’t want to dance with him. Yet another gem.

Eventually it was time to go. And there were still guys who reached out and tried to grab our arms so we would dance with them. When we finally made it down to the door, the two guys who followed us to the bar magically reappeared! Thankfully, security stood by us and asked them to leave. We were worried they would be waiting outside.

We split up on our way to the metro since we were going on different lines in opposite directions. As I hurried to make the last train, I met yet another charmer. After learning I was heading to the metro he grabbed my arm and told me there was no way I could make it — so I should go home with him. OBVIOUSLY. How did I not think of that? Luckily we were right in front of the station by that point and the security guard came to investigate.

I really did have a good time that night. When we were dancing — without being accosted — it was fun. I love going out with Janine for some girl time – but it’s definitely less eventful when I go out with my guy friends. I just wish guys had more respect for me than to grab my thigh or grind on my ass. I just want to dance — ALONE.

Lindsey is a young sales professional living in Arlington, Virginia. This essay was originally published on her blog.

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ABOUT “My Streets, Too

“My Streets, Too” is CASS’s ongoing series on personal writings on street harassment by members of the DC community. Email Renee to submit writings using your full name, initials, or anonymously (just let us know). Please be sure to use the subject line “My Streets, Too.”