Useful perspectives. This is in no way intended to shift any burden of blame onto someone approached by a creeper, or imply they do/did wrong by not doing this.
One day I was on the MAX (basically a giant street car that goes all over the metro area) on my way to meet up with a few friends. I didn’t look at anyone, I didn’t speak to anyone, I just stood to the side on my phone making sure I wasn’t going to be late to my meeting.
Out of no where, this guy comes up to me and starts to chat me up. Me, being who I am, am absolutely terrified to tell this guy to f*** off. He was at least half a foot taller than me, and was way too bulky for me to fight back. So I suck it up at humor him, say hello. Before introducing himself or asking me for my name, he asks me out on a date. Not wanting to piss him off I try to make light of the situation and I laugh, telling him that my boyfriend wouldn’t like the idea, but thank you for the offer. He just shrugs and says, “He doesn’t need to know.”
At this point I’m scared out of my mind. There’s this guy who, after seeing me run two blocks to catch the train, comes up to me and has made it perfectly clear that he wasn’t going to leave without getting something out of me.
I deny him a second time, saying, “I don’t even know you’re name. We’re strangers, I don’t know you.” He finally introduces himself and asks me for my phone number. I tell him I don’t give my number out to people I’ve just met and he says, “Fine, but at least take mine so we can meet up later.” So he watches me plug his number into my phone (which I deleted as soon as I knew I was safe and away from him) as we’re pulling up to my stop. I tell him I need to leave and switch trains and he tells me, “Oh, I’ll wait with you. I don’t have any plans, so I’m in no rush.” It’s important to note what at this point he had previously told me that he was late to a job interview, but he has all the time in the world because he still hasn’t gotten what he wanted from me; a yes.
I get off of the train and he follows me, and waits at the platform with me for over ten minutes until my train arrives, asking me all sorts of personal questions about where I live and where I was going that day. As soon as the train pulls up he grabs for me and says, “Do I at least get a hug before you go?”
I was terrified. I was embarrassed. This dude, who before even asking me for my name asks me out on a date and then continues to harass me after I tell him I have a boyfriend, asks me for a hug only fifteen minutes after meeting. People around us were staring at me, as if I was being rude for denying him, and every inch of me was mortified. I wanted to run, but I felt like if I had done that he would have chased after me and things would have gotten worse. So I did, and he squeezed me so tight I felt like I was going to burst. It took me a good ten seconds to get him to let go and I ran to the train car just as the doors were closing. He was trying to get me to miss my train so I would have to wait with him even longer. I would have been stuck there for over a half an hour until the next train came by, and the platform (aside from the few buses coming by) was now COMPLETELY EMPTY. He knew EXACTLY what he was doing and he knew EXACTLY how to get me alone with him.
People, if you are in a situation like this do not feel obligated to give in. If someone is making you uncomfortable and asks to touch you in any way, YOU DO NOT HAVE TO SAY YES. Make excuses, be blunt, just straight up say ‘no’. If possible, go to someone else near by who you think can help you and ask them to help you. It’s important for guys to learn that they can’t get what they want just by asking over and over again.
I got lucky. But not everyone does. Please, everyone, Be Safe.
SECOND STORY TIME
So I was on the transit bus alone one time. This was my first time riding, and so already I was PETRIFIED. I sit down, pull out my ipod, and begin to play some games. This guy sits down next to me, and begins trying to have a conversation. I don’t really respond, I don’t even look at him, just give half-hearted “mhm”s and “oh”s, as I don’t want to be rude if he was just striking up a friendly conversation. He then asks me on a date.
Now, as I stated before, I already was absolutely petrified. My heart stopped and I didn’t know how to answer. So I just didn’t. He didn’t let up and I could feel his eyes on me. I quietly stammer out a “no thanks” and my stop HAPPENS to be coming up, so I pull the string thing to let the driver know I want to stop there, and once we stop and the doors open I get up and he asks me, “Well, can I at least have a hug before you go if you won’t go on a date with me?”
This makes me break. There are now people staring, as we are the only people standing up and not getting off… So I just start crying. Hell, I am bawling almost instantly. He looks so fucking freaked out and people are now getting up to come over and comfort me/question him. I don’t stop crying, and he keeps trying to comfort me by touching me, and people are yelling at him for that.
AND THEN. AND. FUCKING. THEN. THE GOD DAMN BUS DRIVER. A VERY EASILY 6 FOOT BURLY MAN. COMES OVER TO US. PULLS THE GUY AWAY. AND KNEELS DOWN. HE THEN ASKS, IN THE MOST CALM VOICE, “Did you request the stop?” I very slowly and shakily nod, as I am still crying my eyes out. He then asks, “Do you want to get off?” I give a quiet “mhm” and nod once again, and he offers me his hand. I take it, he stands up, and he escorts me off the bus. He asks me questions such as where I was going next, if I was going to meet someone shortly, if I was going to transfer buses from there. He was very polite and waited for me to answer the entire time, and my friend (who I was going to be meeting there) showed up. He asked me if this was someone I knew, I said yes, and he said alright, have a good day. He then told me- and this is something stuck in my mind forever, so it is word for word-
"If some guy EVER starts harassing you like that again, do exactly what you did there. Cry. Cry and scream and have a temper tantrum. Not only will it throw him off, but it will get others to notice. They might not interfere, they might, but you will have gotten their attention and if you happen to go missing the next day the search for you will be a hell of a lot easier because everyone in that location will have seen you screaming and crying with a guy now very awkward with his actions. They will know. That is what my daughter did, and three days after she went missing she was back in my arms. I pray for you and every other person like you who has this done. You stay safe now, okay?" And after I began blubbering again, I nodded and he left.
So this is the second lesson for yall. If you can not have the courage to say no or make an excuse, cry. Let out those sobs and tears and cry your heart out. Because it is going to make people notice and make people aware.Source for both: Tumblr