Catcalling…

Catcalling- ‘Rude, sexual remarks made by men passing women on the street. Usually “cat calls” are about the woman’s body as a whole or a certain feature’.

Recently I have received an alarming amount of uncalled and uninvited Catcalls whilst walking to and from work, on my lunch break or just taking a walk through town in general. Most of these calls are from a certain local scaffolding company. They have slowed down their lorry to walking pace alongside me, clicked and whistled at me like I am some kind of dog or cat and of course the original wolf whistle and shout. I don’t react to them really because I don’t want to give them that satisfaction. I don’t say anything back but I normally end up shaking my head and look at them very angrily. It’s an interference and makes you question the way you look? Why they picked you? and makes you feel strangely self-conscious.

Now this subject is an interesting one and there are lots of different viewpoints, hence why I am blogging about it. When I recently brought up this topic up when sat at the pub, I got a lot of interesting comments. Of course, I received the ‘you should take it as a compliment’ which partly I can see why people think that, but I personally don’t think that’s right. As an intelligent young female, who pays her way and works 6 days a week and normally doesn’t give a shit, I feel I shouldn’t have to take being hollered at in the street. I know the men who catcall probably don’t mean to come across as rude or sexist but if you catcall at the wrong woman that is possibly going to affect her. I mean I know they are only trying to look cool in front of their friends or colleagues and probably don’t mean to come across in the way they do. In the world of 2019 surely it is time we moved past this kind of on street harassment?

All of these thoughts in recent weeks has led me to research into cat calling. Which has led me to question is catcalling a form of sexual harassment? After my research I found that a lot of people are asking the same question. And a lot of people agree that it is. Now calling it sexual harassment may seem a bit extreme to some people reading this but the definition for sexual harassment is ‘Behaviour characterized by the making of unwelcome and inappropriate sexual remarks or physical advances in a workplace or other professional or social situation’. If that is the definition surely it must be classed as a form of sexual harassment?

I am in no way saying it’s just men, because I know women can be even more nasty (I would know, I am one). Get a group of women together and all they do is bitch about other people.

I would love to hear your thoughts below. This is a little bit of a different blog subject for me so would love to hear some opinions…

Chloe May x

Last Post: 6 Months into 2019…

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58 thoughts on “Catcalling…

  1. Where I live, catcalling is like greeting and it’s frustrating to hear a bunch of men disrespecting you everyday and fearing they would beat you if put them in their line. Great post! Thanks for sharing!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I found this very interesting. Also rather sad to hear/read/see it is still a problem just as it was when I was young, when my daughters were teens & now that they are adults. One incident comes to mind that occurred in Shanghai, when one daughter was about 14y/o. She was wearing a skirt and one shoulder top, perfect for hot, humid weather, as we were walking near our apartment building some labourers whistled at her and she asked why they were whistling. I said they probably thought she was attractive. We had a short discussion about the inappropriateness of adults whistling at a teen female. Beyond that I did nothing, feeling my language skills were not anywhere near enough to respond on her behalf. She never wore that outfit again until we were back in Canada a couple of years later. Sexist remarks are everywhere & we women remain the most affected. These days I try stand up to anyone regardless the situation.

    Liked by 2 people

      1. This is such an interesting post. Personally I don’t really mind the calls, but I do sometimes wonder how many of these guy’s would do it walking down the street alone – 9/10 times it’s always just to make them look a certain way in front of other “men”… You are so right about women too, they can be awful in groups as well!

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Thanks for your comment Ellie! I just think it is such an interesting subject with many different view points! I can see each side of it but no one should go out of their way to interfere with someone’s day through a sexual/intimidating way x

        Liked by 1 person

  3. I believe it is absolutely harassment. It’s unwanted remarks and it makes most women uncomfortable. Especially if they are following the calling up with walking up to. It’s completely inappropriate. Great post!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Girl yes. Yes yes yes! I think it is sexual harassment. I experience catcalling mostly everywhere. It is very uncomforting for me to walk into a store/gas station/ work/restaurant alone because 9.5x/10x I will be catcalled. Do men not realize that this is weird? Do they understand it makes us feel award/ and violated? Where I live, we have a beautiful downtown main street area and I cant even walk it alone because of catcallers. They even catcall from their vehicle!
    Thank you for posting this. You are not alone.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. I’ve experienced catcalling since the age of 11 (disturbing, right?) and I 100% would say it’s harassment, especially when it occurs frequently. Many women are made to feel uncomfortable by it – I hate it, and I don’t feel like I’m being complimented at all but rather gawked at as if I’m an object. No problems with someone coming up to me and saying something like “I’m sorry, I don’t mean to be rude and don’t take this the wrong way, but you look absolutely stunning in that dress” or something similar as that’s framed as a genuine compliment but I get the feeling from the way cat calling comes across that the same intentions aren’t there. There is no need whatsoever to make someone feel uncomfortable so you can look good in front of your mates.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I completely agree! If someone came up to me and said ‘you look nice today’ Its much better recived then a shouted comment across the street. Thank you so much for sharing your story x

      Like

  6. I am definitely against catcalling. There is no point to it and it just makes you look like an arse. If you really want to make someone feel better about themselves or beautiful, go and tell them to their face like a real man! Catcalling is definitely the coward’s approach.. xx

    Liked by 1 person

  7. As a petite woman, catcalling tends to make me feel very uneasy… especially when done in an aggressive fashion or inappropriate things are said. If someone I don’t know gives me a random compliment in a polite way then I don’t mind though. Delivery and the words used make a huge difference.

    Liked by 2 people

  8. I think unfortunately this is the culture we live in. It’s wrong. Women are just as capable of ogling men and calling out about their looks. However, I think media has portrayed men as the baddies in this. It’s for this reason I detest Love Island – it’s all about looks and objectifys the individuals involved.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. I too hate being catcalled and find it a regular occurrence when I am back in London. It makes me feel very uncomfortable. I also particularly hate it when people say that we should take it as a compliment! In my opinion it is a form of sexual harassment! Thank you for sharing your thoughts on this!

    Liked by 1 person

  10. I definitely agree that it is a form of sexual harassment! It makes me so uncomfortable and afraid to walk anywhere on my own. Once a man on his bike slowed down behind me (apparently being in shorts gave him the right to stare at my arse) then when he passed me was staring over his shoulder at me. Then he turned around and came back to stare at me again! I felt so embarrassed and self-conscious. It’s unfair that we have to be subjected to it when a man probably feels quite safe walking on his own during both the day and night.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. I personally think catcalling is incredibly disrespectful, can be intimidating and thoughtless. Women are much more than sexual objects. The media and porn industry had made people sex mad and care way too much about their and others apperance.
    Thank you for sharing your thoughts with us.
    Alyssa
    THESACREDSPACEAP.COM

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Of course, it is! there is nothing complimentary about being hollered at by rude man as if a woman is a form of entertainment just for walking the street. Slowing down there care to follow you around in my mind is an absolutely threatening and unpleasant experience. Thank you for raising this issue for discussion, I think it’s an important issue.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. It’s not all right Chloe, I thought the world had grown up. As for the scaffolding idiots, report them to the Police, who are taking these things more seriously these days. You’ll be doing other women a favour. As for the occasional comment, best to ignore. Maybe blokes will fully evolve in time.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. I hate catcalling, when I was a teenager I used to feel so self conscious from it and it made me upset, it’s such a threatening experience and it always made me feel the imbalance of power! Nowadays I can usually brush it off but it’s still horrible.

    Liked by 1 person

  15. I think there’s a real difference between discussing (bitching) between a group of friends, and forcing your opinion on someone by yelling it across the street. Whilst calling it sexual harassment can seem extreme, what it does represent is a societal acceptance of men’s need to let women know they find them sexually attractive – or even that they just *could* have sex with them. It basically means that a man’s desire is so important it overrides any other social conventions, such as not screaming your every thought across the street at a stranger, and it also overrides the woman’s right to just walk down the road without having people commentate on their looks or sexual availability. The acceptance of catcalling suggests that women exist only to be viewed as potential sexual conquests, to be looked at and judged by men.

    But I think it’s also a control thing too – I once got cat-called by a group of teenagers, no more than 17 years old (I’m 30). I was wearing a huge scarf, a duffle coat, a knee-length skirt, chunky tights and knee-high boots. The only skin showing was my face and hands. I looked like a rectangle with legs. There is no way that they found anything about that outfit sexually alluring, but they felt that it was fine for them to tell me they wanted to have sex with me. Why? It wasn’t because they were attracted to me – whether they’d thought about it that deeply or not, they did it because somewhere their need to assert their sexual dominance overrode not only my personal space, but also the fact that I was basically wearing a box.

    Liked by 2 people

  16. 100% against catcalling. It used to happen to me when I would walk to and from work, and it got to a point where I changed my route because I couldn’t stand it – it always seemed to be the same stretch of road it would happen on. Thank you for sharing this post! X

    Liked by 1 person

  17. Loved reading this post! I hate catcalling so much and I honestly don’t know a single person who enjoys it, which makes that whole “you should take it as a compliment ” idea a pretty big stretch. I just wrote a post on it too with a slightly different approach, I’d love to get your thoughts on it 🤗 Thanks for writing this though, there aren’t enough conversations about this in my opinion.

    -Emma ^_^
    thecouturechemist.wordpress.com

    Liked by 1 person

  18. This post was such a good read and so interesting to hear your views! I am such on the fence about cat calling, because it does make me feel awkward and like I am a piece of meat, but then sometimes it can be nice to know you are desirable. It is so confusing! xxx

    Liked by 1 person

  19. I 110% think catcalling is harassment, mainly because it’s freaking intimidating. Like during the day it’s just annoying – but I get it a lot when I’m walking at night. A guy in a car slowing down to drive next to you at 10pm…honestly terrifying. Even during the day, there’s a bit of a power imbalance imo because say I were to yell back “fuck off” at someone who cat called me, 9 out of 10 times they’d start hurling abuse back xx

    Liked by 1 person

  20. Personally, I find catcalling makes me feel self conscious… I remember once walking home and 3 separate vehicles beeped or whistled at me, leaving me to feel very anxious for the walk.

    I’ve had conversations with older generations who don’t see an issue with catcalling, my Grandad for example once questioned why I didn’t take men whistling at me as a compliment. He told me that in his day, it was seen as flattering and it took a while to explain to him why it’s different now without him thinking of us as an overly sensitive generation.

    I think maybe calling it sexual harassment is too far but there’s no doubt that it’s no longer seen as complimentary, if it ever was.

    Liked by 1 person

  21. Interesting. I totally agree with you. And I totally agree that catcalling is considered sexual harassment.
    I remember once when my twin and I were Heise, my sister was in a bathing suit (i was in my normal, tomboy, baggy clothes). These guys that aged from, probably, 18-24, they saw my sister walking to a picnic table in the building of the pool. She just got out of the pool, dried off, and put her headphones in and were watching a tik tok. We were 12 1/2 at the time.
    The guys catcalled her, I heard but she didn’t. I told her that they did that and she never believed me.

    Liked by 1 person

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