5 Habits Women Have Had to Learn Because of Harassment

July 13th 2016

Laura Donovan

Thanks to street harassment, something as simple as walking to work can be an unpleasant experience for women.

The harassment doesn't end with catcallers and unwanted advances from men on the street. Women also face harassment online and in other real-life situations.

This has forced a lot of women to adapt to their surroundings and find creative ways to defend themselves. Here are some behaviors that women have had to learn as a result harassment from men.

1. Turn the camera on the men bothering them.

Jase Dillan gained national attention in the fall after she posted a viral Facebook video showing her following a man against his wishes on the streets of Boston for more than two minutes. Dillan alleged that the man had filmed her and women who appeared to be underage without getting their permission.

"I'm videotaping you the way you were videotaping me," Dillan told the man in her video. "I'm sorry, am I making you uncomfortable? You don't like being filmed without your permission?"

You can watch the video below:

A Minnesota woman named Lindsey made headlines two years ago for creating Cards Against Street Harassment, which women can give to street harassers, calling out the problem of street harassment. She also posted a YouTube video of interviews with men whom she said harassed her:

2. Post stories online about getting harassed in public.

Several women's stories have gone viral after they shared their catcalling experiences on social media. Christen Brandt posted a Facebook photo earlier this year of herself in winter gear to show that harassment can take place even if a woman is completely covered up:

"Next time you wonder whether your skirt is too short, next time you ask your teen daughter to change her clothes, or the next time you hear about school dress codes in the news, remember this photo," Brandt wrote.

Sharing such experiences on social media spreads awareness of street harassment and relays the message that it happens to women in their everyday lives.

3. Change their transportation route.

A whopping 72 percent of women all over the world reported changing their transportation plans as a result of harassment, according to a study published last year by the anti-street harassment organization Hollaback! and Cornell University.

Twitter user Amelia McCann wrote that she exited a train to get away from someone bothering her in the train car, with the hashtag #commutingwhilefemale:

Similarly, Twitter user Melissa Haggerty lamented that she had to pretend to listen to music to avoid harassment on her commute:

4. Protect each other from harassment in public.

Some women have been forced to protect each other from harassment in public places, a recent ATTN: video revealed. The video opened with a group of women swatting at a man in Turkey for allegedly exposing himself to another woman on a crowded bus:

Facebook user Hannah Quinn Horr gained attention several months ago for sharing Tumblr screenshots of stories about women protecting each other in public. In one, a woman said that a group of girls warned her that she was being followed outside a club:

5. Post screenshots of online harassment.

Women face immense harassment on social media, from receiving unsolicited dick pics to getting taunted on dating apps. Some women have taken a stand against the harassment by posting screenshots of the various forms of harassment to highlight the problem.

The popular Instagram account @TinderConvos documented some of the creepy messages that women get from men, as well as strange messages that women receive for ignoring their advances:


A photo posted by Tinder Convos (@tinderconvos) on


A photo posted by Tinder Convos (@tinderconvos) on


A photo posted by Tinder Convos (@tinderconvos) on

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