People Who Have Posted #MeToo Online Share Their Stories Of Sexual Harassment
After the sexual allegation against movie star mogul Harvey Weinstein surfaced. Actress Alyssa Milano tweeted a simple message to the survivors of sexual assault/harassment (both men and women) encouraging them to come forward and reply with "Me too." These two simple words have since started a movement online giving people the courage to speak up and share their own stories. The power of dialogue is always important, and survivors should never feel alone. We thank them for their bravery.
Source available at the end.
I had this friend who was quite flirtatious, but I thought nothing of it. We were both 15 and decided to go out for the day. He robbed alcohol from a nearby shop and heavily persuaded me to drink it while he had sips. He asked me to kiss him and I said "No" and he got annoyed and said that that was the whole reason why he had come to see me. I was young (15), drunk, and a bit naive. So, I kissed him back. We then went to chill somewhere quieter and out of site from the general public so that we could carry on drinking.
He ended up on top kissing me, and we made out while fondling each other for a few minutes, which I consented to. Then he proceeded to make his way down to my shorts and took them off. At first I didn't do anything to stop him because my head was spinning from all of the alcohol.
He then buried his head between my legs. When I decided that I didn't want it, I told him to get off of me and tried pulling his hair to get him away. He became forceful and wouldn't take "No" for an answer. It was 15 minutes of hell as I looked into the sky and hoped that it would stop. Eventually, I got him off me. I told him that my mum needed me back, and I went home and cried for hours.
I had to deal with a month of seeing him in school which made me nauseous, and eventually, it started giving me panic attacks. I had to tell the teachers, who told my parents, and the police got involved. I was interviewed in a room, had to give in the clothes I wore that day, and hoped he would get put away.
Unfortunately, he got away with it due to insufficient evidence even though I had texts on my phone that read: "I wanted to make you orgasm. That's why I didn't stop when you told me to." People at school found out, and I was labelled a slut, a liar, and quickly became ostracized.
Fast forward 5 years, he's currently serving time for raping a 13-year-old. Goes to show.
When I was 12, I was spending the night at a friend's house. I was downstairs getting a glass of water when her dad came into the kitchen and pushed me up against the counter and started trying to take off my nightgown. I managed to squirm away and ran out of the house. Thankfully, her house was just down the street from mine so I ran back home and banged on the door until my mom let me in. I told my parents what just happened. My dad got this look on his face and went down to talk to this guy. To this day, he won't tell me what he said, but I never saw that guy outside again. His family moved away a few months later.
The most traumatizing was shortly out of high school. I had just broken up with my boyfriend. One of my best friends, who was a guy, offered to hang out. We drove around, and he kept pressuring me to have sex with him. I let him know that I didn't like him in that way anymore, but he continued to pressure me. I would try to make it a joke and say, "I'm not drunk enough" but then he would change the conversation into finding booze so that we could get drunk together.
He continued to pressure me, and eventually, he parked the car by an empty baseball field. He changed the conversation again. This time, he said to do it as a "favor" for him as a friend. I gave in and we got into the backseat of his car. We did a little foreplay. When he got the condom on and got on top, I told him very clearly, "No, I didn't want to do this anymore." He pushed me down and said that I couldn't say no now.
We finished, and he took me to dinner after and talked about how we were still such good friends. I really didn't know how I felt at the time. It wasn't until I told my friend over the phone the next morning and started crying over the whole experience that I realized what had happened. I have a lot of other stories, too but this one was when I felt the most betrayed.
I don't know if this is controversial, but I'm a guy and I posted it as my status because sexual assault/harassment isn't limited to one gender.
For some background information when I was younger up until early college, I was rather overweight. After years of being teased and poked at for being big, I never really got comfortable with physical contact coming from anyone. Midway through college, I ended up shedding all the weight and actually having some semblance of a jawline, plus abs appeared on my body.
I remember going out to a bar with some friends and having a girl approach me for the very first time. She bought me a shot, and then another one, and then another. She started getting very close and putting her hands up both my shirt and down my pants. I remember saying, "No, please stop" but she continued anyway.I remember being extremely scared. I grabbed her by the wrist to try and take her hands off of me, and she screamed and slapped me.
I was asked forcibly to leave the bar immediately.
I didn't post "Me Too" because I didn't want any questions from my family and friends since not many people know about it.
When I was about 6, a random stranger showed me his penis and tried to get me to touch it and go with him to his car.
When I was 19, a guy at a bar wouldn't leave me alone. He went as far as grabbing my right butt cheek and lifting me off of the ground to show me that he could "do whatever he wanted to me" and that I couldn't do anything about it. I punched him in retaliation, but my 5'3'' 130lbs frame didn't do much to his over 6-foot 180lbs body.
When I was 25, I was fooling around with my boyfriend. We hadn't had sex yet because I didn't want to, which was something that I made very clear, but he still had sex with me anyway. He did stop when I started protesting. I felt completely betrayed and violated.
When I was 30, I moved a province away for a new job and my new boss tried several times to make our relationship physical. He wasn't in town often, so I had to try and politely refuse his advances so that I won't lose my job or get blacklisted in the specialty field that I was in. Embarrassed, I confided in my coworker who expressed jealousy that she hadn't been the one he picked.
With all that said, it was men who did the opposite for me that have had a much bigger impact on me. My best friend's boyfriend started packing things up in his car to drive 10 hours to come and get me when he heard the story of my boss trying to make our relationship physical. I had to tell him exactly how I was handling it to make him stand down.
This random guy in Vancouver who could tell that I was lost and asked me from a good distance if he could help. My first boyfriend out of high school who treated me like I was the best thing on Earth, which also made me treat him the same way.
The guys that I naively trusted when I was a drunk college student who just took me home without taking advantage of me. In my experience, most men are standup guys most of the time, but you have to watch yourself because all it takes is one person with an ulterior motive to wreak havoc on your life.
It was at a college party. This guy's frat were the sponsors. He was the former president, and he asked me if I'd like to see a private exhibit upstairs. I was 18 and I wasn't drinking, so I though that it was "cool" to be invited up by a senior. He took me into a second floor game room and started rubbing his penis on my behind.
I said, "I should probably go back to my friends." And he said, "In a minute..." while blocking the door.
He grabbed my butt and then my breast as I started to cry, eventually, he let me out of the room. I didn't slap him or punch him. I felt so scared, and I felt so dirty for a long time after.
Did it happened because I snuck into that frat party? Was it my fault? I questioned if I had led him on and that's why he had acted like that. I blamed myself for a long time. He also made up a rumor that I'd had sex with him which, thankfully, did NOT happen.
I never spoke about it.
I was 14 while they were a heterosexual couple in their mid-twenties. She became my "friend" and introduced me to him. Within two weeks, I was in a sexual relationship with them. Within a month, I was living with them, that was, until I turned 16. She quit sleeping with me not long after I moved on, but he continued to.
They threw me out when I was 16. This was after she found out that him and I were still having sex without her. She had some kind of a breakdown and tried to kill us both. I was back with him a few months later. We carried on with each other until I was 21.
The older I got, the more he would tell me how he missed the way that I was when I was younger (14). He missed when we had just met and how innocent and trusting I was.
I know it may not as frightening as some others stories, and some people have told me that it was my fault (including my own sister), but I was just a kid and he was 26. I was groomed and lured into a relationship with a grown man and woman who took my virginity. They were my first everything. It has taken me a lot of time to get over all of the years that I spent with him.
So Mike or Crystal, if by any chance one of you guys is reading this, what you did was wrong. And one day, it will come back to get you.
Once I was walking down the street and had a man come up, out of nowhere, and lock arms with me. He clamped his hand down on the top of my arm so, that way, I wouldn't be able to move and/or pull away. He stayed that way with me for over a block and a half when I was 16.
I was found on the floor of a bedroom on prom night, black out drunk (most likely drugged) and seconds away from being sexually assaulted. Luckily, someone found me, picked me up, and took me away. The next day, the man messaged me asking about "our chemistry."
I've had a boss who would call me "Pumpkin" and "Baby" and would get in my personal space, touch my hair and my hands, and snap my hair ties on my wrist.
I've had a boy sit on my chest and try to "playfully" force his penis into my mouth.
I've had men add me on FB and message me asking if I was horny, or if I wanted to do it, or DM me on Instagram asking about my breast.
I've had a man send me an unwarranted penis picture to try and get me to sext him. I've been groped, hit on, catcalled, and taken advantage of all starting at the age of 13.
I was specifically thinking about the time when I was masturbated at in public. When I went to report it, I was told to "Be flattered."
It also reminded me about the time when I was a young teenager, and I was groped in this crowd that I was in by an older man.
This has made me think of specific incidents that I've pushed out of my mind, and I wish I could go back to not remembering. It's made me realize how hard this #MeToo thing must be for people who don't want to relive or remember their past assaults/harassments.
It was after a party in college where I had been drinking. I went to hang out with a group of friends at an after party. We kept drinking a little bit and, at no point, did I feel unsafe. That was, until I went to the bathroom and came out to find only two people left. They told me they would show me what a real man was like.
One of them pinned me down on the couch, and one of them watched. In the end, it didn't end up as badly as it could have, but it was still immensely scary. In that moment when I was first pushed onto the couch, I realized that those two men could've overpower me. They could've done whatever they wanted to me. If I screamed, I would've probably got more hurt than if I just let it happen.
The first person I told afterwards asked me what I thought would happen with the way that I "acted." So, I just learned to not bring it up to people. Those guys began to hang out with my friend group, so I just stopped hanging out with everybody. I became very scared and angry, and I drank a lot. The sad part is that this wasn't the first of my stories. I felt really upset with myself for putting myself back into that position again.
It was hard because I didn't feel like I could talk to anyone about it. There are stories I wouldn't even feel comfortable anonymously posting on the Internet where I've ended up in the hospital.
Honestly, it just hurts my heart to know that so many others have gone through something like this as well. I'd have it happen to me over and over to keep it from happening to someone else. To anybody who is reading this, if you've shared your story (or even if you're still not there yet), I just want you to know that you're strong and brave.
I think I was about 16. My mom was not home. I woke up feeling like someone was watching me. This 20-something-year-old man from across the street had broken into my house and was standing by my bed staring at me. He tried to force me to give him oral, and I only got him to leave by saying my mom was supposed to be home any minute. She didn't come back until the morning time, but I just sat awake in my bed all night.
It took me a couple years to realize the extent of what happened because he's my ex. I was 15, and he wanted to take a "break," but he invited me over so we could talk.
Instead of talking, he started trying to initiate sex. I didn't agree to it because we weren't together, and I wanted to know what we were going to do. He ignored me and kept trying no matter how much I was trying to stop him. He said that if I had sex with him, we could get back together. He was a weight lifter and had been physically aggressive with me before, so I got scared of what he could do if I kept resisting. Afterwards, he told me he didn't want to get back together yet and asked me to leave. I was so naive and still got back together with him. He started to get even more physically and emotionally abusive. I had to transfer schools just to get away.
I had a guy that I slept with once pester me for 2 hours to sleep with him again. He was drunk and refused to let me drive him home as he only wanted to come over. He tried to guilt trip me by saying that he was going drive drunk, and if something were to happen to him, then it would be my fault since I wouldn't let him come home.
People always think that sexual assault is some guy in a dark alley or drugs at a party. However, its more likely to be a friend or someone who assumes that, just because you were willing to do it with them once before, they somehow have a right to your body now.
I was a guy's house who I had been on a few dates with before this night. I was wearing a skirt. We were kissing in the living room, and the next thing I knew, he was trying to go down on me. He wasn't responding to me clamping my legs shut, attempting to move away, or even saying, "Slow down." I tried to stand up, but he pushed me back down and kept going. He almost made it seem like he was pushing me down for my own good somehow and like I shouldn't be upset. He overpowered me and held me there while he did what he wanted.
When I was platoon leader one of my sergeants was a vulgar, misogynistic creep who often made crass sexual comments in front of me. I told him to "Shut up" and thought that was going to be the end of it. It wasn't, it was just a symptom of something much worse.
As it turned out he was abusing his position as Squad Leader to sexually batter soldiers in our unit. One of them finally spoke out, and this sergeant received a field grade article 15. This meant that he lost his rank, forfeited pay, and had to do some mandatory extra duty stuff. I also wrote an evaluation that effectively ended his Army career. I'm just sad that he didn't go to prison.
If you see something, say something. The appearance of compliance will only embolden predators.
I'm a guy who was in college at the time. There was a girl who I got fairly close with in the school's theatre program. We spent a lot of time together. Having low self-esteem, as well as, being gay I was essentially oblivious to her flirting.
One night, she showed up at my room and wanted to watch a movie. We did so while laying in my bed. About halfway through she got handsy. I kind of shrugged it off until she started trying to get me undressed, at which point, I notified her that I wasn't interested and that I was gay (which was apparently a surprise to her).
She then got pushy and gave me the whole "If you've never been with a girl then how do you know" speech. She then tried groping and forcing me to do stuff, at which point, I shoved her out of my bed and told her to leave.
After that she spent the rest of the year antagonizing me and publicly making fun of my appearance. She also said a lot of homophobic stuff. While not the only reason, I did end up transferring to a new school largely because of her. I simply didn't want to be trapped dealing with her.
I met a friend of a friend who seemed pretty cool. We talked on Facebook messenger a couple of times and went out for brunch with some mutual friends a couple of times. Gradually, he started messaging me more and more every night. I'd tell him that I was busy most of the times because I didn't want to be rude, but somehow that just made him more desperate, and he started messaging me even more frequently.
There started to be signs of light stalking (nothing serious). He just knew things, but I didn't know how he had found them out because I'm stunningly non-confrontational. I would just tell him that I was really busy with school and work and that I didn't have the time to talk to him at all.
He continued to message me constantly, so I just completely stopped responding. Two weeks later, I got a message that read: "Surprise! I'm outside your house! Let's go get food!" WTF. How did he even know where I lived? I lied that I was out of town, but he said that he saw me through a window.I reluctantly went outside to meet him. Suddenly, he shoved his way in and started kissing and grabbing me aggressively. He was not in the best shape, so I somewhat overpowered him and gave him a nice kick in the balls. I then threatened to call the police, but he was gone.
The next day, I got a message that read: "Hi (my name)!" and that was actually today, so I'm not really sure what to do now. Maybe I should get a restraining order? But I'm not sure if it's worth it.
I was 18, and I had just moved away from home for university. I was in a club's washroom line on Halloween. I was wearing a knee-length skirt. A middle-aged man was standing behind me in line. He reached up my skirt and shoved his fingers under my underwear and into my vagina. The worst part is, this club had a reputation for ignoring obvious fake IDs so there was a good chance that I was 16/17. I turned around and yelled, "What the heck!" He smirked at me, winked, and then walked away. It's been 4 years since then, and I still think about it every time someone stands too close behind me in line.
Another time I was 19 and was visiting my friend overnight at her University. At some point during the course of the night, we lost track of each other and one of her "good friends" offered to help me look for her, but first, he wanted to run up to his room to grab a mickey of rum. I went with him and stood at the desk while he rooted around in his closet. He said he was having trouble finding it, so he told me I could make myself comfortable while waiting. I sat down on the bed, and he immediately came over and held me down and started aggressively making out with me. It was December and my lips were chapped so it really hurt. I started crying and tried pushing him off me, but I wasn't strong enough. He pinned my two hands above my head with his elbow and started unbuttoning my pants with the other. I was begging him to stop. I even said, "Please, don't rape me" but he didn't stop until a CA (University Dorm Supervisor) knocked on the door to look for me (My friend was getting worried about me being gone for so long). I was athletic and considered myself pretty strong, but this scrawny short kid held me down so easily. That, in particular, is what really messed me up for so long. It was a big shock to realize how weak and helpless I really was.
I've experienced more than these two events, but these are the ones I think about most often.
At a party in college, I had a bit too much to drink and my friend brought me into the den to rest on the couch in there. Not long after, another "friend" came in to ask me how I was doing. I couldn't talk I just grunt a little. He leaned over and kissed me, and when I shook my head and tried to turn away, he put his hands down the front of my pants. He texted me the next day saying that he was "Sorry," and I told him to forget it. I didn't want to think about it or relive it. I've literally never told anyone about this in my whole life.
The guy that I gently dumped after a few dates proceeded to follow me home after the last date (post-breakup). I didn't realize he had until a couple of days later when he had shown up at my apartment with flowers. I told him, "Thanks, but please leave" because I had never invited him to my place much less told him where I lived. He gave me some BS about wanting to make sure that I made it home okay.
I finally got him to leave, but he showed up again THE NEXT DAY with an even bigger floral monstrosity. I didn't answer and he blew up my phone about seeing my car in the parking lot, living room light on through the window, etc. I told him that if he ever showed up somewhere uninvited like that again, I would call the police. I gave several friends his name, picture, phone number, license plate number, and place of employment (just in case).
I feel like I need to say this. If someone shows up to your home uninvited and refuses to leave immediately, YOU HAVE EVERY RIGHT TO CALL THE POLICE. I don't care who it is. If they don't own the place or have tenancy there, you can call the cops. Don't worry about seeming "mean" or "overreacting." If the person makes you feel like you are then they are MANIPULATING you, and THEY are the ones in the wrong.
The first time that it happened to me I was only around 12 or 13. I was wearing a long sleeved purple sweater, blue jeans, and my hair was in pigtails. I wore glasses and had braces. A man screeched up next to me in a pickup truck and shouted, "You looked better from behind!" He had to be in his 40s or 50s.
It happens so often now that I've honestly phased it out. I wear large headphones in public just so I don't have to hear it. If I go anywhere not accompanied by a man, it's like clockwork.
I've been assaulted 3 times now, and I honestly don't want to reopen those wounds again with Reddit. Most of the responses were well-meaning, but so many others were blaming me for something that I didn't choose.
I felt compelled to share, but it bothers me that the burden is still largely on victims and women to rip open their pain and suffering to get the world to believe us. The truth is, every woman that I know, every woman that I've met, and every woman that I have yet to meet could write Me too. But the truth is, it's not OUR problem. It is the problem of people who make our spaces unsafe: our workplaces, homes, and communities.
So, my question is: How many people who are learning the scope of the problem are going to do something about it? Sign up for a bystander intervention class and speak up when your friends are being rude. Now that youve learned theres a problem also learn how to help.
I was 13 and at a gas station. This slicked back 30-something-year-old guy came up and started hardcore coming on to me. So much so that the manager, who was a friend, stopped it by distracting him.
Local pedophile tried to pay me when I was 6 for "Being beautiful." My mom almost tore him apart.
I was drunk with friends, and this guy put his hand between my legs. He'd been hitting on me for a while to no avail. I was tipsy and didn't know what to think. I was 22 and inexperienced, so I didn't even realize he had done it on purpose. One of my friends at the table saw and stopped him.
At 16, my BFF and I were stalked through a bookstore. I thought it might be a lot guy at first, but then I realized not so much with the way that he was looking at us. He followed us until I turned around and stared him down with the "I-know-what-you-are" look. Then I left the store ASAP.
I've suppressed this stuff, there's probably more, but I'm lucky nothing worse has happened.
It was during my second year university, and I was partying with my friends and these guys from a fraternity who we were also pretty close with. I started speaking to one guy, and as the night went on, we had a lot of interesting conversations. It started to rain, so we all walked to the frat house together. Once we got there, I mentioned that my feet were soaked and he said that he could lend me a dry pair of socks.
I followed him to his room. Once we were inside, he closed the door behind him and essentially threw me on the bed. I tried to push him off, but he was a lot bigger than I was. Eventually I shouted at him to get off of me. I apologized and calmly said, "I didn't mean to lead you on, but I'm just not okay with doing anything with you right now." He became ANGRY and started calling me names, yelled at me, and belittled me to the point where I felt so small and embarrassed.
I made it out of the room and walked upstairs to leave before I started to cry and ran into the fraternity president who asked me what was wrong. I didn't even know how to explain what had just happened and felt like it wouldn't be taken seriously because "Nothing really happened," so I told him that I felt sick and that I needed to leave.
Posts are edited for clarity.
Racism is an insidious, and unfortunately prevalent, force in all of our daily lives. Maybe we're on the receiving end of it, being treated differently and losing opportunities because of others' preconceived notions.
Or maybe we're on the other side of things. Even those who aren't actively racist or discriminatory still have to process the world through the filters of the things they've been told about people who are different.