Sunday, March 05, 2017

OOTD: Catcalled


A few weeks ago I was sexually harassed inside a bus.

I was on the bus going to Pampanga for work (yes, I commute Manila to Pampanga everyday) and I sat beside this guy and just like the usual I went to sleep after paying the fare. I would usually be able to wake up once the bus is taking the hard turn going to San Fernando, Pampanga and so I did… But this time it was different. I felt the guy’s leg rubbing on my leg and I felt his left arm covering half of my body while rubbing my right breast. I suddenly woke up and he pretended like nothing happened! WTF?! He even had the courage to start asking me questions such as: “Saan ka pupunta? (Where are you going?)” and “Gusto mo samahan na kita? (Do you want me to accompany you?)”


I have been very vocal about my fight against the rape culture as I have been sexually abused before; but when it happened that day, I felt scared, humiliated, and angry at the same time. If I cause a ruckus will anyone believe me? What proof do I have? So when I got off the bus, I ran straight to our office without looking back. I was crying. I didn’t know what to do. It all happened too fast and the bad memories of yesterday flashed back in my mind. And then I asked myself, “what did I do to deserve this? Is this all my fault?

I know that it can never be my fault but that day, I started doubting myself. I just questioned everything I believed in and fought for. It took a day or two for me to move on from the incident and be able to talk about it without tearing up.

I was a bit appalled when some people asked me, “… But what were you wearing?


Dolman Blouson Wide Leg Cropped Jumpsuit from Love Curves | Shoes: Anagon's Closet |
Necklace: Gifted by Sister-in-Law

First of all, it should not matter what a person is wearing. Sexual harassment is sexual harassment regardless. If a person has been taught and exposed to the fact that women should never be objectified, that we are not mere objects of lust, and that our clothes do not make the decision or give the consent, then we will never have to be afraid of being cat-called or sexually harassed. But to answer the question… I was wearing this jumpsuit from Love Curves. Because, see, sexual harassment is NEVER about the clothes. Regardless of what you’re wearing, you will be harassed because of the person himself/herself and you should never be blamed for it. No one should feel the way I felt that time… I have been harassed yet somehow there are still some people who pointed their fingers at me. What kind of support is that? Why are we even trying to justify the harasser’s action?

There were also some people who showed their support. A college friend of mine even sent me a message about how she understood what I felt that time. She had been through something similar and she knows how scary the scenario can be so we can’t just tell the victim to immediately speak up or fight back. It may be easy for some but it can be hard for people like me who may seem very outgoing but really a bit reserved at times.


We have always been taught to dress “appropriately” so we won’t be harassed. As much as it may sound like someone’s just concerned about our well-being, it still bothers me that because of this, some people have been given the right to shame people and use the way they dress to justify a harassment. Isn’t it about time that we start telling people that clothes do not give consent or to simply not judge, justify, or harass regardless of what someone is wearing?

32 comments:

  1. I stand against rape culture too and yes, it is about time that we voice out that a victim should never be judged for the way she dress or act. Anyways, your jumper looks great.

    -Tey
    teyjin.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, Thea. We all need to unite against the rape culture. :)

      Delete
  2. Lovely look , I love everything
    a sweet kiss
    Sara M.
    http://sarameirelesthesnowwhite.blogspot.pt/

    ReplyDelete
  3. Beautiful post dear! You look so elegant in this jumpsuit and I just LOVE shoes with a sparkling tip like the ones you are wearing here. Really really nice overall! Thank you a lot for your last comment on my blog :)
    Sending much love!
    Xx
    Rosa Larissa Klara
    conscious lifestyle of mine

    ReplyDelete
  4. Thank you for opening up about this experience. It is important for us to speak out as women. It was SO NOT YOUR FAULT!! I can't believe it when people ask what the victim was wearing. It does not matter in the least! Nobody deserves to be fondled against her will or worse yet, raped. It is a social disease that needs to stop. I'm so sorry that this happened to you. Your outfit is really lovely, but as you know, had NOTHING to do with the sick actions of that man.
    xo, janea
    www.theSTYLEtti.com

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Janea. I hope more people will stand up against the rape culture.

      Delete
  5. This outfit looks great
    Obsessed, x
    Hadasah Love || www.styletolove.com

    ReplyDelete
  6. I can't believe someone had the nerve to ask what you were wearing!!! It doesn't matter, but you always dress appropriately anyway. The nerve! What a piece of trash (man)! So sorry that happened to you. With all the discussion and awareness we have nowadays, I can't believe this kind of stuff continues.
    http://www.averysweetblog.com/

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. As long as we're all willing to talk about this issue and fight for our right to be respected, we have a chance to change things. Slowly but surely. :)

      Delete
  7. Oh my goodness, what a horrible experience for you! I'm so sorry you had to go through that, and then have the lack of support afterwards with people asking what you were wearing. :( I hope you are never in a situation like that again, it does not sound safe at all!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Mica. I hope this doesn't happen to anyone.

      Delete
  8. What a terrible experience my dear! I hope this will never ever happen to you again! Stay strong my dear! xoxo

    www.naomella.com

    ReplyDelete
  9. You are a nice woman with a elegant outfit!
    MissGrey.ro
    https://missgrey.ro/blog/ce-purtam/rochii-de-primavara-pentru-ziua-femeii/

    ReplyDelete
  10. This look is so perfect on you <3

    X Merel
    www.andathousandwords.com

    ReplyDelete
  11. Ugh, the catcalling situation here in the Philippines is getting worse and worse. You looked absolutely great and that's not a ground for catcalling.
    Keep your head high, beautiful!

    xo, Gillan

    ReplyDelete
  12. Cute look.
    xx
    https://theonethattravels.wordpress.com/
    https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC_zn7IqrAY1I44bRuN6dH-Q

    ReplyDelete
  13. Loving this look dear! That necklace is a perfect add

    Xx,

    || FLOORTJELOVES ||

    www.floortjeloves.com
    www.bloglovin.com/blogs/floortjeloves-12198253

    ReplyDelete
  14. Oh no! I am sorry this happened to you! It makes me sick to my stomach. Thanks for being so brave to speak about it too. Rape culture is definitely on the rise, and more women need to speak out. I agree that we shouldn't be taught to 'dress appropriately' as something feels wrong about that. We shouldn't be blamed, rather our attackers should. :(

    -Emily www.coatandcoffee.com

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I will never stop speaking up for this cause. I hope more people would stand up for this too.

      Delete
  15. I'm SO SORRY this happened to you!!! The fact that you were asked what you were wearing, insinuating that this was somehow your fault or that you enticed this person's volatile act is cruel, insensitive, and down right ignorant. Again, I'm sorry you had to experience this and I can only imagine how you must feel. Sending LOTS of love and support your way, my friend.

    XO,

    Jalisa
    www.thestylecontour.com

    ReplyDelete
  16. You are so strong for having posted this, this is just a horrible reality of most women's lives.. every female has a similar story to tell and that makes me sick to my stomach. We need to teach boys from the moment they are born how to act and that this behavior is not okay and then maybe something will change. I hope you are feeling better now! x

    adelelydia.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete

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