How does daily harassment feel?

Dealing with catcalling"Why have I me the Offer to let?"

Every woman knows situations in which she is stupidly turned on or exposed by men. But annoying afterwards doesn't help. We talk to a social worker about possible strategies for sexual harassment.

"Wow, great ass!" "Are you in the mood for sex?" - and it can be done even more drastically. When men stick such sayings to women, it rarely goes down well. Some women just go on, others fight back - like the French Marie Laguerre. When a man on the street made obscene noises in her direction, she shouted "Shut up!" The man then hit her in the face. We reported about it.

The case sparked a great deal of debate, and we ask ourselves: how do we as women actually behave best when we are in such a situation? In such a way that we don't feel bad afterwards. Because one thing is clear: it is not the woman who has done something wrong when she is harassed - the responsibility rests with the man. This is also what the social worker Kristina Gottlöber says. And she also says: Every woman has to find out for herself how to deal with sexual harassment.

"There is no right or wrong behavior. It is the case that every woman has to feel for herself what is okay with her."
Kristina Gottlöber, co-initiator of the "Safe Wiesn for girls and women" campaign

Women can react very differently, says Kristina Gottlöber. Some just put it away and ignore the incident. "That is what women who are very self-confident do as well as women who are generally shy or reserved and who do not want to be the center of attention in public."

Ignore or get loud

Another option is to get loud and vent your anger. That can be very liberating - Kristina Gottlöber knows this from her own experience. Because it happened to her on her way home late in the evening that a guy talked to her in an extremely clumsy way. "I didn't want to take that disgusting feeling home with me," she says. So she explained her opinion to him very loudly. It was satisfying for her at that moment.

Escape the situation

But the situation could also have turned around and become dangerous. It can therefore also be wise to just go further - or to join a group of people, says Kristina Gottlöber, so that you are no longer alone. "That scares off many perpetrators."

"Quite often it is the case that women are very dissatisfied with their own behavior and have the feeling that they should have acted differently."
Kristina Gottlöber, co-initiator of the "Safe Wiesn for girls and women" campaign

Talk to others

Women often grieve, says Kristina Gottlöber, and think afterwards that they should have been more quick-witted. “Why did I accept this?” Many ask. A tip from the social pedagogue is to talk to a trusted person or maybe several women about it again afterwards and to consider: What could I do differently next time?

Because women are often taken by surprise in the situation itself. "These are things that come unexpectedly, and you have to decide within seconds: How do I behave here?" Explains Kristina Gottlöber.

"In situations that are really threatening or dangerous, it is good to address people very specifically."
Kristina Gottlöber, co-initiator of the "Safe Wiesn for girls and women" campaign

We should all be sensitive

The social pedagogue hopes for solidarity from everyone who hears it when women are sexually harassed - also from the men. "Because when you stand there all alone, everyone looks at you - it's incredibly good when others are there to support you and say: 'Leave the woman alone!'"

In principle, it is about power anyway: men want to use their power over women, says Kristina Gottlöber. The perpetrators enjoy unsettling women.

Get help in dangerous situations

Self-defense classes could help build self-esteem. But if the situation is already heated or even seems dangerous, women should react cautiously, simply for the sake of their own safety. Instead of putting yourself in danger, you need to get help.

"Hey, you over there with the red sweater, please help me!"
Kristina Gottlöber, co-initiator of the "Safe Wiesn for girls and women" campaign

It is important to address people very specifically and not just to call for help, says Kristina Gottlöber. Because that gets people right into the action.

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