Picking up from yesterday –
[Same warning remains that we’re talking about being groped and such.]
I start texting the man I adore with the ridiculous story of what happened.
He is so, so kind about it all.
In an exceptionally anti-feminist-seeming way, I’m actually more upset about the fact that, “That’s yours to grab, not his!”
I realize that it’s actually mine. My body doesn’t belong to the man I adore… But still. We always had a lot of fun banter back and forth, about how we were each other’s. And I was mad some stranger seemed to take that away from me – to encroach on the space of the man I adore…
So, we were texting, and I was upset. I was worried it was dumb to be upset. But he was incredibly upset – perhaps even more so than me. My gut instinct was minimize, minimize. And his was, “You’ve got to report this guy!”
So, we text as I go up to Universal Studios for donuts and all that jazz. He’s being a super sweetheart. And I’m having a fine time. (I looove Universal Studios).
But, ultimately, even in this place I love on this beautiful day, I’m still a little distracted and a little angry. I pick up some donuts for my co-workers (and myself – let’s get real) and go to work. (I work a night job at that time.)
I get out of work early, and I ask someone who works at the metro station how I’d report. He tells me the stop where the police metro station (or whatever exactly that’s called) is.
I get off at that stop and go in. I tell them about what happened earlier in the day. I apologize and tell them I hope I’m not wasting their time for something as simple as being grabbed. I know they have bigger issues.
I happen to give my report to a female officer (though a male officer may have been just as understanding).
She tells me that she’s very happy I reported. She explains that if he so brazenly did this, he’s probably done it before and will probably do it again. And if more women report this kind of behavior, it might be easier to find the guy (and potentially make a case).
They ask me a lot of really specific questions, and I realize how little I was paying attention.
That stranger dude kept talking to me above ground and I kept averting my gaze. I kept looking around wondering where I’d go if he did something, or where I could go to get away from him if need be. I looked around for other people on the street, because I figured nothing would happen with witnesses. So they made me feel safe.
I looked at 1,000 things without ever taking a really good look at this guy.
Thankfully, there was security footage. So, you could easily see what he looked like. You didn’t need me to tell you… But it did make me think I potentially should pay a little more attention to my surroundings, so I don’t feel like a total idiot in front of a police officer again. (I mean, I had some idea of what he looked like, but not a ton.)
I finish reporting and make my merry way out of there.
It wasn’t the end of the world, but it was certainly an inconvenience. It disrupted my day. It made me feel tons of emotions from violated to embarrassed to stupid to “dramatic,” et al.
It made me spend time I wouldn’t normally have spent stopping at that station, giving a police report, then waiting for the train again.
None of it was a humongous deal. But it wasn’t fun. It’s not just like, “Hey, let’s grab a pussy. It’s hilarious!” It’s not hilarious. It’s a disruption, at the least.
In case you’re wondering, of course the man I adore then has me stay at his apartment. After all, it’s been a long day. He’s very happy/proud I reported. And he’s really happy with the helpful police officer’s response (as was I).
And I’m certainly happy he has me come over, because I need to be touched immediately. I just want to feel like that stranger dude is off of me. I want to be touched in that same place on my body by someone whom I want to touch me there. I want it to feel normal and good, and I want that immediately, before I start to feel any weirder about it…
So, that’s what we did. (And I don’t know if that logic is sound, or works for everyone. But it worked really well for me.)
I never heard anything more from the police about this. But I did wake up in the arms of the good man, and I never felt weird about/worried about that day after that… (I even made sure to wear that same skirt on the subway again, because I don’t want one bad encounter to dictate what I wear, or make it so I don’t wear the things I feel beautiful in…)
I’ve barely ever even mentioned that day ’til now. It was a small thing in the grand scheme of life that affected one day. But I’ve had numerous inappropriate experiences like that – that affect me for a day, or an hour, or what have you. It’s not always long, but it’s always inconvenient (if not worse).
And now a presidential nominee is bragging that he does that to women? Aye aye aye aye aye aye aye.
So, I thought it was time to speak this story out loud.