A resident on the unit block of R Street NW has asked this message posted for public comment:
To the females of Bloomingdale:I was just wondering how other females from the neighborhood deal with this problem, because as a resident of the area for the past 2 1/2 years, it has taken its toll on me.
How do you deal with men (sometimes high or drunk) harassing you on the street?
I still don't really know the best way to handle unwelcome comments or catcalls. I have tried just about everything. Ignoring them seems to make it worse, because usually they just get louder (and often cruder) to try to get your attention. Sometimes, if someone seems friendly (especially someone who lives on my block) I might smile and say hello, but many times this only provokes things further, as some take the hello as an invitation to say lewd things. And these things happen in the middle of the day and/or morning. I won't even get into what happens at night.
I know one thing is to try not to walk alone, but sometimes for me it is unavoidable, as I need to get to the bus or metro or go to the coffee shop, which is just about 100 yards from my house. Should I say something more clear back to them (like "please stop saying things like that to me") if it is someone who I recognize who is a recurring problem? I have a feeling that might just backfire and make walking down my street something I would dread even more.There are times when I just try to block it out, but there are other times when I hear certain things that certain men say (very nasty things sometimes) that literally just makes me want to pick up and move to Glover Park. And I hate Glover Park.
I know it is just a part of living in the city and living in our area that I have to deal with and I try to remember all the great things about our area when I start to think it is too much. But if anybody has some constructive feedback for me, I would appreciate it. Thanks.