the women of fully grown.
In light of the recent events and subsequent conversation surrounding women's experiences with men, I asked the women of fully grown to tell me their experiences of sexual assault or a time when men made them feel uncomfortable.
Two thirds of the team came back to me with a story.
"I was on one of my first nights out in Bath and we ended up in this club and it was super packed! I was by the DJ booth and wanted to get a drink so I was walking through the crowd and some man pulled my top up all the way."
"I was in a club and a man lifted me up and started to walk out the door with me over his shoulder and he wouldn't put me down. Security did nothing."
"I was clubbing on holiday when these two boys came up to me and my friend. We both said nicely that we weren't interested and they seemed fine with that and left us alone. When we left the club, they saw us leave and followed us. We had bands on our wrist which said the name of our hotel, so they followed us to our hotel. We went into our room and when we opened the door they blocked it so we couldn't close the door behind us. Both my friend and I were pushing the door shut as they were on the other side trying to push it open, all the while they were going to "f*ck us while we watch each other". They didn't leave until a male security guard kicked them out."
"While my friends and I were on a girls holiday, we were dancing and this guy wouldn't leave us alone. His friends were encouraging him to harass us, and we was videoing us dancing with his flash on. We told him to stop but he didn't. He continued to take photos and videos of us dancing and then filmed up our skirts. I shouted at him to leave us alone, he laughed in our faces."
"A boy (adult) groped my bum in the city centre in broad daylight and walked away laughing with his friends."
"A boy slapped my bum in a club."
"My 'used to be friend' tried, with force, to touch me while I slept in a bed with him and my other friend. These were two people I trusted and it was after a house party. I had no reason not to trust either of them. He touched me with force despite me trying to get away from him and his hands. I was 15/16."
"I've been assualted on multiple occasions throughout my life. When these events have taken place, it's only way into the future that I recognise what actually happened. I'm not pinning my assaults onto men purely, as I've been assaulted by a woman too. But the assaults that took place further into my adulthood were performed by men. Sadly, one of the people that assaulted me I considered a friend, and the other was a stranger."
"I was working in a restaurant and a man came up to me, held my shoulders and told me to stand up straight and stop slouching. There was nothing sexual intended but it was extremely uncomfortable for me."
"When you say something back and stand up for yourself, you're seen as outspoken or being overly sensitive."
"Sometimes it's easier to be quiet and take the inappropriate comments than it is to say no for fear of it becoming worse."
"Guys I've worked with would finish work and have no worries about locking up [place of work] and driving home. As a female, it's the worry of not wanting to be left in the building alone, having to walk to my car in the dark without anyone around, walking home through town with drunk men around feeling threatened; all these things mean you have to plan every step of your journey to try and minimise risk. It can be really exhausting."
"When I was in my first year of college (16 years old), it was winter time, so it got dark quite quickly and I relied on public transport to get me home. There was a man that got off at the same stop as me and after we had gotten far enough from the main road, he proceeded to turn around, shout at me, blocked me off from walking away and followed me home.
I was very lucky that my dad had finished work early and walked the same direction as me, as later on I saw him and told him what had happened. It was only then that we realised that the man was standing at the end of my road watching me and my next moves. It made me very uncomfortable, terrified to get the bus and scared of being left alone for a while."
"I would say that these have happened to me a handful of times: bum grabbing at festivals, getting beeped whilst walking, very uncomfortable staring, wolf whistled at."
"I was walking through town in the middle of the day to go and meet my mum at the hairdressers. As I was walking this white van pulled up in front of me, by my path. I noticed that there were two people in this van as it drove next to me. I knew deep down that something wasn't right, so I crossed the road and started walking on that side. I thought I was being paranoid, so I kept watching the van as I was walking on the other side, to see if someone was being dropped off, or if someone was on the phone, anything to just see if I was overreacting. I then made eye-contact with the driver, who was a man, and he was staring at me. He then shook his head at me, as if he was annoyed because I had crossed the road and out of reach. He drove off, and I took a picture of his license plate as I was worried that something might happen in the future to someone else, and I at least had the picture of the van. I do believe that deep down that if I hadn't have crossed the road, something would have happened, especially as it was a quiet road and there was no reason for them to pull up on that side."
"I am 19 years old, I have changed more than 4 jobs in my life and I can count at least 3 situations that made me feel uncomfortable and violated in each of the different working environments. I have been touched without my permission, I have been humiliated, discriminated, offended and the list goes on. The worst part is that I never said a thing because I was scared of losing my job or because it would make me seem vulnerable."
"When I was in year 11 I was assaulted by a boy I was talking to. He grabbed my phone and as I would reach for it he would grab me in areas I hadn’t consented to. I asked him to stop numerous times but he ignored me. I felt so uncomfortable and scared. I cried the whole way home."
"When I was about 7/8 I was on holiday, playing absent-mindedly on some slot machines. A guy sat at the machine next to me even though I was the only one playing and there were around 12 other machines. He asked me my name, where I lived and how old I was. All of which I gave him because I thought he was being friendly, however I was uncomfortable doing so and thought he would leave if I told him. Then he held his hand up, I thought for a high-five but when our hands connected he interlocked his fingers through mine and held them. I pulled my hand away and ran to my mum."
"I was in Year 11 and I went round a guy friend's house who I had been friends with for years. We were innocently watching a movie but he started flirting with me which made me uncomfortable. I excused myself to get a drink and as I sat up he pulled me in for a kiss. I felt I had to kiss him back even though I didn't want to. He lay me down and touched me inapporiately. I asked him to stop and pushed him away but he kept moving his hands to intimate areas. I made an excuse to leave and went home. The next weekend he got drunk and was texting me that I needed to come over and sleep with him and to Snapchat him nudes of me."
"Two friends and I were at a carnival and everything had died down so we just got a burger and were stood in a supermarket car park eating. Two men approached us and asked where the bus stop was which we pointed in the direction of but it was about 3am so no buses were running, which we made them aware of. They then asked if we would walk them to the bus stop, we declined. All of us were feeling uncomfortable and they started asking what we were doing there etc. One of us said our Dad was coming to pick us up to try and deter them. They wandered off but were still watching us. My friends and I made a split-second decision to run as we felt so unsafe and there was no one else around. We ran and they chased us for a bit but we eventually lost them."
"I worked at a little café every weekend and we had the guy come in every Sunday who ordered the same thing so I got to know his order and would have it ready when he came in. He was very kind, late 30's-early 40's and drove a motorbike so I thought he was really cool. When the café was slow I would talk to him for a bit. After my shift one day he had only just arrived so I waved as I left. I had got to the end of the street when a motorbike pulled up next to me, it was him. He asked me my name and whether we could go on a date. I told him I was 16 and that I was off on a school trip that next week (which wasn't a lie). He wasn't phased and asked whether we could be Facebook friends. He put his phone into my hands and I couldn't think of an excuse so I added myself. I made an excuse to leave and when I turned a corner I ran and called my boyfriend to meet him. I blocked him on my Facebook."
"I have been pressured into sex with a male friend. It has haunted me ever since."
"Working as a waitress I’ve had quite a few uncomfortable experiences, it’s almost as if it comes with the job. Interestingly it’s mostly with older male customers rather than younger ones closer to my age. When it’s large groups of men they sometimes make awkward jokes towards me and make it uncomfortable to continue to serve them. Mostly though it’s subtle small comments such as being told that i should smile, but i can’t stand up for myself or point out that it makes me uncomfortable as I’m just told that I’m overreacting. One time in particular when a male customer was making comments to me that made me feel uncomfortable, I told him to stop and he responded “get on with your job”."
"I don't remember losing my virginity, I'd been really drunk but it was taken by a guy I'd half been seeing, down an alleyway. I found out the next morning by him telling me that "whatever's happening with us isn't happening anymore"."
*Some of these stories have been edited for clarity but this has not effected the overall message. These are real stories from real women. Some stories are from the same woman. All are anonymous to protect their identity.