When a man gropes you on a subway. If a stranger tells you to smile as you walk down the street. When someone calls you a bitch because you turned them down at a bar. The decision of whether to speak up or push back is made in a split second, and for a lot of women, it’s just not worth it.
The person that just harassed you might get even more aggressive if confronted. Besides, what difference will it make, you think. Why spend energy on a person like this?
As the election looms closer and women continue to come forward to accuse Donald Trump of assault, I’ve noticed a shift in the way women are talking about dealing with these all-too-common indignities. They’re not just fed up with the harassment itself, but with the resigned feeling that this is just the way things are.
More and more, women are sharing stories of speaking up in those moments – and crediting Trump’s misogyny with what they did. Carolina Siede, writing at Quartz, described being leered at by a man one evening and changing her usual tactic of not “rocking the boat”.