New submission from Jules
My partner (also a woman) and I were walking along Sauchiehall around 8.30pm, after an afternoon at Pride Glasgow.
3 men wearing smart suits saw us and crossed the street towards us making noises (“woooohhhh”) and then stopped us in our tracks by surrounding us and standing in front of us. One asked, “what’s that rainbow for?” (I had a small rainbow painted on my cheek) to which I replied, “We’ve been at Pride Glasgow, the rainbow is for diversity.”
One man then asked, “Are you two sleeping together?” We tried to keep walking. He then said, “I’d pay to see you both together, I think it’s really lovely, I bet you love being together. I’m totally cool with it by the way.”
I asked if he was together with his friend and got aggressive and his face changed to disgust and said “don’t be fucking stupid.” I told him he was “being inappropriate” and we kept walking on until they eventually let us pass and moved out of our way.
They continue to yell at us and I recall phrases like “fucking lovely” and “show us then” as we headed for the station.
All in all a horrible and invasive experience, leaving us both feeling like we had been reduced to sexual objects and on display for their pleasure. I was also accutely aware of how different they may have treated us if we were men. I felt initially frustrated and protective and then relieved that it didn’t escalate further, but now I think I feel much worse about it.
It’s not the first time it’s happened but I was struck by how public this was (there were others around) and how nobody intervened to offer help.
I want to feel comfortable holding my partner’s hand and I almost always do. Situations like this make me feel much more wary and I hate that feeling.