This happens all the time. Every car horn, every whistle, every cat call and lewd exclamation, strengthens the lesson I’ve been taught over and over and over again throughout my entire life: as a lady, my body is on public display and open for judgment—from anyone.
Most men who will see this are decent, rational guys who will sympathize with my feelings. A small, vocal handful of dudes will send me private messages about how women like me can’t “take a fucking compliment.” This is not for either of you. This is for the guys who don’t know yet that attracting unwanted attention doesn’t make women feel good, no matter how nice their intentions are. I can’t speak for everyone, but I can say that I personally get embarrassed, often scared, and always—ALWAYS—ashamed, in some way, in how I look.
So… now that you know, cut it out. Tell all the girls how nice they are and how amazing they are at their jobs instead.