At a jam-packed London concert when I was 16 years old, a man put his hand on my leg. I knew straight away that it was absolutely not okay. I did not know him, he had not spoken to me, and most importantly, at no point I answer yes to anything like, 'excuse me miss, can I put my hand on your thigh for a while?'.
As women-only carriages spread through public transport systems in Brazil, Thailand, India and Japan... it looks like the preventative, victim-blaming measure may be heading to the UK. According to transport minister Claire Perry MP, focusing energies on removing the victim from the situation rather than addressing the offender is the way to go when tackling sexual assault.
Rightly of wrongly, in the endless dance we call flirting, the man is often the proactive agent. So, he is far more likely to act in an unwanted manner if he miss-reads or miss-interprets the body language / situation. If every time a mislead sexual advance is rebuffed, we call it harassment, then men start to feel victimised.
I recently read an article about sexual harassment within the gay community. He objected to having his everyday life interrupted, invaded even, by a stranger who thought they could get away with saying something distasteful and hurtful. And it hit me; when women get wolf-whistled as they walk past building sites, is this how they feel?