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Kwentong Commute By Sexual Harassment​ Victims

Hinto na po rito.

Here’s a little throwback to the time when commuting was generally part of a busy Filipino’s lifestyle. Yet unfortunately, the more we need it, the more people made it unsafe for many.

Scroll below to read the stories shared through our #MayKwentoAko campaign by sexual harassment victims during their commute.

AJ:
This happened last March, I think it was 10:30-11:00 am, I’m on my way home from work (graveyard shift). I was standing inside an e-jeep wearing a 4-5 inch below the knee skirt, shirt and maong jacket.

We’re like shoulder to shoulder inside the e-jeep since it was really crowded. Then this guy behind me started to get freaking closer to the point that there was no longer space between my butt and his thing. I was shocked at first, I can’t even move but I was more shocked when he put his hand on my waist and that’s the point where I stepped on his feet real hard and begged the driver to stop then I went off the e-jeep.

I’m still scared of crowded places because that experience already messed my mind with trauma.

Linn:
I just got out from school when I rode a jeep (going to the mall). I sat down beside the door because the mall is close to my school. Another man is sitting in front of me. He was looking at me in a weird way touching his private part and I was scared to life. His eyes were full of lust and he almost drooled. I tried to get off the jeep early but he still managed to grope my butt.

I was wearing jeans and a t-shirt.

Zaneya:
It was 7 pm then. I was about to go home from church practice. I rode a jeepney with almost-full passengers. I sat beside a middle-aged man because it was the only space left.

As I was getting fare from my purse, the man suddenly put his right hand on my left thigh. That time, I was wearing a knee-length shorts. When I jolted, he removed his hand. I continued counting coins and didn’t bother since I thought it was just his mistake. Then, it happened again, with his hand kind of squeezing my thigh.

I suddenly shouted, “Manong, para po!”. He sacredly removed his hand at once. It was dark and I was so afraid, but I did not hesitate to alight when the jeepney stopped. I just wished I had the guts to punch him.

Marie:
I was on my way to work riding a PUV. I was wearing my uniform (Teacher’s uniform). I was holding my bag and teaching materials and I dozed off since I finished my materials until 2am and needed to get up at 5am.

I suddenly felt a finger touching the side of my boobs in a circular motion. I opened my eyes and looked at him immediately. He just looked away and acted like nothing happened. I never wanted to sit beside a guy in a PUV since then.

Nag-gagas nalang ako ng sasakyan kung minsan. Mas magastos pero at least, I feel safe.

Kang:
I was an SHS student. I was riding a public jeepney on my way to school when there was this guy I noticed in front of me, weirdly looking at me. I didn’t even mind it since I was very worried that I’ll be late to my first subject.

Mind you, I am wearing a 3/4 sleeve shirt, a pair of pants and a pair of shoes since we don’t have any required school uniform. When the guy beside me had got out, the guy in front of me quickly changed his position to sit beside me. I fell asleep due to traffic, only to realize that the guy earlier is touching my crotch (I put my bag on my lap the moment I sat in the jeep, so what he was doing is hard to see by others).

I froze, didn’t know what to do. I can’t move. I want to shout but it seems like I my tongue was stuck. I was scared. When I was about to take action, he quickly got out of the jeep leaving one of the most traumatizing moment of my life.

So, you see, it’s not about what you wear, it’s about the predators itself. Up to this day, whenever I remember those happenings, I feel disgusted!

Jane:
I was 14 then and was about to go home from school (note: I was wearing my school uniform). I rode a tricycle with a classmate and other students. Even from the beginning of the ride, a certain student and a co-passenger started sputtering profane, sexually-tainted words together with another student and the driver.

When the driver refused to drop me off the terminal, I became terrified even more so when the student suddenly changed seats, occupying the seat beside me trapping me between him and the driver. It was only about a minute when I saw the student carrying a handkerchief and putting something when I shouted to the driver to stop the tricycle and forced myself to get out.

It made them angry, I don’t know why but I immediately went to my aunt’s house and cried a river due to the fear of thinking of what could have happened to me. It’s only been a week when a dead body of a rape victim was found in a far flung barangay.

If you’ve experienced something similar, you may feel free to share your stories with us below. Our ongoing campaign, #MayKwentoAko, features stories shared with us to encourage positive conversations.

 

 

If you need to locate a Women and Children Protection Unit near you, you can use our Health Facility Locator.

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