I’m a male and I was catcalled

This is going to be short because it doesn’t take many words to tell this story and convey the point.

Elevator image that I found online to go with this blog post because I’ve heard it’s good to include a picture.

I was on the seventh floor and I needed to go down. I went to the elevators and pressed the down arrow to call my vator. A few seconds later, a light turned on indicating which elevator doors were going to open and I approached. As the doors opened, I did a quick scan of the occupants. I noticed that it appeared to be all women on this elevator, about 6. As I step in and begin turning to make sure my floor is pressed and also to face the doors, I hear a compliment.

One of them says, “You’re looking mighty sharp today, sir.”

I turned my head in the direction that the sound came from and quietly, but audibly say, “Thank you.”

I turn back around the face the doors. Then I hear,

“Testosterone just walked in.”

This came from the same direction. I felt no need to respond to this. A part of me thought, do I look that nice today? Maybe it’s this beard I’ve been growing all winter — I’m sure it’s as manly as I think it is. Still, I did not respond and maintained my composure. It was weird because a part of me felt like it was a compliment but another part was more than ready to reach my floor and get off of that elevator!

I went back to my office but the words stayed with me. I had time to process. That’s when I realized I was catcalled. I thought, What if I had said to a female, “Estrogen just walked in.” I was disgusted.

I really know nothing of what it’s like to be catcalled but I can imagine the disgust that may be felt when it happens. Disgust may not even be the right word but that’s what I felt. Disgust, because I know this happens to females more than I think. Disgust, because I’ve had female friends that it’s happened to. Disgust, because as a male I’m grouped into the same category. I feel shame because there are other males that do this sort of thing.

And I’m sorry. I’m sorry that anyone (male, female, or otherwise) has to experience that sort of thing. I’ll remember the disgust I felt because if I don’t, then someone may think I’m ok with it.