And It Was Wrong

Just a night out with the girls

"I'm just trying have a night out with the girls."

That's what I told you when you came up behind me at the bar and bought me a drink. It's what I told you, but it wasn't the first thing I told you. First I told you "I'm all set" when you asked what I was drinking. Then I told you "No thank you" when you asked if you could buy me another. I said "I really don't need another one" when you flagged down the bartender. And, finally, I said "I'm just trying to have a night out with the girls" when you ordered me a drink anyway.

"Sweetheart," you said, putting your hand on my back "no one's ever just having a night out with the girls." You winked at me and walked away.

I felt scared the rest of the night. I told myself it was silly to feel scared because you really hadn't "done" anything. But I looked over my shoulder all night, especially when I was leaving, praying I wouldn't see you.

Now I feel angry. There is still a piece of me that feels silly for feeling angry, that says you didn't really "do" anything, but most of me feels angry all the same. Because here is what you did do: you didn't listen to me. You told me that what I wanted didn't matter. You told me that I should not expect to go out with my friends and have control over what happens to me. What is it about just being a woman that puts a big "bullseye" on your back?

My friends told me that you were probably just trying to be nice, but you ignoring what I wanted did not feel nice. You not believing that I could really have, really want, just a night out with my friends did not feel nice. It felt invasive and scary and it was wrong.

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