Creepy Men Love Taking Advantage Of Customer Service Workers

Creepy Men Love Taking Advantage Of Customer Service Workers

"I get nervous when men break social rules in order to show interest."

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When I was younger, I would hear stories from women about creepy guys who would follow them around and shout disgusting things at them, but I always thought it was a rare occurrence. Even though I always believed the women, the idea of encountering a creepy man seemed rare. It wasn't until I got a job that I realized how often these exchanges happen.

I began working when I was 17 and immediately began to notice how often men decided to creep out female coworkers. We barely had any male employees where I worked, and for a good chunk of the time I was there, we had zero. Working at a register, my time with creeps was limited to a minute or so as I rang them up, but once I was moved into the Men's section of our store, things got a whole lot worse.

My job in the Men's section was simple; stock the shelves and racks while keeping the area tidy. Since I was the only worker in that area, I had no choice but to answer any questions the male customers had. Most of the time the questions were short, but a good amount of them turned into a conversation I didn't want to have. They'd start out innocent enough, I'd get asked about where the socks were or something.

Then, however, without fail, the male customer would look me up and down and ask the same annoying question; where do you live? I'm serious, that's actually what they would ask. I don't mean one or two men asked me this. Over the course of my two years there, I'd say at least ten men asked me this exact question.

When this would happen, I'd just laugh and throw out the name of a random town. Once I answered, they'd go about their business. One man, however, kept staring at me and then finally told me that he had seen me around the town that I was actually from. I honestly became petrified and removed myself from the conversation. He, of course, proceeded to follow me. Out of pure fear, I hid in the back room and waited for him to leave.

So basically, a man scared me so much that I had to cease my work to hide. I was at my own job, where I was happily employed, and yet I had to hide from a persistent creep. I have so many stories just like this one and sometimes even I can't believe they actually happened.

Because of how many creeps I've encountered, I rarely make eye contact with certain men at work. Most guys are totally fine, but some guys are a problem. The biggest creep give-away is when they look at your nametag and proceed to use your name multiple times when speaking to you. That's not normal. Normal people just call me "miss" or something.

I've learned to keep my eye contact with men in stores. I made the mistake not long ago of looking directly at and smiling at a strange man when letting him pass me in a tight aisle. I knew I messed up when he gave me a huge smile, moved close so that he was mere inches away from me, and calmly said, "well, how are you today?"

To some people, this may not seem like a big deal, but normal people don't do that in stores. People are supposed to keep their distance. If someone lets you pass, you give them a grin and a nod and move on. You don't invade their personal space and start a conversation.

I've had a co-worker ask me to join her as she walked with a male customer to show him where a certain product was after she deemed that customer a threat. I've had a co-worker cry when male customers shouted suggestive things at her while she was picking merchandise up off the ground. No one should feel this way at work.

I'm trying my best to explain this without sounding like the "triggered feminist" uneducated people like to whine about. No, I don't hyperventilate when a man says hello to me.

I get nervous when men break social rules in order to show interest. No normal person asks a retail worker where she lives after she's pointed out where the socks are to you. No normal person follows said worker around the store after she's ended the conversation. No normal person takes a stranger's polite smile as an invitation to get super close and engage in a conversation.

I have to change the way I carry myself in certain places to make sure I don't attract unwanted attention. It gets harder in a customer service job where I'm forced to be nice and smile to every customer. I shouldn't have to be scared of being pursued when I'm just trying to do my job. In short, why don't these men just leave us the hell alone?

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6 Huge Ways Your Life Changes After Escaping A Small Town

"Don't let small-town life make your life small."

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I've read a few articles on small towns and some statistics show that 20-30% of Americans live in small towns and 80% of the nation's population lived in one of the 350 combined metropolitan statistical areas.

After growing up in a small town myself, I think it can sometimes be difficult to be the person you want to be while trying to please all of your small-town fans. This is the first time in my life I've moved away from my small town with the intention to stay away for a very long time.

Why would I do something so silly?

Over the past two years, I realized how my hometown was stopping me from growing and accomplishing my dreams. Hanging out with friends generally became a gossip session because we were together so often and had nothing more to talk about. Neighbors knew where I was or who I was with. There was always some type of pressure to please everyone. There has always been someone to compare my life to or to be like.

Finally, I realized how detrimental this mentality was to my success.

After a series of events this year, I finally gathered the courage to pick up my life and move somewhere where I was a “no one." Somewhere where I could start fresh and never have to worry about pleasing someone down the street. I can vouch that this has been the biggest change in my life and the best possible move I could have made.

So what things actually change?

1. You find out who your true friends are.

This one will shock you. Remember that person you used to go to dinner with or spent countless nights finding a party or get together to go to with? That person magically fades away. The convenience of you being down the road is no longer an option and that person has now found a new acquaintance who has replaced you. Your genuine friends will continue to invite you to be a part of whatever and most will plan to spend time with you or come see you.

2. You no longer have a close-minded perception of everything.

I remember going to a grocery store and hearing the small town gossip from aisle to aisle. I remember how one-sided most issues were and if you weren't on board, your opinion was irrelevant. Now I can go to the store and not know a single person and have an opinion about anything I want and not have to worry about being shunned.

3. You suddenly turn into a mystery.

This one is great. People will start wondering where you went or what you've been up to. When I call my parents, I always get a good laugh from the conversations they've had with others who wonder what I'm up to. My favorite quote that relates to this is, “The less you reveal, the more people can wonder."

SEE ALSO: 8 Tiny Lies Every Young Adult Woman Has Told Their Best Friend

4.You are suddenly a nobody in your new community, and it's great.

I have a bad habit of trying to avoid people I know, so when I go into stores or do anything in public, I love being a nobody. I love being able to do all of my grocery shopping without being interrupted or asked about school.

5. You appreciate the small hometown things more.

I'm not going to lie, I cringe thinking about making a trip home, but that pizza place I had four times a week and those margaritas that my friends and I would gulp down when celebrating everything from a birthday to making it through a rough day at work suddenly become luxury items. You enjoy those country cruises and those salty fries so much more when you're away.

6. You start to find yourself.

I left this one for last because it's by far the most important thing that's happened to me. I got stuck thinking I needed to be married by 22 and have a family by the time I was 27. I no longer think this. I finally have a bucket list that involves so much more than beating my best friend in a keg stand at the annual town bonfire. I have found who I am through solely relying on me and the things that make me happy.

SEE ALSO: 8 Things You Realize After High School


Don't get me wrong, I love my hometown. It's made me who I am today, but even if it's only for six months, escape your small town. Get away and experience the world. Don't wait until it's too late. It's great out here!

Cover Image Credit: 10 Best Media

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How Growing Up In A Culturally Diverse Environment Changed Me

We are all human.

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I can proudly say that I am from Montgomery County, Maryland, more specifically from the city of Gaithersburg. According to a 2018 study by WalletHub, three of the top 10 culturally diverse cities in the United States are located in Montgomery County. Those cities include Gaithersburg, Germantown, and Silver Spring.

I have lived in Montgomery County ever since the day I was born. Growing up in such a culturally and economically diverse area has educated me with the value of accepting differences. Since I was exposed to an assortment of cultures at such a young age, I hardly ever noticed differences among my peers and I. The everyday exposure to various cultures taught me to embrace diversity and look beyond appearances such as the color of someone's skin. I was able to open my eyes to other ideas, lifestyles, and backgrounds.

Ever since I was a child, I was not only taught to welcome different cultures and ethnic groups, but I was always surrounded by them. From my elementary to high school years, every classroom was filled with racial, ethnic, and linguistic diversity. Coming from someone apart of the Caucasian race, I was often the minority in school. Not everyone is as fortunate to experience such a multicultural society.

Since being from Montgomery County, I have grown up as a person with an open mind and strong values. Diversity has not only taught me to be more mindful but has also helped me become more of a respectful person. Learning about other cultures and backgrounds is essential to help societies strive, but experiencing it firsthand is something that no one can teach you.

After being in countless culturally diverse situations, I have been provided with many lifelong advantages. I was taught to be inclusive, fair, and understanding. I am able to be comfortable and accepting of all cultures and religions. After growing up in such a culturally diverse environment, I now develop culture shock when I'm not surrounded by diversity.

Our world is filled with numerous different kinds of cultures, ethnic groups, and religions. Being raised in a diverse environment has prepared me for what the real world looks like and taught me exactly what equality means. As I was growing up, I was always taught to be nonjudgemental of others and to embrace all individuals for who they are.

Diversity molds our identities. Every individual is unique, but each of us shares at least one trait — we are all human. Who would rather experience a homogeneous society, when they could constantly be learning about other cultures and building diverse relationships? When growing up, I never realized how impacted and truly thankful I would be to of had the opportunities to experience diversity each day. So here is a long overdue thank you to my parents for choosing to raise me in such an incredibly diverse place all of my life.

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