At school there is a lot of flirting going on. Flirting can happen between friends, with a crush, with a teacher or a stranger. It can be welcome and flattering, or unwelcome and creepy.
Being a girl and growing up means you need to get really smart at handling attention from guys. The better you get, the more confident you will become at stopping a flirt from becoming something more.
Remember that nobody is entitled to touch your body. Even if you’re being friendly, that is not an invitation.
Here are some strategies to put a stop to unwanted flirtations:
1. Ignore it
You can just play dumb. This goes for a guy calling out to you on the street, an annoying guy in class who hassles you, a guy at a bar or a teacher who makes suggestive remarks or declares love. Don’t respond and don’t give them any additional attention.
2. Confront it
If it’s safe, you can confront the person yourself, or you can tell someone else about it. Creepy attention from an older uncle or a teacher may be best handled with a word to your parents (or a loud public Eeew that’s just gross! Don’t touch me). If it’s a school friend who keeps hassling you and thinks it’s funny, you can challenge them directly (or speak to a teacher about it).
3. Find some lines that work
Here are some ideas:
That's not cool — and it needs to stop.
Why did you put your hand there? Eeew that’s gross! I don’t like that at all. Please don’t do it again.
What exactly do you mean by that comment?
No thanks I am not interested / I have a boyfriend.
4. Get away from it
If the situation is more aggressive and frightening, your first goal is to get away and stay safe. If a guy corners you at a party, you get an unwanted kiss, or you find yourself in a remote classroom with a teacher - remove yourself from the situation any way you can. Find a crowd, make an excuse, flag down a friend and then regroup and tell someone who can help.
Sometimes girls worry about getting a guy in trouble if they "tell" on him, but remember that he's the one acting inappropriately, not you. Find a strategy that works for the situation.