A woman has spoken out about a horrifying attack she and her girlfriend were subjected to while travelling on a night bus in North London.
28-year-old Melania Geymonat had been out on a date with her girlfriend Chris, and had been travelling back to Chris’ home in Camden when the attack happened on May 30.
After realising they were a couple, a group of men on the bus began demanding Melania and Chris kiss in front of them for their entertainment. When they refused, the gang proceeded to physically assault them, leaving them both covered in blood.
Air hostess Melania has spoken about the attack over Facebook, describing it as ‘chauvinist, misogynistic and homophobic violence’.
Recalling how the men’s harassment quickly escalated to physical violence, Melania wrote:
They started behaving like hooligans, demanding that we kissed so they could enjoy watching, calling us ‘lesbians’ and describing sexual positions.
I don’t remember the whole episode, but the word ‘scissors’ stuck in my mind. It was only them and us there.
Trying to diffuse the situation, Melania tried to make jokes, while Chris pretended to be feeling unwell. However, this did not deter the gang, who only became more ‘enthusiastic’.
The next thing I know is that Chris is in the middle of the bus fighting with them. On an impulse, I went over there only to find her face bleeding and three of them beating her up.
The next thing I know is I’m being punched. I got dizzy at the sight of my blood and fell back. I don’t remember whether or not I lost consciousness.
The group of men then allegedly stole items from the bloodied couple before fleeing the scene. Melania has not returned to work since the attack, and is unsure as of yet whether or not her nose is broken.
Writing on Facebook, Melania spoke up bravely against acts of homophobic violence:
What upsets me the most is that VIOLENCE HAS BECOME A COMMON THING, that sometimes it’s necessary to see a woman bleeding after having been punched to feel some kind of impact.
I’m tired of being taken as a SEXUAL OBJECT, of finding out that these situations are usual, of gay friends who were beaten up JUST BECAUSE. We have to endure verbal harassment AND CHAUVINIST, MISOGYNISTIC AND HOMOPHOBIC VIOLENCE because when you stand up for yourself shit like this happens.
By the way, I am thankful to all the women and men in my life that understand that HAVING BALLS MEANS SOMETHING COMPLETELY DIFFERENT. I just hope that in June, Pride Month, stuff like this can be spoken out loudly so they STOP HAPPENING!
According to the National LGBT Survey, published in February 2019, over two thirds of LGBT respondents avoided holding hands with a same-sex partner because they were fearful of how others would react.
If you’ve been affected by any of these issues, and want to speak to someone in confidence contact the LGBT Foundation on 0345 3 30 30 30, 9am until 9pm Monday to Friday, and 10am until 6pm Saturday, Or email [email protected]
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Jules studied English Literature with Creative Writing at Lancaster University before earning her masters in International Relations at Leiden University in The Netherlands (Hoi!). She then trained as a journalist through News Associates in Manchester. Jules has previously worked as a mental health blogger, copywriter and freelancer for various publications.