Perceptions and personal experiences of unwanted attention among Portuguese male students
Faculty of Business and Law
School of Law and Justice
The present study investigated male perceptions and personal experiences of ‘unwanted attention’ (UA), as well as possible associations between perceptions and personal experiences of UA. Ninety-one male college students, from five Portuguese universities, were asked to indicate which of a continuum of 47 behaviours represented UA. Although UA, stalking and harassment are rarely addressed in Portugal, male college students shared a clear understanding of what behaviours constituted UA, with the identification of four main categories of UA behaviours: ‘aggressive’, ‘threatening’, ‘classic’ and ‘dysfunctional attachment’. Almost all participants (96%) reported personal experiences of at least one UA behaviour. There was a minimal relationship between perceptions and personal experiences of the individual behaviours. The findings highlight the widespread risk of male victimisation and the need to legitimise male complaints.