Recently, one of our BuzzFeed Community members remembered a time when two strangers helped them out of a dangerous situation, saying: "A guy was trying to get me to leave the elevator with him and go home with him. The elderly couple in the elevator with me pretended to be my grandparents and told him their granddaughter wasn't going anywhere with him."
All inspired by a post with similar good samaritan stories, others also weighed in and shared their own experiences with everyday people who stepped in when they needed it. Here are some of their stories:
1. "On my wedding day, I was cutting through the casino of my hotel to get back to my room to finish getting ready. A group of four drunk guys asked me where I was going 'looking so dolled up' and created a circle around me. I explained it was my wedding day and I really had to go meet my mom, but they kept insisting I party with them for a while first."
"All of a sudden, a man I don’t know came up to me and said, 'Honey, I know we agreed to avoid each other before the ceremony but your mom is looking for you,' and he made sure I got into my elevator alone. I never got his name but I’m forever grateful for this stranger who heard me pleading with these men to leave me alone."
2. "My friend and I stopped for a beer at a crowded bar and this guy came up and started talking to us, insisting on buying us shots. We kept saying 'no' but he kept asking until we were like, 'OK, fine.' He came back and gave us the shots, but the bartender suddenly approached and she needed to see our IDs."
"Clearly we’d already been ID'ed inside because we had beer but she took our cards and then looked us both in the eye before shaking her head at us meaningfully. The guy started yelling at us but we left."
3. "My sister and I both worked at a fast-food restaurant in high school. One of our managers was a 30-something man with a lovely wife and adorable twin boys. Somewhere along the way, he left to take a job at a new correctional facility nearby. And then it became a regular thing for him to stop in. We’d all chat with him and joke around a bit, and he’d be on his way. But, as the months went on, his whole demeanor started to change. He went from being very jovial and kind to dark and weird. He started trying to flirt with the girls there, including my sis and I — something he had never, ever done in his time working there."
"One night he came by while my sis and I were closing up. Before the manager came up, the guy asked us if we needed a ride home. He then told us, in a very low voice, that his wife and kids were out of town for the weekend, so we could come and hang out at his place for a while if we wanted, and have a few drinks. Very creepy.
The manager happened to come up front just as he was asking us this, and saw the looks on our faces. He sent us to the back and gave us a signal to call the police. The manager then escorted the guy out, firmly telling him that he needed to leave and was not welcome back. The guy left, but tried to talk to us still through the drive-thru window! And then he sat in his car but didn’t leave until a cop car showed up. We never saw him again after that."
4. "I was sitting with a friend at an ice cream shop when I realized some guy on the patio was trying to look up my skirt. We decided to leave and, in broad daylight, this guy started following us back to our car."
"I found some very tall and super athletic guy who was jogging, explained the situation, and begged him to help us get to our cars. His first words were, 'It’s happening in broad daylight?' Then he ran up to that guy and yelled at him and said he knew what was going on and he wouldn’t let him get close to us. That’s when we ran to my car and left. I still wish I could thank that person who helped us."
5. "I was 19 and traveling alone on an overnight train from Rome to Palermo, in a six-seater compartment with two men. One of the men, also a foreigner, started talking to me in English and I responded to be polite, but then he started getting flirtatious and I obviously was uncomfortable."
"He left to use the restroom and the other man, an Italian in his 50s, asked (in Italian) if I was OK. I told him I wasn’t really loving the attention and hoped he wouldn’t follow me once we reached our destination.
“Come sit by me,” he told me. So I did.
When the first guy returned, the Italian man addressed him in broken English, said that I was his mistress, and while I didn’t want to be rude earlier by ignoring the man, we both wanted to have some quiet time to rest because it was late. The first guy ended up leaving our compartment, and I actually managed to get a few hours of sleep, knowing that my fellow traveler wasn’t going to let anything bad happen to me."
6. "When I was 19 I worked at a very small, historic local cinema, where I was the only female employee...A man in his late 30s came in with his father, who was in his 70s, to buy tickets for the late show. The younger guy got into a conversation with my manager about the marquee and they went outside to look at it. That left me with the old guy. He started asking me questions. He asked if I had plans for the night, if I had a boyfriend. Then he asked if I lived alone. If I lived nearby. If I was in school and where. What time my shift was over. How was I going to be getting home."
"Then my manager and the son came back inside, heard the last question and saw my face and immediately shut the old guy down. The son apologized profusely and got his father out of the building, and my manager asked me if I was okay and gave me a few minutes to sit in the office."
7. "I was leaving my fiancé’s house to take some laundry to wash at my mom’s house. A little girl (maybe eight or nine at the time) ran up to me and told me someone had been following her to school every day."
"I put her in my car and we left out through the alley. We drove around the block and he was waiting for her to walk back out. I took her to school and then went to tell her parents because they hadn’t believed her. I was always so thankful God had me in the right place at the right time."
8. "When I was about eight months pregnant I went to a friend’s poetry night in a shady part of town. As my friends were getting drunk, I started getting tired and grabbed my things to leave. I asked them to walk me to my car and they all had a slurred excuse of why they didn’t want to get up. So I get up by myself. As I’m walking to the door this guy jumps up and acts as if he’s just holding the door for me. But after I went through he started flirting with me and asking me extremely inappropriate questions and touching me."
"I waddled as fast as I could back to the building and the security helped me, and as far as those friends go? Blocked the minute I pulled into my driveway."
9. "When I was 19, there was this guy who was in his 30s that lived a few houses down from me and he would try to get me to engage in conversation whenever he saw me. He'd say things like, 'I bet you look nice under that dress,' or, 'How about you come over and play video games with me, no one else is home.'"
"I went for a walk one day to a local restaurant to pick up some food I had ordered and he saw me and attempted to engage me in conversation once again. The girl at the counter noticed that he was standing outside the door as if waiting for me to come back out and asked me if I felt ok. I told her 'no' and she allowed me to sneak out the back door that the employees use through the kitchen to get home and leave unnoticed by him."
10. "I was at a club and saw an older man who kept trying to flirt and dance with a guy half his age, who looked very uncomfortable. I approached the young guy and quietly asked if he’d like me to pretend to be his boyfriend. He said yes, and we hung out for the rest of the night while avoiding the creep. And that’s how I met my boyfriend many years ago!"
11. "When I was 21, I was traveling with my friend back from New York on the Chinatown bus, and my friend noticed a guy rubbing the headliner of the bus in a weirdly sexual way. We arrived back home at the station and waited for my father to pick us up at 5 a.m. While we waited, a girl around our age asked if she could sit down with us because the guy sitting next to her kept trying to run his hands on her thighs. It was the same guy we noticed earlier."
"While she sat with us, he came over and kept trying to invite her to come back with him. I angrily told him to back off and he got scared and finally left her alone after two attempts. After my father came, we dropped her off at the nearby Starbucks while she waited for her next bus. It was probably my first time noticing predators do exist nearby."
12. "I live close to a grocery store, so sometimes I walk there if I just need a handful of things. Well, one time I took a slightly different route and noticed this guy was following me. I figured I’d lose him once I went into the store, but then he proceeded to shop in all the same aisles."
"I flagged a stock employee who was over 6’ tall and told him what was happening. He followed the man through the store to make sure he left me alone, and made him wait in the long line to check out while I used the express line. I booked it out of that store and watched my back the whole way home. Never saw that creep again."
13. "I was an at ice cream shop and this guy started talking to me, saying things I wasn't quite comfortable with, and I told him I wasn't interested and tried to ignore him and get my ice cream. At that time he started saying we were together and standing too close to me. I walked outside and the guy was asking me why I didn't like him, telling me to just give him a chance."
"As I was walking outside a lady told me her son noticed what was going on and she noticed how uncomfortable I was feeling and asked if I needed help. I didn't really know what to say, so she basically told the guy I wasn't interested and to leave me alone, and she waited and watched as I got in my car and drove away. I am so thankful."
14. "I was on the last train out of NYC to upstate, and it was like 2 a.m. I sat in the first train cart and there was this extremely drunk, creepy guy trying to talk to me. Fortunately, the conductor noticed my discomfort and brought me up closer to the very front where the conductors sit. The guy tried to move too, and the conductor told the guy to leave me alone, and made him move further back by threatening to otherwise kick him off the train."
15. "I was walking my dog a few years ago and a man was walking up the road behind me. He had a weird air about him and I felt uncomfortable, so I crossed the road and turned around a corner. He was still behind me, so I went into a driveway a lady had just pulled into and started talking to her."
"As he walked past the driveway and glanced at me, I explained that I was pretty sure he'd been following me. She was so lovely and drove my dog and I back home."
16. "As a teenager, I took the train from Miami to West Palm Beach with a friend. We stayed later than planned, so it was dark when we headed home. There were two younger guys sitting behind us and an older gentleman sitting across from us. The guys behind us were having a conversation in Spanish. When we got off at our stop, the older man got off with us."
"He'd been listening to what they were saying about us and wanted to be sure we were safe. He was Cuban and very dark-skinned and said people often assumed he was African American and didn't speak Spanish. He said because of that, he's been privy to some interesting conversations. Really glad he was on the train that night."
17. "I was shopping for my birthday party when a much older man came up to me and asked what I was shopping for. I politely replied that it was my birthday and I was having a party. Then it got real creepy. He asked if he could come. Asked for my address. Followed me through the store. Asked for my address again. And kept following me."
"The nicest woman saw and heard all this and came up to me pretending to know me. She stayed with me until I was done checking out. We chatted like old friends. She actually even payed for all of my stuff! And we walked to our cars together. Seriously so thankful for her."
18. "I was at a neighborhood bar once and there was this college-age girl standing behind me waiting to get a drink. I was chatting with my other half when four young men came up to the girl and wouldn’t leave her alone. The girl was obviously uncomfortable. I turned to her, called her by a fake name, and introduced her to my husband as a 'friend from work.' He got the clues and got up from his stool for her to sit down, then stood behind her.
"She was the first to arrive from her friend group. The friends showed up 10 minutes later. She apologized to us, but we told her our daughter is her age and we are protective."
19. And finally, "I was walking back to a parking garage in an area with a few bars. There was a woman ahead of me dressed as Disney’s Belle – I later learned she had been hired for a princess-themed birthday – and a group of men were catcalling and harassing her. I ran to catch up with her and got on the elevator with her. The men tried to follow and I wouldn’t let them. I got her to her car, then she drove me to the level my car was on and everyone got home safely."
Has a stranger ever come to your defense in an uncomfortable situation? If you'd like, tell me about it in the comments.
Note: Some responses have been edited for length and/or clarity.