Woman Mauled By Bear After Rolling Down Her Window To Take A Selfie — ‘I Thought He Wanted To Be Friends’

Her experience brings new meaning to the "bear vs. man" question.

large brown bear in nature Perpis / Shutterstock

While social media users debate if they’d rather be left alone in the woods with a bear or a man, one woman is considering herself “lucky” after surviving a real bear attack.

A Scottish tourist was mauled by a bear in Romania.

Friends Moira Gallacher and Charmian Widdowson were visiting the Carpathian Mountains when they encountered a group of bears, according to Scottish news outlet STV.

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Widdowson said, “We saw these bears — a mummy bear and a baby — they were gorgeous.”

What the women didn’t know was that trying to take pictures with the bears would lead to an almost deadly situation.

“We were in the car, and we were going to take a picture,” Gallacher stated. “And the bear came up to the window.”

As the women were driving through the mountains, they found a safe spot to pull off the road and stop. Once they did, they tried to take pictures with the bears.

@chaoticgoodfeminist #stitch with @Netochka all of these attacks are carried out by men…not bears. Follow up post using active language. #teambear #tuesday #hopethishelps #dobetter #bear ♬ original sound - ChaoticGoodFeminist

“So I went down the window to take a good picture. I thought he wanted to be friends,” Widdowson said.


Unfortunately, the bear wanted anything but.

“The bear came and wanted to get into the car, but he started getting into the car and bit my friend,” she explained.

Widdowson is convinced that the bear attacked her friend because they were talking about food.

“My friend said, let’s get something to eat … And I think he heard it and decided he had to eat my friend instead,” she said.

Gallacher, who is recovering at a local Romanian hospital, said she credits her survival to the “thick, padded” jacket she was wearing.

STV noted that Romania has “Europe’s largest population of European brown bears.”

@yourtango Women were asked if they would rather be stuck in a forest with a man or a bear - and their answers are sad #manvsbear ♬ original sound - YourTango

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The National Park Service said “bear attacks are rare.”

According to the National Park Service, bear attacks do not occur frequently. In fact, “most bears do not want to attack you; they usually just want to be left alone.”

Bears do not typically attack unless they’re provoked or made to feel unsafe themselves.

Perhaps this explains why so many women would rather be stuck in the woods with a bear than with a man.

The question has been circulating around social media: Would you rather be alone in the woods with a bear or a man?

@brideliciosa #stitch with @LJ TRUTH🕵🏾‍♂️ ♬ original sound - Mama Bri

Most women have said they would rather be alone with a bear in the woods.


Bears are more predictable. They don’t tend to randomly attack. Men, on the other hand, do.

This attack may give people some pause. Bears may not be as docile as it was assumed. However, they still have less terrible tools at their disposal than men do. As one woman said in a TikTok comment, “The worst a bear can do is kill me.”

Despite having a run-in with a bear, Gallacher is still better off than she would be with many men.

Gallacher is certainly not blessed to have been attacked by a bear, although she is fortunate it wasn’t worse. She only sustained injuries to her arm. 

While this incident was undoubtedly terrifying for the pair of friends, they were still better off than many women after encountering a strange man.


According to RAINN, “Every 68 seconds, another American is sexually assaulted.” One in six women has been attacked by something much worse than a bear.

Gallacher’s experience with this bear is a sobering reminder that some of the things that scare us are worse than others, and what seems like the worst-case scenario to society as a whole isn’t always really the worst thing that can happen.

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If you or someone you know has been the victim of sexual assault, harassment, or violence, you are not alone. Call the National Sexual Assault Hotline 24/7 at 800.656.HOPE (4673) or chat online at RAINN.

Mary-Faith Martinez is a writer for YourTango who covers entertainment, news, and human interest topics.