There are good men.
There are a lot of good men. I am not anti-man. I don’t hate men. I think men are awesome. I have sons who have grown into incredible, albeit really messy, men. I am married to a man who is kind, compassionate, and giving.
It would be super cool, though, if the men who are assholes would try not being assholes.
I wanted this to be funny, and it kind of is, but it’s also not.
There is nothing wrong with humans trying to connect with each other. I think we’re better with a tribe and having a partner is amazing. How are we supposed to find someone to share our lives with if someone doesn’t take the first step and cast a net out?
That being said, there is a big difference between trying to make a new friend and being a disgusting asshole creeper.
For instance, there is a difference between respectfully asking for someone’s phone number and telling a stranger she has a sweet ass and then making kissy noises.
Women learn at a young age they will be disrespected by men over the course of their lives. It becomes nothing more than an inevitable annoyance.
It makes me sad that my niece and my granddaughters still have this to go through. I’m hoping that we’ve changed enough as people that they won’t have to deal with disrespect as much as their mothers and grandmothers did. I mean, it’s not like sexually predatory behavior has been legitimized by the president of United States or anything.
One of the things I appreciate about getting older is not having to ignore or quietly reject lewd advances. It just doesn’t happen any more. I know a lot of women bemoan the fact that they feel invisible as they get older. Not me. I love it.
As it turns out, being older is meaningless when people hit on you sight unseen.
I got hit on through Words With Friends. Seriously. A phone Scrabble game. It’s like creeper dudes are made of rancid cooking oil and can just ooze anywhere.
I stopped playing Words With Friends a few years ago, but started again recently when I started playing against Mountain Girl and the Bass Player. I have gotten random requests from people and have been digging playing.
I got a game request from “Kyle” and accepted.
I guess if Kyle wanted to be crude, he could have sent me an instant message. But no, Kyle was more creative than that.
The first thing I noticed, is that I was kicking his ass. I mean, sometimes, the letters are just not there, but I was winning by a large margin.
Then, I really paid attention to the words he played.
Hey. Wait a minute. HEY! No way this is a coincidence. No way. What the fucking fuck, dude?
The next word I played was “No”.
His next word was “Lay”.
I wanted so bad to play “Loser” next, but I lacked the “r”.
I am finding it harder and harder to find this shit funny. I don’t want to be told to not make a big deal out of it because I’ve been told that my whole fucking life. When do women get to make a big deal out of being treated disrespectfully?
In the big scheme of things, this is hardly a blip. I have been treated much worse than this by strangers.
Kyle reminds me of frustration I haven’t felt in a while. There is no good way out of this shit. I can end the game, and do what I did dozens of times in my life where I was crudely propositioned. Walk away and pretend it didn’t happen.
I have always found that option maddening and unsatisfying. Why should we have to ignore that shit?
You know what is worse than ignoring it? Speaking up. What happens when we defend ourselves against this behavior? Sometimes, the hostility is breathtaking. Or they try to shame you for being over sensitive. Or laugh and high five their buddies, which isn’t humiliating at all.
What never ever ever happens? You call a motherfucker out for being a predatory dick and they examine their behavior and apologize. That never happens.
Again, I am not suggesting that some basement dwelling loser playing suggestive Scrabble words has damaged me in any way. Fuck that guy. It just brought some old memories.
I hope we’re getting better.
I hope my niece and my granddaughters have a louder voice than I did if they choose to fight back. I hope my niece and my granddaughters don’t feel cowardly and weak when they choose to walk away.
I guess I can’t make predatory men be different. I can circle the wagons around our girls, though. I can tell them that they don’t have to be good sports and that there is no such thing as being “over” sensitive. We are all sensitive to the degree we are sensitive. There is no scale. “Over” does not apply.
As far as Kyle goes? I was on the fence, I mean, maybe he wasn’t being creepy. But then someone on Facebook told me that this is behavior is actually a thing. And the last word he played was “anal”.
I resigned the game. Not worth it. Really not worth it.
I also hope that Kyle spends the rest of his life feeling unsatisfied. The way one would feel playing Scrabble and their 7 tiles are 3 “A’s” and 4 “O’s”.