I was talking to a friend recently about the oft-repeated canard that feminists hate men. It gets spread around by the Republicans (and the Tories in her case) that we feminists are just grim-faced, no-fux, sexually-frustrated women (because in their world, only women can be feminists) people who hate the mens.
I have always, and I mean always, claimed that it’s the men who said that men are dogs who hate men. I mean, listening to these men talk about men, it’s really quite horrifying. “Men are dogs who can only think about sex. They have no sense of autonomy to say no to a pussy that is in front of them. They are just hapless victims to their raging libidios. Boys will be boys, you know. You can’t expect them to act like decent human beings.
Which, I mean. If this is truly the case, then they should not be allowed in polite society. One of the things that we should be able to expect (yeah, I know) in a civilezed society is that someone who acts in a way that is threatening or harmful to others should not be allowed.
I love men. Not all of them. Not even most of them, but there are plenty of men I love–or at least, like. In many ways, i get along better with men in general than with men. My interests tend to run more masculine (typically) than feminine, and I have had so many women question my womanhood.
I will say, it’s more circumspect than in the past. These days, no one is flat-out saying that you HAVE to think about fashion and makeup to be feminine, but there’s still covert implication that this ist the case. There was a time when I was in my thirties that I thought maybe it was finally going to be ok to be a woman who didn’t wear makeup, care about fashion, and discarded the bra. But, no. We’ve done a full double-down on you have to wear makeup, a bra, and care about clothing to be a woman.
It’s interesting how many women say they don’t care if other women don’t wear makeup, but for them it’s X, Y, and Z. I view that in the same way I feel about women who say it’s fine if other people are fat, but not them. And there’s nothing like a woman who’s maybe five pounds overweight going on and on about what a whale she is.
Let me be blunt. If you (general you) go on and on about how you feel so ugly or whatever without makeup on, I am going to make inferences about how you feel about makeup-less people in general. Which, fine. But it’s not gonig to make me feel warm and fuzzy.
Where was I? Oh, yeah. I like men. A lot. One of my best friends is a man. The other is a woman because I’m balanced like that. I expect men to be better than they are, which is to my detriment at times. Here’s the thing. I don’t see them as dogs who are driven by their instincts and cannot control themselves. I believe that they can be friends with women and not try to get into their pants. Am I giving them too much credit? I don’t think so!
When I was in college, I had many male friends. The guy I was dating at the time told me that all my male friends wanted to get into my pants. I accepted that at face value at the time, but looking back at it, I think he was wrong. And it wasn’t a very nice thing to say to me. It was pretty dismissive of me as a person for one and of the other guys in general.
There’s a reason he believed that, though. Becaause that’s the reason he wanted to date me. We were best friends before he asked me out, but that was for an ulterior motive. He wanted to get into my pants, so he just assumed that everyone else did, too. He also refused to buy condoms when we actually did have sex. I had to buy them. I did not mind buying them, but I didn’t understand why he refused to do so. I mean, he was the one using them to have very satisfying sex.
But, again, I was very naive when I was in my twenties. I took everything and everyone at face value, not realizing that many people are not what they seem. Not necessarily for malicious reasons, but because people are complicated. In this case, my ex was duplicitous in how he asked me out (and under what circumstances), and he had some really fucked up idea beyond that.
In his case, it was partly nationalism (from a little-known country that was war-torn) and partly sexism. And Christian hegemony. And just shitty family expectationts. I know about family dysfunction, believe you me. And he had it in spades.
Looking back, I really wished I had not been raised to be the emotional dumping grounds of my mother. And not te be raised to believe that any guy had the right to do this to me. This is one of the major reasons I don’t want to date a cishet guy long-term. The toxic masculinity that permeates our society PLUS the toxic sexism that my mother espoused to me from her culture (Taiwanese). That plus my natural emapthetic nature makes me an easy mark for being guilted into taking care of others. As I said, usually guys.
I have other friends who are coded (or are) female who are expected to do this as well. in the work sphere, there is a greater emphasis on emotional intelligence (often called EQ) and it’s being lauded as an asset to have. It’s not. At least not for the person who has it. I mean, it can get you further in your career, I have no doubt. But it’s exhausting as fuck. I don’t find it personally beneficial, to be honest. I mean, of course I want to make people I love feel hear and seen. I want to support them and be a safe person for them.
But having to do it for people I don’t care for or who I don’t know? That’s when it gets really tiresome. Also, when I’m forced to do it against my will. Like with my mother. And it’s one very reason I don’t want to be in a long-term, committed, monogamous relationship. I know how I am when I’m that situation, and it’s not who I want to be. Yes, I could work on it. I could get a therapist and work through it, but the ‘reward’ isn’t enough. I don’t want to live with someone. I don’t want to have to think of someone else all the time. I don’t want any of that shit! Especially not with a cishet dude.
Yeah, I said it. I’ll call it like it is. I like the D. Don’t get me wrong. I really like the D. But the rest of what comes with it? The belief that they are right about everything? The ‘I won’t do this thing until you’ve nagged me a million times’? The not listening to anyything you said or realizing that you’re serious about whatever is pissing you off? And, yeah, I get that I’m stereotyping. But it’s happened so often with the guys I’ve dated that I’m just tired.
I want the D, but if I ever have a romantic relationship, it would be with a non-cishet dude. That’s just where I’m at. I know myself. I know how I am at this age. And I’m too tired for that nonsense. I’m too old to teach someone how to act or to break someone in. More to the point, I’m unwilling to do it. I’d rather just have multiple friends with benefits.