(Straight) Men, Women, Society: What You Say, What I Hear

(Thanks, New Black Woman!)

What you say:
Everywhere you look, women are stepping out dressed provocatively but bristling if the wrong man shows he enjoys the display. And men – well, they are in a total state of confusion. There are cocky, attractive, successful men, alpha males, revelling in this unexpected bounty, boldly eyeing off the assets of women they fancy as their prey.
What I hear: "Men are natural-born thieves. They see something belonging to someone else and automatically assume it's their simply because they want it."

What you say:
"Sensitive males are wary, not knowing where to look. Afraid of causing offence. And there are angry men, the beta males who lack the looks, the trappings of success to tick these women’s boxes. They know the goodies on display are not for them. These are the men most likely to behave badly, blatantly leering, grabbing and sneering. For them, the whole thing is a tease. They know it and resent it.

"...In one of my workshops, I remember a guy describing women flaunting their bodies as a form of ‘biological sexual harassment‘ towards men, to which most of the group gave a collective nod,” Tiller says. ”The self-assured, cocky blokes seem to see bare flesh as a green light and often express a ‘bring-it-on’ attitude but others find it difficult to handle. I think it’s a real catch-22 for most men. We really do want to be respectful but that’s not always easy with a neon pink G-string staring up at us.”

"The internet is bristling with men writing about what they regard as women’s sexual arrogance. Provocative female attire is an assault against men, writes Giovanni Dannato for In Mala Fide, an online magazine of heretical ideas. He argues women exposing themselves without intending to reciprocate the attention they attract is impolite and inconsiderate – which, he bizarrely suggests, is rather like schoolchildren who bring something tasty to class that they are not prepared to share. It amounts to ”an act of aggression in which they use the power of their sex as a weapon”, he writes."

"...some men spend their lives in a state of sexual deprivation, dealing with constant rejection. Roy F. Baumeister is a psychology professor at Florida State University who has extensively researched gender difference in sex drive. ”Sexual frustration is almost inevitable for the majority of men and not just occasionally. They won’t have enough partners or even enough sex with one partner to satisfy their wishes,” Baumeister writes, concluding, ”the tragedy of the male sex drive” is men’s state of perpetual readiness, which so rarely meets its match."
What I hear: "Men are exceedingly fragile creatures. Slaves to their hormones, they find day-to-day life unbearable as they cannot control themselves. Perhaps they need to stay home where it's safe, and they can masturbate all day to ease their constant frustration. If they have to go out in public, they should wear blindfolds, with their hands snugly tied behind their backs."

What you say:
Dannato may be on to something when he proposes that some of the catcalling these women attract is a ”defence mechanism used by low-status men against women flaunting themselves publicly”. There certainly are a bunch of men writing about the plight of the beta males – unattractive, low-status guys who don’t get to first base with women.  (Excerpt Source)
What I hear: "Men who don't know how to deal with women and/or who won't take the time out to improve themselves are a burden on society. Perhaps society may find use for them as eunuchs, or perhaps society can set up some sort of euthanasia program for men who feel ill-equipped to function in a world full of women."


And if I sound harsh, so be it.

I'm tired of these thinly veiled, pro-rapist articles which insist that men "just can't help it" and therefore can't be held accountable for anything they say or do.

Ladies of the bar, how many of you have been cornered and harassed while you were in sweatpants and a hoodie, with 3-month old hair, and an arm full of cat food?  How many of you have been in professional dress at work or en route to work when some strange man propositioned you from out of the blue?

Ladies, how many of you have been approached because of the goddamn color of your skin?  Raise your hand if you've heard the "You look like you like white/black dudes" by some weirdo who made a beeline for you from out of nowhere?

Now, let's talk about thigh, ass, and cleavage right quick: Um...it's there.  It's hers.  It's not yours.  Deal.


  1. You think they'll be able to help getting shanked? I can't co-sign on this enough.

    "Can't help it" my ass. Eat a dick, you simple motherfuckers.

    1. For real. This type of subtle enabling is setting men up to get fucked up in the street.

      Put yo' hand on my ass and see how many pieces of it I mail back to you, motherfucker.

  2. I cosign on this so much!

    I'm fucking tired of getting my ass smacked grabbed and whatever else. I don't know how many times I've said " Get your hand off my ass before I cut it off". Secondly I am not going to say sorry for having a nice ass, pair of hips, and boobs...they are mine and I will do what I want with them i.e show some of it or perhaps not show it...and they just need to deal.

    And thirdly I get tired of being called Exotic. I'm pretty sure everybody understand why here. It annoys me because I am a POC, just because I'm part Asian doesn't make me exotic. But that sure as hell means they're never going to get me into bed though...exotic my ass.

    Yea how many of you have been called 'exotic' by white boys/girls?

    1. "Yea how many of you have been called 'exotic' by white boys/girls?"

      And the whole practically accusing me of being a liar when I explain that I'm black and not some exotic mythical mix.

    2. I'm an exotic mythical mix...of Black and Blacker, with a side of slave rape.

  3. In all my times I've been harassed, I was 1) going about my regular business in 2)non-provocative attire. I don't even own anything that could be classified as 'provocative' clothing. As far as I saw, the only reason they needed to bother me was that I'm female.

    These 'men' are looking for an excuse to act like dogs, so they play the oldest trick in the book - blame the female temptress! (Seriously, peep this shyt that went down at BYU: http://tumblr.thedailywh.at/post/17720981094/dress-code-violation-of-the-day-brigham-young)

  4. So I suppose if someone is driving a Rolls Royce, A BMW, or a Lamborghini, I should be pissed off because they're flaunting their wealth and teasing me with it and I should be pissed because the owner won't hand me over the keys and the pink slip.

    What they say: YADDA YADDA YAWN!

    What I hear: A bunch of bitchassness from sorry punkass motherfuckers who need to take the bench learn what being a REAL MAN is.

    I mean my God, they're acting like straight up punks, crying about the womynz being too provocative or whatever, and then they wonder why they can't get laid.

    Between this and that birth control fail, I'm seriously starting to hate males. They're only good for one thing and half the time they can't even arise to the occasion to do that much. I'd give up cock if I wasn't so addicted to it.

    1. Neo,

      We're twins in this regard. *high five*

      Addicted to the dick...yes LAWD! You, dear sir, win the Internet.

    2. Exactly. He says "women exposing themselves without intending to reciprocate the attention they attract is impolite and inconsiderate"

      So what the hell do you call a dude who only wants to bed a woman and then can't even do that right? The only thing that's inconsiderate is the shitty sex women are expected to gladly accept from any guy who's seen some cleavage.

  5. This so much. I walk with my 4-yr-old, her snot shit and piss all over me and still get propositioned. And then I turn and realize that he's a cop. I feel sooooo safe. Ground up those balls, I LOL at it. Stay away from me and my daughter before I go tigress on you, humanity be damned. Geebus.*shudders

    'Exotic' is a cuss word in my house. I hate that stuff so much.

  6. They're entitled, resentful, misogynistic, and two-faced. They pretend to be nice until you don't give them what they want. They think women owe them. If she flirts with you or befriends you or compliments you or accepts a compliment from you or dresses provocatively or goes out in public, then she owes you sex. Period. And if she doesn't give it to you then she's a b*tch or a cock tease. Ugh. What nobody seems to realize is that women would be oogled and catcalled at and groped and harassed no matter what she wears. I remember this one time in high school marching band when my female friends and I were in our big ass, ill-fitted band uniforms being harassed and catcalled at by grown men twice our age. I was only 14 at the time. It was the first time anything like that had ever happened to me. Were we supposed to take that harassment as a compliment? That they wanted to do statutory rape-y things to us? Another time, my cousin and I were getting some lunch and she was wearing big grey sweat pants and a t-shirt so large she had to tie it so it didn't swallow her up and two guys harassed us up 2 flights of stairs commenting on her every curve (that they couldn't even see!) and propositioning us. It was disgusting. It doesn't matter what you wear, you're never safe.

  7. Perla Buttons2/19/12, 5:15 AM

    As an Australian, I am so bloody embarrassed that this pile of re-fried arse came from my country (and was warmly welcomed in some quarters). Despite being well up-to-date on the well-orchestrated thrashing this piece has received in feminist/womanist/non-fool spheres, it has permeated my thinking a little.

    *Somewhat OT Story Time!*

    I'm an incredibly unhip, unfashionable dag*. I usually get about in ensembles seemingly inspired by Jerry Seinfeld's sitcom wardrobe. But I occasionally like to look good on purpose. Last Friday,I bought a silk-like colour blocked** shift that was short - I looked good and not even remotely Seinfeldian.

    Along with technical, length-related difficulties experienced while sitting down at the restaurant, I started wondering about the extra bullshit I might have to deal with if I wore the dress (or other dresses/'nice' clothes) again. These arseholes have permeated the sartorial thought patterns in my "exotic" (infinite, unending eyeroll)little head!

    It's just going to take a second to push it out, but I fucking hate that it seeped in there in the first place.

    I really can't stand people who outsource self control.

    I really can't stand those who suggest that it is my duty as a ladyperson to both mother and gatekeep for a group of people who, in most other areas, are stereotyped as being less emotional***, more rational (hell, women are supposed to be straight-up "irrational"), more logical and much harder to distract than me.

    *Uh, "dork" might be an equivalent term.
    **I think that's what you call it? Purple, red
    and pink anyway.
    ***Being "turned on" is an internal, emotional and physical response to stimuli, isn't it?

  8. I remember being followed around a hardware store by this guy about 10 years my senior. I was wearing a really old painted up T-shirt, and my hair was tied back with an elastic band I'd found in my car. I thought it was obvious that I was looking for power tools, not a date. I just wished the circular saws on display were actually plugged in so I could perform some impromptu surgery.

    I really can't stand how some men think they're entitled to your body simply because you're in their line of sight.

  9. QueenofSheba2/19/12, 8:45 AM

    Preach!! You need to take this gospel to the Taliban and all the assorted women hating cultures out there.

    I have personally stabbed a man who couldn't keep his filthy hands to himself and wouldn't take 'No' for an answer. It was with a plastic fork, mind you, but it was all I had to hand and I made it count! And you wouldn't believe the amount of whining and self pity he wallowed in afterwards, the disgusting wimp!

    The only thing honest about this article is the assessment of these type of men as beta males. Very true. Beta males don't have the balls to face up to those they see as the alphas in this world so they take out all their loathing on those they see as being beneath them on society's totem pole i.e ALL WOMEN. We should never ever stand for that B.S.
    Every woman on this planet should learn self defence as a child. My mother insisted on it. What a wise woman.

    Yes, men might have physical strength over us, but women have the mental strength and inner steel to see off all comers, if we have the proper attitude and some training.

  10. I wear scrubs to work and I've been harassed. I've walked with my four year old daughter and have been harassed in FRONT of her. I was hit on while I was pregnant with HER. I've been told:

    "Fuck you then, bitch"
    "You have something against white guys?"
    "I guess you only fuck with white dudes (I've never dated a white man)"
    And when I was with my ex: "Your boyfriend is Asian? That's weird."

  11. This illustration is perfect: http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v141/leohimesan/kindnessnotacomeon.jpg

    1. Thanks for this! It's gotten to the point where I hesitate being nice because I don't know if the dude will be able to handle it.

  12. I remember being abroad trying to learn a new language and work in clinics for my field. I was walking home and a guy starts talking to me. In South America, it's considered a compliment if dudes roll up and tell you how pretty you are (or at least that's what my teachers told me). Now, men had come up and told me I was beautiful and left before this particular one. I was also trying to be "Good Ambassador" and not act up in a country where I'm the only black woman for miles. So I politely say hello and he starts talking about 40 bucks. Initially, I thought he was begging and told him I didn't have money to give him. But then he says "No, from me to you." and gives me a smirk. I coldly told him good bye and left.

    As for any "provocative" attire, I was in a parka, hat, scarf, and jeans y'all. Men are gonna be pigs no matter what a woman wears. All this crap was about trying to blame and control women for their lust and insecurity.

    1. Leo Princess2/19/12, 1:33 PM

      So I politely say hello and he starts talking about 40 bucks. Initially, I thought he was begging and told him I didn't have money to give him. But then he says "No, from me to you."

      What the hell?!

    2. That's what I said. I was so bundled up my friends could barely recogniz e me but this clown somehow sensed "hooker". I was so through.

      The point is that if a dude's a pig, he's gonna oink even if a woman's covered up and in a bubble.

  13. Oh mY God!!!! I hate that pro- rape enablist bullshit!
    @Perla Buttons
    This is genius "I really can't stand people who outsource self control. "
    You're right about this being the only area where men are seen as being out of control and emotional as opposed to the other areas of life where they are more logical and rational than us tempting ho's, yeah!!???
    And it really doesn't matter what you wear, in fact I've found the more dressed down I am the more likely they are to approach me (maybe cos I'm 6ft and lithely athletic) However when i'm dressed to kill i tend to get looks and compliments but no actual gropes, and some actual respect.. I wonder why that is?
    Neo-Prodigy, you do desrve the internet!!!

    1. I've also wondered why, when I'm dressed like a pure bum, men hit on me like there is no tomorrow. When I'm dressed up, looks, maybe a compliment, but none of the disrespectful comments or behavior.

    2. Leo Princess2/19/12, 5:50 PM

      I don't get it either. Does their mind think Female in a Bum Outfit = Woman Who'd Relish Any Man's Attention?

    3. Perla Buttons2/19/12, 10:51 PM

      Thanks Jellybean, but I lifted it (with permission) from a Jezebel commenter on an article about the BYU note passer Leo Princess mentioned.

      The original quote: "Dear dudes - self control is not something that can be outsourced". Gold!

  14. I stopped walking to class in skirts and shorts (in Miami) to try to avoid getting attention and it still didn't work. If even a regular pair of jeans is too provocative to wear, I'm not really sure what we're expected to look like as women going about our everday business.

    Also, men are incredibly fragile creatures and they will continue to be such until they stop pretending that women are the ones with all the emotional problems. They need to learn how to deal with life ASAP, or we'll just be hearing more and more bullshit like this from them.

    Society makes us think that it's women who can't function without relationships. How many rom coms work on the idea of a single woman who's sole existence hinges on finding a romantic partner and getting married? But then in my own life, I've known far more men who hit their mid 20's and start worrying about finding a partner, settling down and having kids. The women I've known have never been worried about that.

    I remember reading that a study was done showing that men were more likely to describe themselves as "in love" sooner than women and that breakups hit them harder than women too. It doesn't surprise me one bit; I've seen so many men use emotionally manipulative tactics to convince women to stay with them (tears, threats of suicide, etc) and I'm sure I don't have to elaborate on the violence that men exhibit when they feel that they lose what they think is entitled to them.

    I can't help but think of George Sodini, the man who claimed he did everything right to deserve sex and shot innocent women when he didn't get it? Is this seriously what men are saying? That this kind of violence is a justified response to half of the population having a right to choose what we wear and who we sleep with? There needs to be some serious discussion had among men about the emotional issues that a lot of them seem to be unable to handle.

    1. I did the same thing in college, stopped wear shorts. Walked around in baggy jeans and polo shirts from the men's department. Still got harassed.

  15. Javan Nelums2/19/12, 10:55 PM

    "Men are exceedingly fragile creatures. Slaves to their hormones, they find day-to-day life unbearable as they cannot control themselves. Perhaps they need to stay home where it's safe, and they can masturbate all day to ease their constant frustration. If they have to go out in public, they should wear blindfolds, with their hands snugly tied behind their backs."

    We are human beings...this statement is BS. It's call self control. So what a woman dress. Men have to be a better person and treat her with respect. call me old fashion

    Popular argument: "But Women rape too."
    Yeah, that argument is a little too close to home for me (this is the reason I hate people who uses the term "butthurt" and other things that have to do with rape). So guys making that argument who has never experienced that trauma should never use that argument ever when talking about women dress or anything thing else that excuse them for acting like animals. Off the record..this is big mess.

  16. I must say that this topic is sorely needed.

    Men who do engage in such behavior and take little or no responsibility for their actions and even blame women are mentally and emotionally immature. Their male privilege makes them retarded to realize that women are people too. However, male privilege like white privilege is destructive.

  17. I live in one of the most unsafe cities for women in India. The city's culture is pretty aggressive, which often gets translated into various forms of violence against women. It is all about power structure(s) (or perceptions of power) - When I am dressed in jeans or formal, western clothes, I am not harassed as much as when I am dressed in traditional Indian/South Asian clothes. When I am fully covered up is when I get the most cat-calls, kissing noises, groping, comments about my body, men shoving up against me etc. In many parts of South Asia, jeans, t-shirts and other western clothes often signify an upper-middle class upbringing (hence, better political/law enforcement connections etc.), which may be why I have noticed more harassment when wearing traditional clothes. So, that argument about only "provocative" attire setting men off? Complete and utter bullshit.

    1. @Siah, you aren't from Lucknow are you, b/c I spent a few weeks there and we weren't allowed to go out alone (unlike the time we spent everywhere else in India), and my Indian friends referred to it (before we left) as the "Rape Capital."

      I was taken out to get a coffee and Cafe Coffee Day and the driver didn't even let me walk down the block alone (he dropped me off at the door and I expected to walk back to find him as he circled the block, but nope, he parked and walked back up and was waiting outside the door for me). Granted, I did get some looks that I'd never encountered but wasn't sure if it was blackness or my femaleness...

  18. @ KohanaFlux
    Cosign!! Cosign!! Cosign especially this:

    I remember reading that a study was done showing that men were more likely to describe themselves as "in love" sooner than women and that breakups hit them harder than women too. It doesn't surprise me one bit; I've seen so many men use emotionally manipulative tactics to convince women to stay with them (tears, threats of suicide, etc) and I'm sure I don't have to elaborate on the violence that men exhibit when they feel that they lose what they think is entitled to them.

    @Brotha wolf: this is the crux of it right here:

    male privilege like white privilege is destructive.

    My close female friends and i have been discussing for years the emotional immaturity yet mammoth sense of entitlement that is exhibited by the various men in our lives. They seriously are damaged by not fully engaging publicly as well as privately in the full range of human emotions. Thye mostly operate as we all do under a veneer of personal integrity and normalcy but as soon as you get close all the gaping holes in their emotional development are glaring, and you as the sole woman they have opened up to in their lives are supposed to deal and maintain a relationship with someone who should have been maintaining a relationship with themselves and not just through sexual relationships with women. it dooms these interactions to failure as you cannot wholly relate to someone who cannot relate to themselves of women in general in an honest and healthy way. They really do come off as stunted children with bank accounts, tarnished by society enabled entitlement to our bodies and our time. i have no desire to be a free therapist to the man in my life. unfortunately this increasing seems to be the case.

    1. QueenofSheba2/20/12, 12:27 PM

      "i have no desire to be a free therapist to the man in my life."

      Oh my god, I so concur. Just say No to that shit. The world is full of so many needy desperate men!

  19. The truth is, our bodies have not changed over the years. Men have looked at and engaged with women since birth. Unless they are telling me that women at age 15 are a new species men have seen these bodies every since they got here. Yep, hips, thighs, butt, breast etc - none of this has changed - it is part of being a girl, part of being a woman. In large part they do not want to F their aunt, mom, sis - so YES it is BS. Being curvy- biologically - is part of what a woman IS. Men find this attractive - that is good - but the touching, reaching, thinking you have rights to it - bro, get a grip. This obsession about what we wear - for some reason men do not get that we dress for ourselves in large part. What they see as flauting is women simply being her femininde self which is why it would not matter if we wore burkas or a burlap sack. Femininty is attractive to men. IF I feel like wearing something super sexy then so. be. it. I look and feel good - just enjoy the view and leave me alone.

    The thing is, the definition of manhood is deteriorating. These types of convos and explanations well, this is rationalizing bad behavior and choices. This type of obvious crap is why more women do not care if they date, have male friends etc. - they see the cost as being too high. What the definition of men now is now - for women - it is becoming scarier and more threatening. Men need to take themselves to task. Women need to make sure that they take care of themselves and live. boldy. anyway.



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