Dear Guy Who Seemed Cool On Our First Date But Freaked When I Said I Wanted To Take Sexual Stuff Slowly And Sent Me A Barrage Of Douchey Text Messages Which Culminated In Pronouncing Me “Crazy”,
I feel as if we have gotten off on the wrong foot.
I had a lovely time with you on our date Thursday. You were everything your online dating profile promised you to be: smart, sarcastic, interesting, attractive. I’m glad you walked me home. I really enjoyed our first kiss and our little makeout session in front of my apartment. I really did! I felt like we got a little carried away towards the end of it, and it was also freezing cold outside, so that’s why I said goodnight and went inside. It was late, and a school night, anyway.
But I’ll confess your texts this morning were pretty confusing. You said you wanted to see me again to “finish what we started last night.” I said that I wanted to see you again, too, but I wanted to be clear I wasn’t just looking for a “hookup thing.” You said you weren’t either. I said good, because I want to take sexual stuff slowly. You then said maybe we would not be a good fit. I was sincerely perplexed, because you had literally just said you didn’t want just a hookup thing either.
We went back and forth like this over text. Presumably both of us were trying to figure out what the other person really meant. I got the sense you aren’t so jazzed about dialing back the physical chemistry to get to know me as a person. Which is totally fine! I’ve been like that before, too. But that’s not what I personally am looking for right now. So, finally I agreed with you that we were maybe not going to be a good fit.
That’s when you called me “mean and bitchy,” a rather heady assessment for someone who spent a grand total of two hours in my presence. So, I called you an asshole and told you not to contact me again.
“You are crazy!” you texted back. “You realize that, right?”
Now, my friend, you have touched a nerve.
You didn’t seem to think I was too bitchy, mean, or crazy literally 15 minutes earlier when you texted me saying you wanted to see me again. What changed?
What changed is that I said something that you didn’t like. I told you, in response to a flirty-sounding text, that I wanted to take sexual stuff slowly. But it really doesn’t matter what I said, does it? I said something that you didn’t like. That made me “bitchy,” “mean” and “crazy.”
I will leave it to you to figure out why it is that responded this way. It could be worth an examination. My guess? In our culture, “crazy,” “bitchy” and “mean” are three of the worst words that you can call a woman. Those words you used are dismissive on purpose. Those words are intended to shut a woman down, because women know society doesn’t like mean, crazy bitches. Got the message loud and clear, sweetie.
Now, sometimes there is an actual reason to call a woman one of these words. For example, she has keyed your car, set your house on fire, or cancelled your subscription to “The Walking Dead” in order to TiVo an entire season of “Jerseylicious.” No one would begrudge anyone else from using those specific terms in those specific circumstances. The problem is when they’re used as catch-all terms, as potshots that are just supposed to hurt because they are dismissive. It’s a default setting for you not have to deal with what a lady has communicated — whatever that might be.
Frankly, these kinds of potshots are lazy. Like other people who call women words such as “crazy,” you pulled these words out of the pickle jar because they were 1) hurtful but also 2) easily at hand. And they did hurt me, sort of, but not for the reason you might think.
I’m chagrined that you’re one of those guys that do this. Do what? You are probably asking. Do this. Respond this way to a woman voicing what she wants. Be that guy. I’ve tried to see things from your point of view. However, if you were perhaps confused, or felt disrespected, I wish you had phrased that more eloquently than calling me a mean, crazy bitch. Because as best as I can tell, your knee-jerk reaction to whatever you were thinking was “ZOMG SHE COMMUNICATED WITH ME AND ASKED FOR SOMETHING IN THE EMOTIONAL REALM AND I AM FREAKING THE FUCK OUT HEEEEEEEEEEEELP.” Your potshot was trying to get a reaction out of me. And it did.
It made me sad. For you.
Because if this is really what you think about women who say something that you don’t like, it’s not going to be easy out there in the dating world — to say nothing of marriage or having children (perhaps a daughter) someday. Now, this could just be my craziness coming out, but I have this radical idea that it might be easier to just listen to what a woman is saying, file those little bits of emotion away in your brain, and then make a thoughtful judgment call based on what she communicated. No one is saying you have to do what she asks. No one is even saying you have to stick around with her! But changing your own behavior to listen and — crazy, radical idea here again — communicating with her your thoughts might yield better results than writing off anyone who says something you don’t like as, say, the stock “evil girl” character on a nighttime soap opera. Hell, any daytime soap opera. If this is how you see women, the world will become very small indeed.
And I actually think that is crazy.
Meanly, bitchily, and crazily yours,
P.S. Oh! One more thing. I suppose I should thank you for not throwing in “fat” or “ugly,” too. The next girl, perhaps?