Featured image: Crocheted eyes hanging from the ceiling at Meow Wolf in Denver. You can look at me all you want but the blog is looking right back at you.
Title Reference: Sugar, We’re Going Down by Fall Out Boy
I’ve been calling myself a “born again virgin” for the last 8 months of my “sobriety”. It was something I had to do to check myself, to see if it was something I even still wanted, to see if I would be treated differently or if I would act differently when sex was off the table.
And the longer I went without it, the more I really didn’t care for it, and the more I realized it wasn’t sex I wanted, but intimacy. I wanted the closeness of someone, and the only way I had been getting that previously was through sex. Really, I just wanted to cuddle and watch a movie, but that just doesn’t happen anymore. I didn’t feel like I could just invite someone over to cuddle without the “implication“; I could put myself in a situation where I’d be pressured to do more. It’d be “my fault” for inviting them over in the first place.
Eventually, though, and I’m sorry to report, the hormones got the best of me, and I finally broke my celibacy. I originally wanted to make out with someone at the wedding I was at, but the only one who I thought was cute had a girlfriend, and that would also ruin the whole point of me being “good”. So while camping, I found a nice Canadian, who showered me in compliments and seemed genuine enough.
What I found extremely funny, though, and something that has continuously happened since starting this blog, was that my friends told him to treat me well or he’ll get put in the blog. And while they’re not wrong per se, I never use names… you’ll just know it’s you. And if that’s a deterrent at all, then maybe I’m doing something good here. Maybe I’m protecting myself more than I realize. I have noticed less guys send me weird messages, and that guys are wholly more aware of their actions and often mention not wanting to be in the blog.
With guys used to “getting away with it”, the threat of being publicly outed makes them think twice… which is interesting. There is actually only one instance in this blog where I named someone outright, if you want to go and find it (it was for good reason). So, if I’m not using their name, why is it so terrifying? Is it just that they have to personally acknowledge that they may have done something wrong? Is it just a hit to their ego?
At the campground I was at, I have genuinely never received so much male attention in my entire life. And, as someone who has purposefully avoided men for the better part of 2022, it was frankly overwhelming. Sure my ego was boosted but at what cost? The haunting memory that I’m stuck in a woman’s body and will forever be objectified no matter what stance I take? I kept getting told the same thing, too, particularly from older men, that I’m so nice and easy to talk to and how “most girls” are so cold to them. So now my downfall is being kind? Must I be more evil? I literally had men protecting me from other men because I’m too nice to exit a conversation before it’s natural conclusion.
I also got asked my ethnicity TEN times. It made me wonder what people, particularly men, are thinking when they look at me. I’ve even gotten the word “exotic” before, which, if you don’t know, isn’t exactly a PC thing to say. (I’m literally a white person with a tan and a big nose, get over it.)
It isn’t necessarily a bad thing that men want to talk to me, or even necessarily a bad thing to ask me my ethnicity, but I’m frustratingly curious as to why it was happening at such an alarming rate. I can say and do a multitude of things to get guys to stop talking to me, but I can’t get them to stop looking, and I definitely can’t stop their thought-crimes about me.
I wrote my college thesis on agency, particularly in women in short stories, and I think that’s the thing I was grasping so fruitlessly for. I wanted to be able to call the shots and draw the line; I wanted more control. I wholeheartedly gave consent to that Canadian; my mind wanted it (my body is another story, she’s still apprehensive), and so I filed the mental paperwork and made my moves accordingly.
But I can’t police peoples eyes or thoughts or even words. All I’ve ever wanted is to be seen as a full person with good ideas, funny jokes, and something to offer that isn’t my looks. I constantly feel like I’m proving my worth as something more than a pretty face, and its become exhausting.
How can I get men to actually listen to the words that come out of my mouth? Recently I was in an Uber with a guy, and I was passionately talking about the student loan crisis, when he tried to kiss me in the middle of speaking. It’s as if the words never mattered; that even as, dare I say, a very intelligent woman, I could still not talk my way out of being objectified. Even when I mention that I write, are men only interested in that because they must appease me to continue the conversation? Simply put, are men only entertaining the words coming out my mouth so they can get to the source?
So I guess I will continue to be picky, and try my best to stave off those who don’t respect me. I will continue to finish my sentence while men try to kiss me. I will continue to hand out my business cards for the blog when guys ask for my number. I will continue to stand my ground as a human being.
It’s of no surprise that many of my nightmares are me screaming and no one can hear me.
One of the older men who tried to talk to me this weekend told me how he was fired for sexually harassing his coworker (though he didn’t think it was sexual harassment, shocker). As someone who got a man fired for sexually harassing them in the workplace…man did I bite my tongue. I am too kind.
Also I’ve been absolutely screaming this banger: I Threw Glass at My Friend’s Eyes and Now I’m on Probation by Destroy Boys