Things Men Should Never Say to Women

Without question, these are fundamental values.

I’ve done a lot of crazy shit, but no matter what situation I’ve ever been in, I always treated women with respect.

Please… please do the same.

In a polite society, you’re expected to treat men and women differently.

Even leaving aside outmoded schools of thought like chivalry, there’s a tacit understanding of different rules for interacting with different genders.

You can say what you mean in as mean a way as you feel without running into trouble. However, women are more sensitive beings, and according to this logic, you need to be polite and on your best behavior — no curse words, no crass sexual talk and so on.

However, it’s worth highlighting some very valid reasons we should think about what we say to women differently than what we say to men. Namely, that women’s lived experiences mean that there are some things that are much more real, serious and painful to them than they are to men.

Simply put, there are things you can say to guys that don’t register remotely similarly in terms of impact as they will with women. To explore that concept, here are nine things you should never say to a woman, as well as why you should think before you speak.

1. Using Gendered Slurs

Why? There’s no male equivalent to “bitch,” “slut,” “whore” or “c*nt”

As gendered insults exist for both men and women, it’s easy to draw an equivalency. You might think that “bitch” is like “bastard,” “c*nt” is like “asshole,” “whore” is like “piece of sh*t,” and so forth. In a perfect world, those terms might carry equal weight.

However, the world we live in is a world where anti-women slurs like those are often used in conjunction with serious anti-women violence. That’s not to say that everyone who calls a woman a “c*nt” will also engage in acts of physical violence toward her, or even that men who are violent towards women use such language, but simply that the two are paired up often enough to make them extra powerful.

Think about it: Have any of your guy friends ended up in the hospital because his girlfriend beat him up and called him a “bastard” when she did it? Chances are, no. On the other hand, many women know someone who’s been a victim of male abuse — an abuse that often goes hand-in-hand with abusive comments.

When you use anti-women slurs, you’re signaling your own potential dangerousness. Don’t make women live in fear. If you’re angry and want to call them names, use non-gender specific insults, or better yet, calm down and talk it out like an adult.

2. Threatening Her With Violence

Why? Many women already live in fear of male violence

Male violence against women is a widespread and deeply damaging phenomenon.

Even if you never lay a hand on a single woman, threatening to do so puts you on the side of those who do harm, rather than those who don’t. As well, threats are particularly terrifying if you or someone close to you has actually experienced real violence.

Physical threats might come off as joking, non-serious or otherwise par for the course between you and other men, but it’s a very different situation when you’re using threats of physical violence against women, who typically cannot defend themselves in a one-on-one confrontation.

Even a semi-threat like, “If you were a man, I’d punch you right now,” comes across as deeply terrifying. Don’t do that.

3. Implying She’s Not as Smart as a Man

Why? Women have had their intelligence questioned for centuries

For a lot of recorded history, men have taken the lead on thinking. That’s why our school textbooks are full of male scientists, male inventors, male philosophers, and so forth.

However, to use this evidence to conjecture that women aren’t as smart as men is to commit a serious error. For much of human history, women were expressly forbidden from pursuing the same studies their male counterparts were encouraged to pursue.

As a result, any discoveries or advancements made by women were done against the intentions of the men around them. They did not receive financial support, they did not receive emotional support and they did not receive logistical support. Had the roles been reversed, it would be men who would be absent from our textbooks, not women.

If you imply to a woman that women aren’t as smart as men, you’re participating in this long history of injustice, and revealing yourself as a pretty shallow thinker, too.

4. Engaging in Slut Shaming

Why? Women should be allowed to be as sexual as men

A man who sleeps with a lot of partners is a playboy, a stud or a Casanova. You probably don’t need to be told that a woman who sleeps with a lot of partners is not described using such positive language.

People even come up with justifications for the double standard, like, “A key that can unlock many locks is a good key, but a lock that can be opened by many keys is not a good lock” — ignoring the fact that human genitalia and anti-theft devices exist for completely different reasons with nothing in common.

A particularly dark aspect of the way we shame women for their sexual desire is something known as “victim blaming” — when we imply that a woman who is raped, assaulted or harassed is to blame for her own misfortune, rather than the person who did it to her.

The implication being, if she had been more modest (i.e. “OK, but when you’re dressed like that, what are you expecting?”), she wouldn’t have been in that situation. If your buddy went on a date and ended up being raped, you wouldn’t tell him it was his fault for being alone with a stranger drinking alcohol late at night, would you? Don’t do it to a woman.

5. Implying She Owes Her Success to Her Gender

Why? Women deal with more gender-based hurdles than men

The thinking goes that because women are sexually desirable to men, they can get things more easily — free drinks, entrance into events, promotions at work, gifts, and so on.

While there is a degree of truth to this — men sometimes do give women they’re attracted to special privileges they wouldn’t accord other men — this is not a uniquely positive dynamic. Often, these freebies come with a subtle (or not so subtle) expectation of romantic or sexual favors in return, and broadly speaking, they exist within a culture where too many men see women as potential conquests, not fellow human beings.

Ask a woman if she would trade the ability to get free drinks at a bar here and there for the promise that she wouldn’t ever be stalked on her way home, and most would give a resounding, “Yes!”

Women may have a few small things easier than men, but broadly speaking, their lives are more difficult, and to imply otherwise is both ignorant and cruel.

6. Telling Her She’s Ugly or Fat

Why? Women face immense looks-based pressure

The trope that women are looks-obsessed is not entirely without merit. However, it’s due to them being conditioned to understand that their looks are the most important quality they have by a society that prizes female beauty above any other trait.

As a result, almost all women are hyper-conscious of looks, not unlike the way almost all men are highly conscious of notions of toughness and strength.

Telling a woman that she is ugly or fat is a direct attack on one of the most vulnerable parts of her psyche. In a world where the models for beauty are endlessly made-up and photoshopped, even the most naturally beautiful women in the world cannot compete with men’s expectations of that beauty.

There is no winning this game. Don’t add to the frustration of that by complaining that she doesn’t live up to your standards, too, or subtly suggesting she “wear some makeup” or “work out more.” It’s not necessary.

7. Shaming Her About Menstruation

Why? It’s a natural part of life for almost every woman

From around the age of 12, young girls begin menstruating, typically continuing to do so once a month for the bulk of their adult lives.

Societal messaging pushes that menstrual fluid is disgusting, and that women should be ashamed of it despite the fact that it’s natural, normal and essentially universal.

If guys had periods of wet dreams that lasted one week out of every month, it would be both awkward and deeply embarrassing for most of them, for starters. Consider offering women the same respect you’d like to receive in that kind of situation, rather than saying something like “Gross, are you on your period?”

As well, it’s worth considering that this is a feature of the human body intrinsically tied to the capacity for reproduction. Meaning, if your mother, her mother,  her mother and so forth hadn’t had their periods, you would not exist. Have some respect, and be polite about menstruation.

8. Telling Her She’s Crazy

Why? Many men weaponize the concept of craziness to cast normal behavior as wrong

It’s tempting to call someone whose behavior we don’t understand “crazy.” If you get in an argument with said person, you’re absolved of any responsibility. You don’t have to win the argument, you don’t have to behave rationally, you don’t have to treat them with respect — they’re just crazy.

However, it’s an unfortunate truth that men weaponize the idea of craziness in a way that often targets women, particularly for the fact that women and men approach emotional matters very differently.

“She’s just crazy,” or “You’re behaving crazy right now, you know that?” are just particularly cruel ways of saying, “I don’t understand this reaction.” That said, just because you don’t understand someone’s emotional reaction doesn’t mean it’s not valid.

Quit telling women they’re crazy and start putting yourself in their shoes — what you learn might surprise you.

9. Belittling Her Concerns About Abuse

Why? We need to take women opening up about their trauma seriously

Recent years have seen a significant change in the way society sees sexual assault. Once-venerated men have been toppled from positions of power. It’s become normal for people who’ve been abused to open up about it.

That’s just the beginning of working towards a future where sexual abuse isn’t rampant, but it’s a start. As a man, it’s not hard to be an ally to women around these issues, but it’s also all too easy to come across as a supporter of abusers when the subject comes up.

RELATED: Here’s How to Support a Victim of Sexual Abuse

If you say things like “Don’t go all #MeToo on me,” you’re making light of an incredibly serious subject. Rape and assault are deeply traumatic events that can mark the rest of a person’s life. Treat them with the seriousness that they deserve.

Victims of abuse deserve support, no matter what their gender is. Committing to treating these crimes like crimes and not like a frivolous annoyance that’s become common outs you as someone who’d rather maintain the status quo than live in a more just world.

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Is A Long-Distance, Open Relationship A Good Idea? An Expert Weighs In

If you and your partner live far apart and you’re curious about trying to see other people, it’s natural to wonder: Is a long-distance, open relationship a good idea? I’ll be the first to say it: The heart wants what it wants. Things change, people evolve, and relationships develop in their own ways as time goes on. And although no one can tell you who or how to love, it’s natural to wonder if you’re making the healthiest and happiest choices for you. And when your flame lives a few states away, or you can only see them a few times a year, making your relationship sustainable and fulfilling for both of you isn’t always easy.

“An open, long-distance relationship in practice means you are dating other people — nothing more and nothing less,” Dr. Joshua Klapow, Ph.D., Clinical Psychologist and Host of The Kurre and Klapow Show, tells Elite Daily. “If you are going to be long distance, and you are going to agree to date other people, then your relationship is only as deep and committed as your feelings for each other.”

According to Dr. Klapow, the keys to a healthy, long-distance, open relationshipcan be some serious self-reflection, independence, and honesty. “Don’t try to formalize something that is not formal. Don’t force the relationship — allow it to happen, while you continue to be as healthy and strong as an individual as possible,” Dr. Klapow says. Although it may be hard not to skip girl’s night to FaceTime, or not to wait up for them to call you, Dr. Klapow shares the importance of making the long-distance love work around your daily life — not the other way around. “A long-distance relationship is not only logistically challenging, it is extremely psychologically challenging,” Dr. Klapow says. “Sacrificing your daily life, or watching it pass by simply to be with the other person comprises your well-being and places too much pressure on the relationship itself.”

If you and your long-distance partner are thinking about opening your relationship, Dr. Klapow suggests thinking about “communication, transparency, trust, expectations for what the relationship is versus what you want it to be, and embracing the time you have alone.” Although you and your partner may be on the same page about how frequently you talk or how often you visit each other, opening up your relationship can take a new kind of transparency. Opening up a long-distance relationship may mean discussing using contraceptives with new partners, establishing how much you each want to hear about the other people your partner is seeing, and setting healthy boundaries about emotional involvement with others.

Although all these conversations and changes may initially seem totally intimidating, Dr. Klapow shares the importance of normalizing talking about your relationship. “The more you can make the long-distance logistics normal, reasonable, and predictable, and the more you can embrace your time alone as an individual — the more your relationship will grow on solid grounding,” Dr. Klapow says.

Of course, if you and your long-distance partner start seeing other people and you realize you’re not super into it, or if hearing about your partner’s dates makes you uncomfortable, Dr. Klapow shares the power of expressing your feelings. “Don’t be tied down by labels. If you are feeling jealous about that, then it is up to you to decide if you want to partake in that kind of arrangement,” Dr. Klapow says. Although you and your partner may have initially agreed to an open relationship, you are always allowed to ask for a check-in, or to change your mind about how you’re feeling. If you’re no longer comfortable being open, it’s always OK to say so, and if your partner can’t respect that, it’s always OK to take some time for yourself. “For some individuals, moving from a committed relationship to an open relationship causes too much distress,” Dr. Klapow says. “If you are not comfortable with dating other people and being long distance, then it may be time to move on.”

At every step of the way, it’s important to remember that navigating love and long-distance is hard. It’s totally normal to feel tired or worn-out, or to get frustrated with all the moving pieces. Yet, according to Dr. Klapow, love perseveres. And although you and your partner can schedule and discourse until the cows come home, letting your love guide you can help you both feel supported.

If you’re thinking about opening up your long-distance relationship, remember that you don’t need to use anybody else’s labels or ideas. Checking in with your partner about how you’re feeling can be a great way to stay on the same page, as well as remembering to live your own individual life to the fullest everyday. If at any point you’re feeling uncomfortable with the open relationship, it’s always OK to check in with your partner and express your feelings. Open, long-distance relationships may not be for everyone, but open honesty in long-distance relationships sure can be.

 

Thank you for reading my blog. Please read, like, comment, and most of all follow Phicklephilly. I publish every day.

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Sun Stories – Zoe – Chapter 1 – The Real Number One?

Zoe has been a client of our salon since she was freshman. She goes to Temple and needs to keep her tan on to maintain her hotness.

I’ve been creating this little drama story while working at the salon. I rank all of women based on their beauty. I once created a list of the most beautiful women that set foot in the salon.

The list got out of control and approached the 30’s.  It was just me being new and never being around so many beautiful fit young women in my life since the 80’s.

I started to have my top 10, and then my top 5 and them my number 1.

It seems weird but I created this list because it occupied my creative mind while I work at this mundane business.

Kita held the title for a long time and was basically my sugarbaby and didn’t even realize that I was just trying to teach her what dating was supposed to look like. Total waste. But It ended as it should.

Here school schedule changed and although she blew up my phone and spent hours at the salon getting my free advice, she still went back to loser Steve. So she learned nothing, but I extactred my fee for the therapy.

When Kita went on winter break to Florida and ghosted me for a month after all of her promises I was a little annoyed but understood.

I had already chosen a new number one with Delaney who wanted the spot of number one so badly. She promised much but failed miserably. She even was fired from her job for a clumsy infraction.

I went back to Sasha. The most beautiful girl that comes to the salon. I gave her the lotion I had for Delaney. I even got her an exclusive sunscreen for her eyebrows because she is my desperate number one.

But Sasha hardly comes into the salon. It’ hard for me to have a number one if she never comes in.

I considered another girl that loves to tan, but she says all of her aunts and uncles are dying and she won’t be in any time soon. We had planned to hang for drinks but because of all of the death she has blown me off and she hasn’t come in all week to tan.

But…

I get a call from Zoe.

“Do what do I owe this honor, Zoe. I told you to never call me at work.”

“But I can’t stop thinking about you.”

That was it. She got the joke and played along. Zoe is cool. In that moment, I realized some things.

Zoe comes in all of the time. She has a premium package. She’s sweet and smart. She always listens to my crazy stories and remembers the details. She laughs at all of my jokes. I’m able to reveal crazy stories to her and she’s always interested and cool with them.

Zoe is great. She must come from a great family and is balanced.

Zoe is beautiful and is a consistent client. She is always sweet and her Instagram page is slammin. (Yea I said that) Zoe has always been top 5 but now I feel like after all of the other women have failed me in my little numerical drama, Zoe has moved up on the list.

After her cool flirting and being a consistent client I’m starting to think she’s earned the right to be number one.

I’ve had a tumultuous week, but Zoe has been on my mind.

She’s so sweet and laughs at all of my bits and listens to all of my stories and remembers all of the characters.

Zoe is the one I need to take care of.

Sasha is in a relationship with a guy that sends her 3 dozen roses on Valentine’s Day. Can you imagine setting the bar that high before you’ve even married a girl? The diamond you’d have to give her to marry her will have to be the size of a doorknob.

I love Sasha’s beauty but this whole ranking system at the salon is just a ranking system. I just do it for the blog and to enteratain myself.

But Zoe is a sweet woman. She’s dating a boy now and I hope it works, but he’s not much of a drinker so I don’t know if it’s a match. They had a fight and were silent for two weeks so we’ll see.

Just youth and immaturity.

Anyway… I have settled on Zoe. She’s been a client since we were at the old location. She loves to tan and is a beautiful and smart girl. I always liked Zoe. Who wouldn’t like a girl that’s pretty and always laughs at all of your jokes and listens to your old man stories. I adore her!

I reveal to her tales of all of the crazy girls that come in here, I tell her about Maria, and she loves it.

I tell her my crazy stories about all of my failed number ones….and then I ask her, (I have to do it)

“Zoe, will you be my number one?”

She loved being top 10 and then top 5 and then top 3.

“I mean it. Sasha never comes in and you know the story with all of my failed number ones…”

“I’d love to be your number one. Not for the stuff but just to know that I finally made it.”

I love that I’ve created some crazy rating system for the girls that tan here and now there is a competition to be the favorite.

I just want to have one I can settle on. Zoe has been consistent and chill. I think she’ll be perfect to be the number one.

Free lotion. More time in the sun beds. free drinks. Lunch. Fruit. Oh, here I go again.

I just want to hang out with her.

Do you think she’ll let me?

Zoe is perfect. I just want to have a drink with her.

I’ve already ordered a special bottle of tanning lotion for her. Smoke. It’s her favorite, It costs $45 a bottle but I can get it for cost. I want to treat her.

It’s funny how I’m always looking for my little girlfriend at the salon. But it’s innocent. Zoe knows I’m okay. She knows I’m a dad and gentleman, but I’d love to take her to Square and ply her with free drinks. Not to get her, just to spend time with her. I love the presence of young women. I guess because I’m in a secure relationship, I just love the company of other girls just for for fun.

I’d love to share a chardonnay with Zoe at Square…

 

Thank you for reading my blog. Please read, like, comment, and most of all follow Phicklephilly. I publish every day.

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