“Men, please weigh in on this…Do guys get the wrong impression quite often?”

This comment was from Joan on the post “In Defense of Psycho Bitches from Hell

I think guys get the wrong impression quite often. Kind gestures get misread all the time.

1.)  I was at a gas station and a man and I started a conversation about business-stuff. He seemed interested in our conversation, so I handed him a business card.  I was away from the phone all that day. When I got, home he left 4 messages on my machine…each one was increasingly personal. The last message sounded like he was in love with me…I called him back and was crystal-clear that it was strictly business and I even lied and told him I was gay.  He never called again.

2.)  Another story, I had contractor stop by for an estimate on my driveway and we talked about bricks and concrete…didn’t think any of it. The next evening, he stopped by with the written estimate and dropped off a bottle of wine. Then, on the third night, he stopped by, again but this time, in a shirt and tie and asked me out to dinner.  And all I wanted was an estimate!!!

I have more of stories, but I won’t bore you. In all situations, I was not flirtatious or suggestive, just pleasant and kind. If you knew me, you find I’m kind and articulate, but I’m not flirty.

These are the weird things that women deal with and cause us to be guarded. Am I supposed to be rude and course with men?  Or I should I start talking about Jesus and scare men off with Bible thumping?  :)

Men, please weigh in on this.

Photo by aerosolhalos / flickr

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  1. Joan… In that place that is guarded with the utmost consideration and careful attendance rests the realization of my incompleteness. I know in my heart and supported by my research that men and women are linked physiologically.

    • Ogwriter…Agreed, when we let our guard down, we become vulnerable. But with that said, here’s a big hug coming at you.

      • Joan… As I have written before the condition of the men of color and poor people in general in America are the canary in the mine shaft for white males.I was shocked to find so many similarites of the problems that white men face compared to the rest of us men. THE FINANCIAL MELTDOWN CHANGED EVERYTHING.

        • We are all in the same boat. The majority of working class folks feel at the mercy of the economy. Oddly enough, the lower income families had lesser impact in the meltdown. It was the middle income families that took the biggest hit. This was wake up call for middle income guys, of every color.

  2. Julie…Reagus has a point in that the issues of concern for many men are relationship not sociopoliticoeconomic oreintated.Does one matter to the other?Yes,but neither I nor Raegus can prevent you or Hillary or any other woman from running for president. it’s tiring Dear lord,Shirley Chisolm,a black woman from Barbados, ran in 72,just 8 years after the Civil Rights Act was signed.Maybe its time women to stop whining for and instead start running for office.Random men don’t control corporations,government or other institutions.Occupy Wall St. got one thing right,the future isn’t about coalescing our energies around a new faction like black rights,feminism,or whatever.Its about breaking down those boundaries.

  3. Julie…I have lived through and been a part of feminism, the Civil Rights movement, the black liberartion movement,I’ve been a christian, an atheist,an altar boy and a criminalMy father was lost to me because of his service in Korea and my surrogate father, who was my brother, was almost lost to me in VN..I discussed the impact of socioecopolitical conditions on humanityover cornflakes first as a clever 13 years old growing up in the Haight Ashbury.

    The bottom line is I can’t tell a kid, boy or girl, straight or gay who is being abused at home, that it isn’t the fault of the person who did it.That isn’t fair to them nor is it correct.Are there connections to the issues you raise and the abuse, possibly, but the solution lies in the here and now.I have tro empower the kids I work with now.Your macro view of the world, for me, doesn’t allow that to happen.

  4. Julie…I’m trying to figure out the seperation of systems from the people and values that create,manage and implement the systems.Take slavery.The people that created it were already corrupt.The system reflected their values and beliefs.It is commonly understood in the political science community that systems created by people are a reflection of their values not the opposite.

  5. Joan…I believe that on occasion, needing someone,who is better at something than you,or gives you something of value, does require a kind of submission in certain situations.I believe this builds appreciation between couples of the other’s skills. Jules is right feminists don’t seem to understand the power of compromise,inclusion or of the apology.

  6. I like the Webster’s definition of submission I found years ago, because it doesn’t have scriptural or subservient baggage attached.

    submit: to offer oneself of free will, to cease to offer resistance, or defer to another’s opinions, decisions, authority, wishes.

    By this defintion, submission doesn’t take anything away from the individual and we don’t have to submit and accept everything…but we don’t have resist everything either. For example, try to get a 16 year old to clean up their room without a debate. They grummble and resist. Some parents don’t even command enough respect to get their kids to follow basic rules. But teenagers are a different story altogether.

    It becomes resistance and obnoxious when women challenge everything a man says or does. For example, she starts telling him how to do his job better or challenges his fathering ability or seeks everybody elses’ guidance instead of submitting to his guidance. This stuff starts driving men nuts, when her way is the right way and his way is always wrong. Aggressive women view submission as a weakness and they tend to challege everything a man does. Submission is healthy respect for another, in my opinion.

  7. Raegus…let me reframe my point about feminism. I compare my experience as a member of the Civil Rights movement,the feminist movement,Christianity and black liberation,realizing the most successful one,CR, was the most accepted and inclusive.CR taught me to love everyone,even my oppressors. feminism doesn’t do those things,it has history of teaching hate and disregard for others.A person is perfectly capable of treating people as they should by simply following the golden rule.

    • Raegus- He stated that well. CR teaches us to embrace cooperation, acceptance, and understanding.
      Some concepts imbedded in modern thinking, teach us to embrace separatism, which is fine as long as it’s not at the expense of others or careless disregard other’s values.

      History shows us, when we embrace cooperation, acceptance, and understanding whether it’s a race, religion, gender we win.

      I just visited the feminist site for the first time and I see glaring hypocrisy too. (Take note that feminist site is pink.) There was one article on chivalry and feminism. The same group of women who killed chivalry, now thinks is ok. In all fairness, there are some items of interest, but also things of concern.

      They advocate Middle Eastern women get out the burkahs, but they ignore the cultural, religious, marital belief systems of Muslim men and women. After spending a year in the Middle East, I learned the Islamic culture respects the opposite sex, marriage, and community a lot more than we do. In my opinion, they are dictating how males and females should behave in this country and others. Check it out if you want http://www.feminist.org/

      I appreciate this conversation, because it challenges my thinking too. You guys and gals are raising awesome points.

      • I agree with most of what you said, although I feel the need to mention that that website is actually just one feminist organisation out of many and not the spokesman for feminism. But yes there is a number of glaring hypocrisies within the feminist movement in all three waves. They believe they have the monopoly on wisdom and they can never ever be incorrect. Any man who tries to correct them is a sexist, any woman who tries to correct them is an indoctrinated ‘handmaiden’ (an actual feminist pejorative term for women who aren’t feminists).

  8. Raegus…In my view creating a social climate where all men are seen as monsters is encouraging hate.

  9. Joan…I might even suggest that between couples in love who behave as you speak,they access a spiritual dimension where deep connection resides.

  10. Well, I have hope that people can re-connect with each other and maybe on a deeper level too. I’m in complete support of ideas that bring people closer together, instead of driving us further apart. It’s much like this feminist behavior we’ve been talking about that drives men away from women. I know I picked on the ‘angry black women’ stereotype, but I picking on white women too.

  11. Joan…There must be better options than this for men…other women somewhere who are more ready,where culture is more able to include men.

  12. Raegus – First and foremost I want to say thank you for your insight, because you have been the star player in this discussion. I must agree those messages we all receive about what ‘woman should do’ and ‘what men should do’ is not limited to one site…it’s in our collective thinking. It’s almost as if women are the arbiters of gender behavior. We’re all confused by it.

    I used the Middle Eastern as the extreme example, because it’s the one pocket in the world that has been untouched by the western independent movement. I’m not surprised they resist western ways, because they are looking at our irreverent women, emasculated men, dysfunctional families, sexual promiscuity, lack of community, and they don’t want any part of it.

    I certainly wouldn’t suggest women don burkahs, but something’s out of balance. If our western culture is sending mixed messages “I don’t need a man, I don’t need a man’s help”, yet the same woman says “I need a Good Man; I need you to get off your lazy butt and help me.” These mixed messages are everywhere. And it’s been a slow process of disenfranchising males and male authority. If men can’t get beyond a 3rd date or even hope for a decent girl, we got problems.

    These messages have negative effects on women too…people like me who stayed on the sidelines.

    Let me share one instance of how this attitude affects women. A couple years ago I’m at barbeque with about 20 people, all married couples, except me. The topic of men and marriage came up and the wives systematically berated their husbands in a joking manner about how women don’t really men and men don’t help enough, etc. Off the cuff, I blurted out, “well, I still need men and I still love men.” Immediately, the wives launched into me about being naïve and furthered their crusade against men…in front of their husbands. The husbands couldn’t speak up and I couldn’t correct these wives either.

    About 10 years ago I knew there was wrong with our gender identity. I baked some cookies and brought them to work. The women copped an attitude and called me Betty Crocker and Susie Homemaker. I felt like I was defending the right bake cookies and share with friends at work. Someone feminist made cooking and cleaning a stereotype. I mentioned the Susie Homemaker comment to my mom who was about 70 at the time, she said “these damn today, they’re going to be sorry. She told me to make a choice, be a girl or be a boy, but I still expect you to work hard.” I understood what she meant, don’t cave into the hype.

    Many of us never stopped being women; we simply went to work outside the home–but adopted everyone else’s negative attitude. I suspect this is why there is groundswell of this good men and good women project. People are fed up with disrepectful women and the mixed messages, dating, and marriage world. Women aren’t going back to being homemakers, but it would be nice to move forward.
    The internet may be the vehicle to re-shape some of this anti-male attitude, but men must ‘stand for’ something instead of ‘against feminists’.

    • @Joan…

      Thanks for your wonderful contributions. You obviously see the big picture.

      While I have nothing against the feminist movement, I just think like so much else in the USA things have just gone too far. So, it makes so much out of balance. There are mixed messages everywhere. Nowhere are messages more confusing than over the issue of sex.

      “If men can’t get beyond a 3rd date or even hope for a decent girl, we got problems.”

      Third date! Are you kidding me. Most white men cannot GET a date. Being a black man mostly Hispanic and some white women, I have no problems getting a date. But, I will be honest: many of these well educated professional white women I avoid. They are just a pain in the ass. Double talk and hypergamy out of the ass.

      Many of these women rant about how hard it is to find a good man/nice man. But, they fail to mention he needs to 6 feet tall, athletic, making six or high six figures, Ivy League or similar education, handsome blah blah blah. It is endless list of requirements. The only reason they really want said man is for making baby and family for about 5-7 years and then they will shun him…..On to the next one while collecting lots of child support…It is almost like a hustle with these type of women.

      • I didn’t know it was that bad for white guys, but I know they have a harder time. Please help them with game, I know they’re terrified.
        This stuff crept up on all of us in the last 10ish years, I’m not surprised guys are depressed and angry. Nothing surprises me at this point about women.

        • I can’t say I’ve seen white guys have problems getting dates, shy guys however need all the help they can get. Why has the fear of rejection gotten so bad?

          • Archy—Could be past rejections or just media angst. Fear of rejection is universal…shy guys don’t corner the market on fear. It’s like anything, we’re not confident before we do something, it’s only after we do something we become confident.

            I recommend shy guys practice approaching women in ‘safe’ environments, like a grocery store. They can strike up conversations with women shoppers about how to cook broccoli or how to bake a cake. It takes the dating-pressure off by talking about neutral subjects. It’s good practice getting the marbles out the mouth.

            And to take it a little further, they can practice some eye contact and superficial flattery. Eye contact is big deal with women. Guys can easily do that once a week for a month and gain extra confidence approaching and talking to women. All a man has to do is getting a woman talking, she’ll take from there.

            • But didn’t you hear all the feminist articles saying how they don’t want to be hit on whilst shopping etc:P (sarcasm). I think men probably also heard too much from quite a few feminists on when it’s ok to hit on someone, and seemingly the advice is pretty much never unless you can mindread the woman and know she likes you first. I know it made me paranoid about when it’s ok to hit on someone, some would suggest pretty much never…

            • Archy–I thought about that might not be clear after I sent it.

              Shy guys can practice the art of striking up conversations in a safe place where there is no assumption of a date. His objective is not a date or a phone number, his objective is practice conversing with women, eye contact, like Jules said…listening, and taking an interest in her expertise without fear of rejection. For example, an 18 year boy can find someone who looks like a 40 yr old mom or an 80 yr old grandma and strike up casual conversation. He can practice how to flatter her on cooking tips or her secret family recipe that she shares…don’t flatter her purse or physical appearance. This is ‘the context’ I mentioned earlier.

              This is where many guys fall apart, because they are too self-conscious about getting a date or a phone number, instead of taking an active interest in her. This is also where the contractor in the beginning of the story fell apart. He didn’t pay attention to context or take an interest in my concerns; he was more concerned about getting a date.

              Maybe a good way to say it is, men can stop approaching women but start striking up conversations with women in general. Develop a sense of who she is, before even attempting to get her phone number. Just because a girl is pretty, doesn’t mean you want her phone number or just because a woman is 80 years old, doesn’t mean she can’t add value to a man’s life.

            • The website is blocking all my messages regardless of their content. I guess that goes to show just how ‘free’ speech is here. Agree with everything they say or you’re not welcome.

            • Raegus–we hear you and we want to hear your voice. The gender-blender issues affect all us and I think we all agree that men and women are in this life boat together: we need each other. These discussion boards are a great place to pinpoint and identify problems, but more importantly to solve problems.

              Men are good at solving problems. If I’ve learned one thing in my life, when I have a problem I reach out to men and they help me solve problems. That’s why I’m here.

            • Archy- there may be additional ‘rejection’ feelings from e-dating too.

              About a year ago I signed up for a month of e-dating. Wrote a profile, included a picture and some special interest stuff about me–talking points if you will. Probably close to 90% of guys start with Hi! or You’re Hot! or You have a pretty smile. Those comments deserve a ‘thank you’…but that’s about it. Men may feel rejected or frustrated, depending on a girl’s response.

              I accepted one e-date out of hundreds of intros, because of what the man said in his profile and his approach. He didn’t mince words. He came right out on the first email and said I like what you wrote about such and such, and asked for date. He wasn’t there to monkey around, we talked some more, and set a date.

              But e-dating is different; it’s okay to come out and ask for a date right away, because there is a clear assumption that it’s about dating.

              Men may want reconsider their e-dating rejections, based on their approach and profiles. Put something unique about your character or you as person in the profile.

          • While we’re on the subject of shy guys, or any guys for that matter, I recommend men NOT accept pity from women. ‘Pity’ can turn into a downward spiral of mothering or that patronizing thing that some women do, quiet guys fall into this trap. Instead tell women politely, “I don’t need your pity, but I would appreciate your support.” I clearly states you need support too, but will not accept her putting you in lower status. Just my two cents.

            • @Joan, Yeah pity is useless. I’d much rather her say sometime about how to talk to women, help me practice, give tips without treating me like I am a lost dog.

            • Yep, pity and criticism are deal-breakers for everyone; I know I’ve made a million mistakes in my life…I’m not sitting in an ivory tower. It’s really about taking an interest in someone else, and the more practice you get the smoother is becomes. You don’t appear to have problem communicating here. You’re speaking your mind candidly and articulately and mixing it up with some humor and wit, you shouldn’t have anything to worry about.

              One book I recommend, which is a classic, is ‘How to Win Friends and Influence People’ by Dale Carnegie. It’s old, but it’s still used in business and interpersonal skills training today.

              My dad gave me a copy when I was 12 because I was really shy. By the time I hit high school, I was voted most like Doris Day, who was a sunshiny, friendly actress of the 1950-60s. I liken most of that confidence to the stuff I read in that book.

  13. Joan…when ARE white guys gonna DO something besides bitch about bad things?If they chose to simply exercise their power things would change…tomorrow.It is increasingly difficult to respect the constant whining. When are white women-on the sidelines gonna-make their voices heard?

    • I’m making my Army of One Voice Sideline heard and I’ve slicing-dicing on the net, but it’s not enough.

      This is one major site to unite men and women, and do it in a discussion, just like we did, instead of b-t session. Men are not getting solutions by bitching with other men…it only turns into pity party or derails.

      Thoughts, feedback, suggestions?

      • Yup!!! One Big Ass Pity Party by a lot of white guys! I have lots of white male friends. Good friends. They think I have the edge because I am a black guy and today all women want black men (even gay white men)…..BS. Most people prefer their own. But, will screw whomever they feel like if the timing is right.

        I tell them all the time: f**k what you are reading about what women want. They don’t know what they want! Believe only about 30% of what you read….I also tell them women have sex for about 1000 reasons. All this gibberish about emotional connectedness is horse crap! it only applies when they are married or in relationships. Otherwise, anything goes.

        Just do your thing. Make yourself attractive, dress better, listen, have some confidence, be able to read body language, stop acting desperate, stop trying to impress women with your job/car/wealth. Obviously these women are screwing somebody. My attitude: why not me!

        My grandfather was a big moonshiner. He use to always say, “Boy I am giving the folks what they want!” So, white men need game. If it is PUA, whatever.

        • Jules–exactly, people need to be careful of what they read. Because most women are not out there screwing like rabbits. There’s a minority of women servicing the majority of men and those women are dictating and shaping public thought about sex in some of these studies. If all women were that sexually active, men wouldn’t be having problems getting laid. Most men and women are reading this stuff, and saying ‘that’s not me, that’s not my reality’.

  14. Joan…If women on the sideline spoke up and whiteguys-mostly-stood up,things could change faster.

  15. Joan….I am often stunned by the passiveness of,in particular,men on this site,who seem to content to complain themselves into obscurity.

    • It gets better. Women’s Health Magazine had an article about couple’s therapy about 9 months ago. Young women are dragging our young men into couple’s therapy at 22-25 years old after 3 months of dating and are proud of this! Young girls are emasculating guys at 22 years old. What 22 year old man needs couple’s therapy and needs to hear that HE needs to change, from some chick he picked up 3 months ago? She’s bossing him around by month 3 and disrespecting who he is as a person. Women have lost their minds. Sounds like of shrews need taming, in my arrogant opinion. The troubling part is how many women read that article and thought, “Hey that’s a great idea, I think my man needs therapy too”.

    • I believe this site gets about 3 million hits per month? I’m sure the editors have some ideas too.

      One possibity is have controlled or moderated theme discussions each week, using the strategic approach.

      Google, Bing, Facebook, YouTube are large audiences.

  16. Joan…there must be a way to connect likeminded men and women thirsty for change…any ideas?

  17. Jules…Whats up friend?True story…I dated this golden uterus,who happens to be white,who left her marriage because her diamond parachute was unfaithful. We hit it off and fell in love,but she was used to his WEALTH-though she was a dental hygenist-and I’m middle income. She showed me her list of necessary qualities a man must possess to be with her-10-saying that I had all but one,enough money. Whatms love got to do with it?

    • May be that’s a good thing ask early…does she have a list? Run if she has a list.
      Money is not love. I must be a good catch now that I’m hearing more, makes my day.

    • I am not surprised.

      You can screw her brains out, but for anything more serious it all about the $$$$.

      This is why I keep telling my white male friends it is not about money just to get sex. A man can have “pretty eyes” and get laid. He can have “soft hands’ and get laid. He can be ‘cute” and get laid. He can be “broke, busted, and disgusted” and get laid, so long as the woman finds him attractive..Just the way it is out here.

      A lot of these guys think they need to kill themselves to become high status and all to get sex. No, what that will get you is married with NO SEX! I know.

  18. Joan…you are on to something.I think an Occupy Wall St. type movement for relationships,perhaps, could work. I am learning more about social media and it can be,if used correctly, a good way to go.

  19. Jules… Yeah,with her it was all a convoluted ploy to have sex without coming right out admitting it.

    • I tell women to get rid of those lists of requirements, all it does is put conditions on someone. That’s probably why she got divorced in the first place. You’re better off without her.

  20. Joan…I am fortunate to have lived on both sides of the hot third rail of dating.I went from unattractive to attractive in my lifetime. I feel for shy guys and I dislike the power imbalance and often times shallow,mean,indifference reactions they must negoiate to find companionship.Many times I think legal prostitution is at least part of the answer.Right now many 20 something college girls are being paid to provide”companionship” to sugardaddies.The lies,hypocrisies and flat out double sidedness of this stuff makes me want to stay the hell away from most women. I actually think the things you mention will work, but… is it worth it for men to do this?

    • Ogwriter–I hit frustration point too. Is it worth it to buck the system or just start speaking up when we hear disrespect for men? Collectively, our internal voice is telling us that women or feminists leading the social climate for the last 30 years has been, for the most part, a failure…it’s like girls-gone-wild, but not in a good way. Great news I as a woman, I now have the social right to be a sex worker, porn star, single, disrespect others in public, and not be judged, but I’m not allowed to bake cookies, use the word submit, be gentle with others, and share without being condemned. Thanks for progress ladies and one big social guessing game.

  21. Joan…As a practical matter,even IF women get the message,it will take at least a generation for change to happen. And liberal leaning men are hapless white knights who block efforts at progress.

  22. Joan…As a practical matter,even IF women get the message,it will take at least a generation for change to happen. And liberal leaning men are hapless white knights who block efforts at progress. I am looking elsewhere- at different cultures- for mating.

  23. Change takes time, we didn’t create this overnight, but information moves a lot faster these days. I think you see clearly where the resistance is but that’s to be expected, simply human nature. These discussions are surfacing all over the place regarding gender issues…men (and women) need clarity and are frustrated, I suspect most men are ready for change or least in need of a modicum of respect. I’ll brainstorm…

  24. Joan…one thing is true,according to the experts, about humans and change:1) they only do it if they have to.2) they only do it if there is an alternative.3)there must be a path to change. Men have got to force the hand and frankly I am in shock and awe at the utter ineptitude of men. It’s pretty damn sorry.

    • Those are excellent points to frame these issues. No worries, we’ve all been drinking the same Kool-Aid and we just accepted these things as reality.

  25. Joan…A closed mouth don’t get fed.

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