We’ve all experienced unwanted advances at some point, or perhaps you’ve been the one making undesired advances to someone? These can be without malicious intent, or with it. Regardless, if the receiving person says no, squirms at your presence or nearness, turns away from you, or otherwise communicates discomfort and distrust, it should be deeply and immediately respected. And, never do that again.
There are a plethora of articles containing advice for self protection (this is not that), and very few by comparison on how to not be an offensive creeper. A recent interaction between my fiancé and a known acquaintance inspired this article. thankfully the interaction was not more severe than an unwanted hug. Nonetheless, she felt it was her only option in the moment, so she didn’t offend the other person or hurt their feelings. And that is exactly the base of how unwanted advances turn into actions that are far more serious and sinister and damaging.
Below are five behaviors to steer clear from in your life, aimed to help you be a friend and non-threatening presence in the world and the transition from masculine to feminine energies coming into power. These are applicable to all relationships, whether intimate or strangers. You can also set strong examples for others on non-toxic masculine behavior, and help others make positive choices in what could otherwise be regrettable and offensive situations.
- Inappropriate jokes. If you wouldn’t say it in front of your mother, grandmother, boss or priest, it’s probably best left unsaid. Always be mindful of your company, audience and environment.
- Unwanted touching. Doubt means don’t. No means no. Respect the boundaries set by others, and maintain your own respectful boundaries as well. Cringes are clear indicators to give more personal space. Don’t get so close to strangers that you are “in their bubble.” Give way to others in tight spaces. Don’t put yourself between others and a door to block them in. Maintain respectful distance and attitudes towards everyone.
- Inappropriate comments and word choices. There are endless words we can use to communicate parts of the body, intentions and feelings. Using inappropriate words should always be a no-go. The bodies of others don’t need to be commented on. Again, if you wouldn’t feel comfortable saying it in front of your mother, don’t say it to others.
- Unwanted looks. Use your kind eyes, with pure intent behind them, not malicious, seedy and otherwise offensive looks towards others.
- Inappropriate thoughts directed at someone. Seriously, don’t do this. Control your thoughts, control your life. Thoughts become words, become actions, become behavior. Choose to be and do good. No one wants to be the subject of someone’s #metoo post or nightmares at night.
- NEVER take advantage of someone under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Take the high road, and take them home or get them to a safe place. If you find yourself in such a position, be the hero. Make sure the inebriated person has plenty of water or juice and is in a comfortable and safe resting position.
These are a few guiding pieces of advice to be more mindful of your thoughts, words, actions and behaviors. Removing the toxic, offensive, aggressive and disrespectful language from our daily lives is a cleanse that is well overdue for the betterment of humanity, our mental health, our sexual health, our emotional health.
Be the good. Be the light. Be the strong example.
Photo by Tiago Felipe Ferreira on Unsplash
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