Many years ago, I used to be a feminist. At first it was merely a “yeah, girl power! Feminism!” kind of thing. And then I moved back home from an abusive relationship, and started hanging out with one of my best friends more often. He was one of the few guys that was a genuine friend and didn’t want to try to get into my pants. Or so I thought. After several months, having found some peace and routine with him, he brought up the prospect of being anything more. Thing is, I felt nothing for him in that aspect. I mentioned this, told him that it wouldn’t feel right forcing myself to be in a relationship with him when I didn’t actually see him in a romantic way and that it would only be cruel to him. He was disheartened, but he didn’t bring it up again for a while.
He was a pharmacy student who was on the cusp of graduation. He studied well and had high grades, and part of our hangout routine was him using his homework and notes to “teach” me (I didn’t really pay attention, but it helped him to better understand his material). One weekend - Halloween, actually, as I will always remember it - he was picking me up from my place so we could spend a few days lounging and playing video games. His car broke down and we spent hours waiting for the tow truck. The next night, we were playing video games per usual. He asked about whether or not I wanted to go somewhere and do something different. I told him that, understanding his financial situation, it would be best if we just continued with our normal routine. At the time, I didn’t think much of it. I figured “Hey, he must just be bored and stressed.” He seemed flustered and excused himself to get us some drinks from downstairs.
He came back with some drinks. I remember that mine tasted odd. I chalked it up to flat soda and allergies to the cats. Soon after, I got extremely tired. I thought it was because I hadn’t slept a few days and it was catching up to me, and I was with someone that I trusted.
I woke up feeling weird. My clothes were gone, I was in his bed, and he was on top of me. His tongue was down my throat. Every ounce of trust I had went down the drain. I was enraged. He was the ONLY male I had trusted. He was my best friend. I hardly trusted my own father to not hurt me at this point in my life because of how rocky our relationship had been. The man I had just left was sexually, physically, and emotionally abusive. This man, the man I so foolishly had considered my best friend, had broken every ounce of trust. I don’t even know the full extent to what he had done to me. But I demanded a ride home.
I never went to the police because I didn’t think they would believe me and at the time I still cared for him as a friend. I didn’t understand at the time everything that had happened. It didn’t completely sink in for years that he had drugged me. It didn’t sink in that he was the one who took off my clothes, that he had touched me in places he knew I would never allow. And I didn’t want to ruin his life over it. But it hit deep enough that I began to hate all men. Every one of them.
A couple of months later, after barring him completely from my life, I was hanging out with my female best friend. She took me out with two of her male friends, who I didn’t like or trust. And a guy that I’d liked from high school met us at the place we were hanging out. He pulled me off to a secluded area and started kissing me. At first I didn’t mind. He was cute, and seeing him kind of rekindled the old flame. But then he wouldn’t stop. And I started pushing him away from me, but he would pull me closer. I’d tell him to stop, and he would tell me that I didn’t really want that. I started struggling and yelling.
My best friend with her friends came across us. I came to find out that she didn’t know he had taken me away and had been looking for us. He friends separated us. I was crushed, because once again a man had broken my trust. My friend, instead of consoling me, lashed out at him. Accused him of “using me to get to her because he knew she liked him.” She didn’t try to make sure I was okay. But her friends did. Her two male friends, who I hadn’t liked simply on the basis that they were male, told me that if they had known the extent to which things had happened they would have beaten his ass instead of telling him to leave. One, who had just gotten out of jail, said that if I knew where the guy lived he would be more than willing to go back to protect me from the guy. These two men were more understanding than she had been.
They took me home. I was too shaken up to be fun. My dad saw how I was, and asked me what happened. The guy worked with my father. I told my dad what he did. He asked me what I wanted to do. My only words were “I want him to go away.” My dad said he could make that happen. And he did. The guy moved to California within the month.
I began having doubts about whether or not all men deserved to be hated simply because of their penis.
Months later, I began going to school the place my dad worked at. I realized that a lot of the ladies there liked my father. He wouldn’t ever do anything to return this “friendliness” from the women. My father prided himself on being professional. He was a completely different person than he was at home. One of the women who consistently tried to advance on my father began to feel spurned. So she and some of the other girls conspired together. They made false accusations about my father. Saying he would touch them and speak inappropriately to them. The school wouldn’t even listen to my father. They wouldn’t even allow him to defend himself. “The accusation alone is proof enough” were their official words. They made him resign.
My father began working as the general manager of a chain of luxury refinery. The girls that he hired took a liking to him, and when he turned down their advancements, they did the same. They accused him of sexually harassing them. When he didn’t. Once again, he was forced to resign. “This has happened twice. If it happens again, we will be forced to revoke your license.” Once again, they didn’t even allow him to defend himself. They wouldn’t see the video footage of him telling them to stop. They wouldn’t see the texts of him telling them to calm down. Because he was male.
And I realized that I, as a woman, held more power than any man ever could. I realized that all it took was mere words to destroy a man’s life. That wasn’t weakness. It wasn’t oppression, not on a woman’s part. I realized that there were shitty men and shitty women. But there was no shortage of good men either. And there was no shortage of good women.
My resentment for men faded, and it faded fast. My resentment for feminism grew for forcing me to be so scared of men, because despite my terrible experiences there were men who were willing to go to prison to defend a woman that they hadn’t known for more than five hours.
My entire point is that you are allowed to be hurt by your past experiences. You are allowed to feel, to grow past it. But don’t harbor the hatred. Don’t turn it against the people who didn’t actually do anything to you. If a man abuses you in any way, shape, or form, it’s on him. It isn’t on the shoulders of every other man in existence.
Misandry isn’t the answer. Don’t let your fear turn into hatred, please. Learn to grow past it. Because no matter how scared you are, there are people strong enough to protect you, who are willing to do so in the blink of an eye. People who don’t even know you who still love you enough to treat you like family. And it’s not their fault that there are fucked up people. People, not just men. People.
it’s 2017 can we all just collectively agree that discriminating against someone because of their race/gender/sexuality is unnecessary and wrong?? like don’t overanalyse this. I’m not out here trying to compare the oppression of minority/non-minority groups, and I’m not trying to spark another debate about whether reverse racism or misandry or cisphobia exists. just stating what should be obvious, that nobody deserves to be bullied for something that they can’t control. not only is it pointless, but it kinda makes you a dick ??
what women on the internet do not think misandry is:
• making fun of men for their physical appearance
• making fun of men for their hobbies
• insulting men’s intelligence or putting them down simply for speaking their minds
• not allowing men to have preferences for their partners, physical or otherwise
• making it seem like boys are some lesser species than girls
• saying “I hate men” and “men should die”
• judging someone before you know them just because they’re male
what women think misandry is:
• they think misandry doesn’t exist??
• or worse they think misandry is cool and empowering???
-trans boys are boys and you dont have to indroduce them as trans because before of that, theyre people
-trans girls are girls and you dont have to indroduce them as trans because before of that, theyre people
-gay people dont hate straight people
-black people are not playing the victimn
-bi people are not confusing, bisexuality is valid
-pan people are not people that fuck inanimate objects, they just dont care about gender roles and body types (literally wtf???)
-polyamory people can have stable relationshipps
-lesbians are not a fetish
-kinks are not a problem as long as theyre appreciated by both of the partners
-men can suffer consequences from meninism (like not being able to be sensiblr because they have to “man up”) but they cant suffer meninism itself, saying that you suffered it being a cis male makes you kind of an asshole
-reverse racism doesn’t exist (hate does tho)*
-misandry doesn’t exist (hate does tho)*
*which doesnt give white people or men the right to say that they suffered from misandry and racism because of the fact that you are not considered inferior socially because of your gender or your color, its nothing that can actually harm you, maybe your ego but come on
I don’t like the increasingly popular use of the term “misogyny” for “sexism”. It seems to subtly suggest that the reverse notion, “misandry”, also exists as a systematic, ages old, society-wide discrimination against male people. What I would consider to properly qualify as misandry is instances of individual women who hate men. By analogy, misogyny is then defined as instances of individual men who hate women. Considering how globally spread, ingrained in our society, and thus common among people in the positions of power (i.e. mostly men) is the latter, it is generally summed up to a single social phenomenon known as sexism. There’s no “reverse sexism” on this planet so long as there are no prominent cultures in which women de facto are held superior to men.
So one of the people I know irl claimed that actually, living conditions in North Korea were actually fairly okay and that most of the things we hear about North Korea are capitalist propaganda.
She was obviously wrong. But that’s not the point.
The point is that I rolled my eyes and probably sneered.
As someone who values tolerance and respect for others, I’m disappointed in my response. I should either have responded politely or not at all.
I think I’m mostly upset by the double-standards. Saying, “misandry exists” has caused someone to hold a grudge against me for over a year! I couldn’t - and still can’t- say anything about being upset about antiwhite racism for fear of getting into a massive argument.
And my classmate just strolls in and does apologetics for North Korea, and no one even bats an eye.
But if I sneer at them, I am spreading the problem. I am resolving the inequality (that people can’t say things without fear) in the absolute wrong direction.
One might argue that, as someone with very little social power, I don’t have as much duty as more popular people do. This is compelling but incorrect. Sneering and eye-rolling makes individuals feel sad and hurt, and I shouldn’t do it no matter the power dynamics otherwise.
(Also, this argument is isomorphic to the privilege argument.)
I am going to work on cultivating a better attitude towards my classmates.