In many ways it is getting harder and harder to be a single woman in today’s day and age. I know a couple of married women who would say that things don’t get much better by being married in relation to how some men choose to treat them. I do not intend this post to be a man bashing, she-woman-man-hating-club kind of thing. What I do want to do is share a small list of the kinds of things that I don’t want…in a man, in the kind of attention I receive, etc. I want to share things that I’ve experienced to one) let people who have been fortunate to not experience these things know what goes on in the world and two) let women know who have experienced similar situations know you’re not alone…and it’s not okay. I realize that maybe some of these things don’t bother other women and that’s totally fine. Each woman has her own standards, deal-breakers, tolerance levels, etc. which again is fine…totally normal. But for me (and many other women), I may not make a big fuss about it at the moment and I may just deal with it, but really… these things just are not okay and it’s time to say so! So here’s my list in no particular order:
If you are a married man, I do not want to hear about the sextual problems you are having in your marriage. I do not want to hear that you have a high sex drive while your wife has none.
I don’t care if we are at the gym, I don’t want to hear guys asking each other if they’ve “beat it” today.
If I’m the only female on the court playing pickup basketball, it’s for the love of the game…not so you can pick me up. So especially if it is the first time ever playing ball with me, no, I do not want your number and no, you cannot have mine. I’m here to play ball, not to flirt.
If when at work you feel the need to get off the elevator you had just gotten on to follow me to the opposite side of the building only to corner me and ask me out…you have creeped me out and no I do not want to go out with you. When I email after the fact because I didn’t say no at the time because I was in such shock and I tell you that you made me uncomfortable…do not come to my desk area to look for me!
If you are married and think that you can get away with not wearing your wedding ring to make women think you’re single so you can scam on them… think again. We talk. We know who you are and what you are.
Just because you see me playing sports at the gym does not mean that I need pointers from you…particularly if I don’t know you!
If you are in your mid-late 50’s I’m sorry, I don’t care if you say I’ll have a good time and you’ll make me laugh…I will not go out with you. Especially since you asked me out at work (I was 23 at the time).
If I’m working out more intensely and more focused than you…no I don’t need you to show me a workout to get “better results”.
I do not need you flat out telling me, especially if you are married, how good my boobs look in that shirt…even when I’m wearing a turtleneck!
Whether we met online or not…I do not want to see phallic pictures of yourself that you just sent me especially since I didn’t ask for them! (I’ve asked other single and married women who’ve been in my shoes…they agree.)
Do not tell me that you just “need to be single to figure yourself out” only for me to find out a couple weeks later you are in a dating relationship. Just shoot straight with me.
Yes, I am tall (6’1″). Yes, I played basketball in high school and still play today. Yes,I play competitive intramural volleyball. No,that does not give you an excuse to follow me around the cafe trying to make small talk and then interrupt my lunch offering help if I ever need it with “my form”.
No I do not take being catcalled as a compliment.
Just because we met online and thus our only method of communication is Facebook, texting, etc does not mean you can message me late at night only to tell me some twisted sextual fantasy. I am not a booty call!
No, grown men should no be whistling at me and my friends (we we’re 14) so we’ll turn around so they could take pictures of us at the beach.
No, I don’t want to hear how the woman next to you at the gym is turning you on.
Yes I did see you look me up and down.
Yes I see that you are only staring at my chest during this conversation. No I don’t want you to buy me a drink, especially when I am only 19 and you just told me you have a daughter my age.
Just because I am out with my friends for a girl’s night does not mean that you can put your hands on me.
If I’m online dating and you actually send me a message saying “hey girl, how you doing?”…that is not going to illicit a response!
No, I do not want you following me around the store and peaking behind the shelves & isles (I intentionally went into the lingerie section to see if I was paranoid. I wasn’t…he followed me there too).
If you are married, I do not need you telling me you think I’m hot and that if you were single we would be together.
I am not a piece of meat. I’m not a bimbo. I have standards. I am a godly single woman, looking for a godly single man. Just because you go to church doesn’t necessarily qualify you for that title. Many of the inappropriate or disrespectful encounters I’ve had have been from church going, Christian men. I deserve to be treated with dignity and respect, not as a side show. I’m worth so much more than that! Every woman is. Whether in the context of the dating world or not…I may have tomboy interests and be “one of the guys” sometimes…but I am still a lady. I know etiquette is all but extinct in this day and age but seriously…men…and I say men because that’s what I want you to be…step it up!
I have been blessed to know some incredible men of character, godly, upstanding men. Guys who I call friends, brothers from other mothers, mentors/counselors, etc. These men have given me hope to know that there are quality men still out there. They’ve given me a standard for the kind of man I want to settle down with, the kind of marriage I want to have…it’s super encouraging. But unfortunately, what seems now more than ever is a culture of…well…douche baggery. And I use that term intentionally because quite frankly it’s the best descriptive term and as demeaning as it…that is how disrespected I and many other women have been by some of the men in our lives.
Now obviously there is nothing wrong with giving a woman a compliment, telling her she looks nice today, noticing if she did something new to her hair, or telling her you like her dress or her shirt. If she looks like she’s lost weight or you can see the difference in the new diet plan or fitness program she’s been working by all means tell her. But there’s a way to do that is respectful to both her and if you’re a married man, to your wife.
There have only two times in my entire life when men whom I did not know approached me and gave compliments that I give A+ to! One at the gym and one at work. Fellas if you want to win a lady over with a compliment and show her respect so that she’ll in turn respect you…take note. FYI- they key/winning factor in both is they both prefaced their compliments with stating they weren’t hitting on me!
The gentleman at the gym (and I say gentleman because he truly was) approached me and told me that he didn’t mean to interrupt my workout and that he wasn’t trying to hit on me. He just wanted me to know that he thought that I was very beautiful. Also that he thought the way that I carried myself was very attractive since most tall women tend to slouch and/or do not necessarily walk confidently. He then said he’d let me get back to my workout and left.
The gentleman at my work, whom I had seen around my building but never spoke to, was waiting at the elevators with me one morning. I had just come into work, it was raining outside, I didn’t have on any make up, my hair was just thrown up, and I was feeling just totally frumpy. He looked at me and said, “Excuse me. I am not hitting on you but I just wanted to tell you that I think you are a very attractive woman. There is just something about your spirit that is just so positive and you have this glow. There’s just something about you.”
Guys…men…step it up! We as women need men, real men who are going to be leaders in our lives and communities. I get that guys struggle with porn and lust and whatever else that our sex-crazed culture has continually flung your direction. But even if you are going to give into those thoughts/actions…and my prayer is that you don’t, that you fight against it…but if you are, at least show us the courtesy of keeping it to yourself. I get that certain environments create a specific culture that makes it easy to fall into a line of thinking which translates in how women are thought of and treated (ie, gym and military life). But to quote Nicole Kidman in “Australia”, just because it is, doesn’t mean it should be.
For the men who call themselves Christ followers…you are held to a higher standard, and not be me or by women but by Christ. Get the help you need to deal with the issues you have. Get some accountability. Get a mentor. Get in the Word! There are so many of us single, godly women waiting for godly men to pursue us. Given how the world or other guys treat us, look at us, speak to us…we need men who are going to protect us and encourage us and respect us and edify us, not objectify us. Married men, look at the single women in your life like little sisters and protect them as such. Set boundaries for yourself about what you will and won’t do regarding your interactions with other women who aren’t your wife and then share those boundaries with both your wife and another guy who will keep you accountable; someone who will call you out and ask the hard questions.
Ladies! Don’t let cotton-headed-ninny-muggens…you know, jerks…define who you are or set the standard for what you deserve; for what you are worth. Your worth and value lie in Christ. The life-verse of this blog and the one tattooed on my back is 1 John 3:1,2a– “For see the kind of love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God and so we are….Beloved…” You are a child of God. He is a King. Therefore…..you ARE a princess (and I say this being so NOT a “princess” type). But we are and we deserve at least the respect of one! So single ladies…don’t settle for anything less than a man who sees that and treats you as such!