OKCupid Creepers and Race Fetishism

It seems like it’s been a bumper year for calling out OKCupid creepers via Tumblr – Nice GuysofOKC, OKCupidGoldMine… even FedorasOfOKCupid1 which helped turn another fashion choice into a way that nature tells us “Do Not Touch“.

"Hey, some of us just want to be loved, ok?"

“Hey, some of us just want to be loved, ok?”

Online dating tends to mean that people often let their filters down – the anonymity combined with the impersonalization of online communication often leads to people saying and acting in ways that they likely wouldn’t in person; this is also known as the Penny Arcade Greater Internet Fuckwad Theory.

Yeah, pretty much like that.

Yeah, pretty much like that.

As a result: you get a lot of creepers on OKCupid… and a lot more people willing to call them out on being creepy.

A couple of days ago, the newest version of these - Creepy White Guys – was brought to my attention by readers. Creepy White Guys covers the various profoundly uncomfortable and occasionally downright racist messages that Asian women get sent by white guys who have “yellow fever” or a fetish for Asian women. This naturally started an interesting conversation over on the NerdLove Facebook Page about the nature of attraction vs. racial fetishism – who does it more and what’s so bad about it anyway?

Aside from, y’know, the racism and trading on sexual stereotypes.

(Obligatory ass covering: I’m a cisgendered, heterosexual white guy talking about racial issues. Odds are good I’m going to inadvertently shove my foot in my mouth at high speed. I apologize in advance if I say something stupid out of ignorance and I’ll make appropriate edits as needed.)

The Appeal Of The Exotic

The first thing that needs to be acknowledged: the unusual or the out-of-the-ordinary is appealing… and this includes ethnicity. When you have a relatively homogenous society – or one that has a significant ethnic majority – any divergence from the predominant look is going to catch attention. And some of that attention is going to be sexual.

What is common becomes – to a certain extent, boring. We see it all the time and thus we become used to it. Novelty on the other hand, is eye-catching… and appealing. It’s suspected that this is why blonde hair and blue eyes – both of which are caused by recessive genes – survived; the relative rarity and radical difference from the dark-haired majority made it stand out and caused it to be that much more desirable, giving that person a greater advantage when it came to finding mates.

This is also the frequent cause of so many people’s fascinations with other cultural groups – why so many prep boys seem to have a thing for alt-punk girls, for example. The alt-punks stand out from the usual and represent a change from the expected.

This fascination with novelty actually at least partially hardwired into us, if you will pardon the brief dip of the toe into evo-psych territory; a phenotype that is radically different from the predominant group represents a fresh supply of genetic stock, which represents greater reproductive health and survival chances for newborns. When you live in a small, contained community, you run the risk of crossing genetic lines that are too closely related and developing undesirable recessive traits.

See also: 90% of the royal families of Europe.

See also: 90% of the royal families of Europe.

An injection of genetic material from an outside source helps strengthen the local gene pool, weeding out congenital genetic defects.

All of which is a long-winded way of saying that we tend to like things that stand out, whether it’s accents, body types, hair color… or race, for that matter.

The problem of course, is that aesthetic novelty of different ethnic groups isn’t the only issue.

Fetishization Is Not A Compliment

Whenever you have an ethnic majority in any area, there will be people who will make presumptions about the minority. Some of those presumptions and preconceived notions will be sexual in nature, and people will be basing their opinions on them.

In the Tumblr Creepy White Guys, we see a fairly common racial fetish – white guys who have a “thing” for Asian women, finding them more desirable than women of other ethnicities. In and of itself, finding people attractive is neutral; your junk is into what your junk is into, no harm no foul. We all have types that turn our cranks more than others. The problem comes when it goes from simple physical attraction to fetishization. Case in point:

Can't imagine why this guy isn't knee-deep in pussy right now.

Can’t imagine why this guy isn’t knee-deep in pussy right now.

 

Let’s break this down for a second.

To start with, the man is dripping with entitlement issues; his listing his accomplishments – including being white – are set as evidence as to why he “deserves” a hot Asian woman. Notice how much care or attention he pays to the woman he’s writing to: absolutely none. There’s nothing about “hey, we both Neil Gaiman novels and long road trips across the country! We have a lot in common!” or about what attracts him to her as an individual. Instead, he’s asking her to apply – as though for a job – but only if she meets his stringent requirements. He knows nothing about her and cares even less.

Then we get to the fact that the man is a racist.

“But hey,”  I hear some folks say, “he’s saying that Asian women are the best. Isn’t that a sign that he’s not racist? After all, he’s talking about how much he loves Asian women.”

No. No, not at all. This pretty much makes him as much of a racist douchebag if he lead off with jokes about doing his math homework (or his dry-cleaning, for that matter) or martial arts.

No... just... no.

No. Just… no.

Just because these stereotypes are considered “desirable”2 that doesn’t mean that it’s a compliment; it reduces a person from an individual to a collection of stereotypes and presumptions based on race, ethnicity and cultural background.

His ideas of what Asian women are like are based off the idea that all south-east Asian women are docile and submissive – regardless of whether she’s Chinese, Mongolian, Thai, Vietnamese, Indonesian, Hmong, Korean, Japanese or Pacific Islander… or just plain American. Not only is he trading on racist stereotypes, he’s betraying just how goddamn ignorant he is of her cultural background.

His belief that Asian women are the “best” isn’t because of a love of, say, Thailand’s long and amazing history and rich culture, it’s based off the idea that an Asian woman will be submissive to him and treat him like a king, unlike those uppity white, black and latina women with their insistence on crazy notions like “equality” and “mutual respect”.

In other words: he’s hoping for a pretty, Asian fucktoy who will submit to his every whim, clean his house, cook his food and let him parade her around with his other possessions. She’s not a person, she’s a prop, a literal trophy. Just one that will give him blowjobs on demand.

Let’s look at another example from another classy gent:

There's nothing that gets a woman hotter than "Hey, you're one of the good ones,not like those men of your group..."

Because there’s nothing that gets a woman hotter than “Hey, you’re one of the good ones…”

This is another common approach from folks who have racial fetishes: assuming stereotypes about the men of another ethnic group and trying to set yourself in opposition to them.

We get a double-whammy here: the idea that all Asian women are submissive man-pleasers held in subjugation by chauvinist Asian men who will only abuse them, cheat on them and (super classy move, bro) rape them.

(Anyone else get the impression that this winner jerks off to the idea of “rescuing” his Asian princess after she’s been viciously gang-banged and getting ALL THE SEX as a reward?)

But of course, he wants to save her from all that and put her up on the pedestal where she deserves to be. So maybe he’s ignorant but his heart is in the right place, right?

Again: no. Much like the first creeper, this isn’t about her as a person, it’s about his idea of what Asian women are like. Just because you’re promising to “worship” and “cherish” her doesn’t make you better than the guys who are up front about wanting their geisha fantasy doesn’t make you any better. Just as with people who elevate geek girls to goddess status, it’s stripping the woman of her individuality and personhood and reducing her to component parts. By putting her on that pedestal, she’s no longer an individual, she’s a collection of fantasies, expectations and stereotypes (who dishes out killer blowjobs)… and expecting her to be  grateful for it.

It’s worth noting: while I’m focusing on white guys creeping on Asian women, this is hardly limited to folks with “yellow fever”; Creepy White Guys has just provided a convenient jumping off point with plenty of examples at hand. Racial fetishism covers the length and breadth of ethnic groups – there are people who fetishize African-American women, Latinas… pick an ethnic group, someone out there has decided they have a “thing” for them.

MRAs And Fanboys – Why People Fetishize Race

There isn’t any one group that ends up fetishizing other ethnic groups; you are as likely to find hard-core Nipponophiles3 who have an obsession with Japanese women as you will find men who have “given up” on white women because they’re too “independent”.

In fact, there are many Men’s Rights Advocates who fetishize women from India, south-east Asia and Arabic countries because of their supposed “docile” nature; they are – supposedly – “uncorrupted” by pesky modern ideas like feminism and equal rights and are more likely (or so the theory goes) to treat men “with respect”. After all, why deal with Western women who won’t put up with your shit when everybody knows Asian women would be so grateful that a white guy will deign to rescue them from their third-world homeland that they’ll treat him like a king.

"Hey, I ain't no racist. I just need someone to love me long time, ya dig?"

“Hey, I ain’t no racist. I just need someone to love me long time, ya dig?”

 Fanboy-ism is often another cause of fetishization. Many otaku, for example, go through a stage of Nipponophilia. Some reach a level where their interest in all things Japanese goes to an extreme; they want to be Japanese. They pepper their speech with pidgin Japanese, eat Japanese snacks almost exclusively, curse their Western heritage for not having the “luck” to be born Japanese… and look for Japanese partners exclusively. To them (and other fanboys; this is hardly restricted to otaku), a Japanese girlfriend – Japanese specifically, Chinese and Koreans need not apply – is the ultimate status symbol. It makes them Japanese by injection, living out all of his Love Hina fantasies with the symbol that he has achieved the Nihonjin apotheosis.

To be fair: there are also complicated social pressures that can lead towards racial preferences; the current western standard of feminine beauty puts emphasis on northern European features, for example. There is also a great deal of discussion about social coding that corresponds with interracial dating, especially in the African-American and Asian communities. This tends to fall somewhat outside of the remit of this site, but it is worth noting that it does exist.

The Difference Between Attraction, Preference and Fetish

After all of this, it can sound like I think that people who are open to or interested in interracial dating are hiding racial fetishes. I don’t. I do, however, think that people who are interested in interracial dating need to be aware of the potential. There will be times when it can be fun to be objectified; after all, we’re not just people, we’re pieces of meat and we like to feel desirable. The problem arises when a person’s interest goes from a preference to an active fetish; it goes beyond a fondness for an aspect of someone to becoming the foremost necessary quality.

For example: I, like many nerds, have a thing for redheads. Personally, I blame exposure to Molly Ringwald and Space Ace at an impressionable age.

 

DAMN YOU, DON BLUTH!

**Sigh** 

When all other things are equal, red hair can be a factor that pushes me towards one person or another. However, just because I like red hair doesn’t mean that I only date gingers, nor do I believe that redheads are somehow superior to all other women.

A preference can come from any number of places – familiarity, a positive experience, a negative experience, even pop-cultural exposure. A preference can color a person’s choice of partner but doesn’t necessarily overwhelm it; a woman might have a preference for tall Nordic men but be equally happy with her husband if he were short and Mediterranean because he’s himself.

With fetishes, the race and/or ethnic background of the person involved is of supreme importance. It puts the emphasis on the ethnicity and culture – and perceived stereotypes – rather than on the individual. It isn’t that a person’s race is one factor in a host of others that attracts them, it’s the sole factor. If the fetishist’s Chinese girlfriend was suddenly white or latina, his interest would evaporate. The dudes featured at Creepy White Guys aren’t interested in individual women who happen to be Asian, they’re interested in Asian women; if they were black, Persian or white, they would never have looked twice. 

Attraction is a complicated beast; we can’t know everything about why we prefer certain features or aspects about someone. It’s a complex mix of biological, evolutionary and cultural issues that can’t be picked apart easily. It is important, however, that we examine just what it is that attracts us to people… and the behaviors of the people who claim to be attracted to us.

  1. Which annoys me personally. I mean, I own a lot of hats, including a few fedoras. Suddenly they’ve turned into the headwear version of Ed Hardy. []
  2. by people who want women who won’t sass him back []
  3. weeaboos, if you will []

Comments

  1. Fedoras didn't suddenly turn into the headwear version of Ed Hardy. For as long as I can remember, they've been a beacon shining a light to the world warning the wearer lacks self-awareness.

    I would say fedoras falls into the "Dressing Like Someone You Aren’t," "Mixing and Matching," and "Over-Accessorizing." You aren't Bogart. They only match a cheap suit (which you shouldn't be wearing anyway), and as you said: "Keep it to a minimum. Ring. Watch. Done."

    • Also, barf at evo-psych.

    • Stay Excellent says:

      It's a fun aesthetic, as long as you don't take yourself too seriously. I wear a pinstripe-fedora with matching suit to meatspace meets of Mafia, period parties and some of the more relaxed formalwear occassions and I've yet to meet a person who mistook it for tryhard. But I suppose that falls under 'dressed appropriately for the event'.

      • I suppose it is okay with the one exception of a period party. ;)

      • I'm personally fond of bowlers but could never find the right suit for one. Most modern suits don't have quite the right look for a bowler, you need something a bit more antiquated and less flashy than most modern suits. The problem with fedoras, bowlers, and most other hats and caps for men is that they are really for an age where people dressed more formally when going out rather than just for work or special events. The only group that I know besides hipsters that where old-style hats on regular basis are certain middle-aged lawyers during winter and fall.

      • There definitely are some people who can pull off the fedora, and we know them when we see them. Those who can't… well, we know them when we see them, too.

    • Fedora's are one of those accessories that have to be use very very carefully. Plus they are only effective if they are high quality. The cheaper the fedora the worse it looks…

    • Clementine Danger says:

      I like fedoras. I like wearing fedoras. I like men in fedoras. Mind, I'm a steampunk cosplayer wannabe, so I guess my tastes are pretty eclectic to begin with.

      Seriously though, hats are cool. Everyone looks better with a hat. We should all wear more hats, and then everyone will be cool and suave and sexy.

    • One of my friends always wear a fedora; it's actually scary to see him without his fedora because 1) his head is really large and his mother gives him terrible buzzcuts and 2) we're so used to seeing it on him, it's like he's missing an arm if he's not wearing it. He probably gets by fine though, since he has the same aura of a lost puppy (and acts like one too). He's also about as threatening as a kitten…small lost children have been known to go up to him to beg for help, never mind the female who might be standing next to him. My boyfriend also wears a fedora on occasion; he looks like a hipster or oldschool mafia.

      I personally think the difference happens to be wearing a fedora instead of "I'M WEARING A FEDORA!!!! COME BATHE IN THE GLOW OF MY PERCEIVED AWESOME!!!" It's not a quality easily described in words but it can be felt. However, I firmly believe I am allowed this awesome aura when I wear the fedora which belonged to my badass military commander great-grandfather and is now passed onto me.

      • I get what you're saying about the aura. It's when people wear the hat specifically to draw attention to it, rather than just because they want to wear the hat.

    • I really don't get all this hate on fedoras. They aren't inherently a bad thing. I will say this, though. There is a huge difference between a fedora and a trilby. Exhibit A: http://www.fashish.com/styles/114.jpg

      Trilbys have been largely appropriated by the hipster movement, lending to the general dislike. They have a much narrower range of styles they fit well with; outside those styles, it takes a very particular body and face type to make them look good. Another big problem is that people tend to try to wear pinstripe trilbys. Those REALLY only look good with a matching suit.

      Fedoras are much more forgiving. Nearly anyone can pull of a fedora, if worn properly. It needs to sit well on the head, but that's really about it. Stick with solid, neutral colors (brown, black, grey) and you'll be fine.

      Case in point: I have worn a fedora nearly every day for the past 4+ years. I get compliments on my hat on a nearly weekly basis, and I have never received a negative comment. I don't wear anything special other than that, generally just cargo pants and a T-shirt. I'm a fairly average-looking person all around, so no noise in the data there.

      So, tell me again what's wrong with fedoras?

      • Also, I just looked at some of the fedora-shaming tumblers (there's a few of them), and there is a LOT of anti-nerd sentiment going on here. Sample: A fedora speaks volumes about one's character. It implies that he is a basement dwelling, live action role playing, no social skills having, complete and utter geek in the worst sense of the word.

  2. Man, I can never get all these fetishes – even specific common sexual ones like "feet" fetish – I guess that I simply like to keep an open mind about a lot of things, so the concept of "fetish" itself seems far from me. Do you I have a certain preference when it comes to choosing a partner? Sure! (And let's be honest, everyone has preferences) – I for example would prefer a white woman as a partner – but that doesn't mean that it's an exclusivity thing, as if a woman of a certain race is like some sort of rare collectable or something twisted like that. I can still find many other women of different racial profiles attractive.

    P.S. I think that you should also link to your "White Knight Syndrome" post, as that is another bad attitude that all these men present towards women – the concept that they are so special and unique that no other woman can compare to them.

    Anyway, thanks for another great post Doc!

  3. Man, that second example is bad in and by itself, but when you read the second reply (his after the girl unsurprisingly literally tells him to go fuck himself) the whole thing just devolves into pure parody.

    Thanks for the article. I'd been thinking about this sort of stuff myself (fueled by Creepy White Guys, no less) so it's always fun to read your thoughts on the matter.

  4. Just fyi, blue eyes are not a recessive gene. I know it was once believed to be, but that is false information.

    • Regardless, something being a recessive trait does not make it tend towards extinction. See: redheads are not going extinct,despite the many breathless news stories to the contrary. If anything, recessive traits that make someone more attractive could be selected for. And the redheads will inherit the earth.

      On an unrelated note, dark blue eyes with dark red hair is a very striking look. So put another one down for rarity increasing desirability.

  5. welltemperedwriter says:

    I keep wondering if these people who stereotype Asians as docile and submissive actually know any…

    • In my experience, they either don't know very many or only know women who are fairly recent immigrants and who aren't very confident about their language skills. I have a friend of a friend who married a woman he met on a mail order bride website. She was the perfect docile, submissive wife…for about a year and a half. Once she expanded her English vocabulary a bit, he came to the unpleasant realization that she had an actual personality and wasn't submissive at all.

      • welltemperedwriter says:

        That's a good point. My niece's nanny is Chinese and doesn't speak much English, so when everyone's conversing in English she's pretty quiet. When the conversational language switches to Chinese, I'm the quiet one! (I know about enough to say hello, thank you, and which way to the bathroom.)

        My sister-in-law is Thai-Chinese but went to the American school in Bangkok and to college in the U.S. (that's where she met my brother). She's about as docile and submissive as I am…which is to say, not at all!

        • Probably this; a lot of the Asian women (and men, actually. And non-Asians) who are foreign nationals whom I've met have been pretty shy with English speakers and much less so without the language barrier. Specifically Asian people might also seem quieter if they're recently from somewhere with different norms about how much one talks with people one doesn't know well.

    • No, probably not. The image Asian women as docile, submissive but at the same time very sexy women comes from bad late-19th to mid-20th century literature where Asian women would often fall in love with rugged White men like Madame Butterfly. Earlier, Jewish women filled a similar role, think Rebecca in Ivanhoe or Jessica in Merchant of Venice and lots of lesser literay works. Asian fetishists tend to forget that the rugged White man often ended up marrying a White woman in those works because thats they only way White men could really be happy. Plus, a lot of Asian fetishistists are much to uncultured to sit through an opera.

  6. I think you're confusing MRA with Traditionalist. The two aren't always one and the same. More oft than not they are diametrically opposed.

    • MRA are Traditionalists without the moral courage to say so. At least the Traditionalists is open about having really out-moded views.

      • In much the same way feminist means man-hater w/o the courage to say so…

        • Hah, no. Feminism is about wanting equal rights for both genders. There are many sorts of feminists, from man-hating lunatics all the way to the other side of the spectrum and in every other direction. Men's Right's Activists, even though the term is ostensibly about protecting male rights, are in practice almost exclusively mysoginistic assholes – they see men losing the dominance, power and privilege they have had over women for thousands of years, and see this as their rights being oppressed. They're rather like those fundamentalist Christians who scream 'persecution!' when they see the removal of Christian dominance over their respective society, or spoiled trust fund brats who claim to be persecuted when their trust fund is taken from them and they are expected to, shock, work and support themselves like 99.9% of adults.

          Feminists try to improve and protect the rights of the gender that has been on the lower rung of the societal ladder for centuries, 'MRAs' try to the protect the 'rights' (read: privleges) of the gender that has always held the power. When women are actually treated equally to men in society, not just legally but in the hearts and minds of the vast majority of the people, then maybe we can look at treating the alleged erosion of men's rights.

          • FormerlyShyGuy says:

            So if a man is experiencing an issue where he feels his rights are being abused, he should just stfu because ALL of his perceived rights are really just symptom of male privilege?

            Even if MRAs are "almost exclusively mysoginistic assholes" to dismiss all issues involved out of hand seems a bit callous.

            "When women are actually treated equally to men in society, not just legally but in the hearts and minds of the vast majority of the people, then maybe we can look at treating the alleged erosion of men's rights."

            So when all women's issues are fixed 100% then we can address men's rights? Nope we can't because they are alleged rights and can be dismissed.

            Am I saying we need to go back to our old ways like a Traditionalist? No. Am I saying we need to take away rights from women, or stop working toward equal opportunity for everybody? No. It just seems to me to be dangerous to dismiss the concerns of any group of people out of hand.

          • Clementine Danger says:

            "So if a man is experiencing an issue where he feels his rights are being abused, he should just stfu because ALL of his perceived rights are really just symptom of male privilege?"

            God no. If that were the case, if that's really what people in general and feminists in particular thought, there wouldn't be half an internet's worth of blogs and forums carefully detailing and explaining and discussing the issues we're having. It can be very tempting to look at the pile of writings out there and think, well, I get the gist of it, they hate the cock. But there's a lot of details in there that are super important and can't be condensed into a little acronym.

            Take the whole male privilege thing for example. It's often interpreted as "men have awesome things that women want, and women don't get those". That is not the case. Being privileged isn't about having things other people don't. It's about not being exposed to bad things, while other people are. Take my cis privilege. I didn't even know I had it until a couple of months ago, when I made friends with an intersex person and really had to confront some of my cis privilege, and all the ways I have contributed to the problems intersex people on the whole and Alex/Mona in particular face every day. I wasn't trying to oppress or hurt intersex people, or trans people. I just wasn't aware of their struggles, of my privilege, and as a result I said and did things that made life even more difficult for them. I can never take that back. What I can do is be aware of my cis privilege and work on it to neutralize it. It pays to be aware of privilege. I've become a better person since it's been pointed out to me. A person who doesn't unwittingly discriminate against intersex people. Same goes for my white privilege, my thin privilege, my straight privilege…

            Horrible things are done to men every day, by women, and you bet your ass I have enough moral outrage in me to be extremely pissed about that. But I would ask everyone in a position of privilege, men and white people and able-bodied people and straight cis people and all of those, to take a deep breath and remember that having privilege pointed out to you isn't an accusation or an attack on your character. I know it sure feels that way. But it isn't. It's an opportunity to become a better person. That's the thing with privilege. It's a wall between you and the people who could be your friends and lovers. That's all it is. Once you tear it down, there's a whole world of people there that you dismissed before. Good, fun, smart, worthwhile people you would never have known if you hadn't knocked down that wall.

            So don't be angry. We're not going to fix all the problems today, or tomorrow. I am sympathetic to your position, I promise. I just honestly believe that a world in which people are encouraged to check their privilege would be a better world for everyone. For women, yes, and for gay and transgender and disabled folk as well. Men too. Everyone would benefit. That's why I do it.

          • FormerlyShyGuy says:

            I am personally doing my best to be aware of and act better regarding the privilege I do have. I do not want to come across as angry but I have a pet peeve when I see what appears to be the blanket dismissal of the concerns of a group of people. Thank you for your reply it was well said and reasonable.

            That part of what Chett99 originally posted that I do agree with is the idea that it is important to distinguish between somebody that is a Traditionalist and a MRA. If there really are men's issues, just like everybody faces issues then are SOME advocates of those issues that are not anti women and are opposed to traditional values that hurt everybody. The Feminists being man hating blanket statement I disagree with along with the MRA's hating women blanket statement. Both are groups of people and like all groups of people there will be an incredible range all the way from reasonable, to the extreme of acting out with violence and hate.

            I think that what I am trying to say all boils down to please, all of you stop the name calling and debate the issues. Everybody has issues, lets try and address them without it being at the expense of others.

          • Clementine Danger says:

            I do have sympathy for many people active inside MRAs. I do hang around there. I don't participate, because I don't trust myself not to get angry and insulting, and I'm very afraid of being triggered, but I try very hard to keep in touch with what exactly it is I'm supposed to be understanding.

            I just… well, a while ago I read an e-book by two guys who were basically advocating raping women to protect the rights of men and keep women happy. Basically. I'm paraphrasing. And that entire book was filled with so much hatred and anger. But anger is usually a cover for something deeper. Once you get over your own anger at reading that (and subsequent panic attacks, in my case) you find this whole layer of hurt, and trauma, and sadness and pain, and you realize just how unhappy these men must be, and how badly they need help. And that's an extreme case, to illustrate a point, but it manifests in very subtle ways as well, that vulnerabilities disguised as anger.

            Men who hate women aren't happy. Men who are uncomfortable around women because they're women aren't happy. Men who rape women aren't happy. Men who can't really see women as individuals but rather as a monolithic hive mind aren't happy. These men are some of those who would benefit most from a culture that doesn't alienate women. And I'm not going to pretend to be a saint. I can't love men who physically or emotionally abuse women because they're women. I just can't. Too much personal baggage. I personally can't help them, because I have to look out for myself. But they do need help, and they deserve it, and everyone would be better off if they got it.

            And this is a very broad, blanket statement, I realize that, but I've seen a lot of pain and fear in those MRA communities. Once you strip away the bravado and angry flexing, you find a core of people who are in pain and hurting because of this situation we've created, this adversarial, distrustful tension that has somehow developed between men and women. I feel for those boys and men, because their pain is real and legit, and they have that pain because of a problem that actually exists. They're not imagining things at all. But the way a lot of them deal with that pain exacerbates the problem, and that can be very frustrating to me.

            How people deal with the hurt differs. You have the women who become man-haters, and the men who become woman-haters, but they all have that core of pain, and they're not very different. The thing with legit MRAs, people who do actually worry about men's actual human rights, is that they shouldn't exist. Not because they've got it wrong somehow, but because ironically, the issues they care most about are perfectly aligned with the overall feminist agenda.

            But there's this idea that equality is a bucket of coins, and there's a limited amount of it, and for women to have more coins, we need to take some away from men. And that's just not how it is at all. If I could snap my fingers and make the feminist agenda a reality right now, I believe men aligned with MRAs would be so much happier. Because that pain would fade, and that mistrust would go away, and they would be better off. Women would be better off too. And that's not such an unrealistic dream to have. All it takes is a slight shift in the culture.

          • FormerlyShyGuy says:

            I agree with what you are saying alot. I think that are great deal of MRAs that are deeply flawed. My first post on this is not directed at your point of view, my disagreement was with what Cameron had posted. I don't read comments in MRA spaces to get the "raw" view of that world, to educate myself on these issues I tend to read articles and watch view videos. I have no doubt that it not a nice place in alot of ways.
            disposablaty
            I don't think I would identify myself as any of these labels just yet since I don't truly feel educated on the topics involved, but think that there are issues on both sides that need to be addressed i.e. male disposability or the rape culture. Just to give one example for each.

            I think I have said all I can say on the matter plus it is bed time, good night Nerdlovers… Nerdlovians? I don't know night people.

          • Clementine Danger says:

            (Half this post got eaten. Anyway…)

            The thing that often occurs to me when discussing MRAs is that they are reactionary in nature. From what I understand, and I could definitely be wrong, they sprang into existence when fourth wave feminism started gaining traction, as a check against feminist theory and activism.

            Maybe I've been looking in the wrong places, (again, that's entirely possible), but I see very little positive activism from MRAs. I don't see MRA initiatives to end the horrible, disgusting, dehumanizing practice of prison rape, I don't see MRAs campaigning for equal treatment in child custody cases, or the discrimination against men in the child care sector, and so on. I'm sure they exist, or that these issues and more are part of some of them, but as a whole, they seem to focus on negative activism, on acting as a counterweight to the modern feminist movement, and that worries me a little. Mostly because, like I've mentioned elsewhere, I'm a person who sees a lot of value in positive activism, and while every movement needs critical voices, those voices should come from people who respect the movement, which is often not the case when you look at how the members of MRAs relate to feminists. And vice versa. But it's not a perfect opposite equivalency, because, like I said, MRAs are a reactionary movement. You can't gender-flip feminism and call it men's rights, because of the reactionary nature of the MRA movement. And… well, in the interest of having a discussion about this in good faith, it seems to me that a majority of the criticism levied against the feminist movement by MRAs are "women are mean to me and that upsets me, and I don't know how to handle that".

            I could be wrong. It's happened before. Please correct me if I am. But that's what I've discovered and thought so far. I'm always open to having more info about this though. Building bridges and stuff.

          • I think you're raising some really good points. And I'll add that I think there's something inherently problematic about movements that focus on the rights and empowerment of groups that already have the balance of power in their favor. Imagine if we were having this same discussion, but replace MRAs and feminists with white power groups and minority rights activists. Are there people in white power groups who don't hate minorities or hold racist attitudes, who have legitimate concerns about social policies and so on? Probably, somewhere. Are the people who are racist and hateful also unhappy and in some ways deserving of help and sympathy? Sure. But that doesn't mean that we shouldn't criticize the existence of white power groups.

            If there's a specific concern a guy has about men being at a disadvantage in some way, I have no issue with him campaigning for equality in that area and talking about that cause. But when you align yourself with such a general goal as "men's rights", it's very difficult for a group like that not to be full of problematic attitudes at the expense of those they do have privilege over, especially when as you say it was created not because of some concrete problem but as a backlash against an existing movement for gender equality. And those groups appeal to people who are already somewhat downtrodden or bitter, and encourage that bitterness to fester and turn into something more malicious.

            That's why I would take issue with the way the MRA groups seem to function. Not because the idea of men having rights is a problem, but because when a group is created even in part to allow people with power over others to hold onto that power, it's already taking an antagonistic stance rather than a productive one.

          • I there isn't any problem with having an organization devoted to men's issues; the problem is that MRA's, more often than not, appear to be mysognistic assholes. They seem to spend much more time complaining about women on the internet than actually working to alleviate men's problems in today's society, which is unfortunate.

            While there are plenty of feminists who do nothing more than complain about men on the internet these days, feminism as a whole has a much greater track record of working towards positive change.

          • I was thinking about this topic, because of this discussion, today, and it seems to me it's not just about action vs. complaining, but also about the target. I get the impression that most MRAs saw feminists trying to challenge the patriarchal system, which often means challenging things men are doing, and so they felt that to defend men's rights, they needed to challenge things women are doing.

            But if you actually look at the things MRAs usually complain about, those are things that are *also* decided by the patriarchy. Women didn't decide that men should be the ones conscripted to war, or doing the more dangerous jobs. Women didn't decide that it's a woman's role to look after the kids (leading to women getting favoritism in child custody cases). Etc. It's all part of the same system. If MRAs really cared about things being more equal for men in the areas where men have it worse, then they should be challenging the people in power (mainly men) who are enforcing those rules, not the women who are also trying to change our society. I get that there's a kneejerk reaction to shoot the messenger, but that doesn't make it an effective method of creating meaningful change.

          • Feminism has a pretty toxic and misandrist side to it, and I think a lot of mean feel threatened by that specific part of feminism.

            This is something that a lot of women don't seem to get. Men today are brought up to feel like they are part of the problem, and when some men are exposed to extreme feminism, it kind of pushes them over the edge.

          • I don't disagree that there are feminists who are hateful toward all men in ways I would consider to be unfair. But the fact remains that there are also lots of feminists who are working for change that benefits both men and women, who have brought about some of that change already, and who want both men and women to be happy. It is not an inherently antagonistic movement.

            The fact also remains that men feeling resentful because someone else was mean to them doesn't mean we can't criticize the existence of groups that seem to do nothing very productive, and to focus on attacking people who aren't causing most of the issues they claim to be concerned about. There are minority rights activists who say some pretty harsh and threatening things about all white people. I'm sure there are white people who feel threatened by that and get "pushed over the edge". That doesn't make white power groups okay.

  7. Clementine Danger says:

    When they were trying to launch Craigslist in Belgium, there were just a handful of personals on it. Every single one of them were from American men trying to lure a Euro-bride. Keep in mind that Belgium is an industrialized nation that does pretty well in almost all the rankings, not a mix of post-war East Berlin and a Stalin-era Siberian labor camp.

    "Hi! I am a rich man from Arizona! In my country, we respect women who are good to their husband. If you come here and pay for your own ticket, I will feed you!"

    That just had me baffled for such a long time. Although it's probably more of a seriously misguided hero complex than a racial fetish, so I don't know how relevant it is to this post. It just reminded me of that. Maybe because it's got the same stink of entitlement and cultural ignorance on it.

    And I find that the word that always comes up when these people swear of women of a certain race isn't too "independent", it's too "high-maintenance." It's gotten to the point where that word has become a major red flag for the people I know who do online dating.

    • I'd say that's a fetish as well. It's just that it's an incredibly ill-informed one.

      Good grief. I can't imagine a woman who would be interested in that kind of offer, period, but the fact that the man in question didn't know or bother to learn a little bit about a country before fetishizing its women is about as big of a red flag as you can get.

      • You can never tell about other women's preferences. This morning on the radio, the hosts said a guy would give their caner-research-for-kids fundraiser $10,000 if they helped him find the "love of his life." The requirements: must be a "kind and gentle soul," who "wants babies, and" "can drop everything to travel." The host accidentally dropped the key phrase "he's searching for his NEXT wife." Gee, I wonder what happened to the last one?

        And yet, TONS of women called in in response. I couldn't have imagined women jumping at the offer, but the world is full of all different kinds. I DO think the kind of women that respond to these levels of fetishizing are being fewer, though.

        • Clementine Danger says:

          Maybe it was the context. Personally I don't see anything overly entitled about those wants, although babies plus lots of travel = haha no. The kind and gentle thing… could be a clue, yes. Although it translates to "caring" as much as it translates to "submissive". Some people are just more naturally inclined to nurture than others, and everyone likes to feel cared for to some degree. Could go both ways.

          But seriously, babies and travel do not mix. Just ask those poor parents on every flight I've ever been on.

          • Paul Rivers says:

            Yeah, while I hear the "You can never tell about other women's preferences" part, I really don't see any of the above stuff being anywhere near the level of fetishization.

            A "kind and gentle soul" is something some women aspire to. I know a girl who if she was closer to my age I would ask out who could be described as that. If you read the personals, there are a TON of girls saying they love travelling and are looking for a guy who likes to travel. I'm sure a lot of them want kids as well, even if dropping everything to travel with kids is logically fairly impractical – the idea is still very very appealling to them. As for his "next" wife – for every divorced guy out there, there's pretty much always a divorced woman as well, looking for her "next" husband.

            I mean there definitely could have been something in tone of the interview that doesn't come across in text…I'm not really disagreeing because you started off with "You can never tell about other women's preferences", but I can see how that text description at least would appeal to a fair number of women.

          • The entire tone of the pitch struck me as "I'm a rich guy looking for a submissive gal, who will drop everything to accommodate me." I mean, kinda hard to hold down a job if you have to leave with little notice for the other side of the planet. I also find it highly suspect that a guy is essentially bribing a radio station with $10,000 to find him a woman…. what, dating sites are just too much work, better to just fling out your proposal to an entire metro area? Lots of perfectly fine people are divorced, but here's a divorced (at 32) uber-rich guy advertising for a "gentle" baby machine on public radio.

            The whole thing just struck me as wrong and distasteful. But Clementine was wondering what sort of women would fall for such a proposal ("I respect women! I'll feed you!"), and I was just pointing out that even in our country, there are some women who don't seem to mind being a submissive trophy wife.

          • Clementine Danger says:

            Hm. I guess I'm a little sensitive about the subject because my mother is a homemaker, loves being a homemaker and always dreamed of being a homemaker. She is by no means submissive, and I can't say my dad's a jerk either, she made a very conscious and informed choice, and yet she catches all of the flak for it.

            Like I said, it depends on the context, but I think we need to be careful labeling women who are naturally nurturing and gentle and want a more "traditional" role in their family unit as automatically being meek trophy wives. It's a matter of perspective.

      • Clementine Danger says:

        There's a couple of travel guides that praise Belgium for its excellent beer, stunning architecture, and naive women. That's not hyperbole. My vagina is a tourist attraction.

    • I think this is just a sign that a lot of people don't really like to pay attention to things that don't effect them directly. I'm not really into a lot of pop culture but I still try to know whats on TV or which musical act is popular so I know what people are talkign about. Its kind of important to be aware of these thigns. However, much to my dismay, a lot of people are very unaware of anything that doesn't really relate to them and can go through life oblivious to a lot of very important things.

    • Gentleman Johnny says:

      In addition to all of the other bad ideas in this that were already brought up, this guy didn’t think much about the economics of the situation. Anyone who can pay for their own plane ticket half way around the world probably isn’t desperate enough to be lured by an offer of food. Does he also offer to take Australian women to Disneyland if they fly to California in first class?

  8. Does anybody else feel that using the internert as a tool of public mockery isn't really the best idea? A lot of the Creepy White Guys probably deserve being mocked but that doesn't mean we have to do it. Part of being decent is treating the indecent with consideration and kindness that they really don't derserve. Cyber-bullying is wrong even if the target is an a-hole. I admit that this isn't emotionally satisfying and there are plenty of people that I find infuriating and would like to have publically mocked but its not going to change them. Tumblrs like Creepy White Guys really disturb me.

    • Gentleman Horndog says:

      I hear ya. I'm of mixed minds on it myself. On the one hand, I feel like these guys need to be called out, and that this behavior needs to be held up as an example of what's JUST NOT ACCEPTABLE, so other dudes don't go down the same road.

      But on the other, I don't feel that it's likely to change these guys' behavior at all. I actually expect precisely the opposite, that rather than make them re-examine what they're doing, it's more likely to make them double-down and dismiss anybody who has an issue with it (even if it's done in a less-public, more-supportive manner) as an asshole with an agenda. (And sometimes the people doing the mocking can be less than discriminating. I've seen ads on Nice Guys of OKC getting called out [in part] for saying they preferred women with shaved legs, which just feels dickish.) I mean, it's not like they're going to have to look very hard to find nests of other dudes willing to tell them "No, bro, you're doing fine! You're not the problem! It's all those women, who are all so fucked-up because of feminist feminist liberal liberal something-I-heard-on-Limbaugh decay-of-values mens-rights dickswing dickswing GRRR! Stay the course, bro!"

      But on the unsightly mutant third hand, maybe a good hard public pimp-slapping is the only thing that actually stands a fighting chance of getting these guys to re-evaluate their choices and attitudes. My girlfriend has tried politely warning guys on OKC whose messages to her oozed with Nice Guy Syndrome that they were coming across as passive-aggressive and very off-putting, and has gotten nothing but anger back for her troubles.

      Seriously, what makes the Internet a better place? An earnest attempt to reach those who may be unreachable? Sticking their fool heads on pikes as a warning to others? I don't have any good answers.

      • Just wanted to point out, regarding the shaved legs and Nice Guys of OK Cupid, it was never that they preferred women with shaved legs. The question was, "Do you feel women are *obligated* to shave their legs?" To which the men being called out answered "Yes."

        Obligated, not preferred. That's perfectly in line with the theme of that Tumblr, and I don't think it's dickish (at least not anymore than the rest of the page if you found it dickish). Women aren't obligated to groom themselves in any way they don't want to. I saw it being misrepresented as "preferred" in many places though, to give fuel to the fire of criticizing the Nice Guys of OKC Tumblr.

        • Gentleman Horndog says:

          I feel like it's easily READ as "preferred" in context, though. If that particular question had an option that read "No, but I prefer when they do", then calling them out for selecting "Yes" would be legit; but I'm not comfortable making that assumption. I can very easily imagine a decent guy making that answer as a "best-fit." "Obligated? Well, hairy legs squick me out, and I'm on here looking for potential sexual partners, so if they want to get with me, I guess they are…."

          Then again, it COULD be a comment on the guy's attitude towards how women ought to groom themselves, regardless of context. That's gross — but I question whether that interpretation is self-evident on a site specifically asking for personal preferences.

          Either way, compared to the other examples of entitled douchebaggery being skewered on that site, the "obligated to shave" thing struck me as really petty.

          • extinction says:

            As a chick, anything involving the word "obligated" sends off creeper signals and any guy who doesn't understand that isn't worth my time. I don't think it's petty at all.

            You can add explanations to any question you answer on OKC. I never even considered dudes who answered really black-and-white q's like that without a qualifier if they gave a weird answer. Maybe it seems harsh, but I never went on a bad date from OKC and I'm on my second serious relationship with someone I met there (the first lasted over a year; the current one is the best thing that ever happened to me) so I must be doing something right.

        • I agree that there's a world of difference between obligation and preference, but I still feel somewhat uncomfortable with the use of the question because I've answered it and think the answers offered tend to put lots of people in difficult territory. I think there are a lot of people who aren't used to articulating the difference between things they prefer and things they think everyone should do.

          The question offers only "yes" and "no" options, with no middle ground for people who shave their own legs or think their partners should do so, but who don't think that women everywhere should have to do the same. I think some people who answered "yes" might have been reading carelessly or not thinking about the implications, so I'm inclined to give them a pass in the way I wouldn't about the obligation to have sex comment.

          • I definitely don't think it's as bad as the obligated to have sex question, but it'd still be a warning flag to me that a guy was so careless/naive/whatever that he didn't bother to *notice* the word "obligation" or think through what it actually meant, and just casually answered with a statement about how all women should behave. (I mean, it doesn't even say "I think my girlfriend has an obligation…" or "women in relationships", it's just "women" full stop.) I wouldn't call someone a misogynist because of it, but I'd wonder what other attitudes he might just be carelessly hanging on to without questioning them.

          • Gentleman Horndog says:

            I'll totally concede it's a potential warning flag. I suspect most of the women I know would prefer my hypothetical prefers-shaved-legs dude see the word "obligated" and think "Waaaait a minute…."

          • That seems fair. I'd hesitate to date anyone whose reading comprehension was that poor and think it's a negative statement about the guy as a potential date. That doesn't really rise to the level of public mockery, though, as whining about being a nice guy who respects women while feeling that they're obligated to have sex when they don't want to would.

          • I have seen two guys do this: they answer the question "No." and then in the "add an explanation" box they had something like, "I don't think a woman is obligated to do this, but I do think smooth legs are sexy."

            As a woman who cringes to see guys mark "yes" as the answer to that question, the answer above didn't bother me in the slightest. Because the guys stated it as a preference, not a demand the way the question is worded.

        • I will say that more than a few of the Nice Guys of OKC seemed to be on there just because they answered "wrong" on a single question, which seems a little unfair. Especially if there isn't anything else problematic on their profile. I don't don't think most people put a great deal of thought into those questions (OKC encourages you to do as many as possible), and it's all to easy to misinterpret a question or just click the wrong box. "Public Shaming" seems a bit harsh for those guys, considering that there are plenty of examples of obvious assholes on the site.

          • I totally agree with this–I mean, there are a few questions that are so inherently creepy that I don't think you can wave them away regardless of what else the profile says (e.g., the one about whether you'd take advantage of a woman who is flirting with you drunk, but you know would never sleep with you sober), but I have seen some guys "called out" for what I'd consider to be relatively innocuous things and nothing else. People do get carried away, and I'd guess that's part of the reason whoever shut it down felt they should.

    • I'm of two minds about this. On one hand, I have seen people get mocked who I'm not sure really had done anything wrong–often when you get started on mocking and calling out, it's easy to get carried away, especially if you've had to put up with a lot of hostility directed at you and you just want to pay that back.

      On the other hand, I do think there's some value in posting these examples of problematic behavior for everyone to see. In these particular cases–so many guys will claim that women don't really have to put up with that much negative attention/harassment/harsh responses to not responding or declining interest/sexist views/etc. And it's easy for them to assume women are just exaggerating because most of it happens when they're not around or aren't looking. By posting it publicly, the women are drawing public attention to problems that are often denied or swept under the rug. Do I think it's likely to change how the guys being mocked are behaving? No. But it might make other guys who aren't quite so misguided take a harder look at themselves, or their friends, and speak up more. It definitely seems to get people talking about these issues, rather than ignoring them.

      And honestly, since it's all done anonymously, I doubt most if any of these guys ever realize they've been mocked, so it doesn't exactly hurt then either.

      If I would change anything, it's the photos that are sometimes included. I don't think it adds anything to the point that's being made to show most of the guy's profile photo, and if they just stick to the written content, it would keep things much more anonymous and focused on the real issue of raising general awareness rather than trying to shame the individual.

      • Gentleman Horndog says:

        I didn't even think of the "No, really, there are guys who REALLY BEHAVE THIS WAY towards women!" angle. That's a very good pro-heads-on-pikes argument.

        • Clementine Danger says:

          I will admit that sometimes when having this discussion online, it feels very good to just say "no, this really does happen, here's a billion links" instead of having that tired old discussion again and again and again. There are a LOT of people out there who are clinging very, very hard to the idea that the problem is perpetuated by just one or two isolated assholes and that there is no cultural problem at all. Being able to link to page after page after page of "just one or two assholes" can take the wind right out of their sails and really prove that no, these are not isolated incidents, this really does happen all the time, everywhere, every day. It's usually a huge eye-opener for people who genuinely believe there's no cultural problem and opens up lines of communication.

      • I get the point abbout the inherit value of posting problematic behavior and not wanting important issues to be ignored. The main issue is that the Internet gives a lot of petty and not so petty power to would be bullies. It makes it a lot easier to make somebody's life a living hell regardless of whether that person "deserves" it or not. Legally, I think that there should be some ramifications for cyber-bullyying or any other use of the internet to inflict misery on people. However, I can't think of away to write a law that protects innocent people from cyber-bullying while allowing things like the Creepy White Guys tumblr. Unfortunately, you need to protect a-holes to protect the innocent sometimes. There can't really be a "but he really deserves" it defense to internet inflicted mysery just like "he was an a-hole" isnt' a defense to assault charges that happen in the real world.

        • Alternately, we could err on the side of not restricting people's speech, even if it meant that some bad behavior would go unchecked, and instead concentrate on enforcing the laws we already have against harassment, stalking, and assault.

          Any sort of law I can think of about cyber-bullying wouldn't just restrict Creepy White Guys tumblrs, but also more small-scale discussions among friends about bad dates or people they disliked, or even negative reviews or blog posts about businesses that provide poor customer service (which can, in egregious cases, lead to people behaving the same way that they do when people are called out for being creepy on internet dating sites).

        • Gentleman Horndog says:

          The more I think about this, the more I think the anonymity factor is key — and why I think use of distinctive photos on Nice Guys of OKC may be where that site, valuable though it was, crossed a line.

          When you're publicly mocking somebody's BEHAVIOR without mocking THEM, that's not bullying. And it's really the behavior that needs called out in this context, not the individual. When somebody's being an overbearing entitled dickhole to my girlfriend, that's when it's time to call out the individual. When somebody I've never met and probably never will meet is being an overbearing entitled dickhole to somebody else I've never met and probably will never meet, I don't need information that could let me figure out who they are.

          I don't think it's bullying if you leave somebody the out of "No, that wasn't me! I'd NEVER say there are situations where a woman is obligated to have sex with a man! Now if you'll excuse me, I need to refine my OKC profile a bit. To find women. Who are not nor will ever be obligated to have sex with me."

        • I guess I'm just not seeing how the examples we've been talking about would make anyone's life "a living hell". Do you really think most guys who get called out on these sorts of blogs go checking blogs regularly to see if their profile has popped up? How likely is it that they'll even know? Since the guys are kept anonymous, it's not as if people are going and bullying them directly.

          And technically… Most of the posts that are more easily identifiable (including pics) are just what the guy himself posted publicly. If he's willing to announce to the entire world on OK Cupid that he thinks women are sometimes obligated to have sex with him, or that he calls women who only what to be friends with him b*tches, or what have you, is it really bullying for someone to repost his exact words somewhere else, just highlighting the gross parts?

          I've actually seen a bunch of women respond to a post that was made where the guy was geeky and maybe over earnest but not offense, telling the original poster that they thought she was being unfair to include him and that he seemed like a perfectly good guy. So there is internal policing going on.

          • Gentleman Horndog says:

            I see your point about how none of these guys probably suffered much, but it's the Internet; the potential for something going viral is always there. Becoming the Internet's Face Of Misogyny for posting something stupid on OKC seems pretty disproportionate to me, even if it hasn't actually happened yet.

            "is it really bullying for someone to repost his exact words somewhere else, just highlighting the gross parts?" What if the "gross parts" are, to the re-poster, the original poster admitting to being gay? I think you're assuming some things about the re-poster's values and judgment that perhaps you shouldn't.

            And I didn't realize there was a self-policing aspect at play; that's good to know, and a good thing.

          • "Becoming the Internet's Face Of Misogyny for posting something stupid on OKC seems pretty disproportionate to me, even if it hasn't actually happened yet."

            And that's why I do think the photos shouldn't be used–they're unnecessary, and too easy to identify by if enough people were paying attention (which I don't think are right now, but you're right, that could change).

            ""is it really bullying for someone to repost his exact words somewhere else, just highlighting the gross parts?" What if the "gross parts" are, to the re-poster, the original poster admitting to being gay? I think you're assuming some things about the re-poster's values and judgment that perhaps you shouldn't."

            Well, I thought we were specifically talking about the sites DNL mentioned, that are calling out "Nice Guys" and creepy guys. Which are, from what I've seen, focused on pointing out clearly problematic attitudes.

            But I still stand by what I said. Is it bullying if someone posts publicly that they're gay, and then someone adds them to a tumblr about Guys Who Are Gay? Yes, if you then add a bunch of hostile comments about the person, *that* would be bullying, but if you're just letting the person's words speak for themselves (which is what mostly seems to happen) then, well, it's their words. If they didn't want people reading them, they shouldn't have posted them.

          • Gentleman Horndog says:

            We were talking about the sites DNL mentioned, and that's kind of my point; we both agree with the values (entitled male douchebaggery is bad) and the judgment (the guys getting skewered are saying some really creepy shit) they represent. If they were, say, about shaming people for promiscuous or homosexual behavior, or if the people running them had a hair trigger and would shame guys for seemingly no reason at all, our perspective on those sites would change pretty dramatically.

            … though given that we both agree getting rid of the photos takes it safely out of the realm of bullying and ought to have been done here, I'm really not sure if, technically, we're arguing.

            Though I will say that appearing on this site is shaming in and of itself. If I saw something from my profile taken out of context and put on that kind of site (Hypothetical! Not accusing anybody of actually doing that!), I'd be pretty embarrassed to be placed in that company, even if what I said was, in context, perfectly fine. So I guess I'm arguing for anonymity. Which we both agree on. So I'm not sure why I'm typing this.

          • When it comes to mockery on the internet, I think it depends on who you're trying to reach. Is your message directed at the offending person or the greater audience watching?

            Are you looking to change hearts and minds or are you trying to make an example out of them?

      • I agree Mel. I think it can be harsh to "call guys out" and definitely shouldn't be carried away, but I think for generations women have been told to sit down, be quiet, and put up with this crap because we have no other choice. The internet has given us another choice. First, we can finally see that we're not alone and that we as women have strength in numbers, and second, when we shine a light on ugly behavior, we might not change THAT guy's behavior, but we stand a good chance of changing the temperature of the cultural bathtub over time.

        I have direct examples now I can show my son and ask him, "What do you see as the problem here?" And he can think about these things and we can talk about these things without me coming off as the "Mom that doesn't really know anything because no one really does that because I haven't seen it."

        In that way I'm hoping that I can raise him so that when he's confronted with terrible behavior from friends, he has the fortitude to stand against it with confidence. That can't happen if nasty behavior stays in the dark, whether it is racist behavior, or sexist behavior, or homophobic behavior.

        • Lots of groups have been told to "sit down, be quiet, and put up with this crap because we have no other choice" besides women. My group has been told that and we have been told because of our persecution that we need to behave like angels, that we should no better and not seek revenge. Why does one persecuted group get revenge and other persecuted groups do not?

          • Clementine Danger says:

            "Let's do something about global warming!"
            "No! We can't! Racism exists!"

            Honing in on one issue isn't synonymous with ignoring or dismissing all others, and frankly I'm getting a little tired of that particular conversational gambit. Most people have enough of a social conscience to worry about more than one issue at a time. It's just that we're not discussing all the other issues right now. I don't want to disrespect or dismiss anyone else's issues, and I am sympathetic to your cause, but if we're going to have to add qualifiers about how other problems and marginalized groups exist parallel to this one, we're going to be here for a while.

          • What Clementine said. And if it makes you feel any better, a quick search revealed to me that there is also a tumblr for calling out anti-semitism! http://this-is-not-jewish.tumblr.com/

            Anyone who wants to can post things on the internet to protest something they don't like. And anyone who does is probably going to have people criticizing them for being too harsh/taking the wrong approach/whatever. It's not as if the people who call out Nice Guys or creeps have total or even a huge amount of support. The Nice Guys of OKCupid tumblr doesn't even exist anymore, I assume because pressure led to it being taken down.

            In short, this isn't a case of "everyone's letting this group get away with X, but not this other group." No matter what cause you're crusading and how you do it, there will be some people who support you and others who criticize you.

        • Clementine Danger says:

          There's two kinds of activism. There's negative and positive activism (which is not synonymous with "bad" and "good" activism). One says: "Look at this awful thing! I hate that thing! Let's get rid of it!" The other points to the diametrical opposite of that, and says: "That! We want more of that! That there is awesome, and we should all have more of it!" It sounds like the same thing, but the approach and methods are wildly different and affect the people who see it happen very differently. They both have value, and both approaches come with risks.

          I think there's a case to be made for this type of thing as negative activism. My biggest problem with negative activism is that it comes from a place of anger, frustration, and sometimes even outright hatred, and people can sense that. All that can be justified and motivating, but when the goal is to win people over to your side, it's not the best tool in the arsenal. It's why I personally prefer positive activism when it comes to social and cultural issues. Again, both have value, and we need both to make a change, but in this particular case, I think there's more potential for harm than there is for growth.

    • I'm uncomfortable with mocking people using their real names, profile names, or profile pictures. I would have preferred it if the tumblr had blacked out the photos entirely rather than just the eyes.

      I think it's far less of a problem when people post text only, and particularly when they post text that was sent to someone directly, rather than sitting on a profile. We all discuss people who behave unpleasantly in real life. I don't see how discussing people who behave unpleasantly on the internet is different, so long as precautions are taken to prevent people from identifying or harassing the person in question. As Mel said, I think using exact text tends to be helpful because it shows people exactly what kinds of messages are being discussed and what's wrong with them. That can be both helpful to people who aren't as far gone as the ones being discussed, and can perhaps foster a little understanding toward women when they try to point out to men that not all of the sexual attention they receive is desirable and that some of it is threatening or disturbing.

    • Gentleman Johnny says:

      Without having looked at the rest of this thread, let me say this: yes, it is important to be mindful of mocking a specific person on the Internet. That's its own long discussion. However, I feel that the standard removal of names and pictures makes this a different sort of animal. Its more of "people are idiots. Don't be an idiot" than it is "look at this racist fuck. Let's all write to his boss and get him fired."

    • I have no idea why a question of inquiry about the merits of using the internet for public mockery got two thumbs down. I'd question the merits of public mockery for any group. I'm just using Creepy White Guys because thats the topic of choice.

    • Discussions are not bullying. If it takes lightly poking fun at guys for them to choose improve their poor behavior — are you really losing sleep over it?? Social change can be good.

  9. Does anybody why we call red-heads ginger? The color of ginger reminds me more of dirty dishwater than red.

    • It's because of Ginger from Gilligan's Island, not the spice.

      • Thats kind of surprising. I thought ginger was mainly a Britishism for red-heads. I haven't heard any American refer to red-heads as gingers till Harry Potter became really popular. Its kind of surprising that a character on an American show would become British slang for red-heads.

      • Gilligans Island never made it to the UK, so I doubt we got it from there! I always assumed it was because ginger bread and ginger snaps are pretty close in colour to red hair.

    • Anonyleast says:

      Modernly in America? Because a South Park episode that gave bullies another word to use to bully red-heads.

  10. Gentleman Horndog says:

    I feel like any white dude dating interracially needs to be aware of this dynamic. Even if you're being non-fetishy, totally into her as a human being and would be enjoying her company regardless of ethnicity, the fact that there ARE creepers like this out there makes the entire topic a minefield. There's an excellent chance she's had to deal with jerkasses like this at some point, and you do NOT want her putting you in their company. I don't have much experience here, but I suspect it's likely best to avoid the subject of her ethnicity being part of what attracts you to her until you're damn sure she thinks well enough of you to give you the benefit of the doubt. (Or just not bother unless she brings it up. Seriously, the women I've dated have not, generally speaking, needed to hear laundry lists of why I thought they were hot.)

  11. Thanks so much for discussing this topic Doc! It's a really fascinating and thorny one.

    I worked in Japan for a year, and it was fascinating/scary/weird how many of my male counterparts went abroad JUST to score with Japanese chicks. I think in my prefecture, nearly every guy had at least one Japanese girlfriend, and many went on to marry a Japanese woman, despite the fact that at least a handful of them barely spoke Japanese at all, and the ladies' English was shaky at best.

    On the flip side, hardly any of the foreign ladies dated any Japanese men. If they dated at all, it was other foreigners. I mentioned this once at an enkai (professional drinking party), and I was suddenly surrounded by a dozen of my middle-aged, female Japanese teachers assuring me Japanese men LOVE foreign women; they seemed to feel very strongly about the topic (or they might have been drunk.)

    Still, as weird as I found that whole experience, the girlfriends of my male foreign coworkers at least seemed happy and pleased; it seemed to be mutually beneficial. It was certainly a far cry than what I saw CONSTANTLY on dating boards and cons, in which guys complained *endlessly* about Western women. On one particular forum I used to frequent, I couldn't turn sideways without running into a thread about how Asian women are awesome BECAUSE they're docile, or how East-European women aren't "fat and stuck-up," and how Western men need to "attention starve" Western women back into "shape" so they'll be feminine (and thin) and docile (and thin) again.

    Since then, I've had a really, really hard time untangling ethnic preferences among men, to racist stereotypes, and downright hatred of women. I know there are guys who just enjoy certain physical features (in the same way I enjoy brunettes with glasses), but so many of the guys I have run into that state a preference for Asian women seem to do it out of some deep misogyny and racism.

    I think the Doc's rule of thumb is a good one: if you changed the girl's ethnicity, and would still date her, then you're probably in the clear.

    • I spent my junior year in college in Japan and noticed a very similar dynamic. Nearly all of the men would date Japanese women but none of the women would date Japanese men.* Most would neither not date for the semester or year abroad or would try to find a non-Japaense man to date. Never figured out why the women wouldn't date Japanese men but the number of couples I know where its a non-Asian women with an Asian man could be counted on my hands. I know many more couples where its a white or black man with an Asian woman.

      *I went on one date when I was in Japan. Most of the time I was too busy studying, since I decided to choose an academically rigorous course of study, or just exploring the Tokyo area by myself to care. Walking around random areas in the Tokyo metro as a flaneur isn't probably the world's most romantic date. I also think that a lot of Japanese women didn't really find my curly hair and body hair to to be attractive.

      • I went to a high school where most of the kids were Chinese, and I didn't know any Chinese guys who dated white girls, though there were several white guys who dated Chinese girls. So I'd agree there is a pattern.

        As to why, my best guesses are that it's a combination of a few factors:

        -The Western standards of physically attractiveness (which many people internalize) fit the average East Asian woman much better than the average East Asian man (women being petite and delicate-featured tend to be seen as much more attractive than men with the same profile).
        -The stereotypes of East Asian behavior/culture are much more positive, in terms of the other person being a dating partner, for women rather than men. And many people aren't willing to think past the stereotypes.
        -I get the impression that *on average* East Asian men face more pressure from their parents to marry a someone who will fit with the family than the women do, because the guy is the one carrying on the family name/line.

        • According to my gaggle of middle-aged Japanese women, part of it is the traditional dating structure in a lot of Asian communities (even in America.) A lot of couples meet either through work or through match-making (friends, parents.) Cold approaching or asking girls out on dates isn't taught as part of the culture, putting Asian guys at a distinct disadvantage in societies where it's expected for guys to make the move. Some of the Japanese girls I asked about it said they'd never been on a romantic date, so they were thrilled when foreign guys did it.

          I think family pressure is also a big deal. In really blunt terms, their daughter marrying a foreign man is seen as a boom because it can bring the parents economic advantages (since the man's job is to make the money.) Their son marrying a foreign woman, though, brings nothing to the table…. and is actually seen as a threat, because usually the daughter-in-law is who takes care of the elderly parents. If the wife is a foreigner, the parents assume they will be shunted aside. (Note: this is exclusively an observation of Japanese culture, and is a broad generalization.)

          • There are actually more Japanese and South Korean men married to foreign women than Japanese and South Korean women married to foreign men. Its just that the foreign women tend to be other Asians, Filipino, Vietnamese, etc., than white women. Japanese and South Korean women tend to date white or black men more than other Asian men, so its more visible in our eyes rather than just looking like an Asian man with an Asian woman.

        • A person I once knew, in a discussion on why there aren't a lot of Asian-American male celebrities at the time Pat Morita died, perceptively observed that, at least in American culture, Asian men have all of the negatives associated with Jewish men and none of the possitives. Like Jewish men, Asian men are generally perceived as being intellectual, not athletic, and not what you would call leading men material. However, Jewish men do get the positive attributes of gentle, kind, funny, etc. Asian men do not.

      • My experience living in Japan wasn't that us Western ladies didn't want to date Japanese guys, but that they didn't want to date us! I, and my friends, tried really hard to flirt with guys, and even got our Japanese friends to drill us on chat up lines, but to no avail in my case (a few of my female friends did luck out, but nearly all with guys who had either travelled or were a bit rebellious). And I'm not just talking disinterest, but completely blanking us, looking scared and like they were praying that we'd leave them alone!

        My theory as to why this was is a combination of Japanese gender roles being much more traditional, and Japanese culture being very "Oh! No, you go first!". This means that if you ask your average Japanese girl what she'd like to do on a date she'd probably say something like "Oh, whatever you like! Seriously, whatever you want!", whereas your average Western girl would be more like "Hmm, well I'm in the mood for pizza…". As a result, Western girls look comparatively scary and demanding to Japanese guys, whereas when the genders are reversed, traditional gender roles paper over some of those cracks (ie. a Japanese girl would be less shocked that her date would have suggestions about how they spend their evening). Just a theory, and of course there is still a lot of variation in both groups.

    • It’s the same fetish issue in a different culture. IME, they’re not interested in dating foreign women — they’re interested in sleeping with us. Japanese (and Chinese) media portrays us as Slutty McSlutterinas, and American media reinforces the idea.

      • Truth! Especially black American women. We're usually portrayed in the media as being either aggressive, sassy, sexually-insatiable, or all three. So dating abroad can get a bit thorny with the assumptions, the same way it sometimes can when dating interracially here in the US. Ask me how I know!

  12. Paul Rivers says:

    You know…this article really reminds me of accurate all level-headed critisisms of using the word "creepy" are.

    Separate uses of the word creepy –
    1. Indicating potential physical danger
    2. Not indicating physical danger, but low status or attractiveness (a balding unattractive guy is usually the creepy stereotype)
    3. Not indicating physical danger, but used for shaming what someone considers socially unacceptable behavior that's not related to danger – like someone who has a racial preference in dating, for example.

    • What about:

      4. Indicating attitudes and behaviors that will make a person a very poor romantic partner.

      The sorts of racial fetishes discussed here fall far more into that category than into your third one.

      • Paul Rivers says:

        Well…that's kind of what I mean. A number of previous articles from Dr Nerdlove have insisted that creepy is ALWAYS about physical danger. It is sometimes – and anyone who claims it's "never" about physical danger is completely full of crap.

        But it's not always, and it definitely seems to be used as a shaming word for other things.

        On your #4, I certainly agree with you that that's definitely something to look for, but…well that's kind of my point that the way women use the word creepy is not always about physical danger.

        • It's sometimes about physical danger. It's sometimes about boundary-violating behavior. Both are perfectly fair things for women to be wary about.

          As far as I can tell, it's very rarely about low status and attractiveness. Some mean girls are mean, but most of the time when men who are unattractive are called creepy, it's because they didn't cease making advances after the woman signaled disinterest. That's not being called creepy for being ugly. It's being called creepy for refusing to take no for an answer.

          Your characterization in your third point is the most harmful of the bunch. It's not shaming to be uncomfortable when someone objectifies you or stereotypes you. That sort of behavior hurts other people.

          • Paul Rivers says:

            "Your characterization in your third point is the most harmful of the bunch. It's not shaming to be uncomfortable when someone objectifies you or stereotypes you. That sort of behavior hurts other people."

            My point wasn't about whether it's bad or not to shame on that stuff (that's an entirely different discussion), my point was that using the word creepy to shame on that kind of stuff shows that creepy isn't always a word indicating physical danger, contrary to some previous claims I've seen that creepy is ALWAYS about physical danger.

          • Would you please stop going on about this whole "always about physical danger" thing when elsewhere in the conversation people have pointed out that this isn't the case, using direct quotes from the article you cited as supposed proof? You're basically derailing the conversation by trying to make it about something it's not, and then arguing about that thing it's not, instead of talking about the actual issues being discussed. And that's kind of annoying.

          • Paul Rivers says:

            Then I don't understand why we keep going on about this either. I disagree about whether have people in the past have strongly asserted it's completely about potential physical danger, but I have no problem dropping that – as we all seem to agree that creepy is not always just about potential physical danger.

          • Gentleman Johnny says:

            Except that if someone doesn't see you as a person, that IS a sign of POTENTIAL physical danger. A guy who wants a hot Asian trophy wife because: Asians! Is a lot more likely to use physical force to "keep her in line" if she's not "docile" enough. That's how dehumanizing people works.

          • I find it so hilarious that this site mostly consists of a bunch of women upvoting each other and downvoting anyone who says anything remotely critical about the collective belief doctrine on here.

            So much for open discussions and being willing to question oneself, hah!

          • Clementine Danger says:

            Did you mean to say hilarious? Because I think the word you're looking for is "sad". Or maybe "frustrated". Or "scared". Or maybe just "unhappy".

            Buck up. It gets better.

          • Enjoy your 20 plusvotes for that insightful comment.

          • I find it sad that you think the voting status of any given comment is somehow more important than the fact that many people here take lots of time to discuss with the people they don't agree with why they don't agree. In case you haven't noticed, the women you're complaining about *are* having an open discussion about it. Even the most down-voted comments generally have replies explaining what the issue is. I only asked Paul to change the subject because he'd said the exact same thing several times, totally ignoring several people pointing out, with proof, that his statement was inaccurate. And you're saying *we're* the ones who aren't willing to question ourselves?

            What exactly is it you would prefer? For the women to leave? For them to pretend they don't disagree with certain comments? How would that make for a more open discussion, if you're just eliminating people or their opinions from the conversation?

          • See below. Unless you have a different link, I'm not on board with the fact that creepy always has to mean a physical threat. It certainly can mean one, but a signal that someone is going to treat you poorly in ways that will only harm you emotionally can still provoke a fear response and set off the "GET AWAY! GET AWAY!" alarm bells. Ultimately, I think that response is what the "creepy" label is about.

          • Paul Rivers says:

            In the interest of trying to wrap up the discussion, then I'll just say that it sounds like we agree that creepy is not always about physical danger.

          • No, it is not always about physical danger. In my mind, it is about being scared. In yours, it's about many other things. We're not going to be able to hash out the substantial differences in our positions that go beyond the initial misunderstanding, so it would be better to drop the creep discussion and talk about race-related aspects of it. But we do not really agree.

          • Clementine Danger says:

            It really doesn't sound like that at all. Like, not even a little bit. But I'm definitely okay with dropping it.

          • I disagree with your notion that "sometimes" women are mean. In aggressive settings like night clubs, most women are total assholes.

          • Guys are too, of course, but that doesn't make it any less true.

          • If you don't want to deal with these terrible mean women, there's a simple solution. Don't go to night clubs and hit on them! Novel, no?

          • So, you disagree with the idea that "sometimes" women are mean, because in *some* select settings, most (according to you) women are mean? If women are mainly mean in aggressive settings, but not others, isn't that the definition of "sometimes"? Eselle wasn't talking about women in nightclubs, she was talking about women in general.

          • my point is that youre downplaying the fact that creep-shaming guys with bad or selfish intentions happens quite often.

            its so funny that women ask guys to respect your expressed experiences, but when a guy has experienced creep shaming from a woman who is clearly just being selfish/entitled or otherwise an asshole, its just an exception.

            heres a newsflash: women are, quite often, total douchebags. much like guys. and this is what a lot of guys are trying to say.

            welcome to reality!

          • Clementine Danger says:

            So you're saying that bad people being assholes is annoying. Huh.

            There has GOT to be a way to express that sentiment without sounding like an antagonistic douchebag.

            EDIT: goddammit. I fail. Sorry. I'm sorry for calling you names.

            I hate it when I do that. I'm sorry. But do you see how angry what you say is making me? That's because it is so very, very clear that you don't like me because of my biological sex. We've never met, we've barely talked, you don't know what I'm like, and yet your attitude towards me is hateful, just because I happen to be a woman. That just hurts so goddamn much, you know? You thinking ill of me because of something I was born with and can't change hurts like a motherfucker, and it upsets me. It sucks. I get angry. But I shouldn't call people names because of it.

            I'm sorry for insulting you. It just hurts is all.

          • Uhm… what.

          • Yes, I believe creep-shaming is the exception. Just because according to you it happens quite often *in night clubs* doesn't negate the fact that most of life happens *outside* of night clubs. I have honestly never seen a woman "creep-shame" a guy in my entire life, so why should I believe that it happens "quite often"? Do you seriously go around seeing women loudly denouncing guys as creeps, who have done nothing odd, on a regular basis? (Not just in night clubs. On the street. In coffee shops. At conventions. Wherever.)

            A newsflash for you: A guy's experience of how women call men creepy is not an accurate measure of how women use the term. Why? Because when a woman *really* feels creeped out by a guy, she's generally not going to tell him about it. She feels uncomfortable or unsafe in some way–of course she's not going to want to provoke him. So it's only going to be something she thinks in her head, or talks about later with friends. The guy, most of the time, never hears it, except in discussions like the ones on this blog.

            So what do guys hear? Guys are much more likely to hear "creepy" when the woman isn't actually creeped out, and feels confident enough to insult him. Women, on the other hand, can both observe it happening in those sorts of situations, and hear about it from their friends or see it in themselves when it isn't directed at the guy. So I think women have a better sense of in what way the term is used to majority of the time than guys do.

            And honestly, how is it relevant that some women use "creepy" as an insult? That doesn't negate the use of the word to describe behavior that actually makes people uncomfortable. I'm sure there are all sorts of words that get used unfairly–people called "jerks" who didn't actually do anything mean, people called "liars" who were actually telling the truth, etc. Does that mean we should no longer be allowed to use any negative term when talking about someone who affected us in a negative way, just because sometimes people use those terms inaccurately?

          • if you have never seen the type of creep-shaming im discussing then good for you, but guys are quite aware that the mating ritual between men and women as it is today is mostly based on women screening out men, which consequently creates a culture allowing women to be vocal and malicious about it.

            nobody is downplaying the importance of being able to protect yourself from danger, but just look at the norms of today and tell me that this isnt allowing for the kind of behavior im describing.

          • Well McGee, if we're still talking club based "mating rituals," then it usually goes:
            guy appears from nowhere and rubs his junk on woman's ass. She moves away. (polite rejection) If he continues to attempt groping, or a variety of drunk flirting, she grabs a convenient friend or tries to sneak off (rejection). If he continues bothering her, then the rudeness comes out. See, it's not coming out of nowhere.
            Also, most men will respect the non-verbal rejection before getting yelled at. And most women are hesitant to be outright assholes. There are of course the exceptions…

            Also, Amanda Marcotte wrote a pretty good piece on creep-shaming such as it is. http://www.rawstory.com/rs/2012/09/07/but-some-wo

          • Where we disagree is the "most women are hesitant to be outright assholes. There are of course the exceptions"-part, because there are a lot of those people. A lot. And when guys express that sentiments, they are usually yelled at it seems.

          • Do you regularly get yelled at by women in clubs for being a creep? Like as a regular, several times a night thing? Because you're giving the impression that all your interactions with women are hostile and unpleasant.

            Also, this is the kind of comment Clementine was taking about. When you insist that most women are assholes, you piss off and offend women.

          • Just read that most of your points come from observation, not personal experience so nix that first part.

            Instead consider this: if you see a woman yelling at a guy to "leave me the fuck alone, creepy asshole!" That didn't come out of nowhere. This is not their first interaction. This is a follow-up to his pushing boundaries and ignoring her socially acceptable rejections. Don't believe me? Watch some people the next time you go out. Watch the little dances women will do to get away from men they don't like (running off to the bathroom, dancing really close to a girl or safe friend, going outside for air, etc). And watch for the guys who ignore these rejections. These men will be the ones getting creep-shamed, count on it.

          • ive seen that.

            ive also heard women talk shit about guys, openly calling them creepy, like gossiping about their coworkers and calling them creepy for looking or behaving in certain ways, or hearing otherwise nice female friends get all bitchy and pointing at total strangers and calling them creepy. "look at that guy, what a total creep"

            also, my latest girlfriend, who is also otherwise a nice person, proudly explained to me the shitty things she's done to guys as if it was the most acceptable thing in the world.

            the worst part is that whenever i call women out on this shit, they wave it off as if it was the most normal and acceptable thing in the world.

            these are things i have seen women of all kinds do, and i would like to repeat my earlier comment about how this is part of women having the "screener" role in western society and therefor feel entitled to openly judge men, which give way for this awful female behavior that men have been trying to bring up on this site (and other sites) and which you all refuse to admit exists.

          • So you're acknowledging that nightclub creep shaming doesn't come out of nowhere. Those places encourage a certain mode of behavior. If you really hate it, don't go there.

            As for your coworkers and girlfriend, I can't really speak to that. What do you want to hear? From your descriptions they sound like mean people. Since I left high school I haven't known any women who like to sit around and say nasty things about men but I suppose I don't associate with assholes.

          • if youd care to read my comments youd see that ive already said that im not arguing against the importance of being able to protect yourself from harm. im saying that a lot of women on the internet seem to be blind to the fact that its pretty common for women to blame, shame and gossip about men.

            again, its fucking double standards that women are telling men to blindly accept their expressed experiences because "men cant see what women see", while women refuse to accept that guys are experiencing unwarranted creep-shaming (and other kinds of gossip) because then its just "frustrated nice guys who should change their ways instead of trying to silence women"

            bullshit i say!

            and thanks for insinuating that all the women i associate with are assholes. im pretty sure that some of them might be nicer people than you are, but hey, you're as allowed to make generalizations as i am so go ahead.

          • Buddy you're the one who described all the women you know as meanly gossiping and bragging about their bad behavior. I'm not putting any words into your mouth. Hell, I'm validating your experiences; isn't that what you want? Women on the Internet to say, "Yeah you're right, that sounds like mean behavior."

            I have read your comments. On this and other posts. I find your views on women and men reductive and offensive. And I think you're too busy feeling abused by all women ever to have a discussion in good faith.

          • i never called them assholes. i said that they were otherwise good people.

          • *coughs*

            "when men express their frustration with women being gossipy assholes" (your words, from a comment below)

            So are women who gossip about treating men badly assholes or not?

          • everything isn't black and white.

            what im describing to you is an issue that is a side effect of the selective role that women have been getting in western society.

            this means that even good women can express negative behavior, much like good men can unbeknownst to them express sexist sentiments.

            is that really hard to wrap your head around?

          • Yes, it's pretty hard for me to wrap my head around the fact that you're saying that women are gossipy assholes, and when someone says, "I don't think most women are assholes" you say "yes, lots of them are!" and use your female friends and your girlfriend as examples, and then you're getting mad at someone for calling women you said gossiped in this way… assholes. Why are you allowed to call gossipy women assholes but other people aren't?

          • i dont know if youre intentionally misinterpreting everything im telling you so let me break it down for you.

            1. im describing a behavior that exist among a lot of women in varying degrees.
            2. this behavior is the result of women being given the entitlement to openly be choosy.
            3. sometimes good women do bad things unbeknownst to them due to social conditioning.
            4. sometimes bad women do bad things because they are assholes.

            and there you have it.

          • 1. If the only women you know who do this behavior are women who you believe are good but doing it because of social conditioning, then how to you know that there are also a "lot" of women who are doing it because they're assholes?

            2. It's my belief that any person who doesn't realize that loudly insulting and taking pleasure in mocking someone who's done nothing wrong to them is not a good person. No amount of "social conditioning" should change the also existing social conditioning that we're supposed to treat our fellow human beings with respect and kindness. Any person who does something to another with the sole purpose of hurting them, either has to be purposely malicious, or incredibly stupid not to realize that doing something for the sole purpose of hurting someone is malicious.

            I mean, we're not talking about subtle socialized behaviors that people can do without realizing how they affect others around them. We're talking about saying things the people in question *know* are insults and which they later brag about saying *knowing* they made the people in question feel bad.

          • 1. because women often internalize their mate selection and sees it as an inherent right. therefor they often dont think twice about the way they judge men, and sometimes it overlaps into creep-shaming even though it may be unintentional. i think you can quite easily see when someone does it unintentionally, and when someone knows they have this power and uses it to be mean (such as snarling at guys who walk up to them and say hi or responding with "who the fuck do you think you are").

            big difference, yeah.

            2. tell that to feminists who insist that men do bad things due to social conditioning.

          • 1. It sounds like you're saying that women see the freedom to select their own mate from the pool of willing men as an inherent right, with the implication that this is either not true or is a bad thing. I think, I hope, I'm misunderstanding you. Could you clarify?

            2. When feminists say that men do certain bad things due to social conditioning rather than because they're bad people, they're not talking things that men are doing with the sole purpose of hurting people. They're talking about things that the men in question may not realize are hurting people, which is a totally different thing.

          • Clementine Danger says:

            "because women often internalize their mate selection and sees it as an inherent right"

            I find that extremely icky. I certainly don't think of my dating experiences or meeting my fiancee and falling in love with him part of a "mate selection process".

            That is just a deeply unsettling word choice. It's gross.

            Even if it wasn't, I don't see how believing that I have the right to "select my mate" by whatever standards I choose is anything but my right. What else should I do? Lay on the floor with my legs open and my fingers crossed?

          • Clementine Danger says:

            "everything isn't black and white"

            And yet you keep claiming that most women are assholes. That *all* inner city women are gossipy mean girls. That *all* women enjoy hurting men for their pleasure.

            That is not something you say about a group of people you generally respect.

          • no, not all women, but many more than you seem to be willing to admit.

          • Or maybe it's not that she's unwilling to admit it, maybe it's that it just hasn't been her experience. If that has been your experience, I'm sorry; that's really crappy behavior. But it hasn't been mine. Admittedly I am not from the inner city and do not enjoy clubs, so I can't speak with any sort of authority on that. But I can't remember a single time when I or my friends bragged about being mean to men or casually called men "creepy" who were just going about their daily lives.

          • Exactly Joy. McGee's experience has not been mine and I am not going to pretend otherwise. His experience sounds like he associates with mean people, or he's not being fully honest about the behavior of his female acquaintances.
            McGee, when a person says, "my partner and all my friends say X mean thing about a group I am a part of and I find it troubling," the normal response is to say "that sucks. These people are being jerks and you don't have to put up with that. There are nicer people out there."
            You can't have it both ways. Meaning, you can't complain that your girlfriend displays a problematic behavior (one that you have been protesting for pages of the Internet) and then tell me off for criticising her.

          • yes i CAN say that because its more of a side effect of social conditioning than a case of people being plain evil. in other words, people who arent assholes do it too.

          • Oh you've really talked yourself into a circle haven't ya? You want to be able to condemn woman out of hand, but it can't actually apply to the ones you know and like. Think about that for a bit.

          • are you even reading what i am saying?

            i am condemning the ones who do it with bad intentions, but other women do this too, to a lesser degree, and without realizing its effects.

            is that so hard to understand?

          • Sure buddy. You're saying that you don't really think a majority of women are mean assholes. Good. We agree.
            However, that contradicts what you said upthread, where you accused a majority of women of being mean assholes.

          • Also worth noting: "intention" isn't a get out of jail free card. If a person is behaving badly, their intentions (bad or unaware) aren't worth a shit to me. It's behavior that matters, not some magical "intention" that neither you nor I can see.

          • feel free to point out where i did this. my opening statement was that some of the women who shame guys do this.

          • Clementine Danger says:

            No, your opening statement was this:

            "I disagree with your notion that "sometimes" women are mean. In aggressive settings like night clubs, most women are total assholes."

            As to your intent, Lord knows what it might be. Let's review.

            You have no traumatic experience with women. Women aren't creep-shaming you. Women aren't mean to you. When women around you act disrespectful of men, it's no big deal. You have no emotions. Nothing is personal. You're just here to be the cool, logical Spock to us wild, emotional, mean-spirited feminists, doing the world a favor by lecturing us on how misogyny is totally cool and justified.

            Snarf.

          • Thanks Clementine. By the way, you have been a boss on this thread. I freely admit I have no patience and turn snarky and insulting. But you've kept your head and continued making logical and interesting posts, even sharing your story on the Internet. Props!

          • Clementine Danger says:

            I really started out badly, insulting the guy and being sarcastic. I really hate it when I do that, but… Yeah, I think you can imagine where that comes from.

            And many thanks to you too. You and Mel have just been so good with this.

          • Yeah…I'm done listening to you talk in circles and change your ridiculous argument because you're getting called out.
            Peace McGee, I'm off to insult men and act like some stereotype of a Mean Cheerleader. Since ya know, all women act that way.

          • Clementine Danger says:

            McGee, what your girlfriend is doing *could* be a red flag for abusive behavior. This here being the only thing I know about her, obviously I can't tell, but people don't usually brag or feel pride about treating other people badly. That's abnormal and unhealthy behavior, and people who display that sort of behavior may not be the best people to be in a relationship with. If she really does feel pride about treating people badly, if that's a regular thing in her dealings with people, that's very troubling, and she may have issues that could affect you and your relationship. This really is something you need to address, because that's not acceptable behavior on her part, and it's not something you're supposed to be okay with.

          • her behavior is entirely normal for inner city women, ie taking pride in how you put guys down in clubs in order to boost your own ego and using the number of approaches you get as a measurement of how attractive you are.

            usually this is just bullshit that girls say in order to inflate their egos, and they tend to drop it when you get past the "getting to know you" part of the relationship. most of them are good people behind this exterior, but i still think that this behavior is telling of how guys are being treated poorly and how a lot of woman thinks that it's okay to dehumanize and treat guys like shit is good clean fun.

          • Clementine Danger says:

            That is not normal behavior. That is not healthy behavior.

            If you've gotten to a point where you honestly believe this is normal, you really do need to get help. I cannot emphasize enough that this is not healthy. It's not healthy for her to relate that way to people, if she does, and it's not healthy for you to believe that this is the standard for human interaction.

            Because it absolutely is not. This is not how people treat each other, and if you honestly feel it is, you are in a place where you urgently need to seek help.

          • oh come on.

            some of you people seem to be holding onto this ideal of how people should be overly respectful of boundaries and how if anyone does anything that even remotely crosses one of your rules, its immediately a red flag warning sign meaning you should back away from the person in question.

            i remember reading a dating column a long time ago about how a girl dated a guy who always wanted to drag her onto the dance floor while she wasn't comfortable dancing, and all the responses to that article addressed how she should explain to him that she doesnt like dancing except for one comment which was a long rant about how he shouldnt physically pull her onto the dance floor and how this is a warning sign of abusive behavior.

            it seems to me that a lot of you people are pretty adamant about warning signs, and i think that if anyone applied your filters in day to day interactions with the opposite sex, they'd end up pretty lonely.

            dont get me wrong, its important to protect oneself from danger, but i think what you just said is going overboard.

          • in other words, saying "this is not healthy behavior" is a pretty explicit problematization of someone's behavior, and i dont think you can judge people so quickly based on something as innocent as talking bullshit like my ex girlfriend did. especially since this kind of talk seems to be pretty common among some women.

          • If you don't think it's a problem for women to treat guys this way, or unhealthy for them to think it's fun to treat men this way, then why are you complaining that women do it and saying that it's "guys being treated poorly"?

          • To be fair, there's a large area of behavior that falls into mean but not seriously unhealthy or abusive.

          • Also, I love how you're getting upset about Clementine calling out the bad behavior *you described* your girlfriend doing, behavior that *you yourself* have associated with assholes, douchebags, and dehumanization, telling her that she shouldn't judge people so quickly, when in this same conversation you've been very quick to judge all of the women here as self-indulgent man-controlling hypocrites just because we dare not to agree with everything every guy here says.

          • once again, its not black and white. its more of a sliding scale where some are assholes and some are not. im talking about different kind of women in different conversation threads. i dont understand why you are pulling arguments from one thread into another in an attempt to contradict me when i am obviously talking about different things in different threads.

            and i am not calling women on hear man-controlling hypocrites because of this specific discussion. in fact, i dont recall calling them that at all, so please dont falsely quote me like that. its bullshit.

          • Clementine Danger says:

            I have already pointed out to you that you constantly make negative generalizations about women. I told you you can find the proof for that yourself if you read your previous comments.

            None of your previous comments have employed this sliding scale. It's always about all women in night clubs, all inner city women, most women this and all women that.

            We're those women.

            You do realize that when you say things like "all inner city girls are like that" you are not talking about some fictional race of aliens, right? You are absolutely talking about me and the women on here. Personally. "All of them" includes us, and "most of them" probably includes us.

            That is not a nuanced, sliding-scale opinion.

          • Bullshit? Okay. So when you say, and I quote, "i think its obvious that girls on here just take pleasure in being able to tell guys what to do." you don't actually mean that you think the women here are enjoying trying to control men? And when you talk about our "bullshit double standards", you aren't saying we're hypocritical for supposedly demanding certain treatment for ourselves but not offering it to others? I'm not falsely quoting you, I'm going by the standard English definitions of words you've actually used. I'm sorry if I used slightly different words that mean the same thing for the sake of succinctness.

            It also interests me that it's apparently okay for you to accuse us of all sorts of wrong-doing that you claim to have seen in the comments on totally separate posts, but I'm not allowed to point out things you've said right here in this overall discussion. Judging people quickly is judging people quickly regardless of what else we're talking about.

            But don't mind me. I'm just trying to rationally point out your own double standards. If you're allowed to do that to us, without even offering proof, I don't see why I shouldn't be allowed to do it to you when I even have quotes to back me up.

          • i believe that a lot of women on here use the site as an opportunity to inflate their egos and or instill a sense of self-importance. i do not at all believe that most women on here are just looking to help guys out of the goodness of their heart.

            there's obviously something fun about being in the position to tell other people how they're wrong. much like how most police officers are good people but still have some kind of need for dominance that partly motivated them to get into that line of work.

            however, i never said anything about controlling men, and thats what i spoke up against. theres a big difference.

          • BritterSweet says:

            That's what you believe. But what's REALLY happening is that a lot of women here are giving sympathy and helpful advice to people who ask questions and relate to the subject matter of each article (such as being a victim of stalking, or having trouble attracting the opposite sex), as long as they're not being disrespectful. And you are trying to somehow make women the bad guys. Anyone, no matter the gender, can tell just by looking at what is being said by each person.

          • Clementine Danger says:

            You seem to have a real problem giving people in general the benefit of the doubt. You just can't imagine people wanting to be good and doing nice things for one another, because that's just not how you want to see the world. Because to accept that people are generally kind and don't want to hurt you would invalidate every belief you've ever held. And that's scary, letting go of all that, because you think it defines you as a person. You've implied time and time again that your world is full of hostile people who hurt others for kicks. You sound like you're depressed.

            How can I read that and *not* feel bad for you? I've been there. I stood on the sidelines pointing out all the things that were wrong with this world and how everyone was mean to me, and I wasn't even altogether wrong about the facts, but things didn't change until I got out there on the field and started owning up to the fact that I had my own issues to deal with. Change starts from within.

            And I promise you, it was amazing. Once it clicked, once I realized that I *chose* to be unhappy, that it wasn't anyone else's fault that I felt that way, the world just snapped into proper perspective. Such a relief, such a breath of fresh air, to make the conscious choice to give people the benefit of the doubt, and open myself up to all the awesome things life has to offer. It was the best thing I ever did for myself, and I never looked back.

            I kind of want that for you.

            I also want you to stop hurting me and others in addition to yourself, but that's a separate issue.

          • Clementine Danger says:

            Wait, you yourself used your girlfriend as an example of how women treat men badly. YOU did that. YOU said that, not me.

            So which is it? Is it just some innocent bullshit or is it a symptom of the systemic oppression and humiliation of men by women?

            You can't have it both ways.

          • ive said many times that it happens in varying degrees and for different reasons, much like how systematic sexism against women occurs.

          • Clementine Danger says:

            No. That is not what you said AT ALL. If that's what you meant, you have issues communicating.

          • Clementine Danger says:

            "it seems to me that a lot of you people are pretty adamant about warning signs, and i think that if anyone applied your filters in day to day interactions with the opposite sex, they'd end up pretty lonely."

            I do apply those filters every day. I am happily engaged, to be married this summer, and I have many wonderful relationships with people who like me and respect my boundaries, and whose boundaries I respect in turn. We're all pretty happy over here.

            This is not some crazy fantasy ideal that we're advocating. This is reality. There is a whole world of people out there being nice to each other, treating each other with dignity and kindness, who just need a minor correction to their behavior every once in a while.

            People can't cross your boundaries. If your girlfriend is making you upset and angry by bragging about how she hurts people, that is not okay. That is something you have every right to address. If your coworkers are making you uncomfortable with their behavior, you have every right to take that up with your boss or HR. Don't go online and whine about women. Tell your girlfriend her behavior is out of line. Tell your coworkers that their behavior is creating a hostile work environment. You deserve to be treated right. If people make you feel bad, you don't have to sit there and take it. We don't. You don't have to either. You don't have to disappear and seethe in resentment because you're afraid that stating your boundaries would be overly demanding. You have the right to your boundaries just like everyone.

          • would you like it much if i told women who are being sexually harassed to take it to the police instead of the internet?

            i already told you that i did tell these women off. theyre not making me personally uncomfortable either, but that doesnt mean i cant point out how its a problem that guys should be able to express on here and other places on the internet without being accused of being misogynist MRA assholes or just plain whiny.

          • Clementine Danger says:

            "would you like it much if i told women who are being sexually harassed to take it to the police instead of the internet? "

            Yes! Of course!

            Well, maybe not you. Someone who could be kind and supportive about it. But yes, absolutely encourage women who are being victimized or abused to go to the police and not the internet! Why are you asking me that like it's a tricky conundrum?

            Can you please just admit that this is personal for you? That whole Spock act really isn't fooling anyone at this point.

          • im of course meaning "take it to the police instead of the internet" in the sense that they should just shut up and take their issue to the appropriate law enforcement instance instead of talking to people who can't help them anyway, which is what you suggested that guys do when they express frustration over girls maliciously gossiping and creep-shaming them.

            and no, i dont see why i should admit that it's personal when its not. i find it a bit worrisome that you dont seem to be able to comprehend how someone can debate something without it personally gaining them.

          • Clementine Danger says:

            I'm not telling you to shut up. I'm trying to be kind to you, tell you that you can absolutely change things in your own life. I don't want you to feel like the world is full of hateful people who are having fun hurting you and people like you, because that's just not how it is. I'm telling you that you can take those feelings and use them to affect positive change in your life as well as in the culture.

            I can absolutely believe that people can argue points without it being personal to them, although it doesn't happen often. But throughout this thread, you have expressed frustration, anger, confusion, sadness and aggression, all of those very obvious and very strong. Those are emotions you're going to have to deal with, and we can't do that for you.

            If you want to be an activist, you have to guard your own happiness first. Affecting cultural change takes a lot of emotional energy, it's extremely draining and emotional and oftentimes very personal, and when you say that for you it isn't, not even a little bit, that sort of tells me something.

            Me, I have this thing I call my Cunt File. It's an email folder that automatically filters all the hatemail I get for a comedy article I once wrote. It's called that because every email in there contains that word about a hundred times over. Most of it contains graphic descriptions of how these people are going to rape and murder me. That's very draining. If I wasn't in a good place emotionally and psychologically, that sort of thing could easily destroy me.

            That's why, if you're serious about being an activist and affecting change, you have to be in a good place with yourself. And it's pretty obvious you're not.

          • it seems that youre unable to follow the flow of this discussion.

            you said that when women gossip or creep-shame guys, the guys should tell the women off or talk to the appropriate enforcement instance instead of "going online and hating women".

            so i told you that it would be pretty unfair to tell victims of sexual assault to take it to the police instead of the internet, so why would you apply the same logic to guys who are on here (and other sites) expressing their frustration with how women tend to act in a culturally established pattern?

            im not even going to respond to your last comment because youre not addressing what im saying.

          • Clementine Danger says:

            "you said that when women gossip or creep-shame guys, the guys should tell the women off or talk to the appropriate enforcement instance instead of "going online and hating women".

            No, I said that to YOU. Not every guy. YOU.

            And I'm going to be honest, as a rape survivor I can't talk to someone who equates "women gossiping about men" with "having your autonomy and personhood violently stripped away, possibly while being forcefully penetrated." I just can't. If anyone else wants to talk to McGee about how that's not a very good analogy, feel free to pick up where I left off. I just don't have the emotional energy left.

          • i dont understand.

            i have been discussing guys expressing frustration about being creep-shamed in a general sense, and you respond to me as if it were happening to me personally.

            thats a pretty confusing way to hold a discussion.

            and i never equated gossip with rape either. im making a point that the same respect should be paid to people trying to express their experiences with bad treatment, and that it shouldnt just be reserved for certain kinds of bad treatment.

          • "the same respect should be paid to people trying to express their experiences with bad treatment"

            Please show me where anyone was disrespecting someone who shared their experiences with bad treatment. Because the thread you jumped into was Paul making generalizations about how the word "creep" is used. He didn't say a single thing about his own experiences.

            I have seen past discussions where guys have talked about women unfairly calling them creeps. And guess what! The women sympathized and told them that was unfair and sucked. I would go looking and pull up examples, but that would take a while, and it hardly seems worth the effort when every other time I've offered examples, you've just ignored them.

          • Clementine Danger says:

            "thats a pretty confusing way to hold a discussion"

            That's because you're just not very good at holding a discussion.

            You: Point
            Mel: Counterpoint example
            You: Denial
            Mel: Point
            You: Denial sarcasm

            This logic thing REALLY isn't your strength. You've been failing at it for a while now, going in circles, having to deny every single thing you said previously for your new argument to make logical sense, derailing to cover your tracks, rephrasing things again and again in the hope that what you said will magically transform into something completely different, arguing against yourself when people concede a point to you (that one in particular just baffles me), demanding proof without being willing to offer the same and refusing the proof you're given, and lacing the whole thing with reminders of how logical and right you are, because you just are.

            I'm just saying, if this were debate club, they'd kick you out so fast it'd make your head spin.

            I'm sure you have many skills, but debating is just not one of them. You're pretty much the poster child of every fallacious debating technique ever discovered by man. Try gardening or something.

          • and yeah, a lot of girls gossip and say a lot of terrible shit. they are accepted everywhere else, so me treating it like some kind of big warning flag wont really change much.

            people are usually completely unaware of social issues, and its not going to help that some informed person from a nerdlovin' blog makes a personal stance that nobody is going to care about anyway.

          • If treating it like some kind of big warning flag results in you not interacting with girls who gossip and say a lot of terrible shit, isn't that a benefit in and of itself?

          • yes, just like spending your life in a bomb shelter will probably protect you from all of life's harms.

          • So what's the problem?

          • You don't have to spend your life in a bomb shelter. Just stay away from bars and clubs. Or go to different bars and clubs.

          • Clementine Danger says:

            You're talking to the guy who further down this thread freely admits that his "conversational style" is meant to keep the mean people who would hurt him out. Basically he's hiding out in his bomb shelter and occasionally peeks his head out to yell at people for not hearing him.

            There's a lot to unpack there, is what I am saying to you.

          • Clementine Danger says:

            McGee, I get the feeling that when you say "men", you're actually talking about yourself. You clearly see your relationship with women as a whole as an antagonistic one, and you don't seem to like women at all. I'm just wondering how much of that attitude leaks out into your interactions and affects the women you interact with. No matter how you try to act or what you choose to say, your true feelings and attitudes always find a way out, in behavior and word choices that you may not even be aware of. I think the women in your life are responding to this and that's created the false impression that, since all women in your life are like this, all women in the world must be like this. But I'd say the chances of them responding to what leaks out through your actions and words are very high.

            I also think you're doing the many, many wonderful men I know a great disservice by trying to rope them into this. I promise you that the majority of men does not feel the way you do. They are not in a psychological war with women, they are not angry at women and they are fully capable of thinking of women as individuals, which you are not. I think you need to start with realizing that your experiences are not universal, and not insult men by implying that they too do not like women very much.

            I just don't believe that you speak for all men, and I kind of need you to believe that too. Because again, the vast majority of men simply do not feel like that, and you're doing them and yourself a disservice by making your feelings the standard. They're not.

            Unless some of the guys here want to chime in. Dudes? Is he right? I'm taking a poll here. Because that's information I feel I should have.

          • thanks for that insightful analysis of my personality, but most of my observations come from listening to women in my proximity or other men, and not so much from how i've been treated myself.

            the mere fact that you believe that i'm discussing this from an entirely selfish perspective just goes to show that you are in fact the one doing so.

            also, youre not really entitled to speak for the vast majority of men, nor is a nerdlove poll indicative of anything.

          • Clementine Danger says:

            I didn't say selfish, that's not what I meant at all. What I meant was personal. There's at least one thing we all have in common, and that's that we see the world through the lens of ours own experiences. You and I are no exception.

            So yes, of course this is personal for me. You say it like it's a GOTCHA sort of thing, but… I don't see how it could not be personal. All the things you say about women apply to me, because I am a woman. And most of the things you say aren't very nice. So yes, of course that affects me on a deeply personal level. I'd have to be a robot to not be affected by it. It's very painful. You may be looking at this stuff from the sidelines, but I live it every day. Of course it's personal.

            I'm not trying to psycho-analyze you. That's not my place, and I'm not any sort of mental health professional. I'm just trying to understand. The way you see the world is just so radically different from the way I see it, it sounds like we're from different planets, and that's just weird and fascinating to me.

            And… I'm aware of the fact that this may sound condescending, but I feel kind of bad for you. I wasn't trying to be snarky before. You really do seem like you're unhappy. And I get the feeling that you're choosing to make other people unhappy too. You're certainly making me unhappy. I kind of want it not to be that way.

          • i dont think its healthy to take such discussions personally. im certainly not.

            the only reason why im discussing these issues with fervor is because ive noticed that on this site, having a rational and friendly discussion will cause a lot of people to see you as an easy target and attack you with outright insults, but if you appear aggressive, the only people who will dare talk to you are rational ones like mel.

            sad but true.

          • There's a whole lot to unpack here and in the other comments you've made, but since you apparently value my "rationality", let's try to approach this in a rational manner, shall we?

            1. If you value rationality, then you should recognize that the main complaint you were making here is the opposite of rational. You were focusing on the idea that women here are "downplaying the fact that creep-shaming guys with bad or selfish intent happens quite often." Presumably you're saying we shouldn't do this? That we should admit that it happens quite often?

            But, see, the problem with that is I, and I'd assume the other commenters you disagree with, *can't* "admit" that women creep-shaming guys is more than an exception. Why? Because in my experience, it is the exception. The majority of the time when I've heard a woman refer to a guy using the word "creep", it's usually not to his face, and usually because he legitimately made her uncomfortable. And your only proof that women use it as an unfair insult "quite often" is your own experience. I'm willing to allow that this sort of behavior is more common, possibly common full-stop, in clubs, because I haven't gone to clubs very often, so I'll accept that you probably know more about what goes on in them than I do (assuming you do go to clubs more often than I do). But I have plenty of experience with all sorts of other areas of everyday life, and your experience there doesn't trump mine. So I don't believe that women do this all the time; I don't believe that most people are douchebags, or that most people buy into the sort of "mating rituals" you're talking about.

            Notice, however, that I didn't insist that *you* have to believe that my experience is more valid than yours. Every comment I've made to you here, I've said "I believe" and "I think" and explained why I believe and think the things I do. You are welcome to respond to me and say, "Sorry, but I believe differently because of my experience." I have no problem with that. We can agree that we simply have different experiences that have led us to different conclusions. What's unreasonable is for you to present your experience and beliefs as absolute facts that apply to everyone, and call other people irrational or biased for not believing in your experiences over their own.

            2. You said above, "the only reason why im discussing these issues with fervor is because ive noticed that on this site, having a rational and friendly discussion will cause a lot of people to see you as an easy target and attack you with outright insults". Now we're back to burden of proof. In my experience, people who start rational and friendly discussions here are met with rational friendly discussion, not attacks and insults. Here's my proof, from right here in this post:

            -LeeEsq made a polite inquiry about whether public mockery is really a good thing. Several people, men and women, commented weighing in, giving reasons they did or didn't think it was good (often a little of both from the same person). I don't see anyone insulting or attacking him.

            -Paul Rivers posted another comment about how women filter dating partners based on race too, and various people weighed in, many of them agreeing, none of whom from what I can see attacked or insulted him.

            Your turn. Please provide examples of "a lot of people" "attacking" commenters who made a rational and friendly comment with "outright insults".

          • 1. the reason why i dont prefix my comments with "i think" is beause ive tried doing the courteous discussion approach before, but since nerdlove and a lot of others here refuse to pay this courtesy and instead pass their experiences off as the truth, then i will do so as well as a counter measure.

            2. im not going to go through numerous articles and dig through commenting threads just to motivate my discussion style. all i can tell you is that im all for rational and friendly discussion, but this site seems to be plagued with people who will do anything from outright insult you to making wild assumptions about you and responding with toxic comments unless you fight fire with fire, and thats all im going to say about that.

            its okay if you disagree, because my discussion style isnt as important as the topic of discussion.

          • Clementine Danger says:

            "im not going to go through numerous articles and dig through commenting threads just to motivate my discussion style."

            Wait, just a while ago you DEMANDED that I go though all of your posts to provide you with examples of how they're hurtful so you could have your proof. You basically told me I was lazy and wrong because I refused, just like you're refusing here.

            You're not covering yourself in glory here.

          • yes, because you came out of nowhere with a pretty strong claim.

            in this case, mel wondered why i had an aggressive discussion style, and i told her that it deters people who would otherwise see me as an easy target.

            that's a pretty big difference.

          • "yes, because you came out of nowhere with a pretty strong claim."

            Excuse me, what? Claiming that all the women here only comment to feed their egos and tell men what to do for fun is an incredibly strong claim, and given that you haven't provided any evidence of it, I'd say it also comes out of nowhere.

            And I *didn't* ask you why you have an aggressive discussion style. *You* brought it up in response to Clementine's comments about taking the conversation personally, and *I* pointed out why I didn't think your explanation was fair to the commenters here. Which includes me. If you're going to make insulting claims about my motives, then yeah, I think I have as much of a right to ask for proof as you do when someone makes insulting claims about your motives. I don't see how those two things are different at all.

          • Just because Nerdlove and a lot of others here refuse to pay that courtesy (for sake of argument, I'll just assume this is true for now) doesn't mean it's right to refuse to pay that courtesy. Appeal to popularity is a logical fallacy.

          • if nerdlove and everyone else is expressing observations and personal theories, theres no reason why i shouldnt be able to do the same thing.

            also this isnt appeal to popularity either, because i have been referring to gender roles as the basis for my arguments.

          • "if nerdlove and everyone else is expressing observations and personal theories, theres no reason why i shouldnt be able to do the same thing."

            That's appeal to popularity.

          • Clementine Danger says:

            It is. It's also wrong from a purely human standpoint.

            Nerdlove, for example, has a past that he is not proud of and owns up to. He makes it clear that he has learned a lot and that he wants to share his experiences and what he's learned from them to help people avoid some of the mistakes he and others have made. That takes guts, balls and manberries, and a fair amount of personal insight into his own past and thoughts. I don't always agree, but I do feel he's earned the right to speak with authority on some issues.

            McGee however is adamant about the fact that he has not had bad experiences with women, or any personal experiences at all, and that he is simply pointing out unbiased and impersonal observations like the Jane Goodall of women, apparently just because he can.

            So basically, he is trying to claim the perks of having done the work without doing the actual work. And that's just not okay.

          • 1. "He was mean to me so I'm going to be mean to him back" is a kindergarten argument. The way adults behave is by treating others the way they want to be treated, not stooping to the level of someone they don't even respect.

            And it's funny that you suggest that you get insults and toxic comments "unless" you fight fire with fire. Are you really finding that your approach in this conversation has resulted in people being more friendly to you than they are to other people who approached topics more politely? Because it seems to me that you're still upset about the way we're arguing with you. Honestly, I think people would be making much fewer assumptions about you and be responding with much less hostility if you had come in with less hostility and fewer assumptions yourself. But hey, I just have proof that I've already pointed out to you, and you can't be bothered to offer any of your own, so clearly you're not interested in actual facts or anything.

            Second, you *totally* ignored my point. It's not just about how you phrase your beliefs. It's that you're telling us that we are *wrong* for not agreeing with your beliefs, accusing us of "downplaying" this supposed truth, even though your only proof is your experiences, and we have equally good proof of our differing beliefs from our experiences. Do you not see how irrational that is? No one has denied that your experiences exist, or that it's a bad thing for women to treat men poorly. We're just saying that we think there are lots of women who don't do this as well, because we know them.

            2. I'm not talking about your discussion style. I'm talking about your claim that most people here outright insult people who start friendly conversations. That *is* the topic of discussion, because this entire conversation rests on your accusation that the women here are not having open discussions and are unfairly shutting down men. If you can't offer any evidence that this is actually happening, then your entire argument becomes void.

            And frankly, if you'd have to go through numerous articles and dig through numerous commenting threads just to find *one* example of "lots" of commenters "outright insulting" and "attacking" someone who started a friendly conversation, then it obviously doesn't happen that much. In fact, given that I could provide you with *two* examples of it happening the other way (opposing opinions expressed without any attacking or insults) from right here in this post, I think it's fair to conclude that more often people *don't* attack or insult. You know, if you bother to look at it logically, since you're all for rational discussion, right?

          • 3. You keep saying to Clementine that you can't see how you've made any hurtful comments about women, at the same time as saying things like "the women on here seem to have no problem making some pretty toxic accusations or generalizations" (really? Show me where the regular women commenters have made toxic generalizations recently. Burden of proof, remember?) and particularly:

            "i think its obvious that girls on here just take pleasure in being able to tell guys what to do. its self indulgent bullshit that feeds their ego and makes for a fun sunday night activity."

            Do you have any idea how offensive it is to suggest that the women here, including me, only comment to indulge our egos and have "fun" telling guys what to do? Obviously I can't speak for any other woman here. But I can tell you that the reason I comment here is because I want to help people. I want to give advice to the many people who come here with questions. I want to provide an alternate perspective when people come here making negative generalizations (including women!). If I just wanted to have my ego stroked, I'd go find some forum where I'm not going to have read people saying awful things about women in a fairly regular basis.

            Just so you know, I make an incredible effort to keep my arguments rational here because I *know* that getting emotional is an easy ticket for the kind of guys I'm sometimes talking to here to say, "Oh, well, can't listen to you, you're just being hysterical". But I still quite often come away from discussions here feeling physically sick that there are people in the world who believe horrible things about me simply because I was born with a certain set of genitals. That isn't fun. That doesn't make me feel good. I only keep coming back because the idea of letting those ideas stand unchallenged makes me feel even more sick.

            So yeah, it does hurt to see someone come in and claim that this is all just trivial to me, that it's "fun", that my motives are selfish and self-indulgent. You said you came here "discussing these issues" like this because you feel it's the only way to get the people you want to talk to (like me) to talk to you. And at the same time you're insulting me for bothering to come here and say my piece at all. Guess what? That doesn't make me want to talk to you. I'd much rather talk to you if you were having a truly rational and friendly discussion rather than this aggressive one which makes me feel attacked.

          • i could explain why i believe that a majority of women here seems more interested in debating, feeding their egos or hating on guys who represent what they hate, but its not really relevant for the discussion so i dont feel a strong need to defend that point right now.

            what i will say is that this is a dating site for men, and if you cant deal with men expressing their thoughts and frustration as part of their improvement process, then maybe you should go somewhere more suitable for you.

          • "i could explain why i believe that a majority of women here seems more interested in debating, feeding their egos or hating on guys who represent what they hate, but its not really relevant for the discussion so i dont feel a strong need to defend that point right now."

            How is it not relevant to the discussion? You started this discussion with the following comments:

            "I find it so hilarious that this site mostly consists of a bunch of women upvoting each other and downvoting anyone who says anything remotely critical about the collective belief doctrine on here."

            and

            "my point is that youre downplaying the fact that creep-shaming guys with bad or selfish intentions happens quite often.

            its so funny that women ask guys to respect your expressed experiences, but when a guy has experienced creep shaming from a woman who is clearly just being selfish/entitled or otherwise an asshole, its just an exception."

            This whole discussion is about how the women here supposedly ignore/attack/downplay/whatever men's contributions. You are the one who made those claims. You have not provided any proof that we're actually doing that. And if you don't think it's relevant to the discussion, why the heck have *you* been bringing it up, over and over again?

            "what i will say is that this is a dating site for men, and if you cant deal with men expressing their thoughts and frustration as part of their improvement process, then maybe you should go somewhere more suitable for you."

            I can deal with it. Obviously, I'm still here. Just because I *can* deal with it, doesn't mean I enjoy it. But as I said already, if you'd bothered to read, it would make me feel worse to let those thoughts stand when they are incredibly negative and hostile. (Note: I didn't say any time a guy expressions thoughts or frustration it makes me feel ill. Only the really awful opinions.)

            Anyway, I can say the exact same thing to you. This is Dr. NerdLove's blog. He has made it explicitly clear that he thinks men need to be more aware of how their attitudes affect women and their dating success, that acting creepy is a far bigger problem than creep-shaming, and he regularly challenges men's assumptions and entitlement himself. *He* sets the tone. We are simply following his lead. If he asked the women commenters not to criticize guys making frustrated negative comments about women, we would stop. And he could moderate those comments out if he thought they were harmful to the discussion.

            If you don't like the way discussions go here, then you should take it up with him. Or, if you can't "deal" with how women expression their thoughts and frustrations about some things guys say, in an effort to help their improvement process, then maybe *you* should go somewhere more suitable for you, like the hundreds of blogs and forums that are full of guys ranting about women, where women rarely set foot. It's not as if there aren't tons of other sites where that happens.

            I also notice that you still seem unwilling to admit that anything you've said could be hurtful, even though I pointed out a specific quote that I found hurtful and explained why, which is exactly what you were asking Clementine for as proof. Me leaving the discussion wouldn't make comments like that suddenly not hurtful.

          • Although, you know what? I think I've said all I can say on this topic, and you'll either stop and think about it or you'll keep brushing it off. That's up to you.

            I don't see anything productive coming out of continuing this discussion with you unless you are going to be rational and friendly the way you said you'd prefer to be. If I see a rational and friendly comment, I'll respond to it. Otherwise, I'll save my time and energy for talking to the people who are actually being friendly and rational.

          • Clementine Danger says:

            I know that feel, sis.

            You're awesome. Get your teaspoons together, then go right on being awesome.

          • in other words, if you feel physically sick from learning that there are guys who think the way they do, then go somewhere where you dont have to listen to them.

          • Clementine Danger says:

            No. We should challenge them, and talk to them, and keep at it, because that's the only way we're going to make a change. Ignoring behavior like yours is condoning it, and we will not do that. We can't. Not for ourselves, and not for the men and women you have chosen to rope into your arguments. That is not an option.

            I have told you you have hurt me deeply. Mel has told you that your behavior makes her physically ill. Max has indicated that he does not at all agree with you. That *should* mean something to you.

            We have already done more than what's required of us by engaging you. I have told you that passing this information on to you is our part of the job. Dealing with it is yours.

          • yes, and im challenging you too in order to make a change.

            whats your point?

          • Clementine Danger says:

            That we have as much a right to be here as you do. You probably wouldn't like it very much if I blew you off and told you to just leave if you don't like it, so don't tell us the same thing. It's disrespectful.

          • my point was that if you are going to start complaining that if you get physically sick from people expressing their opinions on a site aimed at helping them with their problem, then go somewhere else.

            if you want to stay and debate them, then why complain that they make you physically sick.

            i dont really get what point she was making.

          • Clementine Danger says:

            I can't speak for her, but I was doing it because… Well, I told you why. I think you're unhappy and angry, and that's no way to live. You hurt me a lot, but…

            Actually, good point. Now I don't know why I'm trying to help you anymore.

            I just know that if I were to leave every online place where I felt ill and frightened and angry because of opinions like yours, I may as well unplug my modem right now. I had to give up WoW, which I loved dearly, because I kept getting triggered. I've had to give up a forum where I posted every day for years because the people there insisted that I brought my rape onto myself. I've had to leave an actual group of friends in the meatspace because I insisted that they had to choose: be friends with me or the guy who raped me, and they chose to be friends with him.

            If I kept backing away, I wouldn't have a whole lot of space left. I have to draw the line somewhere. I can't keep backing off until I disappear. I have a right to live my life free of people like you telling me I am a bad person because of my gender.

            But you… You won't even admit you have a problem. You won't even admit to having the emotions you so very clearly display. That's rough on me. I've worked so hard. I worked like a dog to make it through a violent rape and an abusive relationship that included rape, I've dealt with having my friends taken away from me by the guy who almost destroyed me, and I did it. I really did it. I came out the other end a better person, and I'm not bitter, and I'm happy and loved and capable of loving people, and I'm so proud. I've gone through hell. If I can make it to the other side a happy, loving, caring person, a woman who loves the world and the people in it, if I can learn to place the blame where it belongs, on those two individuals who took everything from me instead of all men everywhere, then so can you.

            I worked so hard to be a good person. You don't get to take that away from me. Not before you've worked as hard as I have.

          • i'm sorry that you got raped and that is a very serious issue. nobody should try to convince you that you brought it upon yourself and that's a big social problem right there.

            however, this has nothing to do with me expressing theories and observations about male and female behavior in the same way as nerdlove and other people are doing it.

            and no, this is not an issue that i am personally affected by.

          • Clementine Danger says:

            Thank you.

            And it does. You asked us why. I told you why. This is why.

            I am telling you that if there's anyone here who would be close to justified in hating men, saying nasty things about men, discriminating against men and being afraid of men, it would be me. But I don't. I refuse to do so. Two guys made their decisions. That does not reflect on all men.

            And then there's you. You've never had any traumatic experiences with women, you don't even have any particular emotions about it, and yet here you are, claiming all inner city girls are vicious gossips, most women are assholes, women are so mean to men all the time…

            Can't you see it?

            I mean, you really can't see it, can you?

            After all I've been through, I refuse to hate. I just will not do it, no matter how badly I've wanted to after it happened.

            And you, by your own admission, haven't really gone through anything, and yet you're brimming with resentment. You're so hateful. It's sad.

            You think you're standing up for oppressed men. You're not. You think you're like Dr. Nerdlove, giving advice and helping people out. But you're not. You're just hateful, and sad, and resentful, and you hurt people who haven't done anything to you just because they're women, and you don't even feel sorry about it.

            I hope you never have to go through what I did to learn that it's not women and the world who are keeping you down. It's all on you.

            I am out of teaspoons. I've tried to help you, and you've thrown it back in my face.

            Get help. You are unhappy, and you're sad, and you hurt people.

          • when i say that women gossip and creep-shame men it doesn't mean that all women do it.

            it is like how when feminists say that men are sexist, it doesnt mean that all men are sexist, but that its a problem that is overrepresented among men.

          • Clementine Danger says:

            I appreciate you qualifying that, it's good that you're minding your words, but I'm stepping away from this discussion now. It's not going to get resolved this way. Maybe we can pick this up again some other time when I've had some time to breathe.

          • By default, if you use a statement of the form "Group X (eg, women) are/do thing Y", you're implicitly using the "all" qualifier, since otherwise how is anyone supposed to know which members of group X you claim are/do thing Y and which members aren't?

          • its about context. i started this discussion off by saying that part of the women who creep-shame do it unfairly. from there on it became "girls creep-shame" because i didnt feel like constantly having to restate my entire point to the same people who responded to my original argument.

            even if that wasnt the case, the premise for the discussion has always been why girls creep-shame, not how many of them do it.

          • "even if that wasnt the case, the premise for the discussion has always been why girls creep-shame, not how many of them do it."

            Um, what? No, the premise of the discussion was you telling eselle that you didn't agree with her that creep-shaming was the exception. That is about *how many* not about *why*.

          • Are you serious? I wasn't "complaining" about it; I was offering the proof that *you* asked for that things you said could be hurtful. Don't ask for things you don't actually want to hear.

          • Man here.

            She's right, you're wrong.

          • this is ridiculous.

            nerdloves articles and most peoples comments on here are based on observations and generalizations. there's not exactly a lot of science backing up many of the claims made on this site, so it's quite ridiculous of you to jump others who make assumptions that dont fly well with your views.

            i might as well comment on half of the stuff that nerdlove's done in the same manner as you just did mine.

            what's the point?

          • But I've spoken to lots of men and women and they told me that you're wrong, so that means you're wrong. Because that's the reasoning that you used (and please, please don't respond with "give me proof!" No. You know you said that, and I know you said that).

          • Dr_NerdLove says:

            NerdLove here. She's right. Move on.

          • And by the way, I don't believe that women *or* men are "quite often" total douchebags. I think there are a few really awful people out there, and the majority of people are decent human beings the majority of the time.

          • human beings are emotionally-driven and selfish in nature. go figure.

          • BritterSweet says:

            You're being emotionally-driven and selfish right here on this page. You smell very strongly of projection.

          • you contribute with nothing by making vague statements

          • Right. Because "human beings are emotionally-driven and selfish in nature." is totally less vague than "You're being emotionally-driven and selfish right here on this page."

            Pot, kettle, etc.

          • Well it's a good thing then that humans are hard-wired to feel good when they do good, selfless things. Or is that just me? Either way, it's also a good thing that humans can get positive feedback from other humans when they do good, selfless things. Or is that just me again? Hmm …

          • Clementine Danger says:

            That was a good thing you said there. I like it and agree with it, and as a result I think positively of you and will carry that attitude into our further interactions.

          • Thank you for the kind words Clementine. I would say that I will think positively of you and carry that attitude into subsequent interactions as a result of this, but I'd already decided to do that based on other things you've said.

          • Clementine Danger says:

            This has been a very emotionally fulfilling, though by no means non-standard human interaction that I am pleased to have been a participant in. Rejuvenated by the kind words we have exchanged, I will now go forth into the world and interact with others in a similar fashion in the hopes of repeating this pleasurable and mutually beneficial experience with others.

          • I would like to provide you both with internet cookies and social approval for your positive and socially appropriate interaction.

        • Paul, where exactly has DNL "insisted" that creepy behavior is always about physical danger? Because I looked up his past articles just to check, and right here in one of the earliest ones about labeling men "creepy" I find him saying the following:

          "He may not mean to cause her discomfort, nor may he actually be a threat, but for whatever reason, his behavior indicates that he does not seem to be willing to acknowledge her boundaries, whether physical or psychological."

          Notice the "or psychological". Which is exactly where racial objectification would come in.

          You're getting upset and arguing against something that I don't think anyone here has ever suggested to be true. Every time I've seen the term "creepy" get discussed, it's always been in terms of crossing *all* kinds of boundaries and making the person wary of *all* kinds of threat, not just physical.

          • Paul Rivers says:

            You probably wrote this before I wrote my other response, see my other response.

          • I already replied to your other response. It (your other response) doesn't disprove what I said here. What part of "or psychological" do you not understand?

          • Paul Rivers says:

            I don't understand why you would respond here – my post above says "see my other response". Not "I'm right, so you're wrong" – it says "I'm replying in the other response, no need to continue here".

          • I thought you were dropping this. Now you're arguing about where I chose to respond?

            Saying "see my other response" implies that you thought your other response addressed the argument I brought up here. Which it didn't. So I responded to say so. Because I'm not psychic and I didn't know that eventually you were going to get around to addressing those arguments (which you hadn't yet, at the time you posted this). Later you did, and the discussion continued there. Okay?

    • What Eselle said. And also, no one has said that creepy is only about physical danger. It's about discomfort and not being sure if a person will respect your boundaries–whether physically, or emotionally, or socially, or whatever. I would find a guy who goes on about how wonderful and docile Asian women are creepy because that indicates to me that he at least sometimes sees women as objects to cater to his whims rather than individuals, and he might apply that attitude to me. Of course that would make me uncomfortable and distrustful of him.

      • Clementine Danger says:

        For me, and definitely some other women I've talked to, "creepy" can also be the step that comes just before "triggering".

        A lot of women have been victims of sexual aggression and outright assault, and for them the fear of physical danger can be supplanted by the fear of *remembering* the physical danger, the consequences, and eventually be triggered as a result.

        My worst trigger in casual conversation is probably pushy behavior, the kind of behavior that says "I see you're not really interested in my attention, but just to make sure, I'm going to keep at it for a little while longer". That's something that's often mentioned when it comes to creepy behavior between men and women, conversational pushing of boundaries. I got triggered that way once. This guy kept pushing, and I kept getting more and more anxious, until I just broke down and started crying like a baby and yelled at him to stop being a creep, because the whole situation was so very reminiscent of the situation that led up to this monster raping me. Guess who got a nice lecture on labeling men "creepy" on Facebook the next day?

        Anyway, creepy behavior… The fact that it's annoying and entitled is obviously bad enough on its own, but I think some consideration for the many, many women who have to organize their social lives around triggers is necessary as well. There's more of us than you think.

        • Paul Rivers says:

          Just wanted to say I definitely agree that this guy who wrote you a lecture about calling people creepy is likely being an insensitive clod.

          It's a true social dilema to try to figure out exactly what to do when a girl you're interested in is getting nervous. I have a tendency to want to leave the moment it happens, and this has been a bit of a disaster for my dating life as women get nervous for a bazillion reasons:
          – You're weirding her out
          – She finds you really attractive (for an extreme example, imagine a 14 year old girl who loves justin beiber turning around and there he is standing 5 feet away from her and the outpouring of nervous energy she would put off)
          – She doesn't want to be part of the conversation any more, but hasn't found a convenient way to leave it
          – She really wants to keep the conversation going but can't think of anything to say
          – Something completely unrelated is causing her to be nervous – waiting to hear back on a text, realized she said something to someone that could be taken with totally the wrong tone, etc.
          – She's hoping you'll ask her out
          – Random mood fluctuations (it's the same with guys, girls will say "suddenly he wanted to leave the conversation" and occassionally it's just an unrelated mood change).

          I agree the guy in your example could definitely benefit from better awareness and perspective, especially after it happened being maybe a little irked he was called creepy but also understanding that there must have been something else going on as well. That's what I would have assumed. (And it also would depend on how much pushing you meant by "kept pushing" – there's a huge spectrum there from "kept trying to make conversation" to "seriously, being a pushy ass").

          • Clementine Danger says:

            "Just wanted to say I definitely agree that this guy who wrote you a lecture about calling people creepy is likely being an insensitive clod."

            Well, you know that *now*, because I've explained the situation and given you the backstory from my perspective. I don't owe it to anyone to explain that though. Pushy Guy and his Mansplaining Buddy didn't know the whole story either. That's why you have to be sensitive to that sort of thing, because no woman is going to say: "Your behavior reminds me of the time I got raped. I'm scared. Go away." If you had been the guy in that conversation, if you're not sensitive to these issues, you could have walked away with the same attitude he had. "What a emotional bitch, yelling at me out of nowhere while I was being super nice to her." You could be his buddy who says "Wow, she sounds like a total bitch, dodged a bullet there buddy!" He never knew about that whole phase of my life, or my triggers, so he doesn't think he's doing anything wrong when he pushes my stated boundaries or goes to his buddies and whines about how emotional and mean I am. Which leads to:

            "It's a true social dilema to try to figure out exactly what to do when a girl you're interested in is getting nervous."

            It really, really isn't.

            You walk away.

            If you *have* to do something about it:

            "Am I making you nervous?"
            "Yes."
            Walk away.

            Problem solved.

            And if you end up walking away from every single encounter with a person you're interested in, it's time to start looking for the common denominator.

          • I'm one of those women who tends to freeze up and stammer and blush around men who I'm strongly attracted to. My take on it is that I would much rather guys err on the side of backing the hell off. Sure, I might miss out on a couple of intimidatingly attractive men who were genuinely interested, but that's a small price to pay for not being pressured or followed around by someone who's harassing me.

            If you think there's really a strong chance that despite her one word answers and lack of eye contact, she's genuinely interested, you can do as Clementine suggests and ask her if you're making her nervous. Or, if you don't want to be that direct, give the woman an out and see if she takes it. Excuse yourself for a few minutes and see if she's there waiting for you when you come back. Or bring some other people into the conversation and see if she takes the first chance to latch onto someone else, or if she's still mostly paying attention to you.

          • Yep, this. As someone who also has tended to get nervous around guys I'm attracted to, I'll say that my nervous-out-of-attraction looks a lot different from my nervous-because-I'm-creeped-out. A guy I liked would still be getting lots of smiles, giggles, and eye contact (even if it was brief eye contact, then look away, then brief look again). I'd stay near him and turned toward him. With a guy who's creeping me out, I'm not going to smile unless very tightly out of politeness, I'm going to avoid eye contact as much as possible, and I'm going to try to move away from him.

            I don't think it's usually *that* hard to tell the difference between attracted-nervous and creeped-out nervous, and if someone is having trouble telling which it is (or it's somewhere in between), offering them an out or just asking are great ideas. Better than possibly making the person even more uncomfortable by deciding you're just going to pretend you don't notice!

      • Paul Rivers says:

        "And also, no one has said that creepy is only about physical danger."

        Whoa, whoa – who is the "no one" that you're talking about? This site has specifically said that.
        http://www.doctornerdlove.com/2012/05/labeling-me
        "Labeling someone as “creepy” isn’t about women being lazy and forcing men to jump through hoops to earn the right to get her phone number. It doesn’t mean “I’m not attracted to him” or that she’s throwing obstacles in his path. It means “This man’s behavior or attitude represents a heightened threat to my person.”

        • You posted at the same time I did above–as I quoted above, DNL makes it clear in that same article that the threat could be physical *or* psychological. Someone objectifying women and expecting them to be docile and subservient certainly suggests a psychological threat.

          • Paul Rivers says:

            Well, I disagree with this 100%. I don't know how "heightened threat to my person" could possibly taken as anything other than a potential physical threat. You asserted "I don't think anyone here has ever suggested to be true" – that's more than a suggestion.

            In the context of the article, this –

            "He may not mean to cause her discomfort, nor may he actually be a threat, but for whatever reason, his behavior indicates that he does not seem to be willing to acknowledge her boundaries, whether physical or psychological."

            Combined with the later comment specifically saying "heightened threat to my person", I take that as a physological threat that could potentially lead to a physical threat.

            "Someone objectifying women and expecting them to be docile and subservient certainly suggests a psychological threat."

            First, there's a difference between stating a preference for a race vs jumping into objectification and docile and subservient, as someone saying they're a black guy looking for a black girl (or an Indian guy looking for an Indian girl, etc etc) doesn't seem to generate the same reaction.

            Second, it *could* be a threat but it's not inherent. I mean I'm not saying you're wrong to not like that language, but like I wouldn't be into someone who wrote that they're into bdsm either, but I imagine starting a tumblr feed about The Creeps of BDSM would get the same reaction…

          • "First, there's a difference between stating a preference for a race vs jumping into objectification and docile and subservient, as someone saying they're a black guy looking for a black girl (or an Indian guy looking for an Indian girl, etc etc) doesn't seem to generate the same reaction."

            This article is not about having or even stating a preference. There's even a section about what the difference is.

            "Second, it *could* be a threat but it's not inherent. I mean I'm not saying you're wrong to not like that language, but like I wouldn't be into someone who wrote that they're into bdsm either, but I imagine starting a tumblr feed about The Creeps of BDSM would get the same reaction…"

            Honestly? We could really fucking use a tumblr about The Creeps of BDSM. There are a lot of them out there, and because not everyone who enjoys it talks about it openly, some of them never get called on their behavior or experience any negative social consequences from it. In the same vein, there are some generally well-meaning people who have never learned how to present themselves in a non-creepy way, because they don't know anyone else who likes what they like and can model talking about it while being respectful.

            As a base guideline, a simple statement in a mainstream profile about an interest in BDSM is not creepy. Neither is a more specific list of interests in a fetish-oriented profile. Mentioning BDSM in a message to a woman whose profile hasn't indicated she's interested in that? Creepy as fuck. Mentioning it at an ordinary social gathering, particularly to someone you're sexually interested in? Even creepier. You need to build a rapport with someone, get comfortable with each other, and determine that the person actually likes you back before you start discussing your turn ons with them in depth. Doing otherwise is crossing a ton of social boundaries, and is a sign of someone you don't want as a partner – for either kinky or vanilla sex.

            I think you can apply pretty much the same rules to these racial fetishes. You can indicate the race of the people you're seeking in your profile, but don't send messages like the ones above and don't describe your sexual attractions to people you don't know. Do that, and you'll avoid most potential landmines.

          • So your mind and emotions aren't part of your person? Come on, you're just being difficult now. And in the same article, DNL also talks about the dangers women are worried about including the possibility that someone will "harass/threaten/grope/assault" them — harassment and threats are obviously verbal/psychological, not physical violence.

            DNL states outright that he's talking about both physical and psychological threats, and you're *choosing* to interpret that as all leading back to physical danger. Which means the person making this all about physical danger is *you*. You can't complain about other people "insisting" on something being true, when the "insistence" is reliant on reading something into their words that contradicts what they're actually saying.

            And yes, part of the reason a psychological threat raises flags is the worry that it could escalate into a physical one. But most women–most people!–would prefer to avoid having someone make them emotionally uncomfortable even if they knew for sure it would never escalate. It can still be incredibly unpleasant even if the other person never touches you.

            Anyway, I think it's pretty clear from the article above that we're not talking about people who just state a preference and leave it at that, we're talking about people who *are* objectifying or stereotyping based on race. Did you even read the examples or the blog that's calling these guys creepy? They're not guys saying, "I prefer to date X race", the end. They're guys saying incredibly prejudiced and/or racially sexualizing things. I'm not seeing anyone in this article or the comments claiming that the former is creepy in and of itself, only when it's taken to the level of a fetish. So what exactly is the problem?

          • Clementine Danger says:

            "I don't know how "heightened threat to my person" could possibly taken as anything other than a potential physical threat."

            Because personhood is about more than your physical body, and not all danger is physical in nature. You're a human, I presume. You avoid emotional and psychological pain. You avoid people who make you feel angry or scared or who are just plain nasty to you. Physical danger doesn't even have to enter into it. Humans avoid pain of all kinds. A person who sees that you're sad because your cat died and laughs at you for crying is a threat to your well-being, and a person you're going to avoid. That person makes you feel angry and unsafe, and the threat of physical violence doesn't enter into it. The danger isn't that this person is going to punch you. The danger comes from the fact that they obviously don't care about your feelings, and maybe later on, they'll laugh at you for crying when a friend dies, since they obviously think you crying is funny. That's not a person you want to be around. You could describe what they're doing as posing a threat to your person.

            Similarly, a person who doesn't respect boundaries and doesn't take your personhood into account poses a threat to your psychological and emotional well-being. And you can be damn sure that the type of person who thinks your race is a character trait isn't the sort of person who has a keen grasp of mutual respect and human emotions.

          • Firstly, it's entirely possible to be abusive and destroy a person without ever physically harming them…

            Secondly, your nervous system does not distinguish between physical and psychological threats, it just gives you the same physical fear symptoms as if you were facing a bear. So it doesn't matter if the guy is creepy in the sense that he's a potential physical threat or in the sense that you feel the condescension dripping from his every word he's making you uncomfortable, you're still feeling the same physical fear reaction.

        • Notice his contrasts and his wording. Labeling someone as creepy isn't about women making men jump through hoops, and it isn't about them finding men unattractive. Objectification and stereotyping and violating social boundaries aren't in that first category of things creepy is not.

          Also notice that the phrasing is "heightened threat" rather than "immediate physical danger." Threats come in more than one variety. Additionally, someone who objectifies you and sees you as a submissive Asian girl or a fiery redhead is at an increased risk of being a physical danger. He doesn't see you as a person or recognize your individual personality or needs or wants. Not seeing someone as a person makes it easier to mistreat them, and clinging to stereotypes makes it easier to dismiss behavior that's counter to the stereotypes. Particularly, since racial stereotypes almost always have a sexual aspect (whether they're about men or women), they can make it easier to disregard a refusal. (I've actually had someone do this with the creepy redhead nonsense, and keep grabbing while telling me that a passionate girl like me must want it and dismissing my being pissed off as having an Irish temper. It was presented as aggressive teasing, but it was kind of scary and not at all funny.)

          • Yes! Someone who shows that they don't think of women (or specific categories of women) as whole and actual people is a threat because they are showing you they don't feel a need to respect your rights as a person. Someone who wants you to be subservient is additionally creepy because they are specifically seeking you out in the hopes you will be unwilling or unable to assert your own desires and needs – they are essentially telling you that they want you to be bad at saying no.

            If you don't think that's got anything to do with safety, then I don't think you've really been paying much attention in these discussions of 'creepy'.

    • Seriously, dude, this isn't an issue at all. Here are the possible scenarios:

      1. Women who call dudes creepy for mean-spirited reasons. These women have identified themselves as assholes, so don't hang out with them. Problem solved. (also they are exceedingly rare).
      2. Women calling dudes creepy in a joking manner. Being a guy with good self-esteem, just go along with the joke, and everyone's having a good time. Or let them know that it makes you uncomfortable. Being your friends, they will lay off.
      3. Women calling dudes creepy because said dudes are making them uncomfortable. Stop being creepy, problem solved.

      In any case, if being called creepy is something that happens to you often enough that it is a big problem for you, then you are probably doing something wrong.

      • so when women point out issues in the behavior of some men, its the men who need to change, but when men point out issues in the behavior of some women, its the men who need to change.

        whats funny is that nerdlove loves to zone in on certain TYPES of men, the most awful kind, and write articles about how they need to change, but when men talk about the most awful kind of women, the guy should just… ignore it and look somewhere else.

        doublestandards much?

        so tell me, why cant we talk about awful women?

        oh right, guys are always wrong. i forgot this long-running theme in todays society.

        • Um, how about because the main audience for DNL's blog is men. He can tell men how to change themselves. But he can't tell men how to change other people (i.e., women behaving badly) because we can't force other people to change. He can only tell them how to respond to other people's bad behavior in ways that are most productive for themselves.

          If this was a blog for women's dating advice, believe me, you'd see women being told to change their behavior. My proof (all of which turned up on the very first page of google results for "women dating advice"):
          http://www.glamour.com/sex-love-life/blogs/single… Oh look, it's a woman calling other women on being too picky, entitled, judgmental, etc.! Just like DNL calls men out!
          http://www.cosmopolitan.com/sex-love/dating-advic… Would you believe it? Women advise other women on how to "escape the friend zone" just like men do for men!
          http://www.marieclaire.com/sex-love/advice/online… Check it out, women also give other women advice on how to fix their not-so-great dating profiles!

          And, funny thing, those sites don't give women advice on how men should change their behavior… because the sites are aimed at women. When they talk about men's behavior, it's all about how women can deal with that behavior. Hmmm. Sound familiar?

          • the difference between cosmo and dnl is that nerdloves articles often spill into social issues, and when those discussions result in people making idiotic assumptions about men and linking to non-dating advice related websites that downplay the importance of what men are expressing, such as downplaying when men express their frustration with women being gossipy assholes and using their social leverage to falsely creep-shame men (which again is due to the "selective role" that women have been given in society), it's entirely appropriate for people like me to come along and tell you that what you're doing is doublestandard bullshit.

            so there you go.

          • I'm having trouble following what you're saying, because you wrote a sentence that's a paragraph long. So forgive me if this doesn't address what you were trying to get across perfectly.

            A guy comes here and says "I think women do X". Women reply saying, "I don't think most women do that. Most of the women I know don't, and I don't." This isn't downplaying. This is one person expression an opinion, and another person expression a different opinion. You're calling it downplaying because you're assuming that X is true. If we don't believe it's true, why wouldn't we argue against it? And believe me, when someone makes a negative generalization about men, many of the women here argue against that too! It would be a double-standard if we were okay with generalizations about men but not about women, but I haven't seen that to be the case.

          • "women being gossipy assholes and using their social leverage to falsely creep-shame men"

            what

            Everything is wrong with this.

            First off, that run-on sentence is making me think you're getting angry. Maybe calm down a bit? Secondly, I'm sure that what you described has happened, probably to you. But here's the thing: it is super rare. All women don't do it, most women don't do it; a few individuals did it to you. That sucks, I'm sorry. But that one instance or few instances is not representative of women in general. It isn't. Stop saying it is.

            Again, if creep-shaming really is a big problem for you, it's probably you who is doing something wrong. I've never actually seen it happen in the real world.

          • TheWanderingDude says:

            Yeah I have to back Max on this. I also have never seen the kind of creep shaming you described, soon to be 33yo and have never seen it with friends, girlfriends, coworkers and even strangers(And yes I sometimes went to clubs)
            Either you live in a very strange place which seems to collect the nasty people of the world or me and Max are both extremely lucky.
            The only times I have seen men complain of being creep shamed they weren't actually called a creep, they just were told "Not interested" by a woman and took it badly, seeing it as being put down and insulted, as if they were entitled to getting a positive answer.

        • Dr_NerdLove says:

          Strangely, when I'm writing to a predominantly male audience trying to get better at dating, telling them “hey, bitches right?” isn't exactly helpful.

  13. Paul Rivers says:

    I wrote this on the facebook page, but I think it makes sense to post it here as well –

    While there are some things where "equivalance" arguments aren't really accurate, like fear of sexual assault (for men compared to women, outside of prison), there are other situations where equivalence is completely justified in looking at things, and dating based on a race is definitely one of those.

    There's no shortage of just as much race-based filtering from women. I dated an asian girl – she told me several times she didn't like dating asian guys (that's not a typo, and apparently it's quite common that asian girls prefer not to date asian guys). I went out with a white girl (I'm white) who said she wasn't attracted to black guys. I've seen Indian girls on match or okcupid who specifically say they don't like Indian guys. Look around at how many interacial couples there are where the girl is not white and the guy is white, vs where it's the guy that's another nationality – there's a fairly larger amount of asian/indian/etc girls dating a white guy than there are white girls dating a guy of another race.

    This just seems like another one of those "when men do it's bad, but when women do it it's totally fine!" kind of things to me.

    I mean that Asian girl I went out with would talk about guys who *only* seemed interested in the fact that she was Asian, and practically nothing else about her really – the point isn't that it doesn't happen, the point is that women absolutely do it just as much, probably more from my perspective.

    • Yes, women are creepy about race and fetishize it as well. These women also deserve to be called out.

      That being said, the Doctor almost always addresses his advice to guys, whether it's calling out type advice or more gentle and helpful advice. Women who read it kind of have to switch the genders and see how much of it applies to them.

      • Okay, maybe this is a thing, but I have never seen any examples…. even on the Internet… of girls fetishizing race is anywhere near the same capacity. I've heard girls ooing over accents, or "sexy" foreign men (I myself have SUCH a thing for UK accents.) But I have never heard of women saying they'll ONLY date guys of a particular race, because "their hair is so silky" or "they're so more independent than <insert other ethnicity." Can someone point me to examples where women seem to be focusing on race to a similar point as these guys in the article?

        • I agree that I don't think fetishization in this way is as common or overt among women as it is among men, but it definitely happens. Black men getting fetishized because of ideas about their "size", for example.

        • I don't know of any articles. I have known a couple of women personally who will only date black men for some reasons that struck me as being icky and racist, so I do think it happens, regardless of whether it's more or less or equally common. I'm fine with saying it's wrong.

          I do think it's worth noting that Paul seems to be trying to put racial fetishization in a broader category of racial filtering, and that most of his examples are about women who won't date one particular race (which, of course, is something men do too). I don't think that's quite the same thing. It's troubling and involves some of the same stereotyping, but I think the dynamic is slightly different. It seems like that sort of thing involves a lot of bitterness and negative stereotyping and in some cases self esteem issues, while fetishization has a more obviously sexual element to it.

          • Yeah, I think it's one thing to feel uncomfortable dating someone outside your race, or someone of a particular race, and so to choose not to. Often those feelings may be based on unexamined prejudice or other issues, but ultimately, in and of themselves, they're not hurting anyone else. It's when you make negative or objectifying statements about people of those races, or seek out dates with someone of a specific race expecting them to be specific things solely based on their race, that you are affecting other people, and that's a bigger problem.

          • I do think that people who refuse to date certain races sometimes do so in ways that are hurtful to others, at least in the sense that those who are vocal about their negative stereotypes spread prejudice. Hearing messages that your race is full of dorky, short, sexless guys isn't any better than hearing messages that your race is full of exotic, submissive sex goddesses. It doesn't affect people directly in the way that fetishization does, but I wouldn't say it's completely harmless.

            There's also a sort of uncomfortable angle to it because sometimes the race that's excluded and stereotyped is the person's own race. Regardless, it's a complicated issue, but I think it's something that needs its own discussion, since the motives and the way it manifests are a bit different.

          • I think we agree. Like I said, when you make negative statements about people of those races, that's a problem. I just meant that if the person is quietly choosing not to date people of certain races, not talking about the fact, then I don't think that hurts anyone except themselves (by allowing their prejudices to limit them).

            For example, being totally honest about myself, there are guys of certain races that I tend not to feel physically attracted to. But I would never have mentioned that in a dating profile, and I won't go into any detail about it here, because I realize that part of it is social programming to find certain features attractive and others less so, I do sometimes find guys of those races attractive–I just find I'm less likely to, and I know that making statements about finding certain physical qualities that are related to race less attractive is hurtful to other people. I don't think I've ever hurt anyone else by having those feelings in my head, though.

        • I've seen girls fetishize black guys.

          • BTW, I've seen this not as a result of wanting a black guy for his "size" but I've seen girls fetishize black guys because they want a black guy to make their interest in hip-hop/urban culture legitimate so they aren't seen as the poser white girl. I suspect it is similar to the Japanese fetish thing mentioned in the article.

          • That's interesting. It reminds me of turn of the 20th century Anthropologist and soldiers in foreign locales "going native," as they used to say, in imperialist speak. People falling in love with a culture and a people, and seeking to integrate into that culture as much as possible. I have met a great number of people who have married into a host culture after putting themselves there for personal and career interests (humanitarian and Peace Corps types marrying African men, organic agriculturalists marrying Latin American men, development professionals marrying into their working region, etc), as well as modern Anthropologists doing the same. I wonder if this ought to be thought fetishism.

          • Clementine Danger says:

            I don't think it's the relationship or the history of the relationship that counts, I think it's the intent. If you're dating a guy because he's an awesome guy, you're golden. If you're dating a guy because he's black, that's iffy, no matter where and how you met or what type of relationship you have.

            There's also the matter of availability. I live in Belgium, so I've dated Belgian guys almost exclusively. That doesn't automatically mean I've got a fetish for Belgian guys. If I move to Tokyo tomorrow, chances are I'm going to be dating Japanese guys. Nothing to do with race fixation and everything to do with availability.

        • You sometimes see female anime fans fetishizing Japanese men.

    • Clementine Danger says:

      It's kind of sad-funny that it's gotten to the point where, if I see the name "Paul Rivers" on a comment on this site, I know exactly what the comment is going to be.

      I just want to give you a big hug and an affectionate slap on the back of the head, grab you and shake you and get it through your thick skull that you are probably a really awesome dude, and stop limiting and sabotaging yourself at every turn. I kind of get the vague feeling that it sucks to be you, and it doesn't have to be that way.

      • Gentleman Horndog says:

        You're a much nicer person than me. I just get the vague feeling we're being trolled.

        • Clementine Danger says:

          I have this… friend, I suppose would be the classification. She's wonderful, on paper. She's an actress and a singer and a mother, she is so very pretty, she dresses in a way I wish I could pull off, she's fairly smart and very social and I could go on and on listing all the ways in which she is awesome. And everyone HATES spending time with her, because she's insecure to the point of being paranoid. In her mind, everyone is scheming against her, trying to destroy her, or just plain mean to her, and when we try to make it clear to her that sometimes we do things that have nothing to do with her, all she hears is that she doesn't matter. It's exhausting. And it's so very frustrating, seeing someone constantly teetering on the brink of happiness and taking a step back. With just a little work and responsibility, she could be happy and awesome, but she chooses to be miserable and tiresome, and I just want her to stop.

          Everyone has a chance to be happy and whole. It makes me sad when people limit themselves and make themselves unhappy and blame the world for it. It makes me angry when they limit themselves and then blame me and my entire sex for it. I kind of want to buy them a beer and tell them about the millions of ways the world is an awesome place filled with kind people and exciting opportunities, and they are awesome too, and not to be scared. It's one of the good things you get after crawling out of a hole deeper and darker than Satan's asshole. It kind of gives you a chance to see the world in a much better light. So no, I don't think Paul's a troll. I think he's fallen into a mental trap he set for himself, and I want to drag him out of there. Even if I'm perfectly aware that that's not something a stranger on the internet can do. Everyone has the potential to be awesome. It's frustrating when people step away from that potential.

          That's the thing about activism, I think. If you want to help people, you have to *like* people. It's alright being angry when someone acts like a creepy misogynist, but at the end of the day, you can't hate people for their own good.

    • Being attracted or not to a race physically is different from what this article describes. It isn’t so much the physical features of the race in these cases, rather the behavior they think comes with said race. Because race is totally a factor in your personality to the point that every person of the same trade is exactly the same.

    • It does happen, actually. I know a guy who will date only asians. To the point that it's comical. He actually told an asian girl that he didn't know prior to the encounter that he "liked asians" as a way of hitting onher. He was known, in college, as the creepy guy who hit on every asian chick who walked past. It wasn't about them as a person, it was because he had a fetish and it was creepy. When your only criteria for dating someone is their race, it's a problem, not a preference.

  14. difference spice says:

    This has always been an uncomfortable and complicated issue for me. I've been with roughly 50% white women, and 50% Asian or Asian-American women (though I happily chase after women of all races). The desire for someone overtly different from myself has always been a huge source of my attraction to particular women. This has had me dating musicians (I'm not musically inclined at all), writers, bakers, Europeans, other international students, and for some reason, this includes several Korean women (and yet I speak Japanese). I'm very attracted to difference, as I'm one of those people who find people just like myself as boring. I have long held the notion that the best romantic partners are those I can learn the most from, whether that be about another ethnicity/culture or an object of someone's passion that I do not share (like music or professional cooking). I think a lot of people think this way too, but maybe aren't as insistent on it as a criterion for dating as I have been (not having had a partner in a while is making me relax that standard though, and "settling" for good personality chemistry as I go on new dates). At any rate, when I've been with Asian women, it's always been with an element of worry that I'm being judged as an Asian fetishist. Speaking Japanese hasn't helped my case–one time my application to live in a coop house was denied, because a Japanese-American resident learned I speak Japanese and vetoed my application, citing concerns of Asian fetishism despite having barely spoken with me (I found out through a third party, after asking why I'd been denied). Guys I met in Japan would tell me they were only interested in Japanese women–true fetishists–and they justified it as "it takes two to tango," pointing out that the women they might wind up with were looking for foreign men (this includes African-American and South Asian men).

    I feel that the concept of racial fetishism, thanks to men and women like those mentioned, has ballooned into such a social faux pas that anyone in an interracial relationship (though especially white men and Asian women, because of the whole "Yellow Fever" trope) is suspect, and has to deal with feeling like they are thought perverts by passers-by and even acquaintances. I'm not sure where we're all supposed to draw the line when it comes to having an interest in interracial relationships, and it causes me anxiety and a certain amount of guilt in being interested in dating outside my culture/race.

  15. Well I think on OKCupid there's an option for "irrelevant," but it's been a while since I was on the site so my memory might be blurry. IF such an option exists, I would assume guys who just prefer it, but don't think it's obligated, would just select that it doesn't matter.

    • The "irrelevant" option is for the third part of the question, where you indicate how much you care about other people's answer to that one. Theoretically, you could answer "yes" to the question that women are obligated to shave their legs, but "irrelevant" when it came to indicating whether you cared how your date answered the question.

      You can also skip questions, but I think some thoughtless people tend to just click through even the ambiguous ones.

    • Gentleman Johnny says:

      Having done OKCupid questions to the point that a new one only adds about .1%, I would remind everyone that there is an option to skip any question. Some of them were uncomfortably binary. Just hit skip and move on.

  16. As an Asian woman who has been perceived as a "rice cooker" before, I never really understood the fetish until reading this. Firstly, because I don't understand how people believe Asian women are all "submissive". In my culture (Vietnamese if you must know) according to super-old-school traditions (read: irrelevant), women are supposed to be cute, sweet, and mild-mannered….then, the day right after the honeymoon, she will evolve into loudmouthed, pushy, stubborn fishwife. It's become a cultural joke for most Vietnamese people. Heck, there's even a wedding night superstition shared among women which tell them they should grab their husband's pillows and sit on it the second they are set down upon their wedding beds. This supposedly guarantees control over one's husband and determines who "wears the pants" in the relationship. So much for submissive Viet women….

    Also, one of the most hilarious warnings I have ever received as a straight female from a male was "If you ever have bicurious urges or somehow become a lesbian, DON'T DATE PERSIAN WOMEN!!!!!" The guy was Persian; according to him, Persian women pretend to be all cute, submissive and pretty….shortly before sucking you, your wallet, and your bank account dry. This guy warns everybody against Persian girls and he himself has only dated a few.

    • I have no idea what "rice cooker" means. I suppose I could google it, but not sure I need to learn what's probably a racial slur.

  17. DNL, I like red-heads as much as the next geek but doesn't Kimberly strike as being a bit too much of a Valley Girl to be an object of desire? Her boyfriend is a classic jock to.

  18. I actually attended an extremely awkward marriage celebration recently between a white man with an Asian fetish and his new Asian bride. He actually travel to Japan to find a girl, but had to leave when Japanese girls wouldn't give his creepy ass the time of day. He then went to the Philippines and eventually found a woman willing to put up with him for a green card. Seriously, the "celebration" was so weird, because his bride looked like she could barely tolerate him, and he kept trying to order her around, which she completely ignored.

  19. Is the overwhelming female desire for males taller than them a "preference" or a "fetish"? Discuss.

    • Clementine Danger says:

      No.

    • BritterSweet says:

      I don't think your goal here is to actually "discuss."

      • Really? How so?

        • Clementine Danger says:

          Where's admiral Ackbar when you need him?

        • It's kind of like the boy who cried wolf, Vic. You start enough "discussions" in which your only goal is clearly to state your agenda over and over and ignore what everyone else says, and people figure out that there's no point in engaging with you.

          Sadly this is going to make it hard for you if you ever really do want to discuss something, but I'm sure you could figure out a way to get that across if that time ever comes.

          • Mmm, I love short guys. Especially small, short guys. But I run into a couple problems:

            1) No one believes me! Seriously. And…

            2) In casual conversations with some cute, short guys, I have learned that they wouldn't date ME! I'm a large-framed woman who is about 5'8". There isn't much dainty about me. But most of these guys say that they look for women more petite than they are, and definitely smaller/thinner. It didn't upset me too much, because I'm not available anyway, but boo. :(

            I'm just saying, if you are a short and/or skinny dude, ask yourself if you'd date an Amazon like me. If the answer is a resounding NO, can you really blame women who prefer taller guys?

          • I can't speak for other short/skinny guys, but to me, a large-framed 5'8" woman sounds pretty awesome!

            But yeah, I don't know much about the short guys not wanting to date you so I can't really say anything about that, but it must certainly suck to not be believed when you state your love for short guys. That seems to be the thing about any preference that deviates from the perceived norm (which in this case seems to be that the man should be the larger of the two partners) – claims of having such a preference tend to be dismissed.

          • Yup, for sure! Kind of like how people who find fat people actually sexually desirable are consistently erased or dismissed as meaningless "outliers". Anything outside that snug, restrictive box seems to spark disbelief.

            I think there's a lot of social pressure on both men and women here, though. A lot of it is the fault of gender roles. Women are conditioned to go for tall because tall=masculine and that way they can feel all small and feminine. And those short guys I mentioned actually told me they need to feel "like a man" with a woman. Women who are larger than they are and outweigh them are apparently emasculating?

            I've never much cared for gender roles myself, so height in a man is totally irrelevant.

          • I sorta kinda kinda sorta pity those guys who feel emasculated in the company of larger women. Maybe it's because I've already accepted that Hell will freeze over before I become a big guy so there's no way I'm fulfilling that part of the male gender role, or maybe it's because there's another supposedly major aspect of the male gender role that I deviate from so strongly that the aspect itself is antithetical to me. But I would think that, if you don't feel like a man and you need to feel like one by the standards of the male gender role, then surely it would take a lot more than just having a smaller woman for a girlfriend/wife/whatever.

            Not that there's any problem with having a smaller woman for a girlfriend/wife/whatever and, despite the preference I hinted at earlier, I would be open to it myself. Just that (imo) there is a problem if the rationale behind it is (almost) exclusively to appear more macho.

          • It's a fairly straightforward question, I'd think. Someone in the thread mentioned the dividing line between a "preference" and a creepy racial "fetish" being whether or not you would date that person even if they were not of a particular race. My question is simply if a woman would date a man who is five eleven but not date the same guy who was five four, is she merely expressing a "preference" about her partner's height or is she indulging in a "creepy fetish" and why/why not. It seems a fair question.

            My guess is that no one has attempted to answer it because both answers are unsatisfactory, for different reasons.

          • Clementine Danger says:

            Is the overwhelming human desire to ignore Vic a "preference" or a "fetish"? Discuss.

          • Is the overwhelming insistence on mistaking snark for wit a preference or a fetish?

          • Clementine Danger says:

            Good one. Now drop the mic and walk away, and I promise you we'll cheer.

          • Personally, I think the dividing line has more to do with how people present their preferences and talk about them than any "would you change this" test. Otherwise, any trait that's on someone's dealbreaker list ends up being labeled a fetish.

          • I spent the last 20 minutes trying to formulate a response and you ended up doing it more concisely and more clearly than I did.

            But yeah, taking that bit about dealbreakers being considered fetishes at the end, if we took that to its logical extreme, then that would mean all straight men and lesbians have a woman fetish while all gay men and straight women have a man fetish.

          • Most of the examples seem pretty upfront about their feelings about Asian women. Yet they are labeled "creepy fetishists." Are you saying they should be more, or less, circumspect in stating their desires?

          • All the quoted messages are riddled with stereotypes. I think all three men need to sit down and evaluate why they're interested in Asian women, and if the non-physical aspects of that attraction have any basis in reality,or are instead fantasies based on what they've seen in the media. For people who don't have these objectifying attitudes but who have a strong physical preference, they should start by emailing the women as individuals, rather than as Asian girls, and by asking about some things on their profiles. If they get responses, at some point it's appropriate to briefly disclose that they're specifically interested in Asian women. No need to go into the reasons why or to make any assumptions about a given woman being submissive or docile, or knowing kung fu, or having an abusive father.

            The comparable case – a woman writing to a man cooing about his height, comparing him positively to short men with Napoleon complexes, and talking about how as a tall woman she's worthy of him unlike all those awful short women – would be pretty goddamn creepy as well.

          • Their feelings are both creepy and fetishistic (not to mention extremely racist). So they are labeled creepy fetishists.

          • They are making generalizations about people based on their race. They shouldn't seek to be more or less "upfront" about it. They should stop.

          • Well, I can't speak for anyone else, but the reason I haven't attempted to answer it is because every other time you've started a conversation here, it hasn't been out of an honest desire to discuss a topic, but as a way to promote PUA tactics/philosophy and make snarky remarks at anyone who doesn't agree with you. So I don't believe you honestly care about the question. And I have no interest in listening to your inevitable snarky remarks if I should try to answer the question. I've attempted to have conversations with you many times already, and I've never found it remotely enjoyable or productive, which are the two factors (one or both) I generally require in a conversation. You've worn out my patience. That's pretty hard to do, so congrats! :P

          • "I can't answer without sounding either like I'm divorced from reality or a complete hypocrite. So I'm going for the ad hominem. KTHXBAI"

          • Thank you for proving my point! :)

          • "if a woman would date a man who is five eleven but not date the same guy who was five four, is she merely expressing a "preference" about her partner's height or is she indulging in a "creepy fetish" "

            The experiment is impossible to duplicate. You can't take a man and change his height, and nothing else, and then test him out with women. The 5'11" guy and the 5'4" guy are not the same guy. You might chalk any rejections the 5'4" guy might face up to his height, but there are too many variables there to be sure. They are two different people.

            And I'm sure guys who are 5'11" experience rejection, too. What's the reason behind that, then? There's just too many things to consider, and too many unknowns.

          • "You can't take a man and change his height, and nothing else …"

            And if somehow you could (scientific breakthrough, radiation-induced superpowers, alien technology, whatever), why would you use it for this kind of experiment when you could put it to all sorts of other uses? At the very least, you could modify your own height to the alleged perfect height to be considered attractive, but even that's just scratching the surface of the tip of the iceberg! Think of the possibilities! Try to see the big picture!

            Erm … I think I got a little *ahem* carried away there ^_^

            But yeah, I'm willing to bet that everyone commenting on this blog will have probably died by the time science manages to achieve this, so I guess we'll never know the outcome of that hypothetical experiment. Oh well.

          • Clementine Danger says:

            "Erm … I think I got a little *ahem* carried away there "

            No, no, that was good. Add a time machine and a romance subplot and you're golden.

            This all reminds me of a Neil Gaiman short story, "Change". I don't know if anyone's read it. It describes what society would be like if someone invented a pill that let people change their sex back and forth. It's really funny and insightful, I highly recommend it. I don't remember which book it was in, but you can probably find it pretty easily.

          • The same could be said of race, then. The guy could be disinterested because she's not Asian, but there are too many variables to be sure.

          • Unless of course the guy explicitly states that he is only interested in Asians, which implicitly means that his disinterest in non-Asians will be partly because of the non-Asian factor. And I'm quite positive that at least two of the examples the Doc posted were explicit in their interest being in Asians only.

          • Well, the biggest problem with the examples DNL gave is not even their interest in Asian women, but the fact that they expressed that interest in offensive stereotypical ways.

            Like he says, you're attracted to what you're attracted to. But when it goes beyond finding that individual attractive, to wanting some sort of stereotypical idea of what you think that race represents, or using the woman as a trophy, that's really problematic. I think any time you start wanting to date people for reasons (racial or otherwise) outside who they are as individuals, you're getting into sketchy territory.

          • This is it exactly. The closest equivalent with height would be a girl who messages a tall guy with nothing in her message but insinuations about how she assumes his height relates to his penis size and ooh, baby, get something down for me from that high shelf and how much she likes watching guys bump their heads going through doorways – then, like a guy with an Asian fetish, she would be showing that her only interest is in the rather odd and sexualized stereotypes she wants him to conform to, not the actual person.

            Okay, that made for a weird comparison. I tried.

          • LOL, I think it worked! :D

    • straight up, here's how it goes for me (and pretty much every other girl I've been friends with, though not all of them actually prefer taller men, and not many of them are in the same boat as far as the second parentheses goes) I prefer tall men (also shorter women, but that's not what this "discussion" is about) I'm 5'8", I prefer men that are 5'10" or taller, just logistics wise. I've always been attracted to taller guys. The first time I developed serious feelings for someone, it was a guy that was shorter than me, didn't stop me pursuing that or having those feelings, didn't stop me from looking at him in the first place. If height was this fetish for me I wouldn't consider anyone that wasn't taller than me and I would put characteristics on being tall that might not necessarily be true and that make me sound like an ass.

  20. i meant to say creep-shaming with a bad or selfish intent but you get the point.

  21. I don't mind being called a douchebag, even though I find it a bit irrelevant to the discussion, but thanks for the apology.

    I don't recall ever saying anything hateful to women. Please quote me on that one before making such assumptions.

    • Clementine Danger says:

      No. That's not my job. When someone tells you that your attitude and words are hurtful, it's your responsibility to check yourself.

      So while I'm perfectly willing to have a good faith discussion about this, it's absolutely not my job to spend hours of my life creating a list of quotes for you to explain away. I've done my part in telling you how your comments are affecting me, and possibly other people. Now it's on you to decide what you want to do with that information.

      • sorry but the burden of proof is on you, not me.

        what kind of fairly tale world are you people living in where you assume that you can throw out assumptions or accusations without having to back it up in any way?

        • Clementine Danger says:

          I'm not trying to prove anything. There's no win for me, nothing I can get out of this. This isn't a contest where the person with the best list of facts wins.

          I've informed you of the fact that what you do here, in this space, in incredibly painful and upsetting to me. That information is yours to do with that as you please. My life is probably not going to change no matter what you decide. Yours might.

          • so you are telling me that i hate women and that it's hurting you, but you refuse to tell me where and how?

            fine, ill try to keep that in mind when writing my future comments, but i still have no idea what youre referring to.

          • Clementine Danger says:

            I'm really trying to monitor my language closely, because it's so important, so I just want to say that it's about your words and attitudes here, in this space. I don't know you, you're probably a really cool guy, but the words you use here and opinions you express really can and do come across as very offensive and hurtful, and it is very, very easy and natural to assume that someone's words and opinions inform their character and behavior. I don't *need* to know you as a person to know a hurtful attitude.

            You've mentioned the downvotes before, and how it frustrates you that every time you comment people indicate that they dislike what you say. I don't want to speak for anyone else, but I suspect it might be an indication not just of the fact that people intellectually disagree with our opinions, but also that you're hurting them.

            I think it would be really good to go back and read over all your posts and try to do it from the perspective of a woman. Just pick any woman in your life that you really like, maybe your mom or sister or childhood friend or something, and try and read what you say from her perspective. Maybe even show it to them. I think that would be a really valuable thing to do if you really don't know what I'm referring to.

            If it helps, one thing I've noticed is negative generalizations. "[Most] women do/are [bad thing]" is an opinion you express or imply many, many times, and yes, that is a personal judgement on me and every individual woman here, so we're going to take that personally. Because it IS personal.

            Another thing to realize is that a lot of women seek refuge in places like this. I know you don't accept that right now, but let's say for the sake of argument that women generally experience various forms of hostility because of their gender, especially online. I know you can relate to that. There are very little safe spaces we can go (again, especially online) to escape from that hostility. So assuming that what I'm saying is true, whether you believe it or not, just read your previous posts and look at how they could be taking that safety away from those who need it.

            I know you don't want to be the kind of person who hurts people. Nobody but a psychopath wants that, and you're not a psychopath. But you kind of are hurting people, and it would be really great if you could stop.

          • first off, i wasnt complaining that MY comments were getting downvoted, but that comments in GENERAL tend to be downvoted if they dont fly with the general consensus of the women on here. again, dont assume that my opinions are based on my personal gain or loss.

            second, i have a hard time seeing how any of my comments could hurt anyone. of course i generalize. nerdlove does it too, and so does pretty much everyone here.

            its funny because the women on here seem to have no problem making some pretty toxic accusations or generalizations, but as soon as a guy comes along and presents a theory of his own that doesnt sit well with the women of nerdlove, he's accused of all the things that the women themselves have been doing for a very long time, or he is accused of being hateful to women, or insensitive.

            doublestandards ahoy!

            and last but not least, yes, its true that women have to take a lot of shit online. its awful and its a climate im hoping, and know, will change slowly over time, but i think its obvious that girls on here just take pleasure in being able to tell guys what to do. its self indulgent bullshit that feeds their ego and makes for a fun sunday night activity.

          • Clementine Danger says:

            Okay, well, I think I've said just about all I can say about this. Like I said, the information is yours to do with as you please. I just hope you give it some consideration at some point in the future.

          • translations: i love to make bold claims but im too lazy to back them up with anything substantial.

    • Haha, sorry dude, but you're wrong. "You are always a douchebag!" might require some proof on her part, but she took that part back. When someone says "You are making me feel bad, in a similar manner that a douchebag would," that does not need to be proven. That is a fact. You are making her feel bad, like a douchebag. I don't think she's lying about her feelings. So maybe think about not acting in a way that makes people feel bad, because that is what douchebags do.

      And for the love of god, do not respond to this with any variation of "welcome to the internet, brah!" Everyone who has ever posted that has been a douchebag. So you'd only be proving her point further.

      • she's constantly hammering the "i hope me telling you this will help you" comment which made me believe that she actually had a point, but if she's just wants to express something pointless then she's free to do so. i was just under the assumption that we were having a rational discussion here.

  22. i meant to say that feminism has a sub-group of toxic and misandrist extremists

    • Clementine Danger says:

      "i meant to say that feminism has a sub-group of toxic and misandrist extremists"

      "Feminists" who define their feminism by their hatred of men are like "Christians" who define their Christianity by their hatred of gays. They're not what they claim to be, and they're just plain wrong. It is that simple.

      You're an adult. You should be able to tell the difference between people with beliefs and extremists, and act accordingly.

      When you're exposed to extremism, it's your job to recognize it for what it is and not throw entire swaths of the human population under the bus because you judge them by the worst of their kind. That's just part of being a well-adjusted adult. Again, this is very basic stuff, and most people have no problem at all understanding this.

      Extremism is always hateful and wrong. It's equally wrong to judge a group by its worst members. But you know that. You just have a double standard for women and feminists.

      "Men today are brought up to feel like they are part of the problem"

      This is a society. If there's a societal problem, then everyone is part of the problem, because everyone is better off when it's solved. Informing people of that is giving them the opportunity to be part of the solution. It's a kindness.

      "and when some men are exposed to extreme feminism, it kind of pushes them over the edge"

      "Some men", huh?

      I really don't know who you think you're fooling at this point. That's not me gloating. That is me urging you to swallow your pride, own up to your feelings and get some help with them. Because until you do, this is going to keep happening to you, and you're going to keep being part of the problem.

  23. haha, and i also meant to type "men". i should get a spellchecker ;)

  24. I feel like people are talking very little about the actual racial fetishization here, but more about creepers, fedoras, etc. Andrew Ti sums it up really well here http://yoisthisracist.com/post/38025647591/im-ter
    But more to the point of actually dealing with racial fetishes: some people have them. Some people own up to having them. But if you want someone to participate in your fetish, you should be up front.
    You could have a relationship with them, but when you involve someone in your particular sex play, they should consent. They should ALWAYS be a consenting partner, and you cannot be a consenting partner without awareness. Especially in such a loaded cultural context- where race, for a person in a minority plays a vital part in their identity, and their everyday life, even if a white man who fetishizes or even 'prefers' asian woman doesn't see it as a negative thing, it may be important to their other partner, female or no. This isn't on the same level as preferring a redhead. To reiterate, race permeates (especially American) life. If someone with a preference can't think about what that would mean to their partner and have an honest discussion about it within the early stages of a relationship, then they are probably not a very good partner.

  25. not that i disagree with feminists. just saying, it works both ways.

  26. If you're more physically attracted to people of a certain race, that's okay. But if you're preference is based on generalizations about a certain race's culture, bodies, or personalities, then that's racist.

  27. I browsed the comments to see how the Asian Americans feel about this; I saw only one.  Interesting.  And if you went to Stuyvesant HS which is now 60% Asian, holla.

    Dr. Nerdlove, you brought me back to reminisce on my days of online dating.  I almost wish you didn’t write this because the obvious fetishists were well…obvious.  Sometimes, it just takes the first date for it to become obvious.  Sometimes, it just takes a peek at their profile.  I feel sadness for all my cousins who are first generation American born, who have to put up with this hooey.  But the guys who fetishize us, we know the cues to run from.  As you noted, it’s never really about the guy accepting the “bad” or even good/fun/desirable aspects of a woman…it’s all about him.

    Heaven forbid I lose my beloved partner right now and when back into dating, I suspect that I would link this article to anyone who imposed even a tinge of this BS my way. Does it make a difference? Perhaps not, but I know that I would speak my truth through this forum.

    • Fyi to some commenters, we ain’t girls, unless you were aiming to date 17 year old girls, *ugh* You don’t go around saying Black girls this and White girls that, do you? Call us gals, ladies, women, anything and I won’t call you a White/Black/Latino/American Indian boy.

  28. "In the Tumblr Creepy White Guys, we see a fairly common racial fetish – white guys who have a “thing” for Asian women, finding them more desirable than women of other ethnicities."

    It's funny how "yellow fever" gets such a bad rap, when in reality, the majority of Asian female/white male relationships are due to "vanilla fever": non-white women dating white men for a genetic status boost.

    There's a fairly well documented trend of attractive, successful women of all races going after white guys. In my opinion, it's a power game. Women like guys with power (which can come in many different forms), and the easiest way to attain a partner of higher "status" than yourself is through race: There are a lot more white guys than there are rich guys, or really tall guys, or really really attractive guys. The media obviously doesn't help this much, either.

    For anyone who wants to see the statistics: http://blog.okcupid.com/index.php/your-race-affec

  29. pragmatic says:

    I think people should remember this: you are ninety nine percent identical to the person next to you! If you are trying to find a good romantic partner, it shouldn't be based on race alone. That in fact is really stupid. It's like buying merchandise blind without evaluating it first. A real connection matters!

    I am Asian, female and I am sick of all these unattractive older men (white, usually) who try to chat me up. Creepy. I know that .also like me because I will always look young.

  30. Thanks for writing this article. i’m a guy who is married to a vietnamese woman and I have feltguilty that maybe I had an asian fetish because most of my dates and both my serious relationships have been with asian women. But like you said, while i love my wife’s culture because it is a part of who she is, I’d love her no matter her culture.

  31. smileyballer1 says:

    Meh. Am I the only guy who is aroused by Asian women because I find their physical features very attractive?

  32. I'm interested in learning more about social coding as regards interracial relationships. Could anyone point me to some resources? The initial googling proved somewhat unfruitful.

  33. Can't people just like whoever they want? I like Japanese women too.. I sort of dated a lot, but I would date anyone! I had a black girlfriend when all my white friends dissed me because they were racist. Why hate on people for interracial dating when it is so difficult to begin with? I think it's beautiful. If you only like red-head girls, call them gingers — which is starting to get borderline offensive/ racist or at least insensitive anyway, well why can't someone like Asian eyes and straight black hair without being a nerd or racist? The trend these days is to say "hey you date a lot of girls that are not of the same race as you therefore you are racist" … my response to people that accuse someone of being racist or having yellow fever or jungle fever is, seriously, seriously, fuck you you fucking dweeby cunt. You're just jealous.

  34. ….but if the Asian girlfriend were black or Persian or white, I think it's safe to say that she WOULD be a different person. Race, cultural upbringing and nationality are an integral part of who we are.