Let’s talk about that famous ‘no’ word. It’s simple, powerful, and yet somehow often ignored.
Now, I’m talking purely from a woman’s perspective, because I’ve never lived as a man (shocking, I know.) So, forgive me if this sounds sexist or like I’m generalising men, because that is not my intention. Not all men are the same, I know that. But I can only write based on the experiences I’ve had as a woman, as well as statistics.
So, here we go.
Let me start but letting you guess how many times I’ve been accused of leading men on. Go on…
Jokes, I wish I could tell you, but it’s actually too many to count. So many times have I told male friends that I’m not interested in being more, and so many times have they continued to read into everything I say and do, hoping against all hope that I will suddenly change my mind, or perhaps I was confused. And then accuse me of sending them mixed signals.
Well, guess what guys… I’m fed up with it. Here’s a little tip, LISTEN to what a girl is SAYING. When she says she’s not interested, she probably really freaking means it.
Let me give you a scenario. I walk outside stark naked, and say “I don’t want to have sex or be touched at all.” Is it my fault if I get sexually assaulted because my ‘signals’ aren’t matching the words coming out of my mouth?
No, it most definitely is NOT. Again, LISTEN to what we are SAYING.
Sure, signs and signals can be fun, exciting, like when you first start dating someone. But when a person says “no, I’m not interested,” that counteracts ANY and ALL signals… Period.
And yet, somehow it’s our fault when we have to reinforce again and again that we want to be ‘just friends’ or nothing at all. Somehow it’s our fault if our skirt is too short, or our heels too high. Causing a temptation that apparently cannot be controlled.
But there’s also the problem of female friends excusing their behaviour with comments like “maybe you’re too nice” or “your personality is too likeable…” While the intentions are good, it is essentially victim shaming, placing the blame where it doesn’t belong.
I have a playful personality that can come across as flirty, I won’t lie about that. But despite pointing this out and still saying I’m really not interested, it never seems to sink in.
I find myself genuinely wondering lately what we have to do to actually be heard, to have our feelings and our needs respected.
I read recently a quote that said “no is a full sentence.” So freaking true! We don’t owe anyone any explanation for not wanting to do something, men and women alike, and we certainly shouldn’t have to repeat it over and over.
I’ve been bogged down, suffocated by what men want and how men think I feel, way too often. And look, I’m betting so many men have felt the same about women too! There’s no denying that. This isn’t a battle of the sexes, this is a battle against the inability to take what should be a simple response, and turning it into chaos and accusations. This is a battle against friendships being demolished because certain people can’t stop chucking temper tantrums when they don’t get the answer they want.
This is about freedom of choice, and the freedom to choose “no” at any time without being made out to be a villain.
If you read my last post about Mr Puppeteer, then you might understand this rant a bit more. Enough is enough.