One year ago today I posted what was at that time, the most controversial work I’d ever written, Worthless Women and the Men Who Make Them. I just reread it. It probably still is the most controversial of all my posts here on SDL.
I made some pretty bold statements. I made some pretty intrepid requests for men to own up to their role in the “I am a woman and therefore I hate myself” phenomenon. I also was brazen enough to ask women to put their boobs back in their shirts and make things a little easier for us as men. Dang. I sometimes can’t believe I wrote that.
The fury that erupted after that post was insane. Men were pissed off because I didn’t bring up all the horrible things women do to our gender. Women were pissed off because… well… some of them apparently don’t like giving men credit for anything that has to do with them… good or bad. A lot of people also really loved it. It went viral. I’m guessing it was the first post a lot of you read.
It’s been a year since I wrote that post, and I’ve had to really question myself and my role in all of this since then. Today I’m probably going to share a little too much information. Oh well.
As it turns out, the promise I made at the end, the one that said… “I, for one, am done with it. I, for one, am taking a stand. I, for one, will no longer be stopping. I will no longer be looking.” has not been an easy promise to keep. Thirty years of programming by the world to want everything that is fake is not something I can just turn off with a switch. And that frustrates me.
It frustrates me because it’s a promise I want to keep. But it also frustrates me because it’s a promise that I want to want to keep. And sometimes, if I’m being honest, I don’t want to keep it at all. Cause I’m a man. And that’s how I’ve been programmed. And sometimes, if I’m continuing in my honesty… It feels unnatural, and it even causes me problems.
I’ve tried to live this message for years, you know, not just since I wrote it. I’ve tried to reprogram my brain to not be attracted to what I see in magazines and in movies. It’s worked. But it’s also made me somehow tune-out the physical attraction for “real” women in the process (to some degree anyway). And because of that, I’ve been asked point blank if I’m gay. By a couple different women. Women that I have been in relationships with.
As a straight guy, that freaking hurts.
And so I battle the validity of the concept in general. I now have two great questions since writing the post. First, will living what I wrote only ever bring me hurt? And second, can I not let go of fake beauty and simultaneously hold onto real beauty? Is there no way to do that? Do they somehow, in some weird and twisted way, go hand in hand? Is it possible I got it wrong with that post?
The part of me that has had my sexual orientation questioned (which I’ll get into more in a moment) certainly wants to think that I was wrong.
The part of me that desperately hurts because so many women hate themselves and they hate everything about themselves… that part believes in the message of the Worthless Women post as much today as when I wrote it. Maybe more so.
If you haven’t yet, please read it. I’d like to hear what you think of it. If you’ve already read it, please read it again. I’d like to hear your thoughts now that you’ve had a year to chew on it.
Anyway… being asked if I might be gay by the people who knew me best? That hurt, but it was also pretty easy for me to not internalize it too much because I realize two things. One, I would have no problem being gay if I actually was. And two, I’m straight. Knowing those two things makes me easily deduce the reason that I’ve had girls wonder or ask. It’s not because I show attraction to men. It’s not because I have given any foreshadowing that I might actually be gay. It’s not even because I like to wear manpris. No… the reason is simple.