Let’s Talk About Men

And yes, NOT ALL MEN.

When I post my silly little thoughts, regardless of what I am blathering on about, I try to qualify my statements and opinions with, well, qualifiers like “sometimes…” and “for the most part…”. I try to avoid generalities and I want to make it clear that I am not writing in an absolute manner.

This is true for this post. So, when I say “Let’s Talk About Men”, I want to make it clear that yes, not all men.

We good? Fabulous.

I’ve started to reply to most of the private messages I receive on Twitter and very few of them go beyond this exchange:

Some man: hi

Me: hi

And that’s the end of that.

To be clear, I am not trying to be bitchy by simply replying with “hi”. Rather I am matching their energy and effort. If the first message was “Hi Hannah!” I would respond with “Hi ______!”.

And as long as I am getting a lot of this off my chest, I am soooooo tempted to bite my tongue and not correct any grammatical mistakes when a guy writes “your sexy”. The restraint it takes to not reply with “*you’re”…

Very rarely do these messages last beyond “hi” and “thank you”.

On the occasion when these amazingly compelling and riveting conversations go past “hi” they usually get right to business, if you will. These guys make it very clear what they want and what they hope to accomplish by reaching out to me.

After their opening introduction of “hi” their next message is almost always one of these incredibly charming questions:

do u like cock

can I suck ur cock

And then I block them and that’s the end of that.

Sometimes a guy will actually try to make small talk before asking me about my opinion on genitalia. This small talk is usually along the lines of “what r u doing” or “how r u”. Super compelling questions that make me want to drop everything and engage with this person.

Honestly? I am likely doing something work related or talking my dog for a walk. I’m sure these guys are hoping I am, oh, I don’t know, polishing my leather skirt or painting my nails or something femme. Which, to be fair, is way more fun than working on my monthly report.

If I am feeling… generous (?) I reply and keep this incredibly fascinating exchange going.

And goodness I am sounding like a bitch here. I am not some goddess that grants men a moment of my time or a scrap of my attention. I have zero interest in men (or with any other gender) and these conversations are incredibly boring. I also know where the conversation is likely leading to. Why delay the inevitable? Just shoot your shot so I can block you.

If the small talk continues it sooner or later gets to the questions about genitalia. On the rare occasions it doesn’t, the questions become just as… intrusive.

Sometimes the questions are… well, innocent enough, I suppose. The guy makes it clear what he is looking for but does so in a less… inappropriate way. This is usually along the lines of “I am really attracted to you”. I reply and make it very clear that I am not interested in them, that I am married, and that I am not looking for anything.

After this “line in the sand”, if you will, one of three things happen:

-The dude stops replying

-The dude acknowledges my boundaries and keeps up the small talk and does so respectfully until he really does get the point that I am not going to budge, if you will

-The dude leans into it even more

The third thing is the most common. Like, overwhelmingly so.

What typically happens next is… them challenging me? If I tell them I am not interested, their response is usually along the lines of “I bet I could change your mind”. If I tell them I am not going to discuss sexual things with them, I am asked why not.

It’s the complete lack of respect for boundaries that I find the most disturbing. If someone says “I am not going to discuss that with you”, well, they mean it. There’s no way to really misinterpret that statement. I don’t owe anyone an explanation or a reason beyond that. Consider the matter settled, I gave you my answer.

The internet allows us some anonymity and some… protection, in a way. We can say anything we want online and it doesn’t have to be kind and it doesn’t have to be true. We don’t even have to attribute our thoughts to our name. We can be whoever we wish. I think this can embolden someone to say or do something that they may not do in real life.

Knowing this, this behavior still gives me chills. It makes me think that the guy who is pushing me to talk about something I clearly told them we wouldn’t discuss is also likely the same type of guy who won’t take no for an answer in real life.

I also see a lot of manipulation from men in these exchanges. If I tell a man I am not interested, I am often met with a comment along the lines of “It figures you wouldn’t like me. No one does.”

I am not going to buy into your bullshit.

I’m sorry you have had the experiences you have had, I’m sure this has impacted your self-esteem but some random person on Twitter is not your therapist.

A lot of these exchanges make me think a few things.

First of all, was I ever that pushy? That disrespectful when I was single and trying to meet someone? God, I hope not. It’s been a long time since I was single so those days are getting harder to remember. The internet/social media was nowhere near as prevalent as it is today so people actually had to talk with each other and didn’t have the safety/anonymity of a DMs.

Secondly, I am very happy that I am not trying to meet someone with how the dating scene seems to be these days. Social media demands a whole new set of expectations and etiquette that honestly seems too overwhelming to keep up with. My younger co-workers talk about all the “rules”, both implied and unspoken, and honestly it all sounds like more work than it’s worth.

And finally I think about how I impact the lives of others when I am presenting in male mode. Of course I am not trying to meet anyone but I am more conscious of how what I say or do could make women feel. Am I coming off as condescending? I am manplaining?

The world can be a mirror and not to belabor the metaphor but we are given opportunities to reflect on our actions and words. Sometimes the things others do can be a cautionary lesson as to how we ourselves behave.

I know a lot of this is venting but goodness I need to vent. This website allows me to talk about aspect of my femme life that I can’t really bring up in casual conversations with most people in my male life.

Love, Hannah

6 thoughts on “Let’s Talk About Men

  1. I had fun reading your post although the truth is you seemed a bit angry when you wrote it, maybe I’m wrong but excuse me anyway. I think this topic is one of the few where generalization would be correct because even those who seem more educated than others are surely looking for the same from us as everyone else. It’s not that it’s wrong per se, it’s just the way it is. They can write me whatever they want (in fact they do) and I decide whether or not I want to respond to them.


  2. Dear Hannah, I feel that some of ‘us’ are very jealous of you and feel very scared to approach you on a lot of topics. Sex for one! You are, what most of us want to be, working or at home you can be the woman you want to be where most of us still are either in the closet of on the border of being single due to our ‘W’ not accepting our love of wanting to be pretty. I too love the feel of putting on lingerie and a dress just to be who we are and have our partner accept this part of us. I also agree that there are some very small minded people who haven’t had the experiences but at 67 I feel the need to talk to more people about this. Heaven forbid if lesbians were not talked about where would they be??? I am not into males but will always be attracted to females and when dressed this is who I feel! Oh ‘Hi’ by the way!


  3. You overlook the fact that some men may be

    Very curious about why you change changed your lifestyle

    Some people may be very inarticulate with the end result that the wrong impression is given


    1. Maybe… but even an inarticulate man could probably find a better way to ask about my life without inquiring about my perspective on genitalia.

      Love, Hannah


  4. Dear Hannah,

    I cringed while reading this entry, mostly because I have received some similar inquiries on a support site I have since stopped frequenting. Good for you and your boundaries. I would probably not engage, and ignore or block such inquiries if I had a twitter following. But your choice to be more diplomatic is likely a well-measured one for you.

    As for the anger detected by some in your entry, you are entitled to it. Our gender identity is about ourselves and those we love and not about any of those random men out there. It seems to me that what you share here is for others of kindred spirit, and those who truly wish to understand. For that I am grateful.


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