I don't want to be such a bitch
December 10, 2009 11:34 AM Subscribe
I have come to realize that I have a hard time empathizing with men, and it’s making it very hard to even begin to look for a satisfying male relationship, romantic or otherwise.
posted by anonymous to Human Relations (30 answers total) 5 users marked this as a favorite
22-year-old college female. At school I pretty much only ever had female friends, and in fact I can’t say I’ve ever had a real male friend (if you don’t count my ex-boyfriend.) I’ve had male acquaintances, more in the past few years (college) than before. But I have never been close to any men except my dad and my ex-boyfriend.
My dad always told me to be wary of men, because they will lie to you and exploit you for sex and then break your heart. I guess my dad was trying to protect me, but hearing that message about men from the only man I knew well convinced me that it was true. And I’m still convinced, despite knowing just how hosed up that attitude is.
I had the great fortune to meet a very nice guy three years ago, right when I began dating. (I avoided it for years out of fear of being used.) We talked all night when we met, dated for years, it was good and we talked and understood each other mostly, and then it ended for many reasons and whatever, no fuckedupness there. But since then I’ve realized that, with the exception of him, I have never understood any man I know. I think of all men as stereotypes. I think they are fundamentally different from me, with a different outlook and different interests. I think they all like video games and South Park and never want to have kids and aren’t vain and don’t feel things and live in squalor and all kinds of stupid sexist bullshit. I think they see me the same way I see them, and although I desperately want to make a connection with a man like I had with my ex, I feel like it’s not even fair to try because, with my current level of empathy, I treat men like poo poo. (My school/life situation right now makes it so that 80% of the people I interact with every day are female, which makes it even harder to figure out how to make a connection.)
After the breakup I slept with two men. One three weeks after, one three months after that. Both times went exactly the same: I slept with him as soon as I could see he liked me, then dumped him the next day or so when I realized I didn’t like HIM. And both times I was surprised that they were hurt by it, because "men don't take sex seriously."
As you can see, I have no idea how to form a satisfying relationship. It’s like I think of guys as nothing but tools to use to validate myself, and then when I do I become so disgusted. I WANT to have male friends, I like hanging out with guys even on a non-relationship level, but it’s only ever been friends of friends and it never goes beyond chatting because… well, I have no idea. I don’t know a single man I can call a friend, yet all my girlfriends have plenty. And I’ve met them and hung out with them and yet here I am. I know where I got these ideas from but not how to make them go away. It’s bizarre and gross and dehumanizing and I need it to stop.