It’s interesting to observe people’s reactions when I start telling people about some of the less than ideal male behaviour I’ve described in my book, The Men I’ve Almost Dated. The thing is, I’ve been pretty honest about my dating experiences and often men don’t come off as behaving very well.
One recent conversation with a couple (let’s call them Maggie and James) went something like this.
‘I think it sounds great!’ Maggie said enthusiastically after I’d briefly described the content of the book.
‘Are you dating anyone now?’ James asked.
‘No,’ I said.
‘Well no one’s going to ask you out once you publish,’ he said. ‘No one will want to date you!’
‘Of course they will. It will just weed at the ones she doesn’t want because they’ll know she’ll just call them on their crap if they try it on,’ Maggie said indignantly.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m not naïve to the fact that occasionally the things I mention in my book might polarise opinion or make some people uncomfortable. The very topics of divorce, dating, sex and pursuing the wrong men is highly topical and a lot of people will have opinions about it.
The suggestion that I will be deemed less attractive by the opposite sex because I’m honest about some very ordinary male behaviour is a little disconcerting yet not surprising. The inference from James’ comments was that I might be too ‘scary’ or ‘intimidating’ because I put it all out there.
I’ve heard this argument before about women being ‘intimidating’ or ‘too confident’ and that it apparently scares men off. James’ remarks were just another edition of that same old story. Honestly, I think these types of comments are just another way to keep women small. The very idea that we should hold ourselves back in some way to make men more comfortable is completely repellant to me. That being said, I don’t believe women are better than men or that we should exclude them from our lives. Relationships between men and women are a delicate balancing act that should be based on mutual respect and freedom to be precisely who you are. But that’s a soapbox for another day.
In the meantime, am I worried that no man will ever ask me out once they read my book?
Um, no, because I’m more in Maggie’s camp and hope that it actually turns away the players from my life. Because the truth is, I don’t want any more men I’ve almost dated. I want the real thing now. If some men find me too intimidating, full frontal or whatever because I choose to tell a story based on my perspectives and experience, then they are clearly not the men for me.
And I’m really 100 percent okay with that.
The Men I’ve Almost Dated is now on sale. Find out more>