I just love when men think they understand what women go through every single day, whether it be in public or on the internet. And by "love," I mean absolutely detest. When men open their mouths about women's experiences, it makes me want to stuff them full of their own nonsense.
I felt that so strongly when reading this post on Reddit's "Am I the A-hole?" I knew from the title, which is, "AITA for telling her she shouldn't be so rude to men?" that I was in for a treat, but I didn't realize just how big (and infuriating) that treat would be.
OP explains that he has a 23-year-old female roommate who often gets random messages from men on social media. If you're a woman, you know what this is about. The men ask her out on dates or ask to buy her things.
"Last night," he writes, "she got a message from a dude which stated, 'Hi, I'm (his name). I live in Massachusetts and I want to get to know you, sweetie." Ugh, gross, right?
His roommate responded apologetically and said she wasn't interested. She mentioned that her boyfriend is deployed and coming home next month, which OP said is true, and then she actually thanked him for taking his time to message her. So overly polite! Way nicer than I would have been. I would have ignored that message completely.
Anyway, of course the guy didn't let up. He wrote back, "Well a REAL man wouldn't just leave his queen for a desert flower. I can make you feel good, baby." Gross times a million.
But she totally kept her cool, repeated that she wasn't interested, and apologized again, which she shouldn't have even had to do in the first place. Of course, he replies, "Fine slut, go to the man who will leave you for years." He accused her of being a "whore" because "talking to random men on the internet" is cheating, not putting it together that he was the one who started this whole thing.
That's when she kind of got fed up. She called him a "creepy dude," which he 100 percent is, and of course, he responded back with more insults. So she wrote back!
Her response, according to her roommate, was this: "I'm sorry sir but no, the women are not at home. They are out and about and have lives. This isn't the 1950s. And since clearly all the women you work with have already rejected you, you can add my name to the list as well. Goodnight have a great time trying to find a woman to put up with your s--t."
That's way more polite than I would have been at that point. But OP, her roommate, thought she should have just blocked him from the beginning. She knew what she was doing, though. She explained that she gets so many of these harassing messages that she knows when a dude will give up, and she knows when she has to respond to get him off her back.
She said that if she'd blocked him, he'd just come back with other accounts. You would think that OP would be like, "Wow, on behalf of all men, I'm so sorry you have to deal with that." But obviously, that's not what he did. Instead, he told her that she was rude to him and should have been nicer.
I would have written him off too right there and then, but she explained that she knows what she's doing. OP didn't get it, though. "I told her no, she was just being a b---h because she could be and these men were people too." Wow.
Now, she's giving him the silent treatment, and so is his girlfriend, who's close with the roommate. He could not see that she was so not in the wrong, that it was entirely inappropriate and rude for the random dude to message her in the first place.
She even tried to be polite at first, which makes her a saint! Luckily, the people of Reddit told him off pretty swiftly. "You think she is the one being rude?" one person asked. "She sounds completely reasonable until he makes unacceptable comments towards her, and her response to him was thoroughly deserved. I'm baffled at how you think she was the one in the wrong there."
"You told her to be nicer to random guys trying to get her to cheat with them? This is either fake or you're denser than lead," another person wrote.
"YTA, having a vagina doesn't mean your duty bound to have to tiptoe around a--holes for fear of offending them. She has every right to respond the way she did," another person responded. To that, I'll say, "Hell yeah."
In an edit to his original post, it seems that OP accepted his judgment. His girlfriend explained to him that his Middle Eastern culture is very different, and she explained to him why his thinking was wrong. "I'm trying to unlearn 20 years of conditioning and thought processing," he writes. "...I honestly didn't realize this happens to women to this degree and this often. I'm sorry to women who have been hurt by this in the past. I have learned from my mistake."
I'm glad he's learning and everything, but I also feel so bad that his girlfriend has to teach him. The conditioning is real, but if he just listened to women and trusted their word, his girlfriend wouldn't have to bear the burden of educating him. He should be better. He might be on his way, but he's still got a lot to learn.