I wrote a guest post for a blog which sparked some controversy. I was accused of being a woman-hater. I was accused of bashing women, of dictating to women what they should or should not do. I was accused of being everything in life I hate. Honestly, as pathetic as it sounds, I cried for ten solid minutes as I was called a ‘writer’ in inverted commas and hated by the very women I looked up and to respected.
I checked out the blog of the first chick who commented and laughed along with the words she had written. I loved her blog and when I went back onto her Twitter account to try and apologise for any offence caused, she’d blocked me. When I took a sneaky peek from a different account, I could see this torrent of hatred on her Twitter feed, tweet after tweet of how much of a bad person I was and how I should be ashamed of myself.
Well, now I am.
I know I can’t please everyone because trust me on this one, I’ve tried. I know there are going to be people who don’t like the way I write or the words that come out of my mouth and I can deal with that. But as I sat there and read the tweets, and then the tweets of other women that jumped right on the bandwagon, I couldn’t stop the tears. It made me feel like a failure. I had upset the very women I was trying to be on the very same level as. Women I respected and aspired to be like. Women with awesome blogs and real things to say.
I hate getting negative feedback online because I’m a super sensitive little flower and the silliest of things upset me but I know it happens. I know that constructive criticism is good and that I can learn from it. I appreciate that and I understand that. I welcome it even if I don’t like to hear it. And in this situation, I think it has been somewhat constructive. I just wish it didn’t need to be quite so brutal.
The idea behind my post was to be a brief introduction. A kinda to-the-point “Hello, here I am and this is what I gotta say!” kinda post. The five things I didn’t think you should do on a first date, points that I would later explain my reasons for. I had discussed with Mr. UrbanVox the plan and we agreed that it would be kinda cool. Sadly, it didn’t get that far. And now I feel the need to explain myself before I offend or upset anyone else.
I said that on a first date, you shouldn’t dress like a slut. Admittedly I probably should have found a better word but I don’t find the word that offensive. I guess that’s a personal thing but I learned today to not use that word anymore.
If a girl wants to dress in teeny-tiny clothing, they should go ahead and do it. They are braver than I am and I wish I had their confidence. I show a little bit of leg in a dress and have anxiety about it all day. I wish I could be more free and open with myself. I wish I had more confidence in myself to wear whatever the fuck I wanted.
But the point I was going to explain later on was that every time I had gone out wearing the smallest dress I owned or with my ample cleavage out on display, all I felt was uncomfortable. Being a busty girl, I already have a hard time getting men to look into my eyes and having a dress that small is just not something a clumsy girl like me can deal with. I’m forever pulling it down or hoiking it up.
Almost every guy I’ve ever known and dated has said my parting line: “Guys bonk girls who dress like sluts. They don’t marry them. Do you want to get laid or do you want to get married?” Almost exactly in those words every time. I have a number of male friends, more male than female in fact, and I talk openly and frankly with boyfriends and lovers. It was a snippet of information I’d learned from my years of failing at dating. Clearly it was a snippet of information I probably should have either explained better or kept to myself.
I go on to talk about expecting exclusivity after just one date and why you shouldn’t. The reason for this, which I was again going to explain at a later date, was because I’ve done it repeatedly, I always get incredibly upset when I find the guy I went on a couple of dates with still online on that internet dating site I met him on, and I end up either making myself look totally crazy by chasing him down, overreacting and pushing him away, or just winding myself up even further. It’s counterproductive. Well, it has been for me anyway. Maybe I should have kept that to myself too. The other women didn’t seem to agree with this point either.
Don’t be permanently phone-handy… Again, a pet peeve of MINE on a date. I don’t really know how or if that one upset anyone but again, I apologise profusely if it did. I can’t apologise enough.
Don’t get blind drunk. If you want to, go ahead. But again, I was going to tell the reader about The Director and how everything I did after date one revolved around the fact I’d slept with him on the first date. Did he really like me? Was I a booty call? Did I make myself a booty call? Should I have waited? Why didn’t I wait? I wish I’d waited… I judged myself for sleeping with him on the first date. I was never meant to have slept with him on the first date. I got blind drunk, got in a cab with him, travelled I don’t know how many miles, went to his house and the next thing I know, it was 8am in the morning, I looked like something out of the Rocky Horror Picture Show and I had what felt like the Sahara desert in my mouth.
I put myself in danger that night. I don’t know if we used a condom because I don’t remember it. Any of it. At all. I got blind drunk and went home with a man I’d known for about 3 hours. Maybe not even that long. That was a dumbass mistake and I regret it. It was a dangerous idea. I’m all for having fun and five or ten years ago, this would have been great fun and games. But I’m almost thirty now and I’m aware the morning after just how dangerous my actions were the night before. He could have killed me. He could have raped me. I wouldn’t have known. I was way too drunk to remember anything. I still, to this day, cannot remember anything about the night. I’m sorry but that’s putting myself danger, feminist or not.
And where are The Director and I now? Fucked, that’s where we are. I couldn’t work out whether or not he really liked me or whether I was just a Friday night stepping stone until the real-deal girlfriend came along. I hated that. It is my personal belief that I wouldn’t have questioned quite as much as I did if I hadn’t gotten blind drunk, made a tit out of myself on the first date and slept with him.
It’s a lesson I’ve learned more and more over the years – every time I get drunk and go home with a man I don’t know, I judge myself. Nine times out of ten I probably make a fucking ass out of myself too. I don’t regret what I did and I would never judge another woman for doing whatever it is she wants to do but me, the way I am, the way I feel, I can’t act like that any more. I’m not as hard as I was in my early twenties, loving life and not really giving a shit. I can’t fuck like a guy despite all those years I said I could. I get weird and emotional with a man I’ve taken to bed and I can’t help that. In fact, I almost kinda love that about myself.
But that’s just me. Those were my opinions. Those were the things I wanted to say but never really got the chance to. I requested that UrbanVox take the post down. The last thing I would ever want to do is make other women feel like shit.
That aside, after the way I’ve been feeling recently and the total lack of love I’ve had for myself, the criticism towards my thoughts, my outlook and even my writing were just hitting home too hard. I’ve been on the brink of giving up, jacking in my writing career and getting myself a ‘normal’ job again for a while… This is just another little blow. Another little dig. It hurts. I’m not good enough. My writing isn’t good enough. People don’t really care what I have to say. Or they do, they just think I’m full of shit.
I always thought of myself as a good person. I’ve always tried to empower women. I pay them compliments, I’m honest, I’m nice. I’m not this women-hating bitch it looks like I am. I’ve never, ever wanted to come across like that. I just wanted to share some advice that I’d learned over the years. That’s all. Little snippets of my failing sex life because it’s funny. Well, it’s not but if I don’t laugh about it, I’ll cry. And I reckon I’ve cried enough.
But yeah, to all those women I’ve upset, I’m sorry. That’s not what I wanted to do. That’s not what I set out to do. I never wanted to be the reason you went on a 2am blog-writing frenzy and I certainly didn’t want to make you angry enough to tweet the stuff you were tweeting.
First impressions are important and it would appear that I haven’t given you a very good one.
So there’s my very public apology. And don’t worry, I’m re-evaluating my ‘writer’ status.