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  • Another Difference
    • (no login)
      Posted Apr 28, 2012 1:10 PM

      between how you experience women and how I experience them . . in addition to differences that may exist between women in various countries . . . is our sexual orientation. You are a gay man and I am straight. In U.S., that difference is very important in affecting how men and women interact. One fairly accurate stereotype of gay men is that they tend to befriend women easily. Straight women say that they enjoy gay men . . that they enjoy hanging out with them, going to gay bars, etc. Obviously, there isn't the sexual attraction issue for women to be concerned about . . they aren't going to get "hit on", so I suppose they feel more relaxed and less on-guard compared to being in the presence of straight men. If the same is true in your life (Marseil), then your experiences would be very different from mine on that count alone.

      An example of mine: You know that I work in an environment made up of approximately 90% females -- almost always have. I find that I cannot be "normally" friendly to women there, as they will accept smiles, compliments and joking from other women (or from openly gay men), but not from myself or other straight males. The younger they are, the more this is true (I swear, I have seen nursing students in their early 20's pass me in a hallway, hugging the wall and looking alarmed . . all I did was glance their way, smile and say, "Hi", and they freak. I'm not looking them up and down, not calling them "baby" or moving closer . . just normal behavior on my part can elicit this response -- shaking head here).

      The most hostile females, in my experience, are white women that only date black men . . talk about the cold shoulder! So, what I started doing with them was acting just as they do: I don't speak as we pass, don't even look at them. If they say anything, I just mumble a one syllable response and keep on my way. They do see that I talk and laugh with other people . . just not to them. Guess what? These women often start talking more to me . . as I avoid looking at them, they ask me to look their way and acknowledge them and what they are saying. I could not have predicted this -- seems contrary to logic, but then I find many things women do are that way. The only sense I can make of it is that if I act friendly toward them, they instinctively believe I'm coming on to them, and as women their role is to make sure that men's advances (real or imagined) are repelled. But, when I start behaving as they do, maybe the reaction is more than they expected or wanted. So, safe in the knowledge that their rejection has been understood by me, they feel like it isn't necessary that we act as if the other does not exist. Mind you, I don't actually go back to being friendly toward them, as this might elicit the mistreatment again. I just operate in a minimalist, business-like manner toward them, without actually be unfriendly. Seems to work. If there is any alternate explanation, I'm open to hearing it.

      Sorry if I bore anyone with my gender issues, but I think I do have reasons for thinking and feeling as I do (it's called "my life"), and the reasons are not all my fault or my doing. A lot of American women are just . . difficult drama queens.
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