I am going to share a story with you all today that has been bugging me for a few weeks. After the pageant Matt, my bestie Melissa and I went to the Four Seasons bar Edge downtown to have late night snacks and celebrate the pageant. After about an hour Matt left to head home and gave us some girl time. I will “Set the scene”…..The Four Seasons is an upscale bar and we were all “dudded” up from the pageant but even as I type that it doesn’t matter to this story. SO….
Without asking before we knew what was happening an older guy came to our table with a very expensive bottle of champagne, sat down and poured us two glasses. At this point we each had finished a drink and wanted to call it a night but something inside of us felt BAD like “wow, this guy just poured us an expensive drink we need to drink it and be gracious” And that is the first problem, why did I feel that way? We are trying to be polite, making small talk while he was bragging about “Who he was” and “What he had” and we were being nice polite women drinking our unwanted drink. Then out of nowhere he literally asks us to “Go back to his place, do drugs and have sex” I was like WHAT in the world is happening, who does that first of all and does that ever work?! My exact response was “that is NOT going to happen” I then talked about my husband, talked about Melissa’s boyfriend and he still wasn’t getting the hint………..
At this point you are problem thinking why didn’t we tell him to leave? And that runs through my head all the time, why? But you see in the moment, maybe it is the “southern” in us we still felt this need to be nice and polite. And all the while he is refilling our glasses. Then I try to speak up and I tell him to save the rest of this nice champagne for someone he has a chance with and he should cut his losses. I mean I still felt this need to “let him down nicely” But nope, he goes on to point out his favorite features on us both (gross) tells us about his hot sons (weird) and then is so persistent. Finally after about 30 minutes of pure cringe worthy interaction I said it was time for him to leave and we were leaving as well. But we still finished our glasses because we didn’t “Want to waste so much money”?!@$#?$
Here is the thing you probably think we are stupid and should have told him to hit the road first thing but we felt this need to be polite, be gracious, be nice and why? We even discussed it at length the next day why as women AND girls are we taught to be polite…in any situation? We don’t want to offend anyone even when that is exactly what they are doing to us? It is something that is engrained into you in the South, how a nice girl should act? Why couldn’t either of us speak up for ourselves. In hindsight even if I couldn’t do it myself I should have asked the bartender for help to defuse the situation. Have you ever been in this situation? It did remind me of my early 20s and here even in my late 30s I didn’t want to offend and I couldn’t speak up for myself. I think this is how society teaches women to act, we should be grateful and kind. I mean after all this man did spend so much money on us…. but that is all bullshit. I like to think I am a strong women with bright opinions but somehow in this scenario I let myself down and my friend.
Have you ever been put into this situation before? Do you think this is something that is subtly taught to girls….be nice, be polite? And the next question is how do we change this? I mean we even have a president who has bragged about “grabbing women” and how they like it>?! And I won’t get into all of that but a good example to young men isn’t happening from the top and that is sad. Some might say it was harmless, sure I didn’t feel like we were going to be abducted but being made to feel so uncomfortable and objectified is something that shouldn’t happen. I thought maybe it was because I was so “dudded” up and dressed up that it might have seemed like I was screaming for attention but that is a horrible mindset to have. How I look is not an invitation. Are you all following me?! I shouldn’t have to make myself under to appear as thought I didn’t want unwanted sexual advances.
Today I just wanted to give everyone something to think about and maybe open up a dialogue. So as always I thank you for listening.