If You’re Confronting A Man, Do You Want Another Man Present?

August 5, 2019  |  

Angry African American woman arguing with her husband at dining table.

Source: skynesher / Getty

There’s a common sentiment I hear among women. It’s why is he involving himself in women’s business. The most notable example of this was Peter Thomas from “Real Housewives of Atlanta,” NeNe Leakes questioned his masculinity, calling him a bitch, asking why he was so concerned. Honestly, it’s an idea I’ve perpetuated myself. Stay out of women’s business.

I thought about the flip side of this question last night when I saw the most recent news involving former NFL player Marshawn Lynch.

Lynch is leading a football camp for young children, children as young as 9-years-old. But that’s not why he’s in the news. The controversy began when Lynch, working with the children, told a 9-year-old to “Get the f*ck out of his drill.”

We’re not here to argue about whether or not he should have done this. He clearly shouldn’t have. One of the boys who he cussed at, ended up crying. When his mother saw this, she wanted to speak to Lynch.

Winded from working out with the kids, Lynch met her. When she confronted him with her concerns, he immediately asked if there was a man present. A man he could speak to.

Later, TMZ interviewed the woman. She said that Lynch’s request to speak to a man was sexist.

I didn’t necessarily see it that way. I was raised around men who believed that men shouldn’t speak to women in confrontational ways without another man present. It’s meant to be some type of chivalry, like men of a certain generation not cursing in front of women. It’s a lost art.

While the mother argued that Marshawn asking to speak to a man was sexist, it might have just been a difference in culture. In this particular instance, there wasn’t a man there and since the woman was advocating for her child, he didn’t need to be there anyway. She can speak to the well being of her child.

But it made me wonder what other women prefer when it comes to men being present. I asked a few of my coworkers what they prefer if they’re ever in a situation where you have to confront a man.

They shared instances when men stood idly by while another man confronted a woman a little too aggressively and they wished someone had stepped in to intervene. Another one shared that she appreciated having a guy friend jump in when another man got too crunk in her face.

And another shared that unless the other man is going to come in with calm, tranquil energy, she doesn’t need him to intervene because two men angry and aggressive are likely to start physically fighting one another.

Other women said that they don’t need a man to step in because they never anticipate a confrontation becoming aggressive or violent.

In fact, they felt that it was sexist for a man to ask for a man to be present. Men and women can have a conversation with one another without another man being around. And there are some men who suggest that women are too irrational and emotional to have a productive conversation with a man. As if men aren’t emotional. Anger is an emotion, typically triggered by another emotion.

Don’t ever let men call us irrational or too emotional.

But the whole thing made me want to ask other women if you know you’re about to have an intense conversation with a man, do you want another man there as a buffer? Is it a sexist suggestion? Or do you feel safer knowing that there is at least some protection there if things happen to go left?

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