Sometimes when we hear of sexual assault allegations against a man, we all say, “Yup. I saw that coming.” The guy just had a reputation for saying inappropriate things to women, making women uncomfortable, and generally pushing the limits of acceptable behavior. But sometimes, we hear of a man who has crossed the line, and we all gasp. “Him?” we ask, “I never thought he’d do that.” Well, some predators rely on the fact that we’d never suspect them—we’d never be wary of them or be overly cautious around them—to do what they do. It’s terrifying and disgusting, but some men disguise themselves as allies in order to gain our trust, get into our good graces, and eventually put themselves in a situation alone with us where they can make an attempt. Now that you think of it, you probably know some men who you could see doing this. Here are ways sexual predators disguise themselves as allies.
Withholding attention to be “respectful”
I’m very much onto these guys, now. I’ll meet a group of men, and I’ve almost come to trust the ones who are a little openly flirty with me out the gates more than the one who stands back quietly, barely saying a word. I’ve encountered a lot of men who pretend to be “respectful” by giving me space and not paying attention to me the way other men do, only to then send me a creepy message later, thinking I wanted their attention all along. It’s a form of withholding attention, hoping that women will then want it and welcome a gross message.