How A Dating Horror Story Illustrates The Fact That Men Cannot Accept Women’s Raw Honesty
The dating world is a hard one to navigate. Just this week I watched Two Can Play That Game and chuckled at both the absurdity of the rules Vivica Fox, Morris Chestnut and Anthony Anderson employed. But I also found myself nodding and saying “umm hmm” to some of the less-than-petty ones that were tested, tried and true. At the end of the day, the conclusion of the movie (No Spoiler Alert) is about being honest with your feelings, no matter how much leverage you lose in doing so.
The lesson about honesty came up today in a discussion sparked by a few uploaded screenshots on Twitter.
From my understanding, Alia Moore aka @KutfromtheKente went on one date with a dude she now has saved in her phone as “Drake.” Pay close attention and be sure to read every word because; not only is reading fundamental, it’s imperative that you know the detailed nuances of the story before sounding off in the comment section. From my understanding, Alia and Drake had one date. And then, as you can see from the text message above, after she organized the second one he canceled on her, day of. Alia was not happy about this cancellation. She found it rude and inconsiderate. (I mean, she rented out a whole theater.) When she told Drake all of this, that she didn’t appreciate his actions, things quickly went weird and then left.
I’m not exactly sure what happened or what he said in between; but for some reason, Alia decided that Drake was worthy of a second chance.
Then, from what Alia has shared on social media, this is the last thing she said.
It was the question that Alia posed, the asking if she was right or wrong that got the internet fired up. People all over Twitter started jumping in with their two cents. And, as is often the case when a woman shares her opinion online, they called her everything but a child of God. Some said Alia was a hoe for seeing four dudes at a time. (She clarified, although she shouldn’t have had to, that she wasn’t sleeping with any of them.) One person tweeted, “B*tch you should have just rescheduled.” Folks warned that this is why so many women find themselves single because of standards like hers. They suggested Alia humble herself. Someone said her being an AKA explained everything. A man I know tweeted that while he respected her honesty, he wouldn’t be able to continue dating her.
I think the discussion about whether she should have said what she did and whether or she’s the type of woman a man would want to date is the secondary issue in this story.
To me, what’s glaring is the fact that whenever a woman speaks with this type unfiltered honesty, men often don’t know how to take it. My sister, mother, women friends and I have this conversation about the differences in which men and women communicate with each other all.of.the.time. A lot of women, especially in relationships, are a lot more considerate, softer and less direct in their communication than men. We don’t want to hurt his feelings, step on that ever so precious and fragile ego of his. We’ve been warned that a woman’s tongue can be sharp and if we want to “make a man feel like a man,” we have to temper that…all the time. Granted, no one should be in the business of hurting anyone’s feelings, especially in the context of a romantic relationship, but often times men aren’t doing the same for the women in their lives.
The intent is not malicious. It’s just that in our society, men are conditioned to be direct and blunt in their communication with women and women are trained to do the complete opposite. Men don’t understand how many times women swallow less than pleasant thoughts, feelings and emotions not for the sake of being the bigger person but for protecting a man’s pride. And that behavior begins very early. If we don’t like a boy and have to reject him, we’re taught to do so gently. Granted, there are practical reasons behind this as well. It can often be a means of self preservation. Lord knows, we’ve seen far too many stories where men with bruised egos, lashed out against women physically, even killing some of them. And those messages from puberty carry on into adulthood and marriages where women often find themselves swallowing and stifling so their men can feel like men. Meanwhile, the millisecond you do something of which he doesn’t approve, you’ll hear about it.
In our jobs we’re afraid to come right out and ask our male bosses that we be compensated according to our value to the companies we work for. While our male counterparts, even the unqualified ones, ask for more than their worth and often get it. We watch as women get over talked by men everywhere from panels on CNN to the most recent presidential debate. One of the greatest lessons even the brightest and most talented women often find themselves needing to learn is to speak up and out. And to do so honestly.
As I’ve said in discussing this Twitter thread with my friends earlier today, I’m not one of those women who advocate that we start behaving like men. Men have far too many issues for us to want to emulate them. What I am advocating for is that women start being honest. Whether we agree with Alia’s feelings of disappointment at Drake canceling the date or not, her response to him for doing so was a truthful one. She didn’t like it. And instead of pretending that she was ok with being stood up, fearing that he might not like her anymore if she did, she told him she didn’t like it. And honestly, I admire her for that. We’ve got to get to the point that we stop letting our fears of men dismissing us or not liking us anymore get in the way of who we really are and how we really feel. In stereotypical but factual depictions of relationships, men often complain about not being able to read their friends, girlfriends’, wives’ and mother’s minds. We need to be more committed to addressing the issue of our silence. Not for the sake of men but for the sake of being our authentic selves. And hopefully, as more and more of us start to do so consistently, men will know how to receive our truths without calling us “extra,” “dramatic” or the worst one, “crazy.”
Honestly, Alia gave Drake an opportunity to get back in her good graces, to make it up to her. But he ruined it by cussing at her via text, after one date and a cancelation. Then he made matters worse by trying to glide past months and even years of dates they haven’t had to say that he was sure she was going to be his wife. How Sway?! If you ask me, that “You’re gonna be my wife line” is what they teach on the first day of “F*ck Boy Lingo 101.” And it certainly didn’t address the problem at hand.
And this is what I’m talking about. He couldn’t handle her honesty. And instead of sincerely apologizing for his part in making Alia upset, Drake tried to assuage her with promises he’ll likely never get a chance to even attempt to keep. He tried to hit her with what he thought she wanted to hear. And Alia didn’t fall for the okie doke.
We can argue that Alia opened herself up to this type of backlash by asking if she was wrong for sending that message. But I’m wondering what is so wrong, so abhorrent about a woman saying, rather politely, what she does and doesn’t like and how she feels?
Images via Twitter