No, #metoo Isn’t Making Dating Harder

The #metoo movement has been trending for quite a while, and honestly, I couldn't be happier about it As a survivor of sexual violence who's experienced assault and coercion in the work place, I'm thrilled that a social movement like #metoo is working to change a culture where victims of sexual violence are silenced by their influential attackers

But some people and by some people, I mean men, are worried that the metoo movement has made it harder for them to date Recently Henry Cavill came out and echoed that concern in an interview he did with GQ Australia

He said: "There’s something wonderful about a man chasing a woman There’s a traditional approach to that, which is nice I think a woman should be wooed and chased, but maybe I’m old-fashioned for thinking that It’s very difficult to do that if there are certain rules in place Because then it’s like: ‘Well, I don’t want to go up and talk to her, because I’m going to be called a rapist or something’ Now? Now you really can’t pursue someone further than, ‘No’

It’s like, ‘OK, cool’ But then there’s the, ‘Oh why’d you give up?’ And it’s like, ‘Well, because I didn’t want to go to jail?’” Cavill is echoing the concerns some men have felt after their idols have been revealed as sexual predators, and subsequently lost their careers That one day, they'll be in that exact position, and lose everything all for a "simple misunderstanding" But when we talk about the men who have been crucified during the metoo movement, we're not really talking about simple misunderstandings We're talking about, well, clear violations, Harvey Weinstein has ADMITTED to offering young actresses roles in exchange for sex, and sexually harassing the women that have worked for him

There's picture evidence of Al Franken groping a coworker while she sleeps ,and 8 women have come forward detailing their experiences with him sexually harassing them Congressman Blake Farenthold cornered one of his aids and told her that he had wet dreams and sexual fantasies about her And there's records of him using tax payer money to settle her harassment case out of court Chef Mario Batali told a woman that if she worked for him, she'd make twice the amount she's currently making ,and then groped her breasts If you're a man and you heard any of these examples and said "wow, I would never do that!", well, we're not talking about you We're not talking about you asking someone out for a cup of coffee or to a movie

We're talking about clear situations where men in power have used their power to assault women and keep them quiet Whenever we have these conversations, I'm reminded that "good men" exist and that we shouldn't put all men into one category Which isn't what we were doing, of course We're talking about a very specific type of man who commits sexual violence and thinks he can get away with it BUt what I don't get is why so many, supposedly "good men" fear that they'll ever be in a scenario where they could end up like any of the men I've mentioned

But then I realized Many men are socialized to approach women in a way where they don't quite get their consent, and that's labeled as a tradition of "chasing a woman" It's romantic to not quite get a yes from a woman To corner her and pressure her until she agrees To grab her and kiss her

And that notion is driven by this idea of women, not as autonomous beings, but as prizes to be won Accomplishments to brag about Women as conquests, not partners And of course some of Henry Cavil's fear comes from the fear of being rejected The fear of a woman saying no or "leave me alone" or "I'm sorry, I'm just not interested" and how, when a man continues to pursue her, that could be interpreted as creepy or weird

But how about this: start respecting a woman's choice and her ability to say no and mean it and you probably won't have to worry about that Tarana Burke started the #MeToo movement over a decade ago to be a source of mutual support and solidarity between, specifically, black and brown survivors of sexual violence What started as a workshop in Tuskeggee, Alabama has morphed into a widespread movement that, while its focus has shifted, has always been about empowering those who have experienced sexual violence to have a voice, to be heard and believed And that's important because often when you experience sexual violence, you deal with people doubting you and suggesting that you're accusing someone for your own personal gain The metoo movement, has been amazing for survivors not only because it allows them to voice their experiences and to be heard, but it also helps survivors know that they are not alone

That is what the movement is about, and one of its many goals is changing the culture in which these men feel comfortable assaulting these women and getting away with it In my opinion the men that feel like the metoo movement has made it harder for them to date are paranoid and are making themselves seem guilty by comparing themselves to men who have committed sexual violence "Good men" don't get nervous when we call to end the culture of sexual violence in the work place and everywhere else They support the women that have stepped forward and said #metoo, and they hold other men accountable for abusing women In my opinion, men can still make the first move and they can still pursue women

There are a lot of"Good men" who still manage to do so and not be accused of assault; and I think it says a lot about a man that he can't envision a way of dating without the possibility of coercing someone into a situation where they might accuse them of assault

Source: Youtube