Battle of the Sexes & Harassment.

Today I went to see “Battle of the Sexes” and it was great. I love Emma Stone so much.

Unfortunately, although I’d bought a ticket for a seat with no one around it in a theatre that was 2/3’s empty, as the lights dimmed, a disheveled looking male slid into the row and sat next to me. I thought it was weird but whatever, I stayed in my seat. I could see out of the corner of my eye that he kept looking over at me, leaned over to the armrest accompanying my seat once or twice, said something under his breath, and even rubbed his foot up against my leg at one point. I was hugging the opposite side of my seat. Hoping he’d move, or take the hint, or leave? 

I wasn’t sure if all this was in my head or done purposely, so I decided not to take any chances and I got up and started to exit the theatre as soon as the screen went dark so I could be first out the door when the postshow text of ‘where are they now’ finished. I was walking to the back of the theatre and about 10 seconds after I got up, I sensed someone walking behind me. I turned around and it was this person. I stood at the back of the theatre and glared at him until he exited.

I was looking over my shoulder and all around as I left the theatre 5 minutes later. I’m pretty sure I saw him looking at me as he rode away on his bike when I exited, going the opposite way luckily. So, ladies – anyone – anytime you feel uncomfortable next to some dude at the movies, it’s always better to possibly offend a random stranger you’ll never see again by moving instead of subjecting yourself to that. This was especially ironic given that I was at a movie called “Battle of the Sexes.”

Male population: please stop saying you’re not entitled. Not all of you are entitled, perhaps, but you need to stand up and be a feminist when this shit happens.

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How Marriage Changes People Forever – From BBC

I read an article this week and I immediately went, “OMG! That was me!” Now yes, I was never married, but my in my last relationship, I felt my usual level of extroversion plummet. And that sucked. Because I liked meeting people where ever I happened to be in the city. I’d talk to people on the train, or in bars, and when I was in a relationship, it was really hard to do that. First, because my ex hated talking to strangers, especially on the street, or you know, helping them with directions, and it’s weird to talk to strangers in bars when you’re with someone – even if you’re only talking to them in the hopes of meeting interesting people platonically.

The article also says that people who get married are better at self-control and forgiveness. Well, that’s good because if you’re legally tying yourself to someone for eternity, you better learn how to forgive because they are imperfect, and you better learn some self-control so you don’t have sex with anyone else (if you are monogamous, that is).

The follow excerpt is also particularly rage-inducing for me, personally:

The pattern is backed up, at least among women, by an earlier and much smaller US study published in 2000, in which the researchers tested the personalities of just over 2,000 middle-aged participants twice over of a period of between six and nine years.

In that time, 20 of the women married while 29 of them divorced. Relative to those who tied the knot, the divorcees showed increased extroversion and openness, as if freed from the shackles of wedlock. Newly married men, by contrast, showed benefits compared with their divorced peers, scoring higher on conscientiousness and lower in neuroticism.

Now these are small studies, but they basically say: men are better off being married, while women are better off not being attached. Where’s the happy medium?

I think this stems from the fact that marriage makes a man seem desirable, while marriage for a woman validates her as a person because someone (finally!) “chose her.” As outdated as a theory like that may sound, I think it’s still pretty relevant. Have you heard someone ask, “What’s wrong with her that she’s (insert age) and still single?!” People rarely ever say that about men. They’re just “focused on their careers.”

Is this 100% true for everyone who gets married? NO. I’m saying that I related to these hypotheses and studies, and their conclusions. 

I once thought that I would like to get married. Then I thought, “Meh, I’d just like an engagement ring because: shiny” and no reason to get married. Now I’m at a place where I’m all, “Nah, I’d rather not walk around with thousands of dollars on my finger that someone could want to steal, or worse, I could lose, and I don’t need to legally bind myself to someone either, thanks.”

I’ve written before about how it irks me when people get engaged and say, “I can’t wait to spend the rest of my life with you!” like an engagement and a piece of paper guarantees that. I’ve seen enough divorces occur to know that it doesn’t. Would I like to “settle down” (another phrase that irks me) someday? Maybe? I don’t know. This could be a bad reaction from my last relationship, or it could just be a realization that I’m not made for marriage, and that doesn’t make me any better or worse than anyone who is. I love the idea of living with someone and having separate bedrooms. Which is totally catching on but it’s still confusing people who are all on board with the “normal” way relationships “should” be.

Of course, I also love the idea of a relationship with someone and not living with them at all. I own my place (#blessed) so the idea of renting this place out to rent some other place with a possible future significant other is unappealing. My place is also too small for two people to live in. I won’t live here forever, but right now: I’m not leaving it.

I think, regarding losing your extroversion in a relationship or marriage, I also should acknowledge that you need to find a person to lifts you up, not suffocates you. I was definitely suffocated. The light inside of me was burned out and for that, I am grateful AF to be #single again.

Goodbye to you.

By “you,” I mean the birth control pill that I’ve been on since 2007. I thought it was a good thing to do since states keep passing laws like these (it’d never happen in NY, but who knows.) I’ve always remembered to take it within an hour time frame every day but I really just got tired of having to remember to take it. Also my monkeymind also liked to occasionally have my pondering whether or not I’d indeed remembered to take my pill that morning (I always had but that didn’t stop my mind from racing). I never lost them and never had any bad side effects (that I know of). But after that study came out about depression, and I’d had a couple of mood swings here or there (most of the time when I’ve had too much to drink so that might be the culprit), I decided to find out more bout IUD. 

I’m a creature of habit so it was a big decision for me, but I decided to do it and I did it on Monday. It took longer than usual and my cervix had to be clamped down three times, which is probably the most painful part. So: yay. They almost made me come back another day after having taken medication they sometimes prescribe to relax the cervix. (Note to anyone who’s getting this done: GET THE MEDS.) Whose cervix is actually relaxed when it’s being held down in place by a steel clamp?! Who are these people?? Next time, I’m just getting my tubes tied because for that procedure at least they put you under and you don’t feel anything. 

I decided to get Mirena because I felt like it was a good compromise between the hormone-heavy pill and the no-hormones-at-all Paragard IUD (which is said to have godawful side effects). I felt nauseous when I first sat up after it was in place. and crampy, so I laid down for 20 minutes and drank some water. I went home and took it easy for the rest of the day and didn’t feel any pain or cramping after the first few hours, and barely any bleeding at all.

I went back today for my sonogram to make sure it was staying in place and, luckily, it is. I couldn’t handle the idea of having another one inserted. I asked if I could have a print out of the sonogram, you know, similar to when they give pregnant women photos of their fetuses? But I think the technician thought I was joking because she didn’t print one out for me. 

I’m pretty sure most of the pain wasn’t actually as bad as I expected, but I’d been expecting pain akin to child birth, so maybe I’m just a big baby. If you get one, take your Advil and relax into it because tensing your body up just makes it take longer (believe me, I know). 

I can’t describe how happy I am not to be bothered with the pill anymore and still be baby-free, and for 5 years! Excuse me, but I’m going to go celebrate now. If you’re considering getting an IUD, let me know if you have questions!

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Do We Judge Married Women Who Keep Their Last Names?

This video was super interesting, and really surprising, to be quite honest. I hadn’t expected that we’d progressed enough as a society to have as equally high opinions of women who choose not to take their husband’s last names. It turns out the opinions of women who keep their own last name are higher. They’re regarded as more independent, they are assumed to make more money and be more intelligent. 

Of course this isn’t always the case, as a couple of my girlfriends have taken their husband’s last names and they’re not stupid by any means. Though it’s oftentimes to replace their own hard-to-spell last names so they’re more than happy to get rid of it. Perhaps they’re just more traditional, which is neither good nor bad.

I do believe the custom is highly outdated though, dating back to when women were considered property of their husbands being the reason they took their husband’s last name. They pretty much had no choice.

I think that since women, and people in general, are getting married later and later in life, it makes sense that fewer women are changing their last names. Marrying later in life means you probably already have your career established and probably have made a name for yourself in said-field. If you’re going to be perceived as smarter and more independent, you’re probably not going to want to change that perception, especially by male colleagues if you give up your last name easily (as sexist and shitty-sounding as that is, it’s still true).

I never planned on changing my last name if I ever married someone. I’m not traditional and I don’t ever want to be “Mr. and Mrs. (Insert Husband’s Name).” Just because we signed a piece of paper doesn’t mean I don’t get my name on mail anymore. 

That’s also a lot of paperwork and that sounds like a huge pain in the ass. When I sent this to my dude and he said, “Oh wow, that’s interesting. But I wouldn’t expect you to take my last name anyways.” Phew. Glad we got that out of the way. I’m glad it wasn’t a deal breaker for him (just to be clear, we have seriously discussed getting married exactly zero times). 

I told him I expected him to take my last name anyways 😉

Do We Judge Married Women Who Keep Their Last Names?

Why I Never Expect a Dude To Pay

My new thing is to chat with guys very seldom before I meet them. Otherwise you develop this ridiculous person that you think they are based on their texts and it’s usually incredibly off.

So, I went on a date last night with a guy who, online, in the brief time I’d chatted with him, seemed nice enough. He was cute – in a quirky way. We met at Ninth Ward downtown. It looked like a cool place and they had happy hour.

He was nice. He was really nice. And he was kind of cute in person. Still quirky. But there were way too many pauses in our conversation. I didn’t know what to say to him, and even worse, I didn’t care. I just wanted to finish my beer and go home. And eat. I was really hungry and I didn’t want to order food there and have to spend more time with this person who I’d never see again. 

We decided we’d split the very minimal check (thank you, happy hour!) and when his debit card was declined twice, I picked up the tab. I was kind of pissed he didn’t even offer to swing by an ATM.

This is why I’ve never been on a date where I haven’t offered to pay my half. I can’t imagine how annoying it is to always pay for dates, even when they’re not going well. Sometimes the guys decline my offer, but sometimes they accept. 

Lesson here is: Ladies, it’s the 20th century. Don’t expect your date to pay for your alcohol or food. 

Awkward side note: Just noticed that this dude checked out my profile again at 2am last night. Oy vey. 

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This is about right. I’ve dated a few guys this year, and if they weren’t socially awkward nerds, they were assholes. A couple were really great guys, but I found myself getting bored and realizing the chemistry wasn’t there.

I started out dating this guy after a four-month conscious hiatus from dating. He lived far away (in Connecticut) and was emotionally tone deaf. My guy friends who met him had some choice words about him. 

For three weeks I made the mistake of dating someone who worked at the company that I was interning at – that was kinda/sorta/very bad. I had one date with a random OkCupid dude who was a touring trumpet player (and quite a good one!), and then a handful of dates with a “tech founder” who lived in his parent’s loft. He claimed to be broke all the time, but was always going out. Now I don’t care if you live in your parents incredibly cool apartment rent-free and get your money from them as long as you don’t walk around claiming to be poor. Because that’s just obnoxious.

There were two very good dates with a cute guy from OkCupid who decided we had nothing in common and that we shouldn’t continue hanging out. And the one date with a banker who was a registered Republican (I didn’t know this beforehand!) and likened date rape to circumcision. Then I spent the last couple of months dating a really great guy. We had things in common, mutual friends, and enjoyed each others company. It was pretty relaxed. No games, no second guessing. It was nice.

Who the hell knows what 2013 has in store. But it will definitely involve fewer Republicans and in-denial trust fund kids. I’m getting better at asking for what I want and not accepting bullshit. These are all positive things, methinks.