Not That Into You

Okay, so I haven’t posted here in… who knows how long. Not that I have any readers. But I promise, I am going to start posting regularly. Then maybe I’ll have readers.

Anyways, so apparently there is a movie being made of He’s Just Not That Into You. In and of itself, I have no major gripes with that franchise. I mean, to start with, I don’t know enough about it to have any right to get angry with it. Also, it is allegedly really liberating for a lot of women to go “oh, I guess he’s just not into me.” Me, I’ll probably never stop over-analyzing, but if it works for other people, that is nine kinds of awesome.

However, as I navigate the muddy waters of being an eligible young bachelorette in today’s bizarre and complicated dating world, I feel more and more that She’s Just Not That Into You needs to be released. Perhaps along with a companion volume, You Are Such A Sleazy Ass, Did You Seriously Think You Stood A Chance?

This is where the gender double-standard comes in. I am a HUGE fan of Jessica Valenti’s book He’s a Stud, She’s a Slut because she does a fantastic job of outlining in very clear, well-phrased, humorous arguments what the double-standards in our society are. I am not her, though, so you’ll have to settle for my awkward and bumbling analysis of this one.

When a girl won’t stop calling a guy who isn’t into her, obsessively trying to convince him to give her a chance, freaking out about what’s wrong with her, pushing for quick commitment and a deep relationship, etc, she is a CRAZY PSYCHO BITCH. When a boy does that, he is a THOUGHTFUL ROMANTIC SENSITIVE MAN.

I call numerous counts of shenanigans/bullshit.

If a boy did that to me (and some of them have), I’d be rightfully freaked out. There is nothing romantic or sensitive about a guy leaping at you and confessing his love and vowing to do anything for you if only you’ll give him a chance and professing his desire to be together in a deep, serious committed relationship when you barely know each other.

This is, as ever, a place where I feel that both genders are getting the shaft because of social gender norms. Us gals are told over and over again that we need to get married, we don’t want to be an old maid or spinster, that sex out of a committed relationship is dirty and wrong and we don’t want to be sluts, that our value is dictated by whether or not we have a boyfriend and whether or not he is our future husband. In contrast, boys are told that in order to obtain a woman, they must conform to these rules regarding entering into relationships. Movies full of absurd relationships where men doggedly pursue a woman who says no, people who leap into relationships without any sort of thought, rushing commitment… This is damning to men, too. It gives them the wrong idea of what women want.

This kind of weird cultural programming makes life difficult for everyone.

And this argument is what I want everyone I know to take away from feminism–it’s for making life better for men and women both. This isn’t some Hidden Vagina Agenda (okay, it is a little bit :P) but something about breaking down the gendered chains that hold us ALL down. In fighting for equality for women, we are also fighting for equality for men. When we all win, we all win.

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07/29/2008. Tags: . Uncategorized.

One Comment

  1. Paul replied:

    The movie Wicker Park did a decent job of setting up characters who embody all of the negative things you mentioned here…and then let them get away with it. It was disgusting. I was all set for some people to get killed, or maybe maimed, or at least soundly humiliated, but nope. Nothing. Just bullshit.

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