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Breakup Girl » double standards
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July 30, 2010

An education

Filed under: Advice — posted by Breakup Girl @ 8:02 am

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A classy trip on April 6, 1998

Dear Breakup Girl,

I was riding on the bus with this guy back from a school trip to DC. He sat with me, we held hands, and he tried to go up my shirt. His friends sat behind us and were talking about what we were doing and they were teasing him after the restroom break. Now I’m afraid that he’ll betray me and that my whole reputation will go down the drain as a whore. Why do the guys always blame the girls?

– Alise

Dear Alise,

DC is a really, really good place to ask that question.

Love,
Breakup Girl

PS. But seriously, here’s your civics assignment: read my rant about double standards. You’re right: it is totally no fair that his going up your shirt should (if it did) affect anyone’s “reputation,” let alone just one of yours. Listen, sweetie, try your best to stay above it all. And to have guys’ hands stay above your shirt in public places. It’s not your fault. I’m just saying.

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August 21, 2009

Daily Double Standard: Flirting

Filed under: Advice — posted by Breakup Girl @ 9:14 am

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Flirting with disaster on February 23, 1998

Dear Breakup Girl,

Why is it okay for dudes to flirt with all kinds of gals but when a gal does it they think we’re hooches?

– Steph

Dear Steph,

Oh, because there’s been this idea since the dawn of history that there’s not enough room in Western Civilization, in the Garden of Eden, or wherever, for both men and women to have sexual experience and power. Because, in a broad psychological/biological sense, it’s a little nerve-wracking to have no real way of knowing if you’re the dad. Because the more sown your oats, the more alpha your malehood. Because … oh, Breakup Girl could go on for hours. Those are just a few of the many reasons why it’s “okay.”

But it is NOT OKAY.

And gals: you are SO not off the hook. Yeah, you complain about guys who are “players,” but you still hook up with them. You also call your sistahs hooches, sluts and hos — when what you really mean is “Damn, I wanted him!” or “I hope I look cool in front of the guys when I agree with them.” You are not helping.

Homework for everyone: Read Promiscuities by Naomi Wolf. Not a flawless book, but it’ll (a) answer your question, (b) make you feel bad about what you should feel bad about, and (c) make you not feel bad about what you shouldn’t feel bad about.

Love,
Breakup Girl

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August 20, 2009

Daily Double Standard: Two guys, one girl

Filed under: Advice — posted by Breakup Girl @ 8:55 am

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Two guys and a girl on February 23, 1998

Dear Breakup Girl,

I am currently sleeping with not one but two of my really close guy friends. The problem is one of them asked me about starting a public relationship with him and I told him I wasn’t interested in starting something like that and from then on he has been treating me like a bitch. The other guy recently told me he loved me and I don’t believe in love and don’t want to experience it. My friends know about this and I will tell anyone who asks me the truth, but I was wondering if this make me a slut ???

– Clueless in Idaho


Dear Idaho,

Having sex outside of a “relationship” does not make you — or anyone — a “slut.”

But having sex with people who you know want more of a relationship than you do, and then hurting their feelings, does make you: lonely.

Love,
Breakup Girl

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August 19, 2009

Daily Double Standard: Petty jealousies

Filed under: Advice — posted by Breakup Girl @ 8:57 am

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Getting “friendly” on February 23, 1998

Dear Breakup Girl,

I’ve been going out with my boyfriend for five months; he’s 17, I’m 16. Things were giong really well until I noticed how “friendly” he is with other girls. He says he loves me,and I truly know that he does, it’s just that he cannot seem to stop “flirting” with other girls. I am his first serious relationship and he was used to having a lot of close friends, but whenever I am present or not, he playfully frolics around with their hair and their clothes and I don’t think it is appropriate! Maybe he just likes attention, but it drives me insane! I don’t want to have to break up with him over it, but he also creates these double standards where he gets jealous if I even receive e-mail from another guy. What should I do?

– Feeling Betrayed

(more…)

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August 18, 2009

Daily Double Standard: Just friends?

Filed under: Advice — posted by Breakup Girl @ 9:09 am

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The opposite of sex on February 23, 1998

Dear Breakup Girl,

Do you think it’s possible for someone in a serious/committed relationship to be close friends with someone of the opposite sex? Based on my own personal feelings and experience, I don’t think so. I argued a lot with my girlfriend of almost three years about this, yet she always assured me that the guys she hung out with were “just friends.” Well, I put up with it, until she finally cheated on me with one of them. Do you think it’s too much to ask of a girlfriend to not have guy friends? Personally, I don’t think it’s possible for a guy and a girl to be “just friends.” I mean, all of my relationships have started out as a friendship first…

– The Man

(more…)

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August 17, 2009

Double Standards Week

Filed under: Advice — posted by Breakup Girl @ 10:16 am

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There are some situations in which Breakup Girl sticks firmly to her double standards. Examples:

  • Good music. I conveniently forget that the Godfather of Soul is the Mother of all Wife-Beaters.
  • Yum! I turn up my nose at milk-fed veal, but my bare hands have gleefully brought death and dismemberment to countless Maine lobsters.
  • Statements, fashion and otherwise. War is bad, but my 82nd Airborne-surplus Corcoran paratrooper boots are good.

Basically, double standards occur when someone adheres both to a principle and also to a big fat self-serving exception to that principle. And usually, the big fat self-serving exception means that someone (wives, lobsters, civilians) gets dealt a lousy hand. That’s how BG describes it, but just to make this official, let’s have a look at the definition of double standard in Breakup Girl’s American Heritage Dictionary (a high school graduation gift from an ex-boyfriend, who like all of her high school boyfriends, is now married with child. See also “harsh.”):

double standard, n. A set of principles permitting greater opportunity or liberty to one than to another, esp. the granting of greater sexual freedom to men than to women.”

Aha. So Breakup Girl has backup when she says: Guys. Cut it out. All of you.

Boys/men: No fair expecting girls/women not to do or have done anything you would do or have done. (Also see “madonna/whore complex”.)

Girls/women: No fair letting boys/men treat you like milk-fed veal.

Breakup Girl is about to go After-School Special on you, but listen up: respect each other’s — and your own — actions, choices, and dumb mistakes. If you feel like someone is doing something mean and lousy to you, get up offa that thing and call them on it. If you feel like someone is getting away with some bad behavior by flashing some fake “that’s how men/women are supposed to be” license, call them on it. Realize that in relationships, these boy/girl double standards are, deep down, all about (more After-School Special words) insecurity and self-esteem. As in, “If she looks at another guy, she might not like me!” As in “If I call him on his double standards, he might not like me!” (Or, worse, “Wow, he won’t let me look at another guy — he must really like me!)

So, basically, Breakup Girl is allowed to have double standards, and you’re not.

Every day this week we will showcase an advice letter on this theme. Call it the “Daily Double Standard!”

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Daily Double Standard: I have a past

Filed under: Advice — posted by Breakup Girl @ 10:14 am

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Too much information on February 23, 1998

Dear Breakup Girl,

I was in a relationship for almost a year and it finally ended last week. It has had ups and downs, breakups and reunions so many times that I cannot remember the numbers. I love him very much, but he cannot live with my past (which really isn’t shady at all!). When he was asking me some very personal and unnecessary questions, I lied to him for fear of losing him. The truth came out. For five months, we have been trying to work through this, him accepting my past (three other men) and the fact that I lied to him; I’ve been trying to move on from his insults. Last week, he told me he couldn’t stop thinking about my “mistakes” and he wanted to see other people. I should be happy to be free from the arguments, but I’m not. I love and only want to be with him. I go to a very small school, so his presence and any girl he takes home are always near. I don’t want to sit in or go out anymore on weekends. How can I go out and deal with the fact he’s with other girls, ones who are in the place where I want to be? Breakup Girl, I obviously can’t change the past, but my future seems in peril! I wish he would accept the past and that I love him. Instead, he’s thrown me away like yesterday’s garbage! HELP!

– Discarded and Depressed

(more…)

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July 3, 2009

High standards? Make it a double.

Filed under: Advice — posted by Breakup Girl @ 9:58 am

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Madonna? Whore? It’s not so complex on February 16, 1998

Dear Breakup Girl,

I have been celibate for six years. Why? The one-night stands got old a long time ago (I’ve been sexually active since age 16), and the chance of AIDS is simply too great to risk my life on a piece of plastic. My buddies ask me, “Why don’t you just get a girlfriend? At least you’d get laid.” However, I can’t justify dating someone solely for the purpose of having sex — it would be an empty relationship at best, and ultimately doomed to failure.

Also, most all of the women I meet nowadays, in my age group (late twenties), quite often have morals lower than the average college jock. I simply can’t imagine that type of woman one day becoming the “mother of my children.” My friends tell me my standards are too high, and that I’ll never find anyone who will “fit the bill.”

Should I lower my standards? Am I being unrealistic? Is wanting a reasonably attractive and intelligent woman, with morals, a sense of humor, and not of baggage too much to ask these days? Right now, my focus is on developing my future so that if/when I meet “Miss Right,” I’ll be financially prepared to provide a comfortable life for ourselves and our children. In the meantime, it’s difficult not having anyone with whom to share things. It can become quite lonely at times. I’ll admit, my standards are high. I may expect a lot, but it’s only because I have just as much to offer. What’s your opinion?

– Hopeful

(more…)

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July 2, 2008

Talk of shame

Filed under: News, Psychology — posted by Amanda @ 5:18 am

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The New York Daily News, our fair city’s runner-up for best morning-after headlines, recently reported that women are not enjoying one-night stands as much as men. According to a survey published in the journal Human Nature, 58% of women said they would not have a casual encounter again, compared to only 23% of men who felt the same. The study found that women still tend to feel “used” after a one-night stand, and that in such brief encounters, often feel let down by sex that’s “not as satisfying as they’d hoped for.” Men, for their part, tended to regret their choice of partners, lamenting that the women “weren’t as attractive in the morning as they’d seemed the night before.”

Over here at BG.net, we’re not sure either how much we’d respect the ultimate conclusions of this study in the morning. Because maybe it’s not so much that “women have not adapted to casual sex” (Urr?) but that society’s double standards (still!) have not adapted to women having casual sex. Check out Feministing’s response for more.

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