Fat, Sweet Machine, You've Got to Be Kidding Me

Top 10 Subtle Ways to Get Douchehounded on Shapely Prose

Dear AskMen.com Writers (and Readers),

Shame does not make women thin. Not eating makes women obsessed with food, not with your no doubt majestically large dick. Humiliating your girlfriend will not make her want to have sex with you.

If you follow your article’s “subtle” suggestions, you will not end up with a supermodel girlfriend. You will end up with a woman who hates you — or, if your girlfriend isn’t as tragically self-lacerating as you assume she is, you will end up alone.


Shapelings, I’m trying to think of alternate titles for this crapfest of a slideshow. So far:

Top 10 Subtle Ways to Tell Her to Break Up with You

Top 10 Subtle Ways to Reactivate Your GF’s Eating Disorder

Top 10 Subtle Ways to Tell Her You’re a Waste of Skin

Help me out?

310 thoughts on “Top 10 Subtle Ways to Get Douchehounded on Shapely Prose”

  1. I like “10 Subtle Ways to Wind Up Suddenly and Inexplicably Single – Oh, and She Took Your Dog, Too.”

  2. 10 Subtle Ways to Show How Vastly Your Communication Skills Require Improvement

    10 Subtle Ways to Cling to Your Denial That Your Partner Is Reverting to Their Normal Body-Type After Starving Themselves for Months to Please Shallow Jerks Such as Yourself

  3. “10 Subtle Ways to Dredge Up Awful Childhood Memories of Her Father”? (My own dad used to do #7 to me all the time.)

    “10 Subtle Ways to Project Your Own Body Anxiety Onto Your GF”?

    “10 Subtle Ways to Totally Have No Gauge for What Getting Fat Means”? (Since the girls in the pictures were NOT EVEN FUCKING CLOSE TO FAT OH MY GOD.)

    Also, it bears noting that when I went to click on the link, it was redirected from an advertisement for Klondike bars. Train of thought…?

    “How terrible would you make your GF feel for a Klondike bar?”

  4. Top 10 Subtle Ways to Emotionally Abuse Her

    Top 10 Subtle Ways to Satisfy Your Inner Jerk

  5. Are you fucking kidding me? Oh Sweet Jesus this simply cannot be real. Loosen the screws on her chair. Yes, please injure her in your quest to dominate and control. Starve her and make her beg for a reasonable portion of food while you sneak food while she is not looking.

    How about “10 Subtle Ways to Become an Abuser.”

    “10 Subtle Ways to Make Your Relationship Dysfunctional”

  6. BTW, I didn’t even bother reading any of the comments at “Ask[OvergrownTeenageBoys]” because there is no doubt in my mind that they require a mondo-serious “Sanity-Watchers” warning. The truth is, the very name “AskMen” (sad to admit for me, being a man, but ya gotta call a spade a spade) rather doubles as just such a warning label!

  7. I like “10 Subtle Ways to Wind Up Suddenly and Inexplicably Single – Oh, and She Took Your Dog, Too.”

    All I can see in my head is the scene in Band of Brothers when Nixon gets the letter that his wife is leaving him and “taking the kid and the dog. THAT’S MY DOG! SHE’S TAKING *MY* DOG.” I laughed.

    10 Subtle Ways to Demonstrate the Importance of Effective Birth Control

  8. 10 Subtle Ways to Get Your Girlfriend to Lose Over 100 Pounds of Useless Flesh!

    10 Subtle Ways to Show Just How Shallow You Are

    10 Subtle Ways to Show You Are Part of the Patriarchy

  9. “10 Not At All Subtle Lessons in Emotional Abuse.”

    Not to take the fun out of this, but I’ve heard from two women since I tweeted about that fucking article — and called it abusive — that yep, their abusive exes treated them just like that, and they didn’t recognize it as abuse at the time. Every last one of these is a major red flag that you are dating a controlling, manipulative, narcissistic fuckwad. (Of course, in my opinion, if your guy reads Ask Men at all, that’s all the red flag you need.)

    I love the vision of girlfriends everywhere spotting these tactics and dumping their boyfriends, but what really guts me is that this shit WORKS on too many of us. Controlling, manipulative, narcissistic fuckwads stoke the flames of women’s self-loathing and self-doubt to keep us passive, and too often, it’s really fucking effective. This is a blueprint for how to be a better abuser. I don’t even have words.

  10. Top 10 Subtle Ways to Reduce the Person You’re Supposed To Love To a Clothing Size?

  11. 10 Subtle Ways to End Your Sex Life

    10 Subtle Ways to Ensure You’ll End Up Alone

    10 Subtle Ways to Get Punched in the Face

    10 Subtle Ways to Keep Her Preoccupied With Her Weight So She Won’t Realize that You Have a Tiny Penis

  12. What Kate Said.

    Seriously, if anyone reading recognizes even one of those ‘subtle’ behaviors from their own lives, it is time to RUN, no walk, away from your abuser.

    My title for it is ’10 Not-So-Subtle Ways to Prepare Your Woman to be a Punching Bag.’

  13. This is a blueprint for how to be a better abuser.

    Absolutely. I mean, that’s what is so nauseating about it–the part where he’s supposed to say “you don’t think I’d be that manipulative, do you?” gave me fucking chills reading it. Maybe the best title would be Ladies: Top 10 Signs That You Need to Get Out Now, Like Right This Second.

  14. Also, fourth-ing (is that a word?) that it’s 100% definitely a list of tips on how to be abusive. Been there, done that, got the t-shirt.

  15. Been on the receiving end of such bullshit, I mean, not having done said abusing!

  16. I only made it to number 6 before I had to quit.. my eyes turned inside out and I couldn’t read anymore !
    What a bunch of losers….. I would love to see what the men look like that contributed to this article. I’m sure they are fine, fine specimens of manliness.

    How horrible that they’re extolling the “virtues” of putting your woman in her place so you can continue to be able to stand looking at her and having sex with her. No wonder women are so messed up about our bodies. yikes..

  17. How about “10 Ways AskMen.com Can Expect To Hear From the Lawyers of Women Injured By Asshat Boyfriends Who Sabotaged Their Fucking Chairs”?

  18. I don’t have a way to say this succinctly as a 10 Ways title, but do you notice it’s as if the only way these men will look at their own junk food addictions and possibly sedentary lifestyles is in order to better abuse the women in their lives? God forbid a man decide to eat veggies/exercise because he wants to see if it will make him feel good. Only good reason to do it is to shame and manipulate. Duh, cause REAL MEN don’t eat veggies. Don’t believe me? ASK MEN bwahaha.

  19. “Top 10 Less-Than-Subtle Ways To Prove You Have The Same Emotional Depth and Capacity To Love as A Tuna Fish Sandwich Does”

    “Top 10 Subtle Ways You Can Become a Total Asshole And Destroy Someone Else’s Life In The Process”

    Really, I know we’re trying to be funny here, but the premise behind the article is patently abusive. It is making me anxious and sweaty.

  20. “10 not so suble ways in which we’ll show that you should never ever take any advice that we give. Ever. Really.”

    I particularly loathe the sabotage of the chair. As if she won’t notice that there are no screws in the legs anymore.

  21. 9 subtle ways to abuse your girlfriend with ‘humorous’ passive aggression
    and 1 subtle way to land her with osteopath appointments for the rest of her life.


  22. the frightening thing, as we are amused at the creative proposals for re-titling this list, is that there are most likely — I can’t even guess a number, but it’s got to be huge — many guys out there laughing at that list. never mind those that take it seriously. as their “right”. argh.

    as soon as i read it, i remembered the day not so many weeks ago when i drove a good friend from work to an emergency shrink appointment because, out of the blue, a guy she had started going out with and thought was a good person suggested to her she really did need to lose some more weight… she’s a strong, bright, fun person, and she melted in a puddle of doubt.

  23. All your top 10 names are better than mine. I want to draw special attention to the part of the article that talks about giving her too small portions. “You can always go back and get more when she’s not looking.”


    I agree with Kate and the many others who said it: this is emotional and physical abuse. If you did this to a child, I would have Child Protective Services all over your ass.

  24. If a man is bothered enough by a woman’s appearance that he would even consider any of these tactics, I’m not sure why he wouldn’t just leave. It seems a lot simpler (and less abusive) to just go away. If my husband’s body hair was so offensive to me that I felt compelled to manipulate him into waxing it I think I’d realize it was time to go. Please, AskMen.com readers, don’t do us clueless fat women any favors by sticking around. Just leave.

  25. You know what’s really sad, is that I think I’ve seen this list before somewhere else. I distinctly remember the “smaller portions/sneak more for yourself” one. But I can’t seem to recall where.

    It made me want to vomit that time, too.

  26. Part of me feels like going round to the AskMen offices and “playfully” sabotaging all the chairs there. Not so funny now!


    It’s cool if you’re a DUDE and you’re fat — the only reason you’d diet or exercise is to trick your gf into doing it with you.

  28. This, ladies, is precisely why I have decided to stay single. Yes, I know many of you will say that not all men are like this. But, having fallen for one emotional abuser (and having taken years to realize it the first time), s%$t like this makes me terrified to date.

  29. What I don’t get is a chunk of the article seems to assume that the woman doesn’t know that she put on weight? If that’s true, OMG fucking hooray! But most likely, so not true. I’ve never had a moment where I went “Wow, I just broke my chair. I must have gained some weight”. Generally, we are weight obsessed enough to know we’ve gained weight long before our significant others see it.

    Also, I love the above title suggestions but I think these tips don’t qualify as subtle.

  30. Top 10 Not-So-Subtle Ways to Prove You’re An Abusive Ass

    Top 10 Not-So-Subtle Ways to Wind Up Totally Alone

  31. Very true, SM. I think that they missed part of the top ten.

    Number 1.1: Tell your fat girlfriend to read this article. She’ll automatically throw up all the doughnuts she’s been eating while sitting around in sweats all day. You encourage this, because you want her to have an eating disorder. And you both live happily ever after.

  32. Had a conversation with my best bud yesterday after she saw a woman — in 100-degree Texas — in full chador. The veiled woman was with a much less modestly dressed man. My best bud was angry at how far repressive regimes & cultures will go to isolate women to control their behaviors.

    I told her that the overt campaign to get women to hate their bodies is an instrument of isolation, and that it is saddening to see just how many of us swallow it.

    My partner is in medicine. She doesn’t no a single family practice doctor who isn’t on his second (or third or fourth) marriage to young women who are meticulously maintained.

    And we are still surprised that the health industry is disgusted by fat. We still think it’s all a big :health” issue.

  33. This article made me really sad and angry. It also makes me miss my husband (from who I am separated from at the moment ) because that was one thing I never worried about-I knew that as far as my size and shape go, he was totally accepting of the entire range.

  34. Er, she doesn’t “know” a family practice doctor who is married to his “first” wife.

  35. Top Ten Reasons why an assertive, confidant woman will not give you the time of day.

    Top Ten Reasons to fear and loathe women.

    Top Ten reasons to marry a Stepford wife.

    Seriously, these are the kind of guys (and I know one) who marry foreign women. They actually have a broker take them to a foreign country where women are available for marriage. These women are pitched as being beautiful, loving etc. Be assured they are not ball-busters with a mind of their own. I do not blame the women as many are desperately poor and sold a bill of good by the broker

  36. Please, AskMen.com readers, don’t do us clueless fat women any favors by sticking around. Just leave.

    Or at least have some straightforward, honest communication before making any final decisions about the status of the relationship.

    Part of me feels like going round to the AskMen offices and “playfully” sabotaging all the chairs there. Not so funny now!

    “They’ve fallen, and they can’t get up!” (Sorry, couldn’t resist.)

  37. This works particularly well if your girlfriend still hasn’t worked out the link between an active lifestyle and emotional well-being. Tell her you have found exactly what she needs to help her relax

    Oh baby, it gets me so hot when you infantilize me.

  38. 10 subtle ways to have Neil LaBute base the central character in his next play on you.

    10 subtle ways to keep the neighbourhood hit-man in business.

    10 subtle ways to personally empathise with John Bobbit.

    10 subtle ways to get ground glass in your tuna sandwich/cyanide in your coffee.

    10 subtle ways to go fuck yourself.

    Ooooh, I could go on indefinitely…

  39. 10 ways to ensure you never experience an honest relationship or any true intimacy in your life

    My first reaction to AskMen.com (which I’d never seen before) was horror and revulsion, then fear. OMG, if *this* what the single guys out there are reading/learning from, how will I ever find a decent guy? But now I just feel sad for the the guys who place such importance on the physical appearance of their partners at the expense of a deeper connection. I hope I meet my Mr. (or Ms.) Right eventually, but I would rather remain single than have a relationship that’s based on superficiality and manipulation rather than developing deeper and more meaningful levels of intimacy.

  40. Over the last two years I have gained about 60 pounds – baby weight, chronic pain weight, and lupron (hello chemical menopause) weight. My husband had been concerned enough to straight up talk to me about it. He is overweight and a type II diabetic. He finally had to go on insulin, which had definitely steeled his resolve to get into better shape (and it’s working). Sometimes our conversations about the topic get testy, but we are always straightforward about the issue. As a diabetic, he wants to be sure that I don’t get the disease so that our young son has a better shot of having at least one parent live to see his adult life. If he pulled any of the manipulative, shitty behavior listed in the slide show above, we would have had the divorce talk.

  41. “Yet 10 MORE Ways We Celebrate the Misogynist, Classist, Racist, Able-ist, Heteronormative Status Quo” (and, as just about everything from AM fits that description, the title is reusable!)

  42. I ranted about this several months ago when the article came out and went with “10 Subtle Ways to Know You’re a Shallow Fuck”; I do so love eviscerating AskMen articles. Given that this is an ongoing series on their site, I am curious to know if AskMen is actually doing us a favour by giving douchehounds bad advice so that they are especially easy to identify?

  43. I’ve got to say I was actually really pleased at the comments to this piece of dreck. The first page is mostly jerks, but the comments get more and more critical as they go on. There are a lot of people out there, male and female, that found this loathsome. Overall, this actually made me quite happy.

  44. I cannot believe that this is an article on this site. Sure there are plenty of stupid and “manly” “How to get your woman to wear nothing and dance around to serve your dick” but this one is seriously promoting emotional abuse and it’s sickening. Any guy who reads this article and thought that this advice was good shouldn’t be in a relationship because they aren’t ready for one. Because they have no concept of reality. In no way is your skinny or fit 20-something year old girlfriend going to stay that same small size for the rest of her life. And neither are you. Stress, lifestyle changes, age, having children, all these things are going to change how your body works and is taken care of.

    It is disgusting and unfortunate that most people do not understand that you body will, and is supposed to change. It’s a real reflection of our youth obsessed culture, that anything not “thin” or “young” is not beautiful.

    And most likely, if you’re perfect sized girlfriend has gained weight and you can’t see why, it’s probably because she is working so hard to take care of YOUR sorry ass, and has less time and energy to focus on herself.

  45. Top Ten Reasons for Your Entitlement!!!!!

    It is the entitlement aspect that infuriates me the most because all the shame, and sadistic behavior ideas flow from the belief that men are entitled to have their expectations of all things female met. I guess this is article only for the looser men who have lost control and let their woman gain weight. Let it also serve as a warning to men that it is possible for a woman to get out of line. YIKES – It could actually happen to you.

    “if she confronts you about trying to shame her into losing weight, the key approach here is denial, as you reply: “Do you actually think I would be that manipulative?” Of course you would, but she doesn’t need to know that.” Such a shame men can no longer order a woman to loose weight.

    How about; Top Ten ways to assert dominion over all that is yours?

    This really infuriates me more than almost anything because it is implicit that women are not individuals, have no minds, and need to be shaped, molded and controlled by men.

  46. What?! I don’t know what comments you were reading, but they’re absolutely ridiculous. I don’t know what I found worse, the guy who had a comment every two seconds about “fat feminist pigs probably lesbians,” or the women who were like, “Well, OBVIOUSLY if you gain weight in a relationship, it means you’re LOSING RESPECT for your boyfriend or husband, and he DESERVES respect JUST AS MUCH AS YOU DO.”

    I need to stop reading comments on everything except SP, seriously. They give me ulcers.

  47. To Red Sonja: Big Fat Deal covered this one a few months ago. That’s probably where you remember it, and that’s where I first read it.

    I hope these guys are seriously hurting for female companionship. They don’t even deserve to cuddle up to a hamster.

  48. Just read some of the comments.

    The are the requisite trolls of course, but the comments thread is getting a fair number of readers crying foul.

    Some of them are likely shapelings.

  49. Ah… and I will add that I dated one of those guys who tries to subtley…and not subtley control his girlfriend’s weight. I didn’t realize it was abuse at the time.
    Eventually, I was dumped for gaining some weight from getting into Intuitive Eating and “smiling too much.” Seriously… he said I started smiling too much. Hah. Good riddance!

  50. The article’s disgusting and abusive. But I do feel at least somewhat heartened by the fact that so many of the commenters over there are blasting it.

  51. Two snaps up for this post and as much summer pie – and/or low-carb tart, as you prefer – as you can eat.

    (I would offer baby doughnuts, but so many people here have lots better recipes than me.)

    Oh, and it’s lunchtime – for non-teetotalers, I don’t think a martini would be out of line either.

  52. Top 10 ways to dehumanize 52% of the world’s population

    Top 10 reasons why the term “black widow” is still used to refer to women.

    Top 10 reasons to confirm your belief that the world revolves around you.

    Top 10 subtle ways to demonstrate your perpetual adolescence.

  53. How about

    “Top Ten Ways to Make a Long Term Committment to Rosy Palm’?


    Next issue be sure to check out our ” Top Ten Destination Wedding Spots for You,Your Right Hand and a Copy of Victoria’s Secret Catalog’


    “Top Ten Ways to Make Yourself the Go-To Guy In Town for Choir Directors Seeking a Falsetto Singer”

    My favorite, though, is the sociopath comment above. Indeed.

    Thank you so much for pointing out that the spatial and bodily control of women is a universal practice and that veiling is just a more obvious example. Everytime someone comments about those ‘abusive’ Muslims and their poor ‘abused’ women I usually counter them with the embarrassingly high rates of abuse and murder of women in our own country. Usually smart people are able to make the connection of their ‘feminism’ being thinly veiled racism/religious hatred. Nevermind the fact that those comments totally ignore the very complex attitudes that Muslim women have about the veil. Maybe she does hate it. Maybe its all she’s ever known and all her husbands ever known. Maybe its the only way she can leave the house. MAYBE she chooses this because she wants people to know she’s an observant Muslim or is a political statement.

    OR maybe she knows how fucking shallow American men can be and finds comfort in not having boobs gawked at or listening to critiques of her love handles.

  54. 10 subtle ways to have Neil LaBute base the central character in his next play on you.

    Buffpuff wins.

    Also, I totally didn’t realize this article was old. (A reader sent it to me, and I sent it to SM.) Oops.

  55. When I checked, every single comment on the main page was pointing out how wrong the article is. At least not everyone on the internet is as idiotic as that article.

  56. “Top 10 Incentives to Attack Men With Cream Pies and Bludgeon Them With Sausage Links.”

    Not like one NEEDS incentive, particularly…

  57. holy fucking hell, dude.
    No, I couldn’t read the comments. I couldn’t even read the *paragraphs that expanded on the TITLES*, which were bad enough.

    10 unsubtle ways to blueprint your path as abuser

    10 ways to expose your own self-loathing and poor compensation skills

    I really do believe abusers have themselves been totally fucked with as people, usually for a very, very long time by people who were supposed to love them – mostly because I cannot think of a more effective recipe for turning someone into a total asshole than abusing them mercilessly (and unsubtly – does the writer of this criminal manifesto really think this shit is all that subtle? It sounds straight-up controlling and manipulative to me). Even so, there are cases of really appalling abuse where the survivors rise above, so it’s not completely effective.

    But I know! Let’s take just the women and what they eat and turn that into a very special hate campaign, just ’cause emotional abuse is so fucking effective! And the chair thing is so funny, ’cause physical abuse is even funnier when it’s covert!


    Kate H., I am totally with you. This just isn’t the kind of shit I can mock effectively. It’s not funny, because it *does* work on a lot of us. AND IT SHOULD NOT. This shit shouldn’t be on AskMen.com – it should be on HowToBecomeAnAbuserIfYouAren’tAlready.com.

    It seriously fucking pisses me off.

  58. ^ The “fat feminist lesbian pigs” thing is just disgusting. Because obviously, if you wanted to be treated as anything other than a doormat or a prostitute, you’re unattractive to men, and therefore, undeserving of attention/concern.

  59. Top Ten Not-So-Subtle Ways to Hasten the Second Coming of Aileen Wuornos (sp)

    Top Ten Ways to Get Eviscerated by a Spork

    [oh, I just realized these are related. Sorry, kinda pissed and didn’t go past the first page of the comments. Must conserve the SW points and blackberry’s memory, you understand.]

  60. 10 Subtle Ways to Make FJ Feel Like Her Emotionally Abusive Boyfriends Were Not That Bad, Comparatively

  61. 10 ways to become an abusive boyfriend?

    I’m an abuse survivor, and several of those tips were the *exact* ways the abuse started with my ex.

    Tell her she’s fat.
    Tell her how to dress, and make it clear that she needs to lose weight to dress that way.
    Ask her why she can’t look hot like her friend so-and-so.
    Constantly compliment so-and-so in her presence, always making sure to put your girlfriend down at the same time.
    Start sleeping with so-and-so, since the gf doesn’t “love” you enough to get hot.

    Ad nauseam…

    Until she’s SO disobedient, so intentionally trying to embarrass you with her fatness/ugliness/wrongness that you have to smack her around – maybe that will get the message into her head.

  62. “you wanted to be treated as anything other than …a prostitute, you’re unattractive to men”

    Well actually this would just give him reason to kill her (their) and dump her (their) body(ies) somewhere for YEARS with little legal punishment other than sitting in his jail cell for the rest of his life while people write books and TV shows about his psychotic ways and wonder WHY OH WHY did this mild mannered husband , father of 2, and an upstanding citizen choose to kill a bunch of sex workers (even if they were junkie whores and nobody really cared anyway aren’t there more important murders to be solved out there?) and discuss how NOBODY had a clue he was such a sick fucker…

  63. Top Ten Not-So-Subtle Ways to Hasten the Second Coming of Aileen Wuornos (sp)


  64. During the long period of my marriage where I had “low self-esteem” (read that as, “hated myself and couldn’t believe that anyone could love me”), my husband was as encouraging as possible during my many failed attempts to lose weight. He wanted me to succeed. He didn’t use any of these stupid, manipulative, abusive tricks. He didn’t need to…I hated myself enough.
    Thank you, SP. Thank you for helping me learn to love myself again.

  65. 10 Subtle Ways To Be A Misogynist Douchebag? 10 Subtle Ways To End Up Alone And J***ing Off To Your 5 TeraBytes Porn Collection For The Rest Of Your Life Because No Real Sane Woman Would Ever Date You?

    Okay, that’s enough of my internet time wasted on the patheticness that is AskMen.com, moving on.

  66. Shit, I had an abusive ex who did most of those ten things. She didn’t stop until her mommy gave her a thousand dollars to ‘stop being a lesbian’.

  67. @threnody,
    I want to draw special attention to the part of the article that talks about giving her too small portions. “You can always go back and get more when she’s not looking.”

    I wanted to comment on that part of the article, too! What a load!

    “MEN shouldn’t have to go hungry, but CHIX HAVE TO if they are to deserve a place next to the awesomeness that is us.”

  68. “They’ve fallen, and they can’t get up!” (Sorry, couldn’t resist.) [Orig. linked to YouTube video of old Life Call commercial.]

    The pop culture response to this advert has always struck me as a pretty good example of US culture’s systemic misogyny, ageism and ableism.

  69. Well, I read through all 10 of them. My soon to be ex-husband used quite a few of them on me. I left him after the denial fell away and I realized our “problems” were really emotional and verbal abuse. Interesting that the article title uses the word “subtle” because subtle was his middle name–which was why it took me so long to get a clue.

    Thank the universe for FA, intuitive eating, and this blog, as all were integral to my getting emotionally healthy enough to wake up and leave. I am crying as I write this. This shit is so triggering for me, but thank you SM for posting it, it is so important.

    The fact that stuff like this is out there is really upsetting to me. “How to be a better abuser” is absolutely right. I’m feeling kind of shaky as I write this.

    Kate, SM, FJ, and AS, please keep doing what you’re doing. It is so important. I am an example of that. You were just a piece of my healing, but an important one.

  70. @Lu – exactly. This is the kind of talk that led me down the path of anorexia my freshman year of college. I’m fat, so I only deserve one saltine a day. Did it because of a guy too. Idiot.

  71. threnody, I hope you don’t mean you were the idiot. It’s our misogynistic, weight-obsessed punitive culture that is the idiot. (hugs)

  72. P.S. Referring back to that statement we both quoted, I hope that whatever girlfriends are the victims of these tactics ALSO go back for seconds when the d*ck is not looking. ;)

  73. Lu,

    I was kind of talking about myself, but really I was simply ignorant of the fact that fat can be beautiful and healthy. And more than likely, the women are the ones doing the cooking (as no man should ever stoop to doing women’s work) so they can serve up a big helping of shit for these douchehounds, while they go pig out on baby doughnuts.

  74. “Ask her why she can’t look hot like her friend so-and-so.”

    *sob* Where were you all when I started dating?
    *clutches SP*

  75. Regarding Muslim women and veils/chadors/etc.: Where I live it’s legal for women to go topless in public. The reasons for my not wanting to do it are probably as “complex” as the reasons why some “mysterious” foreign woman wants to dress modestly.

    At the same time as I don’t want to do it myself, I fully support the rights of any woman who does want to go topless or uncovered. It’s her choice, and not anyone else’s business to tell her whether or not she’s a good little feminist based on how she dresses.

  76. I particularly liked this comment on the site:

    Loosing weight is not hard. But MOST women simply aren’t willing to give up their habits of poor diet. To lose weight, simply stop eating all processed foods, all bleached flour, and all refined sugar. Go for a walk or run every day. It WILL WORK. I have seen it work many times before. But it requires a TOTAL life change. It isn’t something you do to lose weight. It’s something you do to become healthy.

    Yeah, because all of us lazy women are sooo attached to our unhealthful lifestyles, while the menfolk always go the extra mile to follow restricted diets and exercise constantly in order to keep themselves in exactly the same perfect consdition they were in when we met them. And because the phrases “total life change” and “not hard” totally go together.

  77. Because obviously, if you wanted to be treated as anything other than a doormat or a prostitute, you’re unattractive to men, and therefore, undeserving of attention/concern.

    It amazes me how much anger insane rage there is directed at women undeserving of attention/concern.

  78. Ildeth, haha, seriously! “Oh, if only those women would give up the idea that eating huge quantities of meat, drinking beer, and sitting on the couch scratching themselves were markers of femininity and therefore their god-given birthright. They’re so committed to the non-dieting lifestyle!”

  79. Just because I paraphrased, I’ll add in one of my favorite quotes now:

    “I myself have never been able to find out precisely what feminism is. I only know that people call me a feminist whenever I express sentiments that differentiate me from a doormat or a prostitute.” ~ Rebecca West.

  80. My suggestions that I posted in comments:

    “Top 10 ways to prove you don’t deserve a partner.” “Top 10 ways to demonstrate your shallowness.” “Top 10 ways to miss the point of a relationship.” “Top 10 ways to encourage disordered eating.” “Top 10 ways to eat at your partner’s self-esteem.” “Top 10 ways to be an abusive jerk.” “Top 10 ways to hurt someone you allegedly love.” “Top 10 ways to perpetuate a culture that de-values women.” “Top 10 ways to let her know you only value her as arm candy.”

  81. Because obviously, if you wanted to be treated as anything other than a doormat or a prostitute, you’re unattractive to men, and therefore, undeserving of attention/concern. — agh… I dunno how to italicize this!

    I think this is an amazing point… I’ve never heard it put together to clearly before, but I have experienced this for most of my life… sad, eh?

    Awesome convo in this thread!

  82. It’s a shame in addition to making my romantic life a little easier by illustrating vices I’ve managed to avoid (specifically being douchehoundable on the size issue which isn’t an issue for me) that there is the side affect of reducing people’s self esteem.

    But it seems there is a theme going on with the White Girl Fantasy and now this. Don’t leave your self-esteem behind. I’d wager that’s good advice for dudes as well on dude-sensitive issues.

  83. That was terrible. As i read that list, I felt really anxious and kind of scared. Now I know why: 1: everything on the list is an example of abuse; and 2: everything on the list is like my eating disorder talking to me.

  84. If this article was not so disgusting and sexist, I could say it is simply too stupid: every woman is (unfortunately) so conscious about her body and its changes, that would never need her shallow boyfriend to tell it in a “subtle way” …

  85. When I checked, every single comment on the main page was pointing out how wrong the article is. At least not everyone on the internet is as idiotic as that article.

    I’m pleased to hear that. I would seriously hope that a single young straight guy who isn’t educated on body-image and -acceptance issues but who is at least a decent person, would be taken aback if not outraged by the suggestion that he should inflict physical injury (the chair-screws thing) on his partner.

  86. If this was a list of ways to subtly and cleverly tell a gay friend to stop flaming and get back in the closet, an editor would be losing his job. I will be very disappointed but not surprised if someone doesn’t fry over this. I don’t think I’ve ever heard of such a thing as hate speech against women. Nobody believes it exists.

  87. If this was a list of ways to subtly and cleverly tell a gay friend to stop flaming and get back in the closet, an editor would be losing his job.

    Oh, I wouldn’t be so sure. I think it would depend entirely on the publication. And I’d ask you to keep Rule Eleven in mind when you’re thinking in terms of “This would never happen to X oppressed group.”

  88. It’s a shame in addition to making my romantic life a little easier by illustrating vices I’ve managed to avoid (specifically being douchehoundable on the size issue which isn’t an issue for me) that there is the side affect of reducing people’s self esteem.

    Yeah, if it weren’t for women and their feelings, this list would be great because it makes you look good. It makes my asshole exes look like princes too, by the way.

    Good job with the pattern recognition, though, noticing that the two most recent posts on a feminist body-acceptance blog both support self-esteem.

  89. Heather#2(?), on July 9th, 2009 at 3:10 pm Said:
    I’ve never had a moment where I went “Wow, I just broke my chair. I must have gained some weight”.

    My dad was constantly on my case for tipping chairs back and otherwise “not sitting properly,” so my first thought would have been, “Darn, dad may have had a point after all.” :p

    Actually I’m not sure how many of these would have worked on me. I did have a couyple of guys tell me flat out they’d love to date me if I’d just lose ten pounds; my response was to cross them off my list of possibilities (if they’d ever been on it). And if a guy had served me out a teeny bit I would have said, “Hey, I’m hungrier than that.” Or gotten something else to eat later.

    I kind of liked the yoga one, because in my imagination someone tried it, said girlfriend got really into her yoga and eating well and all, got more energetic and happy but didn’t lose an ounce, then boyfriend clued into the fact that he was a douche from the git go. ;)

  90. Ugh! I hate the very existence of this article. I hate the assumption that emotional abuse is a more appealing option than honest, albeit difficult, communication, about attraction. I hate the assumption that the only attractive women are thin women. I hate the idea that a man is primarily concerned with and feels the right to define a woman’s body, especially as the article credits “women” with such little intelligence to suggest that they are little more than material projections of male desire.

  91. Also:

    “10 Subtle Ways to Become Homeless”

    “10 Subtle Ways to Ensure Your Major Lifelong Relationship is with Rosie Palm and her Five Sisters”

  92. ‘Insure’ would be better than ‘make sure.’

    ‘Top 10 ways to insure your genes aren’t passed on to continue publishing magazines like this piece of shit.’

    Yeah. Better.

  93. I especially loved the bit about those couples who’ve replaced their once smokin’ sex life with ice cream and cake. (Huh?) Have the AskDickheads Posse never seen a Haagen Dazs ad? I’m pretty sure they were dreamed up by a bloke.

  94. That list made my skin crawl. Ugh.

    My title for it would be “10 Not-So-Subtle Ways To Get Me To Throw Your Stuff On The Front Lawn and Change The Locks”

  95. Damn it, the editing obession is strong today…

    ’10 subtle ways to insure that your genes aren’t passed on to continue publishing magazines like this piece of shit.’

    OK, I swear I’m done now.

  96. My title for it would be “10 Not-So-Subtle Ways To Get Me To Throw Your Stuff On The Front Lawn and Change The Locks”

    add “(But I’m keeping the Dave Matthews CDs)” to the end of that and I’m on board. ;)

  97. “And I’d ask you to keep Rule Eleven in mind when you’re thinking in terms of “This would never happen to X oppressed group.””

    Hum. My apologies. That’s one that has ticked me off in the past, can’t believe I slipped up on it myself.

    How do I say it in a way that doesn’t compare it to other people’s suffering? What I want to say is that there doesn’t seem to be such a thing as “hate speech” against women. I don’t think I’ve ever heard those words used to describe speech that incites or encourages violence against women.

  98. ‘Top 10 ways to show you have the emotional maturity of a blueberry scone’

    (bonus points for those who catch the reference)

  99. Ok. Against my better judgment, I poked around that site for a bit (MY SANITY WATCHER’S POINTS!!11!!1 WHERE DID THEY GO?!!11?). Can I just say how fucking sick I am of the Relationship as Warzone ethos that so many men’s sites have going on right now. I’m also thinking of that ridiculous men’s wedding website (survive your bride’s meltdown!) that SocImages covered a while back.

    It’s as if women invented relationships, marriage, and monogamy in general too imprison men…nevermind the fact that the economics of marriage were established WAY back when to ensure the social, political, and financial positions OF MEN, and that monogamy has historically almost entirely been enforced ON WOMEN, whereas wanton extra-marital carousing has historically been acceptable for men. It’s almost as if this vast socially constructed paradigm has conditioned WOMEN to looking at monogamous relationships as their only possibility for safety, security, and personal fulfillment. It’s almost as if the possibility for monogamous relationship has been constructed as entirely dependent on the WOMAN’S ability to make a guy’s dick stand up.

    Yes, we women have dreamed up a social arrangement that places men’s desires at the center of everything and subjects us to lifetimes of doubt and self-hatred. We dreamed this up make ourselves happy at your expense.

    I fucking hate the world today.

  100. 10 Subtle Ways To Tell Her You’ll Likely End Up Reenacting the Lorena Bobbitt Castration With A Future Girlfriend

    Wordy, but I like it’s mental images.

    ‘Sabotage her chair’, ‘Buy her clothes that are too small’, ‘Feed her smaller portions and make her feel ashamed to ask for more’, ‘Make her try on old clothes’–Wtf? Seriously. If any man actually thought this would work to make a woman more ‘attractive’ then he needs to take a big-ass step back and realize we’re going to pull the same shit when he starts to lose tone. It’s ridiculous. There were maybe two not-so-Gitmo-inspired suggestions there, and they were ‘Diet with her’ and ‘Exercise with her’, but if you’re actually in love with your girlfriend, why would you want to change her? If she’s eating the same things you are, too, then shouldn’t you look in the mirror and grab your own love handles? How’s motivation there?

    I can’t believe people would even read that crap, let alone use it. I am absolutely furious right now over the thought of some poor, average-sized girl sitting down in a chair only to have it break on her, to cause the assumption she is ‘gargantuan’.

    Errrgh. I want to strangle some small, innocent stuffed toys right now.

  101. I’m with you Lady D. I just have 0 patience for bullshit like this, which seems to be subscribed to by most guys I know in one way or another. I’ve heard so many derivatives of this directed to me, or to other girls and it just makes me sick to my stomach to read it. I’d rather happily live and die alone, than be forced to wade through the scum.

  102. Per Brenda Shaw;
    “What I want to say is that there doesn’t seem to be such a thing as “hate speech” against women. I don’t think I’ve ever heard those words used to describe speech that incites or encourages violence against women.”

    I will take a stab at it. Despite the feminist movement, most mysoginistic thought has been taken as true and not challenged? (But then you can run into rule 11) I really don’t know except to say that at this point in time it is so deply entrenched that most don’t even recognize it as hate?

    Excellent question.

  103. OK, I have to admit that all my sanity-watchers are gone for the day, maybe the week. Just a warning to anyone out there with abuse issues. Thought I would be all badass and face it down.


  104. Let’s have some fun, shall we?

    *Top 10 subtle ways to get your woman to duct tape the toilet seat in the DOWN position*

    *Top 10 ways to get your woman to set fire to the clothes you left on the floor in front of the hamper*

    *Top 10 ways to get your woman to dump the overflowing garbage can into the driver’s seat of your car*

    *Top 10 ways to get your woman to laugh hysterically at the ineffectiveness of your penis*

    *Top 10 ways to get your woman to erase all of your sports settings on the DVR*

    *Top 10 ways to get your woman to be sure to wash all of your whites with that brand new red lacy bra that you bought 2 sizes too small*

    *Top 10 ways to get your woman to buy a box of Xtra large sized condoms to replace your Xtra small sized box with*

    *Top 10 ways to get your woman to hire an expensive handyman to complete all the odd jobs you’ve been putting off*

    *Top 10 ways to spend more “quality” time with your kids because your woman leaves the house the second you come home*

    *Top 10 ways to learn how to cook for yourself*

    *Top 10 ways to learn how to do the grocery shopping*

    *Top 10 ways to learn how to sleep comfortably in the dog house*

    All kidding aside, this article turns my stomach and I will be showing it to my husband so that we can have yet another discussion about the privilege of his gender.

  105. May I just break in and say how much I love Mr. Twistie?

    I told him about the article. He responded by saying that any woman he’s ever known would not put up with that shit for a nanosecond, and he loves us all the better for it.

    He also laughed at several of the alternate titles people have come up with and suggested a retaliatory list of Ten Subtle Ways To Tell Your Man That His Penis is Inadequate, starting with the hint: ‘pull out your microscope during foreplay.’

    I married an awesome guy.

    I’m just saying.

  106. That should be “guessing” not “guess”. This is what I get for joking about this with my hubby while trying to type here.

  107. I have an observation regarding the comments that women in general would definitely, definitely notice that they gained weight long before an intrusive douchebag boyfriend pointed it out. That is probably a safe argument, as long as you are not a controlling, manipulative abuser.

    Like a few others I am super skeeved out by how much the AskMen piece reminds me of the particular controlling, manipulative emotional abuser I used to live with. Mine very certainly did notice my weight gain before I did. Not just once, either — Just about every 28 days he would point out that I looked like was starting to put on weight and getting kind of unsexy to him. Because of period bloating.

    I saw the AskMen thingamus weeks ago and frankly, it has haunted me since then. Now I know why. Thanks for the discussion on SP. It’s still timely.

  108. add “(But I’m keeping the Dave Matthews CDs)” to the end of that and I’m on board. ;)

    Oh, of course! You’ve gotta have good music to listen to after listening to your ex’s body hating nonsense!

  109. @Cindy: Why assume that veiling = oppression? Not all Muslim women who wear veils of some kind are being forced to.

    @smartfatchick: Thank you for discussing some of the many reasons a Muslim woman might wear a chador or other type of veil.

  110. JennyRose: it’s funny that the people who would be most likely to take this seriously (I’m assuming a particularly boorish and unintelligent and small percentage of the straight male population) would also be unlikely to say that they ‘hate’ women. They date women, after all.

    The fact remains that it appears to be seriously advocating violence and cruelty, in both physical and psychological forms. No matter who the intended target is, this editor is someone who believes it’s okay to say things like that.

  111. I think this sort of article appeals to a pretty base sort of male fantasy– not only has he got a girlfriend who’s servicing his sexual needs, but he’s also in a position where he’s able to command her to serve them better.

    And, in this fantasy, he’s so macho and smooth that he can do it without running the risk of public humiliation. LOL.

    Also, he’s a muscle-bound stud (instead of being about as fat, or fatter than his girlfriend is. I would LAUGH MY ASS OFF if my husband tried to get on my case about being “too fat,” on the grounds that he is, and always has been, considerably fatter than I.)

    Seldom do I actually see that sort of fantasy dynamic play out in real life, however.

    Maybe this is a happy accident of geography and personal social networks.

    But one wonders if these mags/blogs don’t pander to the “loser demographic.” Guys who, for a number of reasons, just don’t do well with women or life and need a reassuring fantasy to hold onto.

  112. The Great Curve- Thanks for indulging my need to lecture during the summer months ; )

  113. @ all of the emotional and physical survivors. I’m sorry you had to deal with such dipshits and my heart aches for you. But I’m highly impressed by your intestinal fortitude for seeing that nonsense for what it really was.

  114. And I don’t necessarily mean “loser” as an insult. Sometimes guys, like gals, wind up involuntarily single for reasons that are out of their control, or that are hard to figure out.

    There are healthy ways to cope with the state my grandma calls “single blessedness” and unhealthy ones, and I don’t imagine that’s a gender thang.

  115. The last one, “take her where she has to where a swimsuit.” What does it MEAN to “where” a swimsuit?

    Sabotaging her chair? REALLY? So when the chair breaks and she factures her forearm on the coffee table, she can sue boyfriend?

    These suggestions are all very cruel… we can’t expect askmen to publish something like, “Well we know you see the likes of Megan Fox and Angelina Jolie all over the place, but know that the average woman doesn’t look like that. So consider yourself lucky if you’ve found a woman to spend time with at all – it doesn’t matter that she’s not “model perfect,” as long as she’s good to you,” or something like that.

    It always turned me off when meeting a new guy or seeing in his apartment evidence that he read Maxim. I didn’t want to have to be compared to the cover girls.

    TY Sweet Machine for posting this… I’d like to say, I hope they get a lot of shit from readers, but sadly I am sure there will be a lot of buffoons who will simply add to the fodder.

  116. friendly daughter: I just have to point out that not all men who “for a number of reasons just don’t do well with women or life” are abusive assholes like the men who would take this advice.

    I should know, I married one of them. I was his first-ever girlfriend.

  117. Yes, I know, Bald Soprano. Hell, my own husband was involuntarily celibate for seven years in his twenties, a fate this AskMen writer would probably consider worse than DEATH. ;)

    Have no idea WHY, except that you had to practically hit him over the head to make him understand that you were interested in *going back to HIS place and maybe not with half-a-dozen of his BFFs if you know what I mean*

    I don’t think he was a bitter reader of woman-hating articles then, and I know he isn’t now, or he’d find himself celibate in his forties, too. :p

    I’m just saying, I think there’s a subset of those guys who resort to the satisfaction of hating women to explain their own frustrations.

  118. top ten subtle reasons to DTMFA

    top ten subtle ways to induce nausea in the english-speaking internets-reading world

    top ten subtle ways to spot an abuser and run for your life

  119. I fell through a lawn chair more than 15 years ago (the lawn chair was old and worn, I was not overweight at the time) and I still have a scar on my side from the bad cut that the screws left. If I found out my boyfriend did this to me on purpose, not only would I dump him, I might sue him for disfigurement too.

  120. @ Regina T:

    love ’em all, but could we adapt “Top 10 ways to get your woman to hire an expensive handyman to complete all the odd jobs you’ve been putting off*
    to read, “Top 10 ways to get your woman to hire an BUFF, YOUNG , GREAT-LOOKING, expensive handyman to complete ALL and I mean ALL, the jobs you’ve been putting off* ?

    @ Twistie:

    tell Mr. T he’s a stud.

  121. Funnily enough, those do seem subtle to me, but then my Evil Ex would say things like “most men wouldn’t date you if they saw your stomach / knew about your personality” and “you should be more ladylike”. Amazing how much crap you learn to put up with when you don’t get a boyfriend until your early 20s!

    I’m still self-conscious about my stomach, damn it, nearly 20 years later.

  122. 10 Obvious Ways to Show Her That She Can Do Better

    Seriously, this article is terrible! These are sugar-coated emotional abuse techniques for shallow man-boys. The “subtle hints” are emotionally abusive and an epic fail at tact, but what’s worst is the lip-service given to concern for “her health.”

    That’s the part that REALLY got me. Help her make healthy decisions about food and exercise? Bullshit. If you truly think her weight is symptomatic of a health problem (such as if your girlfriend also shows signs of depression or certain hormone problems) you would encourage her to see a doctor while being emotionally supportive- NOT sabotage her fucking chair.

  123. “I’m still self-conscious about my stomach, damn it, nearly 20 years later.”

    You too? Yeah I was finally comfortable enough around a man to let him see me naked and I let him come in and talk to me while I was taking a bath. At one point he looked at me and told me that I looked like Buddha and I know damned well that I didn’t have rays of enlightenment coming out of my pores or something. So when I told him that bothered me and that I’ve ALWAYS had an issue with my stomach he tried to backtrack and say that the Buddha looked different and skinnier in India (where he was from). I still think about that.

  124. Hmmm….
    “10 Easy Ways to Completely Negate Your Already Limited Redeeming Value as a Person!”

    “Stop Overinflating the Blow Up Doll, and Other Ways to Keep Your Girl’s Weight Down”

  125. It always turned me off when meeting a new guy or seeing in his apartment evidence that he read Maxim. I didn’t want to have to be compared to the cover girls.

    Ugh. I remember that one well…one of my ex-husband’s ‘subtle’ ways of telling me that I wasn’t hot enough for him to bother with sexually any more was to leave porn lying around.

    Leaving aside that weight gain should not be an issue, a relationship in which one partner is using these kind of tactics to ‘communicate’ anything to the other is a relationship that’s already broken down. Or wasn’t one in the first place.

    Those who mentioned veiling – I’ve noticed that recently, in online discussions about the acceptability of the niqab and the like here in the UK, there always seem to be a few guys who chime in saying that in a heatwave like the one we just had here, all-covering garments should be compulsory. But only for fat women, of course. Because then their delicate sensitive little selves couldn’t be offended by us being fat at them in shorts and skimpy tops. And they call Islam oppressive?

  126. I gotta say, I’ve been a lurker on Shapely Prose for like a year and a half…maybe even longer…basically a really long time. And I never comment for a variety of reasons (both lame and valid), but this is the post that broke me of non-commenting.

    Reading that article…it broke me. I’m just done with this whole planet.

    Continue the good fight ladies.

  127. Re: Muslim women and the veil/chador: I have such hugely mixed feelings about the whole thing. Seeing a woman fully covered (in what I believe is the chador?) with a veil over her face, walking next to guy in western clothes, makes me spitting mad. It just does. That’s probably neo-colonalist Let the Nice White Girl Save You bullshit and I will fully own that, but god, is there a more visible symbol of the othering of half the human race?

    On the other hand, I can kind of see where women who wear the headscarf are coming from. I can understand that feeling, even a) I don’t share it, and b) the fact that while I (in a Western country) could choose to wear it, Muslim women in less liberal countries have to wear it would make me far less likely to do so. (I read a fucking fascinating article by a British Muslim woman about how the younger generation are more likely to wear headscarfs and how angry it made her in light of that fact. I wish I could remember where I found it because it blew me away.)

    On the other other hand, our culture makes women so terrified of being thought unattractive that they won’t put food in their mouths, for fuck’s sake, and is there any more insidious oppression than making people afraid to eat? BNot to mention all the other bullshit we’re subjected to ever day; we’re just so used to it we don’t even see it as harmful. So where the hell any Westerners (including myself) get off labelling Muslim/Islamic cultures as misogynistic is beyond me.

    On the other other other hand, it doesn’t actually matter what the fuck I think, because I’m not a Muslim woman and it’s not up to make to make that choice. But can we ignore that many Muslim women don’t actually have a choice?

    In conclusion: I wish I could separate feminism from my own internalised racism on this issue, but I honestly don’t know that I can. And I have no idea what the solution is. Mmm, unpacking.

  128. Also, I saw that article the first time round and it still hasn’t stopped being utterly horrifying. It really only works if you think of a women as livestock.

  129. Caitlin, lots of women lack choice and agency (which of course shouldn’t be ignored – not judging how people present themselves is different from ignoring oppression), while lots of other women have those things to a greater degree. Just because something is unfairly demanded of some women, that doesn’t mean it has to symbolize oppression when someone else chooses that thing voluntarily. As fatsmartchick said, the reasons behind those choices are very complex, no matter how easy it is to turn something visibly striking into a simplistic symbol. And I don’t want to be confrontational, because I can tell you’re thinking about this, but do you think you do fully own the racism behind that thinking if you’re simultaneously making criticisms of those choices?

    The solution is not worrying about the woman that you see on the street wearing a veil, because she’s not asking for your help. It’s not for you to save her.

  130. I’m not sure what I enjoyed more. The fact that the “author” does not know the difference between where and wear or this little aside, “remember you can always go back for more when she’s not looking.” Because who cares what he looks like right? She needs to sustain their sex life with her fuckability.

    Excellent! If I was ever with anyone who sabotaged a chair to shame me I would probably beat him to death with one of the chair legs. Hopefully I would get a fat, female judge.

  131. “But can we ignore that many Muslim women don’t actually have a choice?”

    It’s not our fight and its not our say. AND it backfires because there are a whole lot more women veiling in France and Germany (and Turkey) simply because those countries have attempted to squelch the freedom to choose veiling. Plus, this is an ongoing debate among women in Muslim circles. We just aren’t aware of it because our news is focused on ‘rah rah USA’ nonsense.

    I’ll be very honest with you, if you don’t know the terms and the various forms of veiling, you should probably do more research on the topic. Most likely, the women you see with the face veil are Arabs from the Gulf States. The chador is Persian and doesn’t cover the face. The ‘burquas’ we see in western media depictions of Afghanistan are typically only seen in that country and parts of Pakistan. Hell I’m still learning and I’ve been teaching this for five years.

    Probably the best western academic on this issue would be Anna Secor because she lays out the ways in which class, veiling, religion, ethnicity all intersect and make it very difficult to say whether this is oppressive or not. and whether its chosen or not. There are so many types of veils, meanings, reasons, that it really takes more than an article in a western published newspaper to understand it. Tuareg men in Northern Africa veil. There are women in Turkey who practice a form of veiling where they cover their hair and its just traditional. It has very little to do with religion. Veiling isn’t even really Muslim; its a pre-Arabic tradition that has been melded with a very vague verse in the Koran about being modest.

    I’m really not trying to be an ass here. But its really worth delving into as you can see by how fucking long this post is *sigh* :)

  132. Aaaaaand Siobhan beat me to it. The hatred just keeps on a-coming. And the photo accompanying way #1 in the “Upgrade Your Woman” article is pretty horrifying.

  133. god, I don’t know if I can read another oone. And I mean, the things listed under “More Top 10 Lists” are almost as horrifying — Things Your Girl Shouldn’t Know, Reasons Not To Tell Her (or to tell her) You’ve Cheated, Things Women Do To Emasculate Men… It’s clear what the readership there is like. I feel like Ask Men deserves its own feminist takedown blog, because there wouldn’t be time to talk about anything else!

  134. Thanks, volcanista and fatsmartchick. I absolutely know my thinking on this isn’t where it should be; I’m still in stage 1 of getting over the White Lady impulses. I just felt…I don’t know, like I don’t post things here unless I know they are the 100% Correct Way to be Thinking about Things, and it would be disingenuous not to be as honest about an issue where I know I’m really struggling with my own internalised prejudice.

    Or I could shut up and go do some more research, which is absolutely an option too. Thanks for the resources, fatsmartchick, I will absolutely check out Anna Secour and think a lot more on things before I post on the subject again.

  135. Astrology classes make you more cultured? LOLOL

    Oh wow and pole dancing lessons!! oh god, it’s so bad i almost can’t even be outraged this time. Almost.

    The tone is still all about “things you can do to get her to do things you want,” so I’m still mad. It’s less vicious than the fat-shaming top 10, but still incredibly manipulative. You can introduce sexy time and tell her how wonderful she is — so you can get lots of sex out of her! You can take cooking classes together so she’ll cook for you! Take her on vacations because it will build her character! And of course, you can buy her some surgery so she looks good on your arm. …It’s totally upgrade your sexbot.

  136. Also: these articles and this comment thread are making me wonder just how bad I should consider my most recent relationship to have been.

  137. fatsmartchick, thanks for the reading suggestions — and I’d ask that everyone respectfully disengage from the derail. This thread is not the space for hashing out issues around veiling, especially when there are a lot of very smart feminist women writing about it elsewhere. Feel free to drop some links if you come across them and just want to share, but let’s not do this debate right now.

  138. Jesus god. I thought #6 on the Upgrade Your Woman one was awful, then I read #5 (“She can then practice what she learns and whip you up a delicious meal, which is a win-win situation for both parties.” How??!?!), THEN I read #4, then I read #1 and essentially gave up hope for humanity.

    Also, I went to read Top 10 Things Your Girl Shouldn’t Know (I just…), and #7 actually made me a little sad.

    No.7 – Your weaknesses and fears

    Every man has weaknesses. It could be the sight of blood or the sound of a dentist’s drill. It’s what makes us human. It’s fine if your woman figures these out on her own, but don’t admit all the things that make you cry like a little boy. You must appear bulletproof. You are her knight in shining armour. Who is going to guide her through her occasional freak out? You? Stay tough. You can freak out when no one is around.

    They’re totally building a prison for themselves as well, and policing other men to stay in it. If it weren’t for the rampant misogyny, I’d feel a little sorry for them.

  139. …worse, I guess. Not anywhere near as manipulative as the article that’s the topic of this post, but still. There are similarities. I’ve wondered before, but I always considered emotional abuse to necessarily include things like yelling and/or namecalling, so I figured it wasn’t quite in that category. Just that it kind of had some sucky aspects. Now I’m not sure.

    Caitlin, right! How is cooking him a delicious meal a winning situation for her??? And my god, the bulletproofing advice is horrible. Also: unattractive?

  140. I don’t even know what to say about this. I can’t believe that this article recommends trickery, shaming, lying, shaming, and manipulating your girlfriend.

    I can’t get over the sense of entitlement either. Of course all men deserve to have skinny girlfriends and it is their job to “fix” women who have gotten fat. Also, the entire article seems to be about changing women who have gained “just a few pounds”. Maybe these men should just learn to, you know, love their partner’s body the way it is, and let her make her own decisions about how to eat and exercise.

    I think number 5 is my “favorite”….because no man could ever LIKE a woman who has love handles, or LIKE touching something a little bit soft and jiggly – that would be so GROSS, right?

  141. The Upgrade Your Woman list was so horrifying, I was praying it was a joke. Are there really men out there who sit around and devise ways to manipulate their girlfriend/wife into some submissive sex robot? Gah. I really hope I never meet a guy like that; the only thing he’ll be manipulating his way out the door when I kick him out.

  142. And I don’t necessarily mean “loser” as an insult. Sometimes guys, like gals, wind up involuntarily single for reasons that are out of their control, or that are hard to figure out.

    There are healthy ways to cope with the state my grandma calls “single blessedness” and unhealthy ones, and I don’t imagine that’s a gender thang.

    Hands down, far and away my personal favorite pearl of wisdom in this pearl necklace of a thread. :-)

  143. Honestly, it’s more out of practicality that I can’t understand the whole women having to cover their faces thing. I mean, I understand the headscarfs (not unique to Muslim women, since some Jewish and Catholic women cover their hair, as do Amish and Mennonite women, because of faith. Do Sikh women cover their hair too? A Sikh classmate of mine wears a turban-style headdress, since Sikhs aren’t allowed to cut their hair, but he’s a man. Sorry about the tangent), but isn’t it hard to breathe? How can it possibly be comfortable? That’s why I figure it has to be oppressive to women.

    I also consider the corset, the stiletto heel, the skinny jean, the lap band, and other uncomfortable ways Western/US fashion oppresses women to be oppressive to women, so I hope I’m not being TOO racist. or showing TOO much privilege. The fact is, I see a woman first and skin color second, if I see it at all, but, ironically, I realize this is part of my own privilege of being white, that I don’t have to think about race- mine, or anybody else’s. I wish everyone could have that privilege.

    As for the topic at hand, I know these tactics well. Boyfriends, family members, etc. used these on me. Still do. I never really got it, subtlety is lost on me.

    And you don’t have to be fat to break a chair. You just need a chair with bad screws. When I was a 50-lb little kid, I broke a chair.

  144. Did anyone else notice how nearly all of these suggestions assume that the woman makes no decisions or takes any action for herself. “Sign her up for yoga classes” – Do so and if she doesn’t want to do it, she won’t!

    “Serve her unreasonably small portions” – yes, and she’ll get up and get more for herself instead of drumming her fingers and waiting for your lazy ass.

    “Take her somewhere that she has to wear a swimsuit.” – Yes, because she’ll automatically just agree to go because its what YOUR jackass self wants to do.

    “Stock the house with only healthy food.” – And when she wants a cookie…she’ll buy some when she’s at the store!

    Ugh. Seriously???

    “Top Ten Ways To Find Yourself Castrated with a Rusty Spoon”

  145. For some reason, I’m totally getting a craving to hear the Dixie Chicks’ “Goodbye Earl” (which, FWIW, was originally written and recorded by men). ‘Cause you just know “Earl” would have been all over an article like this. Just sayin’.

  146. Sadly, MSM has degenerated into a marketing tool. These article are written for the benefit of the weight loss industry. As the depression gets worse, the more MSM relies on sponsors for its funds. It certainly hasn’t depended on subscriptions to pay the bills for awhile.

  147. the thing that disgusted me most about the article was that so many guys i know laughed at it.

  148. I think that this line from the “Upgrade your woman” list really just completely highlights something vital that the authors (and intended audience??) really is forgetting with all of these nasty little “tips”: Remember, this is your special lady we’re talking about.

    Right. Your special lady. The one who you’re too afraid to approach in an adult manner to address possible issues with flagging attraction. Your special little “lady” who you’d rather force to the floor through a broken chair than treat as a human being with feelings both emotional and physical about such treatment.

    And…since when were guys moved into the realm of the more “cultured” of the gender stereotypes; so much so that THEY need to show US how to “broaden our horizons” with the wonderment of astrology or zen gardens??!

    And quite honestly, if the men reading such drivel REALLY wanted their women to have the sort of unlimited “Raw sexual confidence” (such as the suggested Pole Dancing lessons would give them) that would leave them breathless then honey I don’t think they would be able to USE those nifty little “Subtle” tips and tricks to wedge said confident tigress back under the thumbprint of male “control”.

    But that’s just the twist isn’t it? Just like every magazine cover for tripe aimed at women with words like “How you can get that Bikini Bod before summer!” and “Lose weight! It’s hard but we’ll show you what foods to avoid” next to a giant glossy image of some decadent cake; the folks reading and nodding along to the articles at AskMen really see no problem with proposing that their “lady” should at the same time be some sort of eye-candy trophy wife, easily manipulated with a few poorly sized clothing gifts AND amazingly confident in herself and her sexual womanly essence…

    Oh and this also brought to mind for me that one year for Christmas my bio-dad got my mother a thigh-master. For Christmas. As a surprise. Thankfully I can say that my mother and the bio-douche are no longer together ;)

  149. Damnit that site is blocked by my workplace. I’ve seen the original, but I really wanted to see the Ways to Upgrade Your Woman!

    How is cooking him a delicious meal a winning situation for her???

    Well, that could be winning for her only so long as SHE gets to eat the meal too, except we all know she’s not allowed to because then she’ll get FAT.

    Also – poledancing lessons? I take them – and I love them. But only because its nothing to do with the husband! If he had tried to “send” me to them in order to improve my sex-toy value, I would have told him where he could shove the pole…

    Plus – what will AskMen think of a fat girl taking poledancing classes? Do they cancel each other out somehow? Because obviously fat is bad, but poledancing is good, right? Am I now morally neutral??


  150. In one of those coincidences that make the universe an interesting place, I broke my desk chair by sitting in it last night. I can say that my being too fat never crossed my mind. My reaction was to turn it over and figure out why it broke (the metal bracked died of fatigue). Then my next thought was that having my fifty pound five year old hang off the arm probably had a lot to do with it. Then I fetched a dining chair and am still using it now. My husband’s reaction was yep, it’s served its fifteen years out; and ask where it broke, then to say, yep, that’s where they go.

  151. SIGH.

    How about the only way this list ever needed in the first place:

    Step 1. Dump your gf once you realize that the only thing you found important was her body

    Step 2. Find someone whose entire family is very skinny, and get into a relationship with her, as chances are she will be able to stay thin for you.

    Step 3. When she dumps you for being an abusive jerk, get a blow-up doll, the only woman a man like you ever needed to begin with.

    This is just… sigh. At least with my boyfriends, they just plain went ahead and told me I’d be prettier if I was thinner, or “you’re perfect except for your stomach.”

    I don’t even know what to say. I’m so upset I can’t even snark.

  152. Suddenly the douchehounds I’ve been dealing with on OK Cupid for the last week or so make a bit more sense.

    This does not make them less douchehoundy, but I like it when I understand how things work. It brings me zen.


  153. Hey Volcanista- I’m actually a semi-professional astrologer. I’ve been studying it for more than ten years and I take it pretty seriously. I know it’s not everyone’s cup of tea, and I know you didn’t know that before, but it kind of sticks in my craw when people just brush it off like it’s crazy and ridiculous without necessarily knowing anything about it. I can’t say it’s made me more cultured, but it’s definitely helped me understand human psychology a lot better. Not to mention that half the time when men find out I’m an astrologer they immediately start explaining to me how it’s a crock and how stupid I am for believing in it, so I’m shocked that that bullshit list would even include it. I’m sure it would be removed, though, if a woman read the writer’s natal chart and called him out for what a douchehound he actually is.


    Whenever a woman tries to “upgrade” a man or make subtle suggestions about his appearance, she’s seen as some kind of nagging bitch. Yet somehow in the world of this list, a man knows exactly what it even means to “upgrade” a woman. Seriously, most men don’t know the first goddamn thing about women’s fashion or spa treatments or anything. Honestly, unless a man was a professional costumer or had gone to college for fashion, I would not let him choose my clothes. And seriously, booking a spa treatment for ME? Maybe when he gets one for himself. To quote Chelsea Handler on a recent show, “Men, if you have time to masturbate, you have time to cut your Jurassic Park toenails.”

  154. Okay I haven’t read the comments here yet because I just have to get this out of my system:

    “Serve her unsatisfactory portions” is some sociopath shit.

  155. Okay reading y’alls comments now; you’ve covered this, bless you, calling this out as a primer on abuse. I can’t even believe the “break her chair” one. Did that happen? Did I actually read that?

  156. If it wasn’t for Fat Acceptance boards and JunkFoodScience I wouldn’t have known that those not-so-subtle tactics were wrong if done to me.

    My mom, who had an eating disorder and probably thought she was doing the right thing … and/or was just plain old abusive, did variations of all of those things throughout my childhood. As far as I know she didn’t sabotage chairs but she did blame the broken rotten board of our tree swing on my fatness. While at the hospital after a failed suicide attempt I was weighed in front of her. The scale read “155 pounds”. She couldn’t stop talking about it while I was led into the room to get my sutures. She was astonished and kept repeating the number to my father and asking if she heard right.

    The small portions of food thing was a big one. She kept track of how much food was in the kitchen too, and would find out who had eaten some from the leftovers or bags of snack food if she saw that any was missing. I still can’t finish the last few slices of a loaf of bread or any other kind of food in my cupboard. It just sits there until someone else eats it or I throw the bag away. I can’t “be a pig and eat it all”.

    We had small portions and I was especially not expected to eat it all let alone ask for seconds, as I was the fattest. When my sister gained some weight while going through puberty she got the same treatment.

    I’ve had past partners act like assholes doing “subtle” things like this in the past. While I knew it made me feel like crap and wouldn’t have wanted them to act like that to somebody else I still felt that fat was evil, and I deserved that treatment anyway because I wasn’t doing anything about my weight problem. Even though I was actively starving myself.

    I’m sorry for taking up so much space in the comments here to talk about me but this really struck a chord. I’m so glad to finally really know that people like this are douchebags and there is nothing wrong with my fatness. I feel sort of shakey writing this.

    10 Ways to Become an Emotionally Abusive Douchebag if You Weren’t Already indeed.

  157. Top 10 ways to be a manipulative asswhore!

    It is like these guys want a doll. I watched the Dollhouse on Fox and I can’t help but think that these men would enjoy having their own personal doll. A woman who is perfect in every way and created just to serve him. In the one episode, the man got his perfect doll and then tried to kill her. Just proves men are never happy unless they are hurting women in some way. (Not all men, of course, I am married to an amazing man, who cooks me meals)

    As a counselor, I see this situation a good deal. Its very sad when a woman cannot see this kind of behavior as abuse. Often she did experience similar treatment as a child. The writer of this article should be shot for encouraging such hurtful tactics.

  158. BlackAnnis, this is one of few places in the world where you need never apologize for “taking up too much space.” The space you take is exactly right. Both in body and in words. Too much of the rest of the world is concerned with making your body tinier or your words less obtrusive to the hateful white noise they try to keep on continuous loop.

    Here, it’s quite all about getting our stuff all up in the world’s face whether or not they have anything nasty to say about that. ^_^

    Nobody’s kicked my wordy ass out yet, so trust me, you’re fine.

  159. How to be a better abuser? Ask.men is kindergarten stuff compared to the trash dished out at roissy in dc, where advocating wife-beating is the order of the day. Hey, they come back with wet pussies, or so he says.

  160. ian in hamburg, I don’t know what your deal is, but I know you’ve been trying to leave several comments over the last few months demanding that we direct our ire toward “roissy in dc.” I don’t know if you’ve got a personal vendetta going on, or if you really honestly just want our opinions on that blog, but either way, please read this before leaving another such comment.

  161. The writer of this article should be shot for encouraging such hurtful tactics.

    Or, you know, the writer of this article shouldn’t be shot because nobody should.

  162. If a man is bothered enough by a woman’s appearance that he would even consider any of these tactics, I’m not sure why he wouldn’t just leave.

    Leaving means relinquishing ownership. This is not the kind is man who places any priority on being less abusive or having a happy relationship.

    Top Ten ways to assert dominion over all that is yours?

    What, the curtains?

  163. WHOA! I didn’t realize I would bring a big old youtube video into the living room, here. Hope that’s not a problem.

  164. This article reminded me of my third husband, who claimed to be an admirer of fat women, and who was lots of fun–at first. Until I realised that he was constantly trying to come up with ways to “subtly” encourage me to gain weight, and doing things to my food that I didn’t like (who fries bacon in oil? who puts more mayo than turkey on a sandwich?) in the hope of raising the calorie count, and who always insisted on having these huge huge multi-course meals. And gave me shit about wearing makeup, and … sigh.

    I’ve dropped most of the weight I gained, thank G-d. I am supposed to be somewhere between size 12 and 18 and have hit 18. I was a 24 for a while. There’s nothing wrong with being a 24 if you are naturally a 24. But I’m not. He turned emotionally abusive too but I DTMFA’d him when it got physical. :/

    I dress modestly–admittedly not in a burqa–I love cute clothes and I’m Jewish, not Muslim. In part I do it for entirely feminist reasons; I’ve always felt it says something about our culture that men are fully covered in professional clothes and women are not, and are expected to wear sheer stockings and all that crap to be decorative. Nobody has the RIGHT to see my body, only my intimates get the privilege of seeing my thighs or my upper arms or my cleavage–and often I wear full length skirts, sometimes I cover my hair. (I also own 2 Muslim coats of the jilbab-that-looks-like-a-long-jean-jacket rather than the chador variety, but I wouldn’t wear them in 100 degree weather, I bought them because they’re the only thing that keeps the San Francisco wind from hitting my asthmatic chest or flying up under my coat.)

    I used to moderate an interfaith modest dress comm on livejournal. There are lots of reasons progressive Jewish, Christian and Muslim women choose to wear certain things and not wear others. I find the idea of modesty as submission to one’s husband and rape & harassment prevention because men can’t control themselves to be creepy as all getout, but I really only have encountered that among the bring-back-the-patriarchy evangelical Christians. Wearing a veil in a conservative state of the USA is not the same as doing so in Saudi Arabia–it’s actually pretty brave, especially given the whole war on terror hysteria.

  165. I couldn’t look at the whole slideshow – it made me too effing angry.

    I had an ex-bf who did some of those things. One speciality was to look at my stomach, then say ‘let’s go to the gym!’ right away.

    One of many reasons he’s my ex-boyfriend. Cock.

  166. Azailas, I was in an abusive relationship with my former husband. He too used to ‘subtly’ add fat to my diet to make me put on weight – it made him feel a better man when I felt worse about myself.

    He and the ex-bf were ‘narcissistic controlling fuckwads’ (thanks Kate for that!)

  167. “Top ten ways to subtly exploit your girlfriend’s low self-esteem for the benefit of your need to be with a trophy rather than a person.”
    “Top ten ways to subtly inform your girlfriend that she is with a man who values your size over your personality, feelings and self-confidence, and you should get out before he starts trying to “upgrade his woman”.”

    The “pinch her love handles” charmingness? Ugh. Because, y’know, no males find soft, curvy hips to be a turn-on. Nope, none at all. Just touching that flesh, just acknowledging its presence, should be enough to make any woman feel terribly ashamed, because it is there. I’m a youthful lurker (who’s so far hugely benefited from reading SP) but I just had to comment on this one.

    When I was younger, in a discussion with my dad about weight and attractiveness, he came out with the following jewel of absolute cruelty [paraphrased for conciseness, but pretty close to the actual words]:
    “You can talk about looking good without being slim all you like, but someday, the moment is going to come when your boyfriend puts his hands on your hips or your stomach, and you’re going to suddenly realise no one likes squishing flab, and I bet *then* you’ll feel differently about dieting”.
    I believe I was fifteen, possibly fourteen, at the time. Sometimes I just want to high-five my mother for getting a divorce.
    I can only assume someone like my dad, with similar views on the female body and the perceived need to make a woman male-worthy, wrote this pathetic waste of bandwidth.
    It wasn’t until years and several curve-appreciative boyfriends later that I started getting over the compulsion to suck in my stomach whenever a male’s hand went anywhere near it, or to apologise for the softness of my body. At this point, if a male I’m involved with grabs onto my lovehandles, I will assume he is not revolted, but turned on. But bloody hell, it took a lot of rewiring to get to the point where I could possibly make that assumption.

  168. @MezzoSherri – That is, provided, that he has not forbidden DMB CDs at all… I had a guy (a coworker) who WANTED to date me criticize my choice in music… Let’s just say… there were no dates.

  169. My favorite comment over there is this…
    “Hey sunshine, I’ve got a cheesegrater here that I’d like to get really close to your balls with.”

  170. Hugs to all those in this thread who’ve experienced these ‘tactics’ first-hand from boyfriends, parents or anyone else. Heartbreaking.

  171. Thanks ladies. After reading this I became very grateful I didn’t marry a complete F-wad. When I gained a few lbs recently 20 to be exact, my spouse told me he really liked my new breasts and that I look wonderful to him.

    Another thought is, if they are pulling this kind of shit when you are young, what will they do if married with children and you get sick with Cancer? Huge red flag!

  172. Hey Volcanista- I’m actually a semi-professional astrologer. I’ve been studying it for more than ten years and I take it pretty seriously. I know it’s not everyone’s cup of tea, and I know you didn’t know that before, but it kind of sticks in my craw when people just brush it off like it’s crazy and ridiculous without necessarily knowing anything about it.

    Right, but it’s not generally seen as a signifier of high culture — kind of the opposite, as far as I can tell. I was saying nothing of my own opinions on astrology, which are admittedly mixed. But I have never heard someone suggest before that a way to improve yourself by becoming more “cultured” could be realized by studying astrology.

  173. and are expected to wear sheer stockings and all that crap to be decorative.

    I mean, this is a tangent, but an interesting one — stockings aren’t really meant to be decorative. I imagine they started as a practical layer of clothing (you know, like socks). This century, women kind of rebelled on the being-totally-covered deal with shorter skirts that showed a bit of skin, and wearing sheer stockings was a wave in the direction of staying properly covered. And then of course shaving (and drawing a stocking seam on your leg) became popular because women worked in factories during the war and their stockings would tear all the time, so they subversively stopped wearing them and shaved to disguise it. I mean, there are all kinds of problems with sexing it up to be a better sex object, too, and it’s now expected or required that we show some sexy leg and shave. But the history is pretty interesting!

  174. The first three are classics and I haven’t read all of these so my apologies if I repeat, but how about Top 10 Subtle Ways to Tell Her You’re a Complete Douchebag that Deserves to Die Alone? Anyone who follows that drivel can eat my shit.

  175. “what will they do if married with children and you get sick with Cancer? Huge red flag!”

    Well in my experience with emotional abusers, they tell you those knots you’re feeling under your right boob are there ‘just because you’re so fat’. Then they fuck the housekeeper in your bed and divorce you. After you die of cancer two months later with no insurance or money, he attempts to take the house from your only daughter because ‘she doesn’t deserve it’.

  176. Yeah, I came across this a few months ago and was a total troll on the comments section. Because… seriously. Why do men think this is okay? Because other men tell them that it is. And too many men who think it’s not okay don’t say anything.

    But this really doesn’t come as any surprise. Askmen.com is full of horrible advice. I’ve wanted to stab my computer monitor many times over articles like, “Why Women Can’t Communcate Clearly,” “Are You a Gentleman or a Sucker?” (or “Nice Guys Finish Last”), and “Signs She’ll Still Look Good In 20 Years.”

    Yes, these are all AskMen.com articles, and I’m guessing they’re not even the worst ones. It’s just a horrible site and it’s giving the wrong advice to desperate men, making them believe that the reason they haven’t been lucky in love is because they haven’t been objectifying women in the CORRECT way.

    I really just need to stop looking at it altogether, because pulling my hair out in the comments is not making me feel better. But… it’s like a train wreck. I can’t look away.

  177. Love handles! What the fuck? I have never understood that term. Is it just a name for “excess flesh” in the waist/hips region? Because that is actually just part of my waist/hips. I really don’t see why more than a certain amount of fat in that area suddenly needs a category all of its own.

    Also, I am officially declaring a moratorium on the word “flab” in my life, because it is just code for “excess flesh that isn’t meant to be there and/or is unattractive”. What the hell? All of you is meant to be there, and attractiion is subjective. “Flab”. Fuck that noise.

    Further, the waist/hips/stomach area is almost always my favourite part of my girlfriend’s body, because regardless of her weight, is where all the awesome softness is. If she’s bigger there’s just more of it, which is neither better nor worse but continued awesome. So in case anyone’s thinking “But can anyone ever really find love handles attractive?”, the answer is FUCK YES.

    Man, I’m late for work.

  178. This is the most horrible thing I have ever seen. Each one worse and more cruel than the next. Sabotage her chair?!?!?!?!?!?!!?

  179. 10 subtle ways to reinforce the internalized sexism already put in place by previous douchehounds

    I couldn’t believe what I was reading when I clicked through. First, the article demonstrates that men who would be interested in these ten steps are shallow, vain, and don’t actually love their girlfriend, and second, none of them would WORK. Either the girl would dump him or spiral into depression. Yeah, good move AskMen.

  180. This whole advice section is pretty much riddled with “How to properly maintain your woman 101.

    Huh. Who would have thought that woman-wrangling was a full-time job?

  181. You all finally piqued my interest enough to go browsing on Askmen.com. Thanks. :p

    I just looked at the ‘five lies women tell’ feature. Very unenlightening.


    I so wish I could grab that writer by the collar and say “I’m never going to fake it to make you or your little buddies feel better about your prowess in the sack. If you’re incapable of doing it, I assure that I will take matters into my own hands. But one way or another both of us are walking away satisfied. And yes jackass, you heard right.. I did yell out the name Sascha.

  182. Please, AskMen.com readers, don’t do us clueless fat women any favors by sticking around. Just leave.

    Yes, Yorke, but any guy who reads AskMen in the first place is lucky to get a woman to go out with him at all.

    No, no. Easier to try to break the spirit of the woman you already have than to start the process all over with a different one.

  183. Okay, so I guess this is the thing that was kind of nagging at me. It wasn’t very clear until I sat and read through most of the comments, but you have all kind of helped me figure out what was bothering me about all this:

    The stereotype is that men date a woman hoping she’ll never change, and women date men hoping to change them… but I’ve not ever found that to be true. I go into a relationship with a man because I like how things are going, and it seems that several of the men I’ve dated only acted nice until they’d got me to commit, and then it’s a crusade to “improve” me. Oh, but it’s not about them, oh no, they love me just how I am of course, it’s just that they want me to be “happier.” One guy even dumped me once he realized he couldn’t “fix” me (thank heaven, because at the time I was too consumed with grief over family deaths to really notice how toxic things were becoming).

    The talk about that “upgrade your woman” thing (which I didn’t see, though I poked around the site a bit, and it’s unfortunately all hateful trash) really hit home… my most recent ex had some very strange ideas about women. He seemed so angry at them that they didn’t live up to some ideal in his head. Thing is, if he ever met a woman who did embody all these traits that he thinks are so perfect (totally gorgeous, really confident and competent and powerful, always in control of herself, super smart, etc. etc. etc.) I’m pretty sure he’d hate her and think she was a bitch, and I’m also pretty sure she wouldn’t give him the time of day (probably another reason he’d hate her). I don’t think he’d be one bit happy dating such a woman, because she’d put him in his place and he’d not be able to tolerate it.

    Once he told me that if I ever got thin he’d ask me to marry him. I didn’t say much, because I couldn’t figure out at first why that was such a shitty thing to say… finally it dawned on me that he just told me I was worth more as a person thin than fat. Regardless of how wonderful I otherwise was, my true worth was based on what I looked like, and thus what he’d look like by association standing next to me.

    I don’t think men like the ones in these articles actually want to have relationships with women, because they actually want to have relationships with an idea in their head that they’ve convinced themselves is Woman, an idea, an ideal, something they both love and hate, the best and the worst thing, and they can never ever figure them out because despite all evidence to the contrary they won’t let go of these “truths” about Woman they’ve convinced themselves of, so whenever we act like the humans we are they just throw that data out the window because it doesn’t fit into their Woman theory, and chalk it up to how we’re all so estrogen-a-riffic and unstable. But in actuality, women are PEOPLE, real honest to goodness people who act the part, and they just cannot, will not, do not, see that.

    I’m so depressed right now.

  184. Reading that article made me a “grumpy lard-ass”.

    There is nothing I can add. All the best alternative titles have already been said.

  185. “He seemed so angry at them that they didn’t live up to some ideal in his head.”

    All of the ask.men crap reminds me of a guy friend who is no longer a friend. In my head he’s number 1 on my list of potential sociopaths.

    One day he asked why women sweat in the crotch area. Apparently he was disturbed to see women at the gym walking out of aerobics class or out jogging with visible sweat in that area. I distinctly remember that his voice sounded kind of pleading as he tried to get me to explain how women could do such a thing. He had a similar voice when I replied that yes, a lot of women do check out dudes’ junk.
    Of course he had an affinity with Humbert Humbert so I don’t know why I’m surprised by any of these exchanges. He was a smart guy but apparently didn’t see that Nabakov thought HH was douche. And this is also the same man who told me that sometimes he really wanted to fuck me and if I’d ‘just lose a few lbs’, he’d ‘pound it even harder’. You could have cut me with kbar knife and I don’t think it would have hurt as bad as that.

  186. fatsmartchick, that’s pretty horrifying. His fear and loathing of the actual female body is combined with a desire to conquer it. It’s like the sentiments of a prepubescent male paired with the mind of a rapist.

  187. Seriously, these are the kind of guys (and I know one) who marry foreign women. They actually have a broker take them to a foreign country where women are available for marriage. These women are pitched as being beautiful, loving etc. Be assured they are not ball-busters with a mind of their own. I do not blame the women as many are desperately poor and sold a bill of good by the broker

    YES! I don’t know if anyone already brought this up, because I only skimmed the comments today, but a lot of these guys also have an Asian fetish, thinking that if they marry an Asian woman, she won’t be a “loud, self-centered ball buster” like white women are. Which adds a whole new racist layer to that particular pathecia cake.

  188. Though everyone might like to know that askmen.com is owned by IGN entertainment ( http://corp.ign.com/ ). I tell you this because they have a bunch of people you can contact about stuff. It’s unlikely that askmen.com will care that what they wrote is offensive to women (and other living things) since women aren’t their target audience. IGN, however, probably doesn’t want to alienate half the population. So, if you’re good and mad, I would suggested sending IGN an email. That’s what I did, anyway.

  189. SugarLeigh, at least you got clued up on what he had in mind before it got to the marrying stage. My ex, on our divorce, fessed up that he’d ‘really’ always wanted a skinny blonde…but when the dating agency didn’t match his preferences, he decided he could always make me lose weight. (He’d never even hinted that he didn’t like my hair color – I was a natural brunette. I presume he wasn’t planning to ‘fix’ that till he’d got me thin.) He also wanted a woman who’d be happy to have a meal and sex with him at weekends and not expect anything else from him (like, you know, commitment and attention and respect and annoying little things like that).

    I wonder sometimes how long it took him to actually get the meaning of the word ‘relationship’. Then again, he wasn’t exactly quick on the uptake – this was a guy who, at the point I left him, after months of failed pleas for him to come to counselling, ‘thought we were just about ready to start a family’ – so it’s entirely possible he’s still mulling around somewhere wondering why women are so awkward as never to conform to his liking.

  190. What are all of you people talking about? Feelings? Minds? OPINIONS?? Pff, girlfriends are just suppose to sit there and look like 22 year old swimsuit models forever and ever until the guy decides he now wants a 21 year old model, everybody knows that! And those who don’t, well they’re just bitches.

    Don’t mind me, but aren’t these the same guys that also think that the women who order salads are shallow idiots? It never occurred to me to date someone based on their metabolism.

  191. Ugh.

    I just poked through their “dating” section. The brain, it hurts.

    Apparently their “dating advice” is equally shit–here is a “true story” on their site using their advised pick up line scheme:

    [in a store]

    Him: You look like you know about fashion, which shirt do you think would look better on me, this one or that one?
    Her: This one.
    Him: Well, I won’t get that one then! I’ve been trying to avoid unstable women lately.

    No shit. This is supposed to lead to flirting and lunch, where the guy “told her,” not asked her, that she would be having lunch with him, and of course she said yes?!?! And they had a great time?!?

    I have to wonder if they are making this up.

  192. Could someone please explain what “douchehoundable” exactly means? I’m not a native English speaker and need a little help sometimes…

    Thank you

  193. Fortunately this site is blocked at my office (go office filter) so I can’t read it, but:

    Him: You look like you know about fashion, which shirt do you think would look better on me, this one or that one?
    Her: This one.
    Him: Well, I won’t get that one then! I’ve been trying to avoid unstable women lately.

    WHAT? Does it explain how that is supposed to be appealing to anyone? That is completely bizarre.

  194. I think it’s supposed to be a “confident” or “cocky” approach? Here is the text from their site:

    So I said: “Excuse me, Fashion Goddess” and held up two shirts to compare, “if you saw me at a party wearing one of these shirts, which one would you find me most attractive in?”

    “The green one,” she replied.

    I said to her: “Well, I’ll make sure not to get that one then. See, I’ve been trying to avoid unstable women lately.”

    Dave, this woman’s jaw just dropped to the floor — I broke right through her brat barrier in no time flat. So, we flirt for 10 minutes or so, and I told her — not asked her — to take her lunch break with me because I’m hungry and I need someone to buy me lunch. Well, of course, she did and she bought me lunch after 10 minutes of flirting and ball-busting.

    And, as a side note, she was 27 and seemed to be very experienced with guys and I just turned 21 this week — she knew this firsthand and didn’t even care. I made her feel attraction off the bat and, as you say: “No amount of logic (or age differences) could convince her otherwise.” Phenomenal!

    His alternative example:

    You sit down to eat at a restaurant, and start talking to the cute waitress. You start flirting with her. She flirts back a little bit.

    Next, you ask her what she thinks the best thing is on the menu.

    After she answers, you either say:

    “Well, if your taste in food is even half as good as your taste in men, then it must be damn good.”


    “Well, I just wanted to know what to avoid — so I’ll make sure to not order that.”

    Good stuff. </b?

    Ugh. I feel dirty just copy and pasting those.

  195. The tagging, I is not so skilled.

    Also, “brat barrier” wtf? Seriously, I am having a hard time not wating to go smack the nearest man across the face RIGHT NOW.


  196. SugarLeigh, on July 10th, 2009 at 4:10 pm Said:
    my most recent ex had some very strange ideas about women. He seemed so angry at them that they didn’t live up to some ideal in his head.

    My theory about guys like this is that their whole masculine identity is wound around women, that being male is either about conqoring women or having a female sevant (sometimes named “wife”). Which in effect means the male identity is TOTALLY FRAGILE, because, yo! It all depends ont he actions of someone else.

    As soon as your own identity and your happiness depend on the actions of someone else, you’re going to be mad at anyone who could be that person (but refuses to), and you’re going to invest a heck of a lot of time figuring out who that person is/should be.

    Guys whose identity and masculinity are invested in things they’re actually in charge of don’t have these problems. ;)

  197. Well, you see, the problem with that approach (besides the fact that it automatically labels you as a misogynistic fuck) is that, in fact, it only attracts unstable women. But it works for the site, because then they can do an article about how all women act crazy, needy, and obsessed and they desperately need a strong (emotionally abusive) man to set them straight.

  198. Please don’t click on the links! That will make the case that ugly, hate-filled articles like this generate traffic, which is the only thing they care about. Trust me, they are LOVING the traffic spike they’re getting as a result.

  199. You sit down to eat at a restaurant, and start talking to the cute waitress. You start flirting with her. She flirts back a little bit.


  200. This is all dating advice called “Negging” made popular by the book “The Game” by Neil Strauss.

    Negging is supposed to make women drop their guard because all women are expecting men to just bow to their inherent greatness and negging throws them off. The book also suggest that women don’t really like a nice, polite man, they like assholes. Therefore, Negging is a way to be an asshole AND get a date which will lead to getting laid if you follow the rest of the rules.

  201. OMG, chava, there aren’t even words.

    I think that’s the whole “neg” thing that is supposed to magically win over all the ladies. if you criticize her she’ll love you! And you know, when I was 18, I’ll admit that a guy who made fun of me in a way that I thought was funny, as long as it was very clear he was joking, was pretty appealing. I kind of liked the asshole-cocky schtick back then, as long as it was clearly an act and I could tell that he was actually a decent human being, because I found the exaggeration kind of funny. And then I could pick on him back, blahblah. ALSO I WAS 18. And doing it in order to get something out of her, instead of joking around and mutually teasing because you already both like and respect one another? is a little bit different.

  202. The one bright side of the article is that it helps you identify the shallow people faster.

  203. Top Ten reasons I love the man I’m with.

    Thanks, hon, for being just as disgusted by this as I am.

  204. Okay, but also? Not only were they able to write a how-to-abuse article with the kind of easy tone that says, “hey, this is normal,” they were able to bolster the “legitimacy” of these points by using stock photos.

    I mean, what’s more legitimate and normalized than a concept one can illustrate with a stock photo?

  205. @sweet machine,
    This isn’t a personal vendetta. I think more women should stand up to bloggers who advocate violence against women like roissy in dc does. My sincerest apologies if, in reference to your link, my comment might temporarily steer things here off topic. I’ve left such comments on forums and blogs where people are talking about these issues because perhaps some of their readers might be interested in what’s also out there because, like I mentioned on this thread, there are a lot worse sites out there than askmen.

  206. Askmen.com never fails to amaze me with all the screwed up crap they come up with. that is one of the most disturbing articles i’ve ever read and its even more disturbing that someone (a man) would take it seriously and employ methods that are clearly, CLEARLY fucked up and abusive.
    what was even more disturbing was some of the responses. some people are totally against it and are disgusted, then you get responses to the responses that are like, ‘i don’t know what those whores problems are, this article is AWESOME’ and of course any woman who objects to this controlling, manipulative, destructive bullshit is of course , ‘a fat dyke’ which i saw a lot of. it makes me sick how many men out there think that this is okay (not to say all of them think that) and the ultimate goal in life is to bag a sexbot that needs to be dominated and controlled.

  207. Hey, Ian! How about rescheduling this time you’ve devoted to telling feminists that we’re doing it wrong to educating other men yourself, eh?

  208. I think more women should stand up to bloggers who advocate violence against women like roissy in dc does

    As lucizoe said, Ian, why do only women need to stand up to this person? Why can’t you do it yourself instead of trolling other people’s online spaces and telling them to do it? If you feel that strongly about this issue, start your own blog to accomplish this task rather than trying to derail other people’s conversations to get them to do your dirty work for them.


  209. “Brat barrier”, Jesus Christ.

    Ian in Hamburg, it’s good that you care, but in reading feminist blogs you should have picked up that what you “think more women should do” is actually completely irrelevant, because men think they can tell women (any women) what to do every fucking day, and that’s part of the problem. We’re going to do feminism our way, thanks, and you can contribute however you see fit. But it doesn’t get to involve you telling women what to do. I’m sure you can see why.


    God, RIGHT? Dear sleazy asshole men who clearly think they’re in there: when you leave, the entire female staff burst out laughing. Because you are an ASSHOLE, and the reason you have to sleaze on us is because NO WOMAN WILL TALK TO YOU UNLESS SHE’S BEING PAID TO. That is HILARIOUS to us, but clearly you aren’t seeing the joke.

  210. If I had read this article in “The Onion” I might have found it pretty funny, because I would know it was seething with sarcasm and exaggerated for comic effect. But since this author appears to be sincere it makes me sad to be male. (I keep picturing the author as the husband from “Sleeping with the Enemy”. I’m sure THAT guy read AskMen.com!)

    Any lady being subjected to #5 should rub his receding hairline and talk about all the changes SHE has seen since they started dating!

  211. You know, chava, my male BS tolerance is below zero, which is why I never date. But it’s also why I can’t understand at ALL why a man could think that insulting someone, even if it works*, is a good thing. What a troglodyte. Even just a guy coming up to me in a store with a “line” (let alone the cutesy/hostile/overly personal form of address “Fashion Goddess”) would get from me nothing more than a quick turn on my heel and the sight of me walking away. Acting out that shit is strictly for weirdos and abusers (the guys, I mean). It’s like someone coming up to you on the street with a convoluted story about being $3 short of train fare to get home to Rockford, etc. Too much info right off the bat makes me immediately suspicious.

    *yes, I understand the concept of conditioned response, but where are these guys’ morals?

  212. lucizoe, I love the way you phrased that. “rescheduling this time you’ve devoted to….” LOL! :D

  213. ian in hamburg, from where I’m sitting, you’re just another fucking Man Who Explains Things concern trolling feminists on the Intertubez — and either you’re the blogger you’re complaining about trying to jack up your page views, or you’re a lazy jerk looking for some poor woman to do the heavy lifting for you.

    Either way, up yours.

  214. Also, perhaps some of their readers might be interested in what’s also out there because, like I mentioned on this thread, there are a lot worse sites out there than askmen

    Perhaps some of their readers don’t need to read sites to know “what’s out there” because it’s HAPPENED TO THEM.

    Does ian think sexism/violence against women exist purely on the internets?

  215. Does ian think sexism/violence against women exist purely on the internets?

    My question is simply, “Does Ian think?”

    Evidence is that he just wanders around randomly strewing whatever randomly wanders through his brain. Which ain’t thinkin’ in my book.

  216. ZOMG – I am in <3 with the SP comments on this thread. Thank you – they made my week seem better.

  217. Also, ian in hamburg, most of us are literate enough to know what the roissy site is about without having to go look. And, without looking, I can tell you that I’d be less offended by it since it is so Obviously what it is, than by the crap on askmen.

  218. Dear AskMen readers,

    If you absolutely must have a thin woman, Rosie Palmer has five bony sisters. And a twin if you’re ambi. Otherwise it might be nice to appreciate the person you’re dating rather than the mental image you have of perfection.

    My title:
    10 Not So Subtle Ways to Make Lesbianism Look Like the Only Sane Alternative.

    (Mary Sue pointed out, some women will pull shit like this on their partners, but most women don’t walk around expecting the world to change to suit their tastes.)

  219. OMFG I almost fell off my bed on that one about sabotaging her chair! You’ve got to be kidding me . . . I’m almost speechless . . .

  220. Wow. Y’know what I find fascinating here? How many of those things in “Upgrade your Woman” demonstrate the ability of a total fuckwad to completely twist and warp things that would actually be good ideas into frightening controlling behavior.

    Take a class together to learn something new and broaden your horizons — awesome.
    Take a cooking class together, learn how to create yummy (and maybe healthy) foods — great.
    Travel together — fun.
    Even ‘spa day’ and ‘sexy time’ could have been good.

    And yet, by the end of the paragraph, this… writer… has managed to turn a great couple-bonding experience into something that’s all about addressing the woman’s “flaws.” Ugh. Scary.

  221. Since several people brought this up, allow me to clarify: I did not assume that the woman in full chador was forced to wear it. At no time did I assume that or say it in the post. I was recounting a conversation about different forms of isolation for women. That conversation was inspired by a woman in full chador. Yes, my friend has a deep viseral reaction to veiling in general. But neither of us is so simple to believe that all veiled women view their habits of dress as oppression.

  222. Ok, this might seem a bit weird… but I detected “One Subtle Way To Have Sex With a Fat Girl.” When my boyfriend grabs my love handles, I (strangely!) don’t recoil. That’s a surefire way to get my motor going, so if he’s interested in a little fat girl lovin’, go ahead, buddy, grab the love handles and just see where they take ya. …Oh dear. But I suppose that’s not the response those AskMen boys are looking for, is it? And here I thought their brains were located in their penises this whole damn time. I guess this proves they haven’t got any brains at all.

  223. Kate, I tried, I really tried to get through the link to AM. But all I could think was Ahhh that’s cute, does it get bigger? I suppose that the people who subscribe to this line of thinking, go around with truck nuts and feel that men are entitled to be immature and get off on belittling women and their bodies for your pleasure. Then you really do not have any right to complain when she slaps you across the face and tels you to get the hell outta her life.

  224. Happened to come across this…..same thing, different package

    Dear Prudence,
    My wife and I have been a couple for a little more than three years. I find her beautiful, funny, and intelligent. The one problem I have is that she’s overweight. When we met, I was a bit out of shape because of a sedentary job and long commute. Since then, I have a new job where I can be more active and bike to work. I’m nearly back to the shape I was in several years ago. My wife was overweight when we met and has remained so. I realize that some of this has to do with the stress of her job and her general (unfounded) feelings of inadequacy. Because of this, and the societal prohibition against telling a woman she’s overweight, I feel unable to tell her what I am thinking. But her weight keeps me from having the physical desire for her that I want to have. I have surreptitiously tried to get her to be more active through hiking, biking, and working out at the gym, but she’s resisting. I want to love and lust after my wife. How can I tell her this?

    —No Idea How To Tell My Wife

    Dear No Idea,
    Thank you for the opportunity to plug my new book, Slim Your Spouse: The No-Fail Way To Turn Your Loved One From Hippo to Hot. Actually, every time I tackle this issue, I increase the ranks of letter writers who are angry that I haven’t discovered the solution to making their spouse slender and sexy. You chose someone tubby, and tubby she remains, so you’ve got a pretty scrawny leg to stand on as far as complaining about the shape she’s in. You say you feel inhibited from discussing this with her. It would be honest to tell her that her body turns you off, but unless you no longer want to be in this marriage, such brutal truth-telling is simply destructive. If you stop thinking of this as strictly a weight issue, that will give you a way to address it directly. You obviously feel healthier and have more energy since you became active, so tell her you want her to join you in this part of your life; add that doing something physical will help her deal with job stress. She may be too self-conscious to go to the gym, so suggest that you two take evening and weekend walks or bike rides as a start. Make this fun for both of you—which means no mentioning the scale or bringing out the tape measure. If your wife starts talking about getting in shape, have her look at the weight-loss books of Dr. Judith Beck, which aren’t about eating plans but about creating a different relationship with food. But let’s assume she never achieves the figure of your desires. You say your wife is beautiful, funny, and intelligent—those qualities would seem to outweigh her weight.


  225. Read article. now feel stuck somewhere between crying and vomiting. yay.

    *makes mental note to continue dating only women*

  226. You know…another point about this assinine article that bears pointing out (again?) is the “Assumption”. The “Assumption” that men are perfect, and women have flaws. This article implies that the men reading the article are physically perfect, eat well balanced diets…all the time, exercise regularly and with enthusiasm, have no genetic predispensity to more fat cells, don’t do anything unseemly towards their woman…ever, are naturally smarter than women about bodies, and basically know fucking EVERYTHING…including an expertise in manipulating time, space, and matter!

    That to me, is the saddest thing about this article. There is no indication that men have flaws, shortcomings, areas of improvement. It’s full tilt, balls out, over the top smugness that they know it all. Not a single syllable about acknowledging their own imperfections…..nor do they offer any advice to these poor men as to what to do when they attempt these things and the woman throws it back in his face…and then some.

  227. Blew a whole week’s worth of SW points in one go… feel sick and sad. My husband thinks the articles on AskMen.com are vile and I am very very glad and happy I had the fortune to meet a man who values me for my humanity and not as an object.

    It reminded me of a boyf I had at 23 who, on observing me selecting a bag of chocolate covered peanuts in a shop, asked me “You’re not planning to eat all of those are you?”. I replied that I certainly was and it was none of his business; he looked me up and down and shrugged but that was when I knew I was going to dump him.

  228. “Take a cooking class together, learn how to create yummy (and maybe healthy) foods — great.”
    Also, potentially, smexy-time.
    *backs slowly away from TMI*
    (No, not in class, you guys … sheesh. :D)

    And yet, by the end of the paragraph, this… writer… has managed to turn a great couple-bonding experience into something that’s all about addressing the woman’s “flaws.” Ugh. Scary.
    We have a winner.
    That’s the part that makes you ill. It’s not about the relationship. It’s not even, except secondarily, really about sex.
    At the end of the day, it’s about control.

  229. Regina, I think that the writers and defenders of these articles would admit up front that men have flaws. They just don’t give a shit about those. Men have no obligation to improve themselves, certainly not for a woman. But the purpose of a woman existing altogether is to be aesthetically and sexually pleasing. To men.

  230. My ex threatened to leave me when I wouldn’t lose weight for his sexual satisfaction…blah blah blah.

    When he left, I lost 250 lbs of stupid, as soon as his 250lb ass was out the door.

    It was a huge relief to me. Now I have a real man who likes my fat ass and rolls and begs me not to change a thing.

  231. PurpleGirl, and others, I have to agree…when it comes to dating, why bother anymore? Granted, not all men live for this simple foolishness, there are a few good ones out there but…the dumbasses ALWAYS outnumber the decent.

    Being wary (almost to the point of paranoia!) about which man sincerely wants to get to know you, and which ones only want you for your ass/ your fat/ on a dare/ as a joke, whatever, gets real old real quick. I could totally emphasize with those who give up altogether. It shouldn’t have to be that way, but lots of fat women have to face that all too often. Infinite suck.

  232. Re: “negging” –
    there is one and only one way to deal with that “strategy” – scowl and walk away, (or scowl and remain motionless.) Any, and I mean any, acknowledgement of such a douchebag’s existence will encourage him, and that sort of personality needs attention so badly that even hostile attention will do. Do not, repeat, DO NOT waste one syllable on it.

    @ Sandra –

    “douchehoundable” refers to behavior that would make those of us @ this blog think that the person in question is a “douchehound.” I think I can speak for the locals by saying that a douchehound is a person lower than a human, lower than any animal – somebody worth no more than the liquid you rinse down the drain after cleaning your genitals.

  233. Re. negging – I actually had this happen several times in bars back when the idea was first being popularised. Openly laughing at the guy who’s doing it seems to be rather an effective response. Hostility they’re prepared for, but mockery seems to take them by surprise.

  234. Oh god, I just read another AskMen.com article entitled, “Top 10: Things Only Men Can Do.”

    Most were self-evident like “Manscape” (ie grow a fashionable, sexy beard) or “Pee Standing Up.”

    But then of course there’s these gems: “Play Real Sports,” “Age Well,” “Become President,” and my personal favorite, “Fuck Things.” Right, because women couldn’t ever have sex without a man present… that doesn’t happen…

  235. Yeah, i want to clarify that real negging would drive me fucking bonkers. (Laughing is a good response to use!) I do see some similarities between that technique and how some people I’ve known just flirt by teasing (a method I myself have been known to use) — except that that was before the negging phenomenon started, and they are also not complete assholes.

  236. there is a difference between teasing and ‘negging’- mainly that I quite like to be teased by someone with a good sense of humour who I’m enjoying being around and I don’t like to be demeaned by some knobhead who thinks he might get off with a fat girl by being rude to her.

    But that’s just me…!

  237. These so-called “men” at askmen.com aren’t real men at all, they’re what I call “Man-babies”. They look like men on the surface but underneath they’re just scared little boys. They like to beat their chest and make lots of noise – “I’m a tough man! Rawr!”

  238. “Oh god, I just read another AskMen.com article entitled, “Top 10: Things Only Men Can Do.”

    Oh. Oh, they shouldn’t tempt us like that.

  239. Eh. I look a little like a cross between a college prof and the archtypical kindergarten teacher, so I tend to lower my glasses slightly, glare/arch an eyebrow, wait five or ten seconds, and then walk off.

    It seems to make them properly ashamed most of the time.

  240. yeah, I don’t know if I would have the wherewithal to laugh at someone, even if I planned to. I would just be too shocked. But I have rather recently been told that I have a killer glare, which I didn’t know (I mean, I glare so rarely), so I might whip that out.

  241. I saw this article a while ago (I think it might have been on Feministing), and I was absolutely disgusted. It reminded me of one I read a few years ago in a former boyfriend’s copy of FHM (popular men’s magazine here in the UK), which advocated pretending to help your girlfriend to lose weight while secretly replacing her diet shakes with high-calorie ones, in the hope that she would gain weight, her self-esteem would fall and she would be more easily manipulated. The message in articles like this seems to be that women are not people – they’re not even pets. They’re just walking sex toys. Ugh.

    I’m still struggling with the concept of accepting my body the way it is (I’ve always had low self-esteem, and that’s not going to change overnight), but thank goodness I have a boyfriend who doesn’t give a flying fig about what I weigh. I found a good one, and I’m keeping him!

  242. For me the negging thing was so absurd that I couldn’t help but laugh. Some of the things they say are just so ridiculous that you’re like, did you seriously think that was going to work?

    I could see how if they managed to hit upon something a woman was particularly insecure about it might be different. Different in that she might be really upset – I’m still not seeing how it could possibly result in a woman wanting to talk to them. Making someone feel awful just doesn’t strike me as a very good ice-breaker.

  243. Oh, but you see, we need to be knocked off our high horses and bratty attitudes so that we will realize the beauty inherent in emotional abuse.

    Seriously, that seems to be the underlying idea. Women have “attitudes” that men just need to poke with the right sharp stick in order to make us realize that THEY are the Twue Dominant Male for whom we have been waiting. Our “attitudes” are just posturing to separate the weak males from the strong.

    It’s the same old “nice guys don’t get the girls” thing. Sorry, but I prefer my men nice. Nice doesn’t mean dickless, because dicks shouldn’t mean violence, to say nothing that violence in men shouldn’t be a positive quality. Yet, apparently it is seen as such, by both genders.

  244. What if, while falling off my horse, I was to “accidentally” knee Mr Neg in the groin on the way down? Oopsie! We women are so uncoordinated you see, it can’t be helped.

    It both amuses and disturbs me that men are seriously walking around thinking that “attitude” is the only reason supermodels aren’t falling at their feet. I wonder if they’re eligable for a refund after the first hundred times they try this system and it fails miserably?

  245. chava, on July 12th, 2009 at 6:41 pm Said:
    Oh, but you see, we need to be knocked off our high horses and bratty attitudes so that we will realize the beauty inherent in emotional abuse.

    The argument I’ve seen is that the guy has demeaned himself by crossing the room to talk to you, so the insult in the neg is there to bring you down to the same social level. Or something.

    Personally, I do not ever like to be approached by a strange guy with pick-up on his mind (the only time I’ve gone to bars I was there for the band or a fun time with my friends), so from my perspective he’s rude to just walk up and expect my attention and then his comment makes it doubly rude.

    Our “attitudes” are just posturing to separate the weak males from the strong.

    Yah, which is supposedly the rationale for our “cutting remarks” that destroy an innocent male. I’m not above cutting remarks with a serious jackass who won’t back off, but I’m pretty sure that the most ego-busting remarks I’ve ever made were me just being too honest and blurting out the first thought that came to my head.

    For instance, on my first job (waitress) this guy was constantly pestering me and when he kept nagging me to guess his age I finally stammered, “Sixty?” Turned out he was in his forties, but my family is long-lived and he lookied way more my grandpa’s age than my dad’s. :p

    He didn’t bother me after that. ;) But I really had no intention of trashing him, either. Some of those “cutting remarks” women are accused of are just plain ol’ honesty slipping out. As CassandraSays points out, sometimes you just can’t help but be honest.

  246. I just want to thank the first couple dozen commenters for validating my labelling of the relationship I recently left as abusive. And no, I didn’t exactly spot it, because I didn’t think it was intentional – until the day I moved out and he spent an hour ranting at me.


  247. Sheesh. What assholes. My father used to pull the same bullshit this article suggests (while sexually harassing me) when I was 15. So did my stepmother. Now, they never did anything like fixing chairs to make them break-they were too cheap to spend money on ME, why would they do that?-but they sure tried the other shit. Makes me very glad they kicked me out of the house when I was 17.
    I can think of one sure-fire title for that article: 10 Subtle Ways To Make Your Girlfriend Think All Men Are Assholes, And Dump Your Pathetic Ass For A Woman

  248. 10 Subtle Ways to Ensure Your Now Ex Girlfriend Hates You FOREVER

    10 Subtle Ways to Make Sure You Get Jumped by a Group Of Angry Fat Women

    10 Subtle Ways to Ensure Your Girlfriend Never Gives You a Blow Job Ever Again

  249. …the waist/hips/stomach area is almost always my favourite part of my girlfriend’s body, because regardless of her weight, is where all the awesome softness is. If she’s bigger there’s just more of it, which is neither better nor worse but continued awesome. So in case anyone’s thinking “But can anyone ever really find love handles attractive?”, the answer is FUCK YES.

    @Caitlin – if you ever want to move to Australia and get a new girlfriend, give me a call, k, cos I think I love you!

  250. You know what, folks? I read that article and though that it was ripped off from a woman’s magazine, Cosmo or More or something like that (although I haven’t read either for years so apologies if I’m doing them down wrongly) and a lazy writer had just search’n’replaced ‘boyfriend’ and ‘he’ for ‘girlfriend’ and ‘she’. OK not the spa bit but the rest – it read so much to me like an article in a magazine about how to get your boyfriend to be human without upsetting him.

  251. orrrr, we could try google. Cosmo’s current “Sex and Love” lists:

    “Does Your Look Turn Him On?”

    “Things Not to Say Around a Guy” (in here: don’t mention their bad sex skillz! they might dump you! also, don’t mention “your bad body image and food issues!”)

    “How to Be a Good Girlfriend”

    So yeah, Cosmo burns my lobe, as Twisty would say, but it isn’t misandrist as much as it is misogynist.

  252. Ooh, Jezebel seems just as upset about this.


    Loving the final paragraph:
    “I can’t even really begin to express the rage I feel for this article: it is based on the concept that humiliating, degrading, and manipulating a loved one is the only way to make them aware of their weight gain. It also sidesteps the fact that for most people, it’s not necessary to point out weight gain, as people are usually aware of what is going on with their own bodies. It also doesn’t advise partners to consider health factors, emotional issues, or other underlying causes of weight gain that could be addressed in a healthier, more supportive way. And, perhaps most importantly, it doesn’t point out that some women may be happier and healthier at a higher weight, and that if their stupid boyfriend thinks it’s more important to make her feel ashamed of her body than to love her for who she is at any weight, then her best method of losing weight would be to dump the 180 pound sack of shit who thought this article was a good idea in the first place.”

  253. I can’t believe no one else caught this (from number 3, I think):

    “…why not start taking her to places where she has no choice but to where a swimsuit?”

    Nice that proofreading shit you put on the internets ranks below humiliating the crap out of your girlfriend. Dude. I want to date you.

  254. As I put in the askmen comments, my personal fave is “10 subtle ways to tell him that his dick is too tiny.”

    Suggested list items:

    –Leave articles for “male enhancement items” around the house

    –“Accidentally” leave out your very large sex toy and then tell him it’s based on the “average” man


  255. I can’t believe that after reading that piece of passive-aggressive tripe, I actually started feeling bad about myself. Definitely abusive, and hardly subtle.
    …Although I have my doubts that *anything* at Askmen.com is hard, given the immense level of insecurity required to post drivel like that.

  256. 10 Subtle Ways to Speed Along Her Osteoporosis by Encouraging Her to Adopt a Mineral-Deficient Diet

  257. No.5 – Playfully grab her love handles

    Huh. I actually LOVE it when my husband grabs my love handles, and I’ve told him so. It’s always when we’re kissing or play-fighting…I think it’s sweet.

  258. Oh here I got one!
    “10 Subtle Ways to Tell a Woman She’s too Ugly and Fat to Fuck”
    “10 Subtle Ways to Tell Her She Doesn’t Deserve to Eat”
    “10 Subtle Ways To Go Bankrupt Paying For Your GF’s Therapy”
    “10 Subtle Ways To Make Your GF Anorexic”
    “10 Subtle Ways to End Up Miserable and Single”
    I could go on all day…

  259. @Siobhan
    The sick thing about the new article is that going to the gym together buying her clothes and treating her to a spa day are all really nice things to do for your girlfriend. Too bad assmen uh I mean askmen had to ruin it with their fucked up messed up demented implications aka to get her tolose weight, slimming clothes and other sick things like that. Ugh I am so disgusted.

  260. Heh, is this a typo or a fruedian slip?

    “In the same vain, women often put on weight in relationships”

    (in #7)

  261. AskMen.com is full of ugly crap, simply put. They had another article on signs she’s a “social leper” that included “collecting things”. Oh no guys, better watch out, I have a record collection! BAD NEWS!

    But this one was just disgusting. Sabotage her chair? Are you bloody serious?

    If I found out that a guy was so upset about my appearance that he had to set me up to fall off my chair in public, I’d kick him in the balls with my steel-toe boots in public.

  262. Yes I know I’m probably posting too many links, but here’s a new one: Top 10 Signs You’ll Get Lucky


    They include: She buys you a drink! She touches you! She compliments you! and (i’m not making this up)… She makes eye contact!

    Maybe they should rename this article, “Top 10 Ways to Become A Date-Rapist,” or “Top 10 Reasons She Totally Owes You Sex.”

  263. top 10 ways to let her know you are an insecure asshole who is afraid she is going to tell everyone what a small penis you have.

  264. lets make out own list of “subtle” things we can do to insult and humiliate the men we “love” ………..naaaaah I hope we are better than that.

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