Unbridled evil is a definition I came upon today when researching feminism to ground myself. I was actually gaslit and mansplained within the same day on the topic of feminism. Despite the fact my body parts alone denote expertise, I did second guess myself for a moment, wondering if it was true. Does my defense of women’s rights reign terror on the entire structure of relationships present day? Is my unbridled evil the reason relationships don’t work out for so many people. Am I, and many of my friends, the Satan of love?

I have a wonderful group of friends. I am convinced I know the strongest, fiercest women and am lucky to have them in my village. But so many are raising children that seeing them with any regularity won’t happen until all children have grown up. It’s a good 18-22 year window I am navigating where I just don’t spend much face time with friends. Plus, most of my friends are not local. I talk to at least one a day. But when it comes to traveling, walking the dog, wanting to go for a hike or to a concert, I have to do all that alone. So these friends recommended I find some local meetup groups where I might meet people in similar life patterns and be able to enjoy activities together.

Google SEO brings up a very well known one which most major cities have. Signing up for it provides a number of offshoot groups which get more specific around activities/interests. In order to become a member and have access to events, I needed to accept a friend request from the site admin. I’m not very comfortable with people having access to my FB page if I don’t know them or I work with them. I have a long list of blocked people and keep my settings private so I have safety in the online community I have curated and keep it as separate from my professional life as I can. Innocent stuff bleeds over on occasion but I am ok with anything that is my choice. In this case, I figure I’d have to take a chance.

Apparently, I fell through the ice into a mucky pond of dark misogyny as the admin of the site claims to be the uniter of Love, simply sharing messages from both extremes of male/ female hatred. Except all messages are misogyny based and guided towards telling women what we need to do in order to attract men. Oh, and by the way, did you know being a feminist means we are all masculine? Yeah, let that sit for a second. Especially in the context of what you know about me. Confident, willing to stand up for myself, leader, smart and articulate. Apparently, only men have those traits. On a woman, they are masculine and unattractive. Picture me shaking my head and doing my gag me face right now.

I made a joke directed to the writer of an article, a 30 something year old woman just discovering how hard it is to find the right guy at her age while balancing career, friends and travel. If that’s important to her, I merely suggested she prioritize it better now because it gets far worse in your 40s. Not a statement of personal despair in being single. Not a request for advice as to why I am single. I know why. I don’t settle and despite having no problem attracting men with my masculine energy, I don’t typically meet ones I am attracted into wanting to see again. I own it. And, finding a man is a nice to have, not a priority. If I were married to anyone I have ever dated, I would be insanely unhappy right now. Instead, I am only unhappy for any stretch of time during the holidays where I don’t see sunlight. Even then, happiness pokes through the colander like errant spaghetti when I see my dog, my family, go to concerts, watch terrible reality tv, read, do crosswords and words searches, travel, shop, get Amazon packages. Quite a bit of happy, actually….even during stretches of depression offset with PTSD.

My idea of a great relationship isn’t based on gender roles or needing to attract a man. It’s about two people with common ground who just enjoy being together, whose unity enhances each other’s already fulfilling lives who are on equal footing with intelligence, work ethic, financial stability, humor and integrity. And yes, must like dogs. There is nothing at all political or ideological about it. If it happens, great. If not, I’m still ok….more ok than probably 70% of couples.

I was responded to with very sexist commentary which was hurting other women in this venue. Men too. There were plenty of men responding that this was idiotic thinking….the belief that women need men because we can’t change light bulbs ourselves or fix our cars by ourselves. FYI, since about the late 90s when cars became mostly electrical work, men and women are equally taking their cars to mechanics and dealerships. I know no men who can fix cars this century which makes them no less masculine and me no more masculine. It’s common sense. The car goes to the shop.

The last time I asked a man for help was probably when I was 23ish and trying to install an air conditioner in an old house so I was confused about how the power might work against the fuse. I asked him to clarify and he had no idea what I was talking about. We are still friends. I figured everything out myself. I think no less of him. He doesn’t think I’m a dude.

This sexist banter went back and forth and was just insults being lodged at me. Basic. All these types can ever do is make fun and call you names. They don’t have an actual debate or fact based argument beyond “I know many women who agree with me.” I’m sure you do. They are white republican women who hang out in bars, pretend to like sports and BudLight to attract men. Or, they are from other countries whose cultures are presently still subsisting on female subservience. Basically, no one my friends or I know. Including my male friends. They are also good for “no wonder why you’re still single.” Like I haven’t had that basic one before. Please. Do better. Be smarter.

By the way, while defending women, I was receiving direct messages from women on the site who were very happy about what I was saying and encouraged me to continue. Some of them felt very bullied by this behavior. Thanks to them for reaching out. I now have new friends. Not the way this site was supposed to work but I’ll take it.

In the meantime, because of the tenor and discrimination happening to women, I did report some of the posts as they were highly offensive and very much against creating a sense of community. His idea of community is getting women to defer to men and then everyone would get along. Actually, getting people to give up on some of their beliefs and self esteem to meet in the middle for someone whose basic beliefs are against your own self interest and safety is not how it’s done. That’s incredibly unhealthy. Even if you are a misogynist, you stick to your own kind. And we feminists, we look for reasonable, kind and intelligent men. There is no need for anyone to give up their dignity to make it easier for a misogynist to get a date. There’s a reason that’s an incredibly small niche of available men.

What’s really amusing is that I got so under this guy’s skin, he decided to do a live video to basically try to explain himself and how these aren’t his messages. He’s sharing to create love, man. He then discussed me and used my name and made fun of me in a public forum. That is defamation of character in legal terms. It also risks my safety as people in this forum do have access to my information and can see my last name online to know who he is referencing. He thinks I voluntarily wanted to see his video. All I did was click on my notifications and they automatically bring you to videos. I saw Gretchen Rubin last night too. I wasn’t trying to. But for legal reasons I did view it later while taking notes and trying not to vomit. By the way, the fact he has to do this video proves every single point I make about fragile male ego and white male privilege. He literally proved my point for me and out himself at possible legal risk in doing so. Who knew I had such power?

He explained to everyone how he taught me how to block him but I couldn’t figure it out and that he felt the need to make an example of me because I am responsible for the destruction of love and 1950s relationships. I’m old but I ain’t that old. That was grandma’s generation who got sick of their bad marriages and got this feminism thing planted. It started with one of my grandmother’s deciding one day not to make my grandfather breakfast and the other one wouldn’t get up from the table to get his salt off the counter which was right behind him. Thanks Jean and Barbara. Your kids are phenomenal parents! We had no gender roles in my house growing up and not once did my mother try to tell me how to attract a man.

I know how to unfriend and block people but because he used my name, I need to make a “paper trail” for safety and reputation purposes. I need to be aware of any further public defamation. I also still want to meet up and create friendships with some of the other members of the group. He and his Hitler faction can hide in a corner. The rest of us are trying to make life fun and meet new people along the way. Some people are in the site looking for a relationship but not everyone. Some of us just want to find other single people unencumbered by children to have a beer with or take the dog out with. I go to concerts by myself all the time and they are sold out. That means my people are very much out there but how do I find them? That’s what I’m working on.

I don’t know what I’m supposed to do about this video and my safety. Like most “attacked” women, I blame myself for starting anything and responding…like because I spoke up for myself. I deserve the attack. On the other hand, even in the online banter of ideology vs ideology, no one should be publicly outed. That’s illegal and dangerous. I don’t want to overreact but I also don’t want to under react. But for safety sake, do know that my dear government attorney friend has his name tucked away in the event something were to happen. She is not someone you mess with. She has a tracker on all my movements, even when I go to Europe. And whoever you are, she can easily find you too.

It was stated in the video that Feminism 3.0 is a fringe group responsible for the death of relationships…he has articles to prove it. Having a Masters in Communication, I am aware you can find documentation to support any argument you want. Check out who sponsors it and you’ll know the bias which supports it. You actually don’t even need a Masters to know that. I just happened to have spent a lot more time than the average joe understanding media sabotage and bots. That’s why we have Trump in office.

Feminism 3.0 is actually the conversation about how having more women on boards and in leadership positions (as well as any diversity of staffing) creates greater financial outcomes for businesses, our government and economy. There is actual data on that. This means even your stock investments and retirement savings have a better opportunity to flourish with gals at the helm. It’s not about “us against them.” It’s trying to help these stale, old all white male boards think a little differently so they can actually be wealthier than they are. There is nothing remotely romantic or sexual about it. That was version 1.0 when women realized they were in complete shit marriages and to get out, they needed to have equal opportunity work and be taken seriously in the workplace so they could provide for themselves. There is also nothing militant about feminism. Version 5.0 seems to include camps to train women how to gather and be ready to march but I never went to camp as a kid so I am not starting now. I don’t like sharing a room or bathroom with other people and I just don’t do the woods for more than a brief hike.

Just because we still don’t want to be in shit marriages with the ideals of Mad Men pre 70s doesn’t make us militant or unreasonable or preparing for march and warfare. We are not destroying relationships. We are just choosing not to date misogynists. What they do about that is their problem.