7 Effed Up Things Guys Do That You Need To Stop Normalizing

The future these days usually doesn’t look all that bright, but there are a few goals for our species that I long for. These goals include ending hunger, eradicating racism, destroying income inequality…and stopping the normalization of men doing effed up things just because they’re men. Let’s talk about that last bit for a second: The ol’ “boys will be boys” moniker needs to die. It needs to die a swift unpleasant death. It’s going to take all of us to do it though, and I’m sure there will be a lot of resistance to it.

This society of ours has a really nasty habit of letting dudes get away with a lot of awful, annoying behavior just because they’re dudes; the same can be said to a far lesser degree for women. And honestly, even those of us who should know better fall for the “boys will be boys” thing on the regular. But enough is enough. Let’s do what we can to make this mindset a thing of the past by acknowledging these seven effed up things guys do that you need to stop normalizing. Of course, people of any gender identity is capable of doing the things on the following list, but let’s be real: There’s one gender in particular that tends to get a pass.


Cheating

Anyone is capable of cheating, but it's alarming how often I see people defend men being unfaithful as ~just a guy thing~. Like, seriously, people justifying men cheating based on the notion that, like, cavemen weren't monogamous, so why should we expect men in the 21st century to be. Uh, because you're not a caveman, you're someone who build a relationship with another human being based on trust and commitment and you broke it. That's not a guy thing, that's a jerk thing.

Clueless

Harassment = Cute, Harmless Crush!

We've been brought up to just accept the fact that guys don't know how to express their romantic intentions toward girls in a healthy way, so harassment is a totally normal way of showing their love. A boy tugging on a girl's pigtails in elementary school is one thing, but when that transforms into the guy snapping a girl's bra straps in middle school, or some bro straight up cat calling a woman as she's walking down the street, then that's a full blown culture of accepting that harassment is just the norm and girls have to deal with it. It's really messed up that we teach girls to just expect guys to disrespect their personal space and annoy the hell out of them, and it's even more messed up that we act as if anyone who isn't cool with that is just being a boring stick in the mud who should be grateful that some guy is all into her. Uh, no, guys.

A Different World

Immaturity, Because Girls 'Mature Faster'

Think about how many times a guy's awful behavior has been waved away because, "girls mature faster than boys." As if complimenting your maturity makes up for a guy's supposed lack of it. Has anyone ever considered the notion that maybe boys mature slower than girls because they're largely socialized that way? Sure, we can talk about actual brain and body development of bodies all we want, but let's not act as if nurture doesn't often have an edge over nature here. We let boys take their time maturing and pressure girls to mature faster, period.

Animal House

Being Sexually Inappropriate Because 'It's Just What Guys Do'

Growing up, I remember hearing that guys think about sex every six seconds. Once you're young enough to hear that stat of dubious believability, you're pretty much guaranteed to expect that it's normal for men to be sex crazed animals who just can't help themselves. We act like they're supposed to be horny 24/7 and act accordingly. Well, newsflash: Women think about sex nearly as much as men do, and we don't get to get away with being creeps because of it. And we shouldn't! This idea that men are always on the quest to be sexually stimulated and we need to just let them use whatever outlets they can to express those urges is absolutely bonkers.

Fresh Meat

Lacking Emotional Labor

When you're performing emotional labor, you're managing your personal feelings and how you express yourself in an allotted field. Think of it like when you're forced to smile and act cheery to customers at your fast food job, even though you feel miserable. We do this at work, at school, at home, and with our partners. When it comes to partners, women tend to do a little more emotional labor than men. And by a little, I mean a lot. We're more likely do whatever performative things we need to do to make him happy and keep him happy. Men just aren't expected to be emotionally nurturing figures in the way that women are, which can be super taxing in a relationship. I think it's time that we made them step it up thought, don't you?

Submarine

Being Violent

Sorry to get too deep here, but with everything from terrorist attacks, to mass shootings, to incidents of domestic violence, I'm getting increasingly frustrated with the extent to which male violence like...straight up ruins everyone's lives. If you think about it, male violence is really a primary reason why there's so much suffering in this great, big, messed up world of ours. But we sort of just expect men to be violent, as if it's in their nature. Can we, uh, not? Yes, yes, anyone of any gender identity can be violent, but let's be honest with ourselves about who perpetrates most of it.

Scream

Acting Out In Class

I don't know about you, but I remember girls getting in trouble for so much as whispering briefly to a friend in class. Meanwhile, boys can often get away with being the raucous class clown and acting out, and it's just...accepted. Imagine a girl in your class acting that way.

Billy Madison

You can follow the author, Ashley Reese, on Twitter or Instagram. Don’t worry, she doesn’t bite!

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