I've been wanting to ask the men of TA this question for a while, but couldn't come up with the right wording to make it sound right....

So.....fuck it. I'm just going to ask you straight out.

How do men see women?

(Example) If you meet a new female co-worker, do you automatically categorize the woman as being like your wife, girlfriend, mistress, daughter, or some other female in your life? Do you then treat her accordingly?

The reason I'm asking is because I'm about to do something totally crazy. I'm entering a field where I may be working with ALL men. Less than 1% of women in this field. Why? Because I'm a crazy girl.....so. I need to know from a guy's perspective how to relate with them. I'm used to the "corporate world," and I can play that game. I'm also familiar with law enforcement, where things are a little rougher, but there was still plenty of women that I worked with. But I've never been the ONLY woman, (or one of the only women.) Maybe I'm freaking out over nothing....very possible. But, for what it's worth I thought it would be fun to discuss how men see women. And, any advice you guys have would be welcome. I'm fearful of men right now, but I know it's an irrational fear. I know that. But the opportunity I have in front of me could put me in the 6 figure range income-wise. I'm willing to do what it takes to overcome this. Any help/advice is welcome.

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I guess I'm weird.  I see women as the source of the most exquisite joy a man may experience and as such, deserving of the utmost respect and equality.

Brownie points! Brownie points!

ask the men

Men is here!

How do men see women?

Very good question. For me it is a mixture of their intelligence, body, and presentation. I know it sounds sexist but I can't help enjoying a well presented woman with a nice body. Here's the redeeming part: even a small sliver of intelligence demands far more respect and interest from me than anything else.

If you meet a new female co-worker, do you automatically categorize the woman as being like your wife, girlfriend, mistress, daughter, or some other female in your life?

No. What an odd thing to do... Is this what women do with their male co-workers?

Any help/advice is welcome.

Considering your past experience with correctional facilities and your obvious intelligence, I'm sure you will be able to handle a workplace full of men. Get past the initial "There are no girls in X field" mentality/comments and if you are able to perform your duties you will just become another co-worker.

@Kairan - In response to the post you deleted. I would start with your local/state employment/unemployment agencies to see if some educational assistance is available. You might find some help through the educational institutions as well. Also, in your job search, pay special attention to companies who provide financial assistance to employees pursuing education. It might even be worth it to take a job that pays somewhat less if the do provide assistance. Finally, if you can get any kind of job at an educational institution, I believe they generally have fairly generous assistance if only in terms of discounts on course fees.

Personally I think I initially size them up from an evolutionary perspective, determining whether or not they'd be a suitable mate-- this usually lasts less than half a second though, and I defer to British distance.

Bring cookies for your colleagues. Try to make friends. Invite them home for a weekend brunch or dinner with their families.

Good luck with your job.

My dear Lady, IMHO, many men are dieing of testosteroin poisening.

Your 'Field', might be an attractor for such fellows, or might offer a sancuary for more civil relating. While I am not privy to your details, I do hope you can establish reasonable boundaries.

Very few times have I been with only 'men' as a group. As a 'man' myself, but mostly nerdy, it has been very clear that alpha-males attempt to establish a pecking order rather soon. This makes little difference as to gender.

I don't think that a fixation on gender is healthy at all. Gender rolls are not compatible with personal freedom, you can not believe in both. Men can express themselves as femininely as they wish, women can express themselves in as masculine of a fashion as they wish, and any one who would interfere with that is certainly a communist/fascist pig. I would be myself if I was you, your gender is a meaningless identity, I have met a lot of people (male and female) who's entire identity is guided by what's between their legs, and it is always ugly. Any one worth your respect wont judge you by your sex, and any one who judges you by your sex is not worth your respect.

You should ask yourself, "How do I view men?"

and then take some time and ask yourself "Why?"      

What would you call a "fixation on gender"? 

Is believing in some basic sex roles a fixation? Women seem physically built to nurture (milk-producing breasts, softer bodies) and men more suited for protection roles. Is recognizing that natural difference somehow bad?

The fixation comes when your belief in basic sex roles morphs into obligations for other people. Some women make excellent leaders, some men are fine nurturers. It's up to individuals to find their own strengths and weaknesses. It is wrong to force a person out of being themselves so they can meet some pre-fabricated idea of who they aught to be based on their genitals.   

Interesting insight Hank! Do you think that it can be helped? Afterall, men and women DO think differently. Their genitals are not the only thing that sets men and women apart. Their brains are wired differently. It takes intentionality to understand the opposite sex in even the most comfortable of circumstances, but as a woman working with ALL men (or mostly men) it's daunting to think about getting along with them as an equal when they are all going to be watching for me to prove that I CAN do it. I can't pull the "girl" card, I have to be an equal......but I don't feel like an equal.

"......but I don't feel like an equal."

That's what I meant when I said you should think about how you consider men and why. Men and women may think different at times but there is more common ground and cross over then anything.  there was a time when women couldn't drive, vote, or fly a plane, but in each of these instances, the assumption of feminine inferiority was proven false. I think most of the differences between men and women are put there by society and the filth of religion. You have been made to view your self as inferior, and that is something to get mad about. You are an individual, and human being of value, don't let people stomp on that as a means of artificially inflating themselves, not for your sex, race, gender identity, or any reason.

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