Dating and Dickpics: Episode 13

13. Unlucky for some. But as someone with seemingly endless bad luck, I like to think 13 can signify some sort of change.

Well, unfortunately, there’s no change here. I was recently at work on a Wednesday morning, quite happily tapping away on my keyboard and coding paperwork, minding my own business and listening to Drake (obviously) when my phone vibrated against the cool, hard wooden desk I’d placed it on. I figured it was one of my friends trying to arrange plans for the weekend so I didn’t hesitate to open it.

It was an anonymous dickpic.

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Scarred for life

I’m not entirely sure what’s worse: a dickpic from a man you know or a dickpic from a complete stranger. Both are intolerable in my eyes and both are embarrassing but perhaps more so from the stranger because they are under the false illusion that somehow, their penis is so magnificent and aesthetically pleasing that you will jump on the next tube to their place naked.

I told the dick in question that his actions were repulsive and that I was not interested. I told him the sight of his ghastly manhood made me want to vomit. He proceeded to call me a whore. Right, I’m the whore. You’re the one who sent a picture of your genitals to a stranger, but I’m the whore. I preceded to destroy his logic by telling him that clearly he’s the whore out of the two of us because he’s so desperate for sex that he’s flashing his penis to an anonymous person. He then used some colourful language and after telling him to have a quick one-two pump in his hand because that’s all he could manage, I blocked him.

Lesson? I will always call you out on your bullshit and I will always have the last word if you dare disrespect me.

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Queen of Effortless Clapbacks aka me

There was another guy who decided to stumble his fuckboy-ways back into my life. He texted me after months and months of silence. His excuse? He’s ‘choleric’. In case you wondered, he’s talking about one of the Four Temperaments which have been wholeheartedly disproved. This was his oldy-worldy way of saying ‘I’m a fuckboy and I’m only messaging you because I want sex and for some reason, I think that I’m so special you’ll break two and a half years of celibacy for me’.

Any guesses on how I dealt with that?

Did I:

  • A: Express my wonder at him texting me again and partake in some polite conversation?
  • B: Make it crystal clear that I am looking for something serious, not a party in my pants?
  • C: Explain how much of a fuckboy he is, only for him to beg for another chance?
  • D: C, but sass him down and block his sorry ass?

The answer is D, because I don’t suffer fools gladly. I was a little shocked that he had bothered to text me but then again, if a fuckboy wants sex, they will magically remember the number of anyone they ever met with a pulse. I don’t think he actually remembered me. He did vaguely describe the night I met him but I really could’ve been any girl he met in any bar in London. He was horny and desperate. I am neither of the two and I have exacting standards.

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I’ll call you out if you’re a fuckboy

Remember how earlier on I was talking about how 13 is unlucky for some? It seems that this installment of D&D shows a change in luck, for I was recently with someone who met my exacting standards. We spent some time together and it was absolutely magical. It was, quite simply, the best weekend of my life (and I’m happy to say he also enjoyed it). He’s a good friend of mine and someone I feel extremely comfortable with. I don’t have to pretend to be someone I’m not. I don’t have to be perfect. My imperfections aren’t a big deal to him. He makes me smile uncontrollably and laugh like a complete goofball. The best bit? I managed to successfully introduce him to my real, true love, Grey’s Anatomy. It’s all very early days but I’m excited and for once, I’m happy. Long may it continue. And although I love all of my readers dearly, I hope this is the last Dating & Dickpics I have to write in a very, very long time.

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It wasn’t as cheesy as this but considering I’m a 20-something Bridget Jones, this picture seemed appropriate (note: I am cheesy)

Dating and Dickpics: Episode 11

At this point, I wonder if there will ever be a time where I stop writing D&D. I love writing it, but I would love to find…well, love.

I seem to have the worst luck when it comes to fuckboys. The guy I was making heart-eyes over in D&D 10? He was a complete fuckboy. I think he realised after the first date that sex was off the cards completely. He thought he could change my mind about it. For some reason, men seem to think that no matter how strong a woman’s convictions are, they are God’s gift to women and will change her mind somehow. No man is ever that amazing. Even if it was Idris Elba, it wouldn’t happen.

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Sorry Idris. I love you but no sexy time.

So I was back in the dating game once again and I found a man who made everything sound so promising. He wasn’t exactly my type but I’m a believer in giving most people a chance if I find we are compatible enough to get along. He actually met me when I was on a night out with my friends. I’d only told him in passing that I’d had a busy day planned but we’d be in a nightclub that evening if he wanted to join us and to my surprise, he turned up. He was courteous and polite. We spent almost an hour outside the nightclub just talking and getting to know each other. After, we exchanged numbers and texted every day until our first official date. That date went swimmingly well. As did our second date. By the end of our second date, I thought that this guy had potential.

But things are very rarely a fairytale, especially in my life.

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I was kind of rooting for him.

His true colours were revealed on my birthday, ironically. So for my birthday, I was betrayed and lied to. I have to say, I wouldn’t have coped with the aftermath without my amazing friends (you know who you are). I got over it in time, but I think that what hurt more was another betrayal that blindsided me; he quickly became an afterthought and collateral damage in the end.

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Party pooper.

Despite this, I am grateful for both the fuckboy and the I’ll Ruin Your Birthday guy too. They both taught me some lessons, which are:

  • No man is ever worth breaking a promise you made to yourself.
  • Talk is cheap.
  • Actions speak louder than words.
  • If a guy suddenly goes silent for more than a day, he’s not into you.
  • It’s easy to say you’re a feminist and believe in equality but your actions will always betray you.
  • Never stay with a man who thinks that talking to other men is a crime.
  • If someone lets you down at the last minute, you’re not their priority, so get rid of them.
  • You never really know someone’s true intentions until it’s too late.

Despite all this drama, I’m still feeling positive. I know I have the love and support of my friends and I couldn’t have picked myself back up without them. I love you guys.

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#SquadGoals

It’s not all doom and gloom though. I’ve decided that I really need to test men out when I date them and not take everything on face value because as I mentioned above, talk is cheap and it’s easy for men to tell you what you want to hear just to get in your pants or take advantage of you in other ways. Looking back, there were many things wrong with Party Pooper guy but I looked past them because he was just so kind and polite and I thought I could compromise. The fact is, I really can’t. I’m bad at compromising when it comes to love and although I used to think that was a flaw, I don’t think it is now. I know what I want and I won’t settle for less because…well, why should I? Why should anyone settle for less?

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Don’t compromise.

I’m excited to announce that I do have a date this coming weekend. I’m looking forward to it because the guy is miles apart from the guys I’ve dated recently. He’s intelligent and very interesting. Hopefully it all goes well and I don’t make a complete embarrassment of myself. But at the moment, I’m not reading much into it. A date is just that — getting together to find out more about each other. And if this doesn’t work out? Onto the next date.

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Bring it on!

 

Dating and Dickpics: Episode 10

I’ve been really busy lately, writing for The Tab on a fellowship that I won so I haven’t had a chance to write here. I was also on a fixed term contract at a company but that ended so I have my life back!  Now I’m back and you just know I had to write D&D Episode 10! I’ve got some absolute gems for you.

There’s obviously been the usual sexual harassment online. I wonder if that will ever stop. I doubt it. For some reason, some men seem to think that if you’re on a dating site or app, it’s fine to sexually harass and intimidate you. In fact, I even received sexual harassment on Twitter, of all places. Some bloke thought he had the God-given right to ask me invasive questions about my sex life. I’m just astounded that there are so many fuckboys. They’re literally everywhere! I don’t even know if I should give them the time of day on D&D. I do tend to hand out some sassy replies though. For example, one guy said he was searching for a woman who loved to be eaten out for ‘the main event’. So I said that I was searching for a man who didn’t spout sexually invasive shit in their messages. He wasn’t happy but he’d pissed me off by writing such foul garbage in the first place. If you piss me off, expect to be dealt a worse hand.

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Fuckboys EVERYWHERE

There was this guy I was texting. We met on Tinder and it seemed to be going well. Tinder is a notoriously rubbish app to use and it has loads of bugs in it so we weren’t always getting notifications when we replied to one another so we decided to swap numbers and take it from there. That was the biggest mistake I ever made. Anyone who knows me knows that I have anxiety and therefore taking phone calls with strangers is really stressful for me. I panic and get anxious so I avoid them at all costs. Of course, if it’s one of my best friends on the other end of the line, I feel comfortable as I have known and loved them for years (shoutout to all of you, you’re the real MVPs). This guy, whom I have never met in my life, thinks that it’s fine to call me up even though I’ve explained that I don’t like answering the phone and that I have anxiety. Anyone who knows what anxiety is, even if they don’t know all about it, knows that people with anxiety tend to have panic attacks. So he was prepared to give me a panic attack because he wanted to call me. Of course, all the alarm bells are ringing at this point. Anyway, he was adamant that he was going to get the bottom of what I was ‘hiding’ because clearly, having anxiety isn’t a good enough reason not to pick up the phone according to him. I said I wasn’t hiding anything and I didn’t think we should meet up because he was clearly paranoid and if he couldn’t accept something as simple as me having anxiety and not being able to speak to essentially a stranger on the phone, this was never going to work out. He cooled off for a bit and then apologised, hoping to win favour with me again. No fucking chance. I told him I was no longer interested, to which he responded that it was fine because…

Because he thought I was ‘born a man’, in his words, and I wasn’t a ‘proper woman’ (because this huge transphobe thinks transwomen are not ‘real women’…after that comment, he really had no fucking chance because I won’t date a transphobe).

So according to him, I wasn’t picking up the phone because I was a born a man. What the hell? That’s absurd. Safe to say I was just so fucking done at that point.

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REALLY?

I love my trans-sisters for sure and I will always stand up for the trans community, but I find it pretty weird that he couldn’t accept my anxiety as the reason that I couldn’t talk on the phone and thought that the clearly logical explanation was that I was a transwoman. Firstly, there is nothing wrong with being trans. Secondly…surely it’s just common decency to give the person the benefit of the doubt and believe what they’re saying is true? Finally, I’m glad I saw his true, transphobic colours because I don’t date assholes who think it’s acceptable to insult people based on their gender. (If anyone was actually wondering, which I highly doubt because my readers are inclusive and awesome, I’m not trans.)

Well, this fine-ass woman (me) actually bagged herself a date with a right fittie. We’d been talking for weeks and we finally went out last weekend. It was so much fun! He’s amazing. I really like him and he really likes me. He’s so handsome, funny and just so much fun to be around. Seriously, I couldn’t stop smiling the whole day and when we said goodbye, I was genuinely sad to be going home. I bumped into a friend on the train home and she noted that I looked like I was high as a kite so I told her all about the date and how incredible he is. He’s so charming. Ugh, I sound like such a fangirl! It’s only been one date but it feels right. I feel like I can be myself around him and I’m really comfortable around him. He’s a great guy. I can’t wait to see him again (that’s happening tomorrow, actually). So maybe this is the beginning of the end of Dating & Dickpics!

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This is genuinely how I felt when I first saw him!

Wish me luck!

  • I’m super excited for tomorrow.
  • Nothing is as good as a gif picture.
  • The weather is lovely and I’d like it to stay like this until the end of summer.
  • I have to start planning my birthday party now that August is just days away and I have no idea where to go or what to do. I do know who I’m inviting though, so that’s one thing at least.
  • If anyone knows of any social media or writing jobs going, do let me know!

Dating and Dickpics: Episode 9

I can’t believe I haven’t written an installment of the prestigious Dating and Dickpics since February. I’m shocked at myself.

Since the chapter of my tragic love life, a lot has happened. There have been interesting developments in my career and I feel like I’m finally getting somewhere.

In my previous installment of D&D, I mentioned that I had a date with someone who propositioned me on Twitter. It was all very innocent as we’d had some banter about having disabilities and football. It all came about because of a show called The Undateables, which airs on Channel 4. As an avid social media user, I couldn’t resist tweeting whilst watching and supposedly, neither could he. Anyway, we seemed to get along so we followed each other on Twitter and pencilled in a date.

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I thought I’d get it…

Our first date was a laugh. We met up in Camden (my usual haunt) and had quite a few cocktails. By all accounts, we got on well. He wasn’t exactly what I was expecting (for one, I expected a deeper voice) but he seemed nice and intelligent. After our first date, we started texting non-stop and arranged another date, but this time nearby his university. I was intrigued because I’d actually applied to UCL for my undergraduate degree but decided to turn it down in favour of Exeter. That date also went swimmingly well. I was beginning to like him quite a bit. We spoke everyday and things were, by all accounts, going well.

Then things got weird, fast. He suddenly maintained a radio silence for a few days. I confronted him about it and told him that rather than playing games, it was just better if he was honest. My suspicions were confirmed: he was avidly trying to blank me. Why? Apparently I’m ‘too much’ and ‘too excitable’. He thought it was fine to be passionate about things, but not to the extent that I was. He didn’t get why the small things in life made me happy. Now, as someone with severe depression, if I didn’t hang on to these little things, I’d probably spend the majority of each day crying my eyes out.

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#depression #mentalhealth

I just couldn’t believe the audacity. You’re blaming me for being…myself? Getting excited about irrelevant stuff like Grey’s Anatomy, pugs and tattoos is just a part of who I am. I was thoroughly offended. When I’ve dated someone and it’s not worked out, it has never been because of my personality. 9/10 times, it’s been because I don’t want kids, or they’re just looking for a side chick. I’ve never had someone complain about what fundamentally makes up my personality.

Another thing I couldn’t quite fathom is why a grown ass man of 30 was trying to avoid me like a teenage boy than be honest and just tell me that he wasn’t interested. And to think the man was doing a Masters…he clearly needs a degree in courtesy more than anything.

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Since that, I haven’t dated much. I haven’t really had the time. I’ve either been working or trying to find work. I’m now working shifts, which makes dating a bit of a minefield. It does, however, mean that I’m more likely to see my best friends as they all work shifts too.

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I did start talking to a guy on a dating app. It seemed like it might go somewhere as we live in the same town, so meeting up wouldn’t be a problem. He seemed decent enough and I was willing to go out on a date with him.

I had just returned from London and received a formal job offer when I got a text from him saying that we should celebrate that very evening. I told him I couldn’t because I was exhausted from a long day and just wanted to stay at home with my mum and celebrate. He was bummed, but let it go. Then he began messaging me about meeting up the next day, which was a Saturday.

Here’s the thing. That Saturday was Eurovision. I haven’t missed a single Eurovision in my life and I wasn’t about to. I’m ever so slightly mad about Eurovision.

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Eurovision > every other day of the year.

So I told him I had pre-made plans and that I wasn’t going to rearrange my plans for a date. We could always do the following Friday as I wasn’t working and I’d be free all afternoon and evening. He wasn’t having it, though. He got all sulky and moody about the fact that I had plans and wasn’t prepared to drop them for someone who is essentially a stranger. He couldn’t get over it. He kept messaging me, saying how disappointed he was, how let down he felt. I was actually livid at this point. You are a stranger. I do not know you. What makes you think that my world revolves around you so much that I’m going to suddenly drop any plans I had just for you? Never mind the fact that he wanted to ‘stay out late’ with me, when I’d made it clear that I don’t like staying out past midnight (unless I’m with my best friends of course — I’m in safe company with them). It all sounded far too creepy for my liking, so I cut him loose. He hasn’t once tried to message me to apologise for his selfish behaviour and to be honest, I’m relieved he hasn’t because I’m sure that if he did apologise, he would somehow try and manipulate the situation for his own gain.

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Of course, I’ve had my dating app/website woes, but I will probably collate those into a Dating and Dickpics 9.5 as there are a lot. It’ll be a picture-heavy post.

  • Why do guys chase you and then go off the grid? This has happened with a suitor who I thought was genuinely interested. Perhaps not.
  • I like the concept of Bumble. It means that you can choose whether or not to talk to the guy you’ve matched with. However, when you do initiate conversation, why don’t they ever reply?
  • I’m fed up of every other man asking me what my ethnicity is. If you want to know, that just means you’re interested in fetishising me, not getting to know me.
  • ‘What that mouth do?’ ‘Lectures you on intersectional feminism.’
  • Everyone hot at my new workplace is either gay or taken.
  • Slowly but surely thinking life as a crazy cat lady would actually be a good future prospect and an increasingly likely one.
  • When is Tom Hiddleston going to just give in and marry me?
  • Coffee is bae.

Update…again

I’ve had a horrible time of it lately. Things haven’t been going well and I feel pretty hopeless. It feels like nothing is going my way at all. It all just seems like everything I do is futile. I’m questioning a lot of my life and the things I’ve done — namely, my career (or lack of). You’d think after so many years just knuckling down and trying to do your best, you’d get some kind of result from that, right? Wrong. I don’t know. I’m just thinking out loud at the moment. I just expected a lot more from life given where I currently am and my current situation. I thought I’d have it all figured out.

I know that no one can predict the future and I never thought of having absolutely everything I dreamed of, the exact way I had pictured it. But I really thought that by this point in my life, I’d have some things figured out and sorted. I’m nowhere near where I want to be right now and I’m not going to give up, but sometimes you just sigh and think ‘how much more of this is there going to be?’ I just have all this anxiety and worry stored up in me and it’s extremely tiring.

I don’t even know what I’m typing, to be honest. It’s just been really tough day and a lot of things have gotten to me today. People online have been extremely insensitive today and I just don’t understand why you wouldn’t afford someone kindness over the internet when you would in real life. It’s made me question a lot of things, including my writing and my blog. It’s made me question whether or not it’s worth continuing on when you seem to get trolled just for existing in an online space. I have truly felt the weight of cybersexism today.

Part of me is wondering what’s the point of dreaming? We’re told as kids that we can be whatever we want to be when we grow up, so we all fantasise about weird and wonderful jobs and we’re told that if we work hard, we’ll get there. Then you become an adult and you realise that what you were told as a child is a modern day fairytale. In fact, you don’t get your happy ending and your dream job. You do have to work hard, but there’s no guarantee it will pay off. And it’s never easy like they told you it would be.

Dating and Dickpics: Episode 8

Welcome, one and all, to another episode of my tragic love life.

As some of you will know from a brief note in my last column, I went on a date with a really great guy. He’s intelligent, funny and pretty charming. He’s also pretty easy on the eyes, which is always a bonus (and if I’m being honest, a basic requirement). Things are going pretty well between us. We went on another date last week and we basically just chilled out and talked the whole time. We went back to his place after a while and talked for ages until I had to reluctantly make my way home if I had any chance at getting back at my house at a decent, civilised hour. He’s smooth as hell, I’ll tell you that now. He says some of the sweetest stuff. He’s got quite a lot of deadlines so things have cooled off a bit temporarily. I hope it’s just temporary. We seem to have a good time together and we flirt a lot too, so I hope it’s just my anxiety rearing its ugly head and he really does like me.

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My anxiety always makes me doubt my pulling abilities

Other than that, I haven’t really entertained any dates from anyone else because the calibre of men is shocking. There’s no one decent. Case in point: the only reason I went on a date with the guy I’m sort of seeing (or pre-dating) is because he came up with a rather quirky way of asking me out and he’s not a douche. He’s a genuinely nice guy who isn’t after everything. But with most guys, they have an ulterior motive. Call it gut instinct because I’ve been a woman my whole life and have had to deal with a barrage of misogyny and sexism, but I just get certain vibes off certain guys. And when it comes to discerning whether or not someone is a creep, I’m rarely ever wrong.

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My gut instinct is as good as Annalise Keating’s

This wouldn’t be Dating and Dickpics without my usual screenshots and naming and shaming of misogynistic males, so here are the spoils of my plunder, so to speak.

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I don’t even know why anyone would think that this is an acceptable opening line to send anyone. Who has ever said, ‘he asked if I wanted a big black sugar daddy and I knew it was love’?!

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As you all know, feminism is a fundamental part of my life. I believe in feminism so much that I’ve even got the word permanently inked into my skin. I shout it from the rooftops and specify that before messaging me, guys should only bother if they identify as a feminist. So why does this asshole think he has a right to bait anyone out. He’s clearly so ignorant that he couldn’t even be bothered to look up the definition of ‘feminist’, which is someone who believes in the equality of all genders. This stuff is actually more infuriating than people who use cheesy lines or blatantly misogynistic slurs. This guy actually wanted to ‘moan’ about feminism to me. Safe to say I blocked his pathetic ass.

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If you needed any more evidence that sexism is alive and kicking online, there you have it. I’m not being funny, but you have to actually meet up with whoever’s pussy you’re going to ‘murder’ and guess what? Being a misogynistic fuckwit means that’s never going to happen! If any murder needs to be done, it’s to you. A nice decapitation of the neck would do.

fuckedupfuckeduptwiceThe above to screenshots make me sick. This guy was seriously so fucked up and triggering. Alongside putting down that I am a feminist, I also ask guys who want kids not to bother contacting me. I always make it explicitly clear because now I’m in my 20s, I feel that anything I get into should be going somewhere and if a guy wants them, we’re not compatible at all. This guy took it to another level. He messaged me saying ‘we would make cute children if we were together’ but I didn’t take the bait. And he couldn’t take that for a hint and kept messaging me one word here or there. I finally snapped and the above is what he sent me. This is unbelievably triggering for me because he was not respecting my boundaries and was actually thinking that it was fine to think about a hypothetical situation would would be a complete violation of my body. After explaining to him how sick and twisted he was, his response was ‘lol relax’. How can I relax when you’ve basically kept insisting that getting me knocked up would be a perfect situation for you? How can anyone who is so child-phobic ‘relax’ after that? I have reported him to the website and I hope they permanently ban him.

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‘Sorry to be that guy’…well actually, you’re not. Because if you were, you wouldn’t have said it in the first place. What you’ve done is just the equivalent of online catcalling so #byefelipe.

Being a woman on the internet and trying to date and find love is fucking exhausting.

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When will the misogyny stop?!

In other news:

  • I got my hair re-coloured and restyled. It’s very Meredith from Grey’s Anatomy before season 12.
  • I’m applying for jobs like they’re going out of fashion.
  • I’m losing all hope in the male population at this rate. Their only potential beacon of light is this guy I’ve been on two dates with.
  • I don’t think ending up alone would be such a bad thing, given the sorry state of guys on dating websites.
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So done

Sexism and Cultural Appropriation: The Real Horrors Of Halloween (CultNoise)

24th October 2015

One of the most globally celebrated holidays is coming up: Halloween. Along with the pumpkins, trick or treating, and general merriment comes a much darker, scarier side, and I’m not talking about ghouls!

The biggest issue with Halloween is the costumes. They’re extremely problematic in so many ways. For some reason, people think cultural appropriation is fine to commit because hey, it’s Halloween! Question yourself with the following: is this part of my culture or heritage? Has this ethnic group been oppressed? If it’s not your culture and that culture has been oppressed, do not do it. The most common faux pas (which is an understatement) is people dressing up in knock off Native American costumes. Native Americans have been systematically oppressed, and are still raped and murdered disproportionately to their population size. They have been oppressed for centuries for celebrating and protecting their own culture, and when you  wear an imitation of their culture as a costume it is highly disrespectful. They are still being persecuted for their culture but, because you’re not a Native American yourself, you will never understand what it is like to be persecuted for your way of life.

No culture is a costume. No culture is a fashion accessory. You cannot cherry-pick parts of a culture for a costume, and yet when someone of that culture goes out in traditional dress, you are the first to look at them in disgust. Halloween is for make-believe and scary stuff, and if you’re appropriating another culture through your costume, you’re making a real nightmare come true.

Another grievance I have with Halloween is costumes for females. Everywhere you go, there is a stark difference between the male version of costumes and the female version of costumes. The difference? The amount of fabric and the fact that it’s always a ‘sexy’ costume for women, but not for men. If, for example, you want to go as a police officer or a soldier but you’re a woman, you’re lucky if it covers your boobs and your bum. I can assure you, the words ‘sexy’ or ‘hot’ will be printed on the packaging of the costume to assure you that you must be sexualised whilst dressing up for a holiday. Can the same be said for the male equivalent costumes? No. Every single female-targeted Halloween costume is sexualised, whereas none of the male costumes are (unless you’re going to don a mankini).

Believe it or not, women and girls want to dress up in a costume and just enjoy themselves. We don’t want to be sexualised for no reason. I am all for women dressing sexy and going for those costumes, but these ‘sexy’ costumes shouldn’t be the only option available if you are a woman. It’s becoming increasingly hard to find non-sexualised female costumes for Halloween. Why are women treated as an object for male consumption for Halloween? Why can’t we go out and enjoy Halloween without being sexualised in an unwanted way?

The real horror of Halloween is not the superstitions and gore that come along with it. The real horror is the costumes that are marketed to people. They are full of cultural appropriation and sexism.