I’m going to jump right in because I just woke up and I’m pissed.
A person has the right to control who touches their body. That’s it. No arguments. No excuses. No buts.
I am freaking sick of feeling like I have to be polite when someone who makes me extremely uncomfortable touches me.
A guy I know makes me extremely uncomfortable. He’s in our church (so I see him regularly), he’s married and for years he has paid extra attention to me and tried to befriend my husband and I (he really wants to be my husband’s friend). He has kind of a simple mind, I don’t know how else to put it. He may be mentally challenged a little? Is that the correct term? He’s very immature and it shows in many ways. I won’t get into the reasons we don’t want to be friends. It’s his personality not his limitations.
He married a woman who is absolutely mentally challenged and I mean that literally, like medically, psychologically and emotionally. Like, I wish someone had stopped her back then by getting power of attorney over her. It’s…not good.
I’m not going into their relationship. The point is that this guy will not give up. With my husband he tries to bond over the one thing they both like, a movie series. That’s it. He can’t talk about anything else, he’s obsessed with it. But it’s like a kid who likes a TV show when they’re young and they can only talk to grownups about their favorite show nothing else.
With me his interactions are different though. He talks to me about two things: my cats and my clothes. Sometimes the movie comes up but not as often.
We’re going to talk about him and what I’m wearing. Most people who like your outfit will simply say they like it. Not this guy. He always says he likes my outfit, like always. But he doesn’t just say it. He reaches out and touches my clothes. Yeah. The last time he ran his finger over my arm while commenting on my top. Uh uh.
There’s a respect between genders among us that keeps things really appropriate. Like, men and women hug (IF WE’RE FRIENDS AND THAT’S HOW WE ARE TOGETHER)and are buddies and we hang out etc but we don’t cross these commonsense lines. No other guy I know would ever, ever stroke my arm. I have a bunch of guy friends and we hug but they wouldn’t do that, do you get what I mean about the difference? Hell I would never do that either.
Married or single it doesn’t matter. And where we are has nothing to do with it. If a guy came up to you, said he liked your sweater and then stroked his finger over your arm, what would you think!? How would you feel? It wouldn’t be normal. If you were into each other maybe you’d feel different.
Anyway, this guy pulled that stunt about two or three weeks ago and it’s still eating at me.
I talked to my therapist obviously and yeah, it’s not okay that some guy is touching me again in a way I don’t like!
The problem is that since he doesn’t touch me every time, it throws me when he does and I don’t know what to say. At times I’ve gotten really distant with him afterwards, like I go the other direction if I see him, I keep my face stony and if he tries to talk to me I give a very terse answer and refuse to even look at him so he go away.
Inevitably though after time passes, even months, I feel rude and try to be polite again and the cycle repeats.
My therapist stated that I’ve got to stop him, even if it embarrasses him.
Now that’s interesting. Not wanting to embarrass him is what’s stopped me from firmly telling him to never touch me again.
How many times do women put up with behavior that makes them uncomfortable because they don’t want to “cause a scene” or embarrass someone? A lot.
I just woke up from dreaming about this guy being in my house and making me uncomfortable. How jacked is that!? It’s bothering me in my dreams!!!!
I have to finally decide that I’m going to say something and DO IT! What I’m going to say I don’t know. My therapist was, of course, right to the point, no prevarication. Tell him, don’t touch me. Ha! That’s WAY harder than it should be. Why is that????
It should be easy to tell someone “don’t touch me!”
I couldn’t say that when I was a kid.
Kids have no rights over their bodies. If an adult wants to hug them, pick them up, sit them on their lap, the child can’t say no. They’re expected to do it and they would be considered rude if they resisted. A parent would see the child squirm or push away and tell them to ‘stop being rude and hug Aunt so-and-so’.
What if a child is too young to fully understand how those actions or that person makes them feel? They know they don’t like it but they don’t know why? How do they tell an adult?
What if the adults aren’t bad people but the child simply isn’t a “hugger”? It’s ok to not like hugging people. But kids don’t have the right to say they don’t want to hug. Only adults can decide that.
Things have progressed a tiny bit because kids are educated to tell if someone does something wrong but it shouldn’t have to be that extreme. Children shouldn’t have to touch or be touched by anyone if they don’t want to.
I have the right to decide who touches me. I have the right to tell them to stop and to never touch me again. It isn’t being dramatic. It’s not being a bitch. It’s not rude. It’s my body. Mine.
I will probably see the guy tonight and if he reaches out I’ve got to slap him down firmly and not dance around it or make it a joke to make it softer. My instinct is to make a joke like, wow what’s with you and touching my clothes haha? Uh uh. That’s no good and he may not get what I’m really saying.
Arrrrrgh!!!! Guys!!!!!! Ugh!!!!! Help me!
I hate this crap but I’ll be damned if I let this dude creep me out in my dreams!
If you could hear the annoyed, exasperated sounds I’m making right now…