12 things all men should do to make women feel more comfortable on dates
In this #MeToo and Time's Up era that we're living in, an increased spotlight has been put on women and their experiences of sexual harassment and assault - in the workplace and beyond. And it's about time. For far too long, influential figures (Harvey Weinstein, Kevin Spacey, Brett Ratner, Louis CK... the list goes on) have abused their power within a system that has enabled them to repeatedly do so.
But while such large movements are necessary to galvanise change in historically regressive fields such as the entertainment industry, it's evident that the everyday sexism that women face in their interactions with men - whether they be romantic interests or figures of authority - are very much entrenched. Certainly, if you're a woman, chances are that you had to contend with cat-calling, inappropriate touching and sexual harassment at least once during the course of your lifetime.
And while we have much greater battles to wage, it's clear that some men can't even grasp the basics: how to make women feel comfortable on dates. Luckily, we live in an age where the heaving forum that is the internet is readily accessible, and so here are 10 women from Reddit revealing what men can do on dates to make women feel at ease and respected...
1. Meet somewhere public
"If you're the one who chooses the location, pick somewhere public. If she chooses the location, do not throw a temper tantrum when she picks somewhere public. All too often, when a woman meets a man for a first date somewhere private, bad things can happen - and if they do, she'll be blamed for it, because, 'she should have known better'."
2. Don't overly embellish your dating profile
"Look like your profile picture. Yes, that older, prettier picture of yourself in college technically still you, but that's not what you look like now. Related: don't lie about your height. If you're willing to lie about something as immediately obvious as your appearance, what else are you willing to lie about?"
3. Don't ask overly intimate questions
"Avoid highly-personal questions and topics of conversation on the first date. I can't imagine that there are a lot of people who want to talk about your d*ck, your fetishes, their fetishes, or your medical history on the first date."
4. Pay the right kind of compliments
"If you want to compliment her, try to stick with complimenting things that she's made a choice about. To a lot of people, 'That dress really looks amazing on you,' rings as less objectifying (and therefore less creepy) than, 'Your body is amazing'".
5. This should be obvious
"Arrive on time, looking presentable and smelling clean."
6. So should this...
"Do not spend all night talking about yourself. Ask her questions."
7. Respect her boundaries