Another label that girls don't relish
Earlier this year, I wrote an article about the word "slut"-what
it means, what its implications are, why some girls are one and some girls
aren't, and it was pretty clear that not many girls relish such a label.
In fact, most girls will do everything possible to ensure that they are not called sluts. However, it has been called to my attention that this sort of behavior, that is, someone trying as hard as she can to not be a slut, often gives a person another derogatory name-tease. So this week I look into this new and exciting world of avoiding sluttiness: WHAT IS A TEASE?
Ramona's friend Carrie is quite a tease. "She's known as a girl
who goes out and flirts hardcore, but never, ever goes home with anyone.
I think it sort of pisses guys off, because they might think they're going
to hook up with her, but chances are, she's not going to do it. I don't
know if she's just really picky or what, but she's definitely got a reputation
as a flirt and a tease."
I went to talk to Carrie herself. "I don't really try to lead these
guys on into thinking that I am going home with them and then not do it,
but maybe it comes across that way. I've dealt with a slutty reputation
before, so to avoid that I try to avoid hooking up with people unless
I actually really like them. I guess I'm a bit of a flirt, though."
So Carrie thinks she's just flirting but Ramona says she's leading guys
on. What's the difference between being a flirt and a tease?
It seems that flirting is general eye contact and smiling; the sort of
thing one reads lessons about in YM. Being a tease, however, involves
a girl flirting to such a degree that the guy she is talking to really
believes something is going to happen, when that isn't her plan at all.
It is obviously a very fine line, varying with every instance and every
girl and guy, but whether it be a revealing shirt combined with arm-touching
or a conversation about sex that lasts for an hour next to a keg, there
are things that a girl can do that give the impression that she wants
to hook up with the guy she's talking to.
Adam despises girls who are teases. "It's just such a power trip
for them. They try to get as many guys as aroused (Adam did not actually
say "aroused" when we spoke, but this is a much more printable
word than the one he did use) as they can so they can think to themselves,
'Oh, all these guys want me.' But it's just [expletive][expletive]. They
don't actually like these guys or even want to hook up with them. They're
so [expletive] insecure and can't handle the thought of actually taking
their clothes off. They just want to feel good about themselves by making
sure they could if they wanted to."
Some girls clearly don't care about the hookup-they just want to feel
wanted. But this can backfire when guys stop liking them because they
know nothing will ever happen. And in all honesty, if a girl leads enough
guys on, how different is that from actually hooking up with them?
As Chuck, who is also fed up with teases, says, "If you're acting
like such a slut, why not just be one?"
Jamie backs him up, "It's so [expletive] annoying. I mean, why is
she wasting my time?"
Clearly, guys are far more excited (no pun intended) about this than
girls are. Carrie defends herself, saying, "There's really no reason
for them to believe I want to hook up with them if we're just talking.
If they really like me, they'll come up to me during the day or ask me
out or something. If not, then at least I've had fun talking. What's the
What I don't think Carrie understands is that by trying so hard not to
be a slut, she is in fact gaining a reputation as a girl who thinks she's
too good to have some fun with just anyone. She comes across as picky
and a bit of a snob, if not worse.
At the same time, her point about guys she really likes pursuing her
is not entirely invalid. Oftentimes a girl is a tease because she is nervous
that the guy she likes will just reject her after a hookup. So she teases
him to test how interested he is. This is not to say that this is a good
idea, but can perhaps serve as a bit of an explanation for you straight
men out there.
So girls, get some self-confidence and go for the guys you want rather than being a tease to see what responses you get. At the same time, guys, you must realize that it is usually insecurity and shyness that causes girls to lead you on. If you think you might like her, ask her out and see what she says, rather than complaining that all she does is talk to you. Who knows, maybe that girl you think is a tease is just looking for a good conversationalist.