Forget About Chivalry, Where Is the Respect?

Women spend a lot of time mourning the death of chivalry. And, in my opinion, this is rightly so.  At the same time, there’s an even bigger problem. We are not only throwing in the towel on chivalry and expecting very little but are also exacerbating things by enabling men to completely discard R-E-S-P-E-C-T too.

(If you’re one of the folks looking for sex, not relationships, you’re going to disagree with the rest of this post so close out now.)

Without respect, who even cares about chivalry?





I could offer up so many examples regarding the demise of respect but will share a few that are currently top of mind for me right now.

New Etiquette Rules

With the advent of so many different communication alternatives, guys have begun a siege on texting, instant messaging, and email. Instead of saying they want to talk on the phone, they’ve begun sharing their phone numbers so that their craving for instant gratification may be quenched without fear of rejection and without attempts at actual speaking. And, in the world of online dating, whole relationships can begin and end before two people have even heard one another’s voices.

One guy kept texting me:

I want you.

Really? We’ve never met, I’ve let him know that I’m more of the refined variety relative to him, but this is what I get? When I didn’t comment, he brought it up again. I told him that it didn’t warrant a response as we weren’t at a place where it was appropriate. He said:

Get your head out of the gutter. I didn’t mean it like that.

Oh, ok. Lovely.

So, it’s a special day when a guy actually takes the time and makes an effort to engage in a telephone conversation. But, in this new world where respect is no more, that isn’t always a good thing. A friend of mine is back on the dating scene after a twenty-five year marriage and asked,

During one of our first phone calls, he asked me what turned me on. It made me uncomfortable so I let him know. I haven’t heard back from him.

She was concerned that she had turned him off by being honest. Why is it bad that she was sharing her feelings? Why was it ok for him to try to get her to talk sexy before they’ve ever met. In the spirit of full disclosure, I’ve been out with that same guy. It has been a while and she asked me if I knew him when he originally got in touch with her. He and I only went out a few times. No big deal. But, he was a gentleman. With me. And, now he’s asking about turn-ons? Ugh!

 My Dream Email

I feel guilty not spending more time setting this one up. Maybe I’ll come back and explain how one of his initial emails explained (referring to his level of religious observance) that

it’s cute and circumcised and all…

I explained to him (via email) that I wasn’t his girl but would be happy to explain why that might be. I expressed to him that someone who is discussing his penis in the second email isn’t my guy but that there are girls out there who might find that cute. He told me that his goal had been to see how I would react… and now he knew. Later that day, he realized that he would actually like to date me and began the process of apologizing for his earlier transgressions.

Stupid me. I gave him another chance. And, just as I was trying to figure out when I would have a night open for him to come to town, I got this email:


I want to spend the night. I can be there by the time you get home from your date.

We can eat brunch and I can leave.

Light petting and kissing are desired and talking will completely be up to you since my stay might overlap your quiet time.

Date, time, and length of visit are flexible and fully adjustable to accommodate your active schedule.

I think your special and I like thinking about you all the time. Soon, I will actually play with your kitty and Abby too :).


Let me point out that my cat’s name is Abbie and that my kitty that he is referring to is not a cat. I didn’t even notice that part initially as I was incensed that he wanted to spend the night AS the first date. I let him know that was inappropriate and unbelievable. No response. I began to worry that he was going to show up on my doorstep unannounced. Who else would be that rude and presumptuous?

Two weeks passed and I received this text:

I’ve been thinking about you

It took everything I had not to reply. I desperately wanted to give him a piece of my mind.

Instead, I decided to recognize that, while I’ve been pretty lucky and have had annoying, miserable, ridiculous dates, most guys haven’t been this bad. Thank goodness.

And, why aren’t their mamas teaching them how to respect?

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