When a man with power becomes a hunter of women

Article en français ici
Artikel in het Nederlands hier

Beware: sensitive subject.
But also very ordinary and vulgar.


Not long ago, I got contacted by a man whom one can consider a public figure, and who therefore has a certain degree of power and influence.

As I had just posted another article about homeless people I was quite happy with the unexpected attention. This man just had to be a good person! However, I quickly noticed he barely knew about my projects. But he insisted: “I would really like to meet you.” When I asked him for the reason why, I never got a clear answer – just vague declarations about my commitment and my pretty profile pic.

Nevertheless, my curiosity had been piqued. There had to be a reason, so I agreed to go for coffee. It was pleasant, but there was always this little voice mumbling something about hidden agendas. And did he have one! Married, of course. And very reckless: soon my inbox would be full of messages, even though I had told him in an early stage that I had no interest in being a ‘piece on the side’.

And yet, things did go out of hand, and the lack of respect became obvious. Messages became pushier, and focussed on the presumed contents of his pants. I cut off all contacts. There is something tragical about middle aged men who blindly hunt after women; it’s like the announcement of a life long failure. Despite the apparent signs of worldly success, their acts show a total lack of depth or even sense.

So yes, he was looking for an accomplice, he said. A nice way of saying ‘an extra-marital relationship and dumpster for all your domestically forbidden fantasies’. Be careful with people who look for accomplices, as they can do you harm, especially when they have power and plan on using it. They know that women still have a socially weaker position, and that single moms struggle to make ends meet. They also know that we too would love some recognition for our talents. But what we want most is to be loved and respected, and this is the least of their worries. In fact, they do not even try to get to know us a bit. In any case, their power, or so they think, make them irrisistible in our Bambi eyes.

Do we keep being fooled? Us, women who strive to exist and be respected above and despite the guy’s politically correct feminist babble that barely hides a deeply rooted machismo? Do we chose not to see that all they want is to bring us down, on the floor, us independent, complex, spiritual, intelligent and therefore beautiful women? Face it: all they keep seeing is a nice piece of meat.

Come on! I have been there, a long time ago, while in a weak position as I was asking for help. I have been through real abuse in the framework of religion (“You are my little secret. And if you don’t agree, I will excommunicate you!”). It still makes me sick to think of it, years after the facts. And yet, I thought that one day I’d laugh about it. The truth is that even if the woman in a vulnerable position may seem to agree on being abused, it remains abuse. Ask her if she would have done it had he not been her boss (or any other man who might have an influence on her destiny), and she will say “No!”. In a relationship with power, there is no ‘free consent’. Instead, what we have here is an insidious form of rape, as it touches her in the heart of what makes her vulnerable: professional or other precarity, spiritual quest, health problems…

Today I am fine, well armed and surrounded, and what I would like here is to warn those women who do not immediately detect the machinery of the hunter-abuser, the man who will not hesitate to use his power and pretty words to turn her into a wanking tool, a good lay in between two meetings. Face it: this predator does not have an ounce of respect for the woman she really is.

Recently, the media lifted the taboo on street harassment in Brussels and we have read the shared stories on Hollaback! Brussels. Great work. Now let’s talk about the white-collar harrasser, the man with the nice office and the good manners. He is harder to recognize, but it is all the more necessary to learn to do so – in an early stage.

For you, women who have been abused by your shrink, doctor, professor, guru, politician, rabbi, employer, landlord, imam or husband: get out of there. Love yourself above all. Let them wander without you. Even if in a weak moment you may hesitate, do realize there is nothing to win. They are the ones who are lost, and all they want to do is suck you up in their confusion, because it is with your energy that they feed themselves. It is not love, it is an addiction. They want to be drugged out by the adrenaline of chasing women, running from the emptiness inside. Until there is not much left of your beautiful energy.

Say ‘NO’.

Marlene

If you are a victim of abuse: speak to a trustworthy person or your doctor. Do not stay alone. You are not the one who should be ashamed.

- Article published on Hollaback Brussels
- Article referred to on Hollaback worldwide

15 thoughts on “When a man with power becomes a hunter of women

  1. Pingback: Quand l’homme au pouvoir devient chasseur de femmes | Brusselsislove's Blog

    • Thank you Rony.. you shouldn’t! Women can be pretty ‘embarrassing’ too you know. I think basically we are in the same boat, and when the unhappiness of a man with power mirrors the unhappiness of a vulnerable woman, only more pain is created. We should all re-educate ourselves, and become more aware of what we are doing to each other, and, most of all: to ourselves!

  2. Yes many are out there who are just waiting to prey upon their next victim. .. Before my blog transferred to WP my blog was on Windows Live.. unfortunately many of my friends on there were targeted on their blogs to such Hunters of Women,..
    Women Beware… and yes say NO!!..
    Excellent post..
    Sue Dreamwalker

    • thank you, Sue! I did not know that predators also searched for preys in the blog world. Just say ‘NO’ as soon as it starts to feel weird is the only solution. Trouble is, when women are in vulnerable positions (work, health care, politics, spirituality) it gets much harder, as there is no real freedom there. Anyhoodles, keep up the good work!

  3. Pingback: When a man with power becomes a hunter of women | Aider les sans-abris: pourquoi rien ne marche (et pourtant). | Scoop.it

  4. Pingback: Met man en macht op vrouwenjacht? | Brusselsislove's Blog

  5. Pingback: When a man with power becomes a hunter of women. | Hollaback! Brussels

  6. Pingback: Week in Our Shoes: DEAR JOHN EDITION | Hollaback! You have the power to end street harassment

  7. Pingback: Hollaback! Brussels speaks in front of the EU Parliament about street harassment! And so much more. | Hollaback! You have the power to end street harassment

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s