What can they say?
Many of us become awkward and self-conscious when we receive compliments from our closest acquaintances and family members, but when those “kind” words come from a stranger, the unsolicited (and often unwelcome) praise can get downright painful.
Many women have experienced compliments with less than virtuous intent, but Feminsta Jones, a feminist author from Philadelphia, put forth a tactic that shifts the power back into your hands and the awkwardness back on the other guy.
Piss a man off today: Tell him you agree with his compliment of you.— W.E.B. DaBaby (@W.E.B. DaBaby) 1494597588.0
Of course, just saying “I know” after being paid a creepy compliment could serve as the sort of “feisty” antagonism that further engages the unwelcome conversationalist, so Jones advises that you temper it with “Thank you.”
"Just say Thank You" they cry, not knowing what to do after a woman agrees with them.— W.E.B. DaBaby (@W.E.B. DaBaby) 1494667038.0
She remarks that the intent of these interactions is often to make the subject respond as the man wishes, so subverting expectations while remaining polite is often the best rebuff a person can offer.
They even complain when you say "Thanks" with a straight face instead of "Thank you" with frilly giggles and fake blushed 😂😂😂😂— W.E.B. DaBaby (@W.E.B. DaBaby) 1494667395.0
She goes further into the logic and her understanding of this common scenario:
I've had SEVERAL men tell me they found "thanks" an offensive reply to a compliment given to a woman 😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂— W.E.B. DaBaby (@W.E.B. DaBaby) 1494667443.0
That goes back to what most women were saying abt their experiences w/this. The expectation's that women should show no self-appreciation— W.E.B. DaBaby (@W.E.B. DaBaby) 1494667622.0
And/or should be overjoyed by a someone (a man) saying something positive about them (that they weren't supposed to know already)— W.E.B. DaBaby (@W.E.B. DaBaby) 1494667676.0
Men as teachers. Men as validation. Men as approval. Men as decision-makers of what is "hot". Men as arbiters of praise. Men in control.— W.E.B. DaBaby (@W.E.B. DaBaby) 1494667738.0
Other Twitter users were quick to chime in with the most egregious examples of this phenomenon, all memorialized in writing, demonstrating that the tactic works just as well in the virtual world as it does in the real one.
@FeministaJones old but still relevant https://t.co/PFim8UAXQN— alex (@alex) 1494625520.0
Why can’t these guys just be happy that you like the same things about yourself that they do?