I’m thinking of leaving a job I love because of a man I loathe. In the midst of all this #MeToo madness, his offenses feel like small potatoes — he has never overtly hit on me or said anything glaringly inappropriate, but I can’t get past the creeping feeling that my stagnation in this job is a result of my unwillingness to flirt with him. To make matters worse, there is a woman who I work with who does openly flirt with him, and as a result she has now risen above me professionally, even though I have been with the company longer. I know I can’t judge her for her willingness to “play the game”, I know I did it when I was younger, but how do I manage my bitterness toward her, my bitterness toward him, and really my bitterness toward the whole damn world?
I did it when I was younger too. We all have done it. We’ve batted our eyelashes, left the top button undone, hiked up our skirts, laid down on the desk (or the casting couch), spread our legs, opened our mouths, sucked, fucked, and done literally whatever we thought we had to do, for the mere possibility of a place at the table. It was not right, but we did it because it was what we were told we had to do.
Yes, the #MeToo movement is madness. It is messy, necessary, madness. Our collective shame is being ripped out of us and put on display like an infant being torn from our wombs. It is bloody, chaotic, excruciating, and powerful AF.
The good news my sweet Bitter Pill, is that there’s no such thing as small potatoes right now. In this movement, the potatoes are ALL fucking enormous. We are abolishing the hierarchy of patriarchal offenses in exchange for the opportunity to tear down the entire system, and no one gets a pass. The man who you work with may not be grabbing your pu$$y, or making you watch him yank his shriveled little wang (I gotta assume Louis isn’t packin’ much), but he is participating in the perpetuation of a system that allows women to believe (accurately) that our success is staked not on what is in our heads and our hearts, but on what we can do to their knobs.
I understand why you would be angry with the young woman who is “playing the game” and I am proud of you for not flirting with this nasty garbage man. He is trash and you are a queen and you should not let his filth near your royal fuckin’ robes. What your flirty coworker is doing is extremely frustrating. She is not honoring herself in her actions, and I’m sure that deep down she knows it. I am also sure that, deep down, you know that she is doing what she has been told her entire life is the only thing she can do, if she wants to get ahead in a world that was not made for her, or you, or me.
I wish you didn’t feel like you have to leave this job that you love, and I am so sorry that it has built to the point where you feel this way. I would like to encourage you to stay, especially right now, when the world is actually listening to women (for the first damn time!). For too long women have been walking away from their own success, in favor of a path with fewer dicks (literally) in their way, but as the old saying goes: “the road to success is paved with flaccid penises”.
That’s a saying right? People say that. Nope? Ok, well I’m saying it.
THE ROAD TO SUCCESS IS PAVED WITH FLACCID PENISES! And sometimes you have to stomp on a few mushy dicks, to climb your way to the top. You should stay, and stomp on those dicks. Fight like hell for the appreciation and professional recognition you deserve. Use what’s in your head and your heart, to be so fucking good at your job that it will be embarrassing to him when his boss (because everyone has a boss) asks why you haven’t been promoted. I hate that you’ll have to work harder than your flirty coworker. I hate that you probably already work harder than this garbage dump of a man. I hate that this whole fucking world exists as it does, but I also, oddly enough, feel excited and hopeful in this moment too…
I am excited that this young woman in your workplace will get to watch you succeed through hard work and determination – that will be good for her, and may even inspire her to choose a path where she stomps on the dicks, instead of them stomping on her. I’m also hopeful that we’re finally nearing a point where this patriarchal bullshit isn’t tolerated anymore. Women are saying “enough!”, and you’re a part of that, and that is fucking radical.
Keep working your a$$ off. Get what’s yours. You deserve it, you goddamn queen.
How do I stop giving a fuck?
One with too many fucks
Dear Too Many Fucks,
Go ahead and give your fucks. Giving fucks is an excellent thing, as long as those fucks are given about the right fucking things. Here are some things worth giving fucks about:
Give fucks about the earth. Give fucks about social justice. Give fucks about ending war. Give fucks about news stories that have long since stopped making the front page. Give fucks about people of color. Give fucks about your mother. Give fucks about the economy. Give fucks about gender equity. Give fucks about eating good food. Give fucks about laughing really hard. Give fucks about people no one else gives a fuck about. Give fucks about going to the gym. Give fucks about fucking rosé, because if there was one fucking decent thing this year it was #RoseAllDay. Give fucks about your siblings and your friends. Give fucks about animals. Give fucks about houseplants. Give fucks about sorting your recycling. Give fucks about taking a fucking break when you need it. Give fucks about flossing. Give fucks about the ocean. Give fucks about books. Give fucks about Beyoncé AND Solange. Give fucks about politics. Give fucks about Democracy. Give fucks about HAMILTON! Give fucks about space. Give fucks about Mary Berry and soggy bottoms. Give fucks about taking a vacation. Give fucks about your lover(s). GIVE FUCKS ABOUT YOURSELF! Give fucks about coffee. Give fucks about kindness. Give fucks about your righteous anger. Give fucks about climate change. Give fucks about science. Give fucks about art. Give fucks about knowing history, but like REAL history, not regurgitated white-man’s history. Give fucks about the people you love. Give fucks about the people you don’t love. Give fucks about your life’s work. Give fucks about snow. Give fucks about representation. Give fucks about freedom of the press. Give fucks about peace. Give fucks about love. Give fucks about knowing when something is not worth your fucks.
There are a million more things worth giving your fucks about. Fucks are infinite. Give all your beautiful fucks. I’ll give one of my fucks about you.
Got a question for Ada? Email her: firstname.lastname@example.org