It was designed to be a way for women to express some of the toxic things they faced every day – from mansplaining to unwanted advances – and give guys a heads up on what constituted bad behavior.
Of course, just like everything else on the Internet, it went sideways quickly.
People assumed all women were complaining about all men and lumping them into the same category. It was called sexist. Things got cruel. Women were called even worse names than usual. And, of course, some women also took it as an opportunity to be cruel right back.
As one might expect, there were response hashtags calling out women too.
But the real point of the exercise was to be informative and we’ve gathered some of the tweets that came of it, for better or for worse. And as long as you don’t take offense to it immediately, you might end up learning something.
Here are a few dozen things women don’t want from men:
But jokes aside, being yelled at on the street is scary (and we have good reason to be afraid even if we ignore it). Being told by complete strangers how we look is off-putting (even if it’s a so-called “compliment”).
Just don’t do it.
2. More bystanders
Some of the backlash against movements like #metoo has been about how women have made it hard for men to figure out what’s ok and what’s not.
So let’s make it simple – keep your hands to yourself, don’t talk about our looks at work, and help put a stop to it among your buddies. Get mad at them, not the women they harass.
3. Implying fatherhood is a favor
It’s natural for moms to get frustrated when their partners call their basic parental duties a chore (or “job”).
No one gets paid for taking care of their own children. You’re not getting a parade or a prize for it any time soon.
4. A “free” lecture
If you’ve noticed that you’ve droned on and on without hearing more than an “uh-huh” from your conversation partner for a few minutes, chances are it’s time to be quiet.
And contrary to popular belief, we don’t need things explained to us just because someone knows something about them.
Women often know the answer, believe it or not. And if they didn’t ask to begin with, try reading the room to see if your soliloquy is being appreciated.
5. To be told they don’t understand
You can’t expect a woman to have the same read on a situation as a man does 100% of the time – but that doesn’t mean she’s lacking information.
Try taking an interest in her side.
6. Workplace inequality
How is that offensive? (Don’t ask, because some people found it plenty offensive for some inexplicable reason).
7. Sexual assault
Just don’t grab us anywhere – does that help with the confusion?
And don’t make jokes about women being sexually assaulted – that only serves to normalize it.
8. An invitation to smile
It’s quite another to meander down the bar and say it to a complete stranger. And telling someone to smile is a really odd request if you think about it.
How would you like it if you were trying to have a moment to yourself or just get some work done and someone told you to contort your face the way they like to see it?
9. To be told how to live
Telling women whether or when to have kids, how to do their jobs, what goals they should aspire to, etc. is just demeaning.
Of course not all men do this, but there are plenty of people who patronize women and it needs to stop. Is that really asking too much?
We can all lose control of our emotions sometimes and we should all do better to keep them in check. But don’t pin that trait on women alone.
11. A wandering eye
It’s the gawking, comparing, and disrespect is the problem, especially if you’re already partnered. And, yes, same goes for women (obviously).
12. Denied leadership
It shouldn’t be too much to ask to even it out – and that goes for the highest levels of office as well.
No one deserves to get elected because they are a woman. But they certainly don’t deserve to be denied a vote because of their gender.
13. Tax fraud
Instead of feeling like women are accusing all men of this, just agree this guy is a jerk and let’s all move on.
14. To be compared to porn
Good luck with that.
If women want to remove their body hair, that’s their decision. But exptecting a grown woman to be hairless from the neck down is pretty absurd – and yes, the only people who are naturally like that are children, so it does tend to creep some of us out.
15. To be spoken over
No one should do it.
But just because men can say “well women do this too” doesn’t mean they should ignore the advice.
17. A violent reaction to rejection
Chances are we’ve already dealt with some bad reactions to saying no and there’s no way to predict it, so this one is important for men to hear.
If you think it isn’t true, just look at any woman who argues with a man online and see the names she’s called. Now imagine that in real life and combine it with the hundreds of stories a year we here about violence against women.
The fear is real, even if you think it’s unfounded and ridiculous.
18. Implying responsibilities are favors
There’s no such thing as “women’s work” unless you live in the dark ages, so we all have to do our part.
19. A play-by-play – of a thing they witnessed
Just try giving women the floor once in a while and understand that we don’t need an entire lecture on your take of the events all the time.
Self-awareness is key for everyone.
20. Unsolicited advice
But every now and then a guy nails it.
We just hope Jeff took his own advice.
21. Your ideas about the end of feminism
Feminism isn’t some radical idea, it’s just a basic call for humanity towards all people, regardless of gender.
Don’t tell women they can’t band together to make the world a safer and fairer place – otherwise you’re just proving that it’s not.
22. To be left out of discussions about women
Sure, men can be experts on women’s health because that’s their area of knowledge, but if you saw a group of women talking about what’s best for men, wouldn’t you feel something was off?
The fact that the hashtag got so much blowback from some men was proof of that!
23. Breathtaking hypocrisy
Women tend to be more outwardly emotional. But has that really provided us with the world we want to live in?
Are things ideal the way they are now?
24. Appliances as gifts
Plenty of guys looked at the hashtag because it popped up right before Christmas and were hoping to see what not to get their wives and girlfriends for the holidays – so this one gave them a good warning.
25. The insanity of taking Twitter so seriously
The inability to just ignore or move on from something that bothers you says more about you than it does about anything or anyone else.
26. Bad pickup lines
Yes, it’s intimidating to introduce yourself to someone (and yes, even more so since women are not always receptive to being talked to). But if you’re working on your pickup lines, you really need to put your efforts elsewhere.
27. Dirty laundry, literal or figurative
Just do it yourself.
The worst thing a guy can do is get mad at a woman who says this.
29. Dick pics
We’re almost always perplexed by a man’s willingness to send one. Isn’t that kind of dangerous from a personal privacy standpoint too?
Just keep your phone out of your pants.
30. Mandatory conversation
If a woman ignores you or passes on the conversation you’re offering up, just chill. It’s not worth getting upset about.
31. Weird gifts
Just save your money.
And he brings the truth.
33. A lack of basic bathroom etiquette
The bathroom is for everyone, so maybe just leave it the way you found it. Mmkay?
If she tries and fails, then so be it.
Do you really want to be told you can’t do something? It’s a rude thing to say. Just keep it in your head.
35. Instructions on how to use their bodies
We’ll go ahead and make our own rules for them as well.
Everyone is entitled to their opinion, but forcing it on others is a whole other matter.
36. A Peleton bike
We kind of wonder how many of those actually sold this past Christmas.
It’s always safest to avoid buying exercise equipment for your parnter unless they specifically ask for it.
37. To be treated “like a girl”
We hope this woman fired her maintenance man that very minute.
38. To hear bragging
But just because some people are materialistic doesn’t mean you have an invitation to share all of this information unprovoked.
You can charter a jet? Cool. Charter is right out of here, please.
This one goes both ways.