Dudefile #99 – He Talks About Other Girls in Front of Me

Hey DW,

My boyfriend of almost 1 year has this habit of talking about other girls in front of me. Whether it’s about situations from the past or in a “joking” manner, I find it disrespectful.

Most recently, he talked to a friend about his old job working at a deli while I was in the car. He said how he hated when, “a hot woman would come to the counter and asked for shaved meat, and he would say, “Yeah, I beat you do,”” (referring to a sexually explicit joke). When he turned around and saw me staring out the window, he said “I’m sorry, baby, but I’m a guy.”

Later, after his friend left, he apologized, seeing that I wasn’t amused by it, and said, “I meant the older hot women that came in, not anyone your age,” like that was supposed to make me feel so much better. He makes says crap like this all the time and doesn’t see how it bothers me making excuses like 1, “I’m a guy,” 2, “It was harmless/It was a joke,” or 3, “I told you to cover your ears.”

I find this disrespectful because he doesn’t even wait until I’m not around. If he says crap like this with me next to him, I can’t even imagine what the hell he says when I’m not around. Maybe it bothers me even more because I NEVER say anything remotely close to the rude/crude/and ungentlemanly like things he says, and woman are just as capable. I’m a young woman who doesn’t want to be attached to someone who acts that way, nor do I think I deserve it.

Am I overreacting? Should he get several “free passes” to say whatever he feels, because he’s a male?

Thanks for any advice you have,



Hi A,

Were you really expecting the DW to say, “Why yes! You should give your dude several free passes to say whatever he wants because he’s a male!” Come on, now. The DW’s way too sensitive for that, sugartits

Ah, but that doesn’t mean the DW is going to take the bait of completely siding with you, either. Mainly because your question isn’t really the one you should be asking.

Look, this situation with Captain Deli Meat isn’t about what dudes are allowed to say because they have dingdongs or what women are supposed to grin and bear because they have hoohoos. It’s not about whether your boyfriend has a seventh grade sense of humor, tells misogynistic jokes as an insecurity reflex, or is simply a bit of a meathead. It’s not about turning the situation back to you and wondering if you took a dipshitty ironic joke out of context, have a rather Victorian sensibility that is offended by any passing acknowledgement that other women exist, or are simply a little pouty and precious by force of habit. Whichever, if any, of these things is true is irrelevant. There is no point in unwinding this string any further. The answers don’t matter.

What this is about is you and this dude being wildly and spectacularly incompatible. The fact is, if you are, as you say, a woman who does not want to be attached to someone like this dude, by all means un-attach yourself. Because he’s not only like this dude, he is this dude. Exactly this dude. Is now. Has been for a year. Always will be. Your issue isn’t with a joke he made, it’s with how he is in a much more fundamental sense.

Who is “right” or “wrong” about a hacky meat joke that the DW, frankly, doesn’t even really get, couldn’t matter less if you don’t like him, in general, as a person. And these things always run both ways. If you think your dude looks forward to having you frown him to death in front of his friends or constantly apologizing when he doesn’t really mean it, then the divide is even larger than the DW suspected.

Hey, it’s okay to have something not work out. It’s not wasted time. Everybody has a relationship or two or thirteen that goes sideways at some point. You learn, you move on, you hope to do a little better next time.

Here’s to listening to your own words and finding a gentleman who doesn’t bother you.


the DW 

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2 Responses to Dudefile #99 – He Talks About Other Girls in Front of Me

  1. misswells says:

    The dude is getting all fake-apologetic just because she’s looking out the window instead of laughing uproariously at his joke? (I don’t get it either) Sounds to me like he’s doing it on purpose, either because he wants attention or he’s trying to piss her off so she’ll dump him. Not that it matters which one — she should dump him either way.

  2. Wendy says:

    DW, what happened to you?

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