Last week was hard, for reasons that have nothing to do with detransition. I found out that the comedian who creeped on me in the fall, and whose friend called me hysterical, sexually assaulted a younger female comedian. There’s always this “well we weren’t there so who’s to say what happened” thing you have to do when a woman tells you a dude sexually assaulted her, and then there’s the “well if he was drunk maybe he thought this was an appropriate time to whip out his rough sex skills” thing and you know, screw it. He shouldn’t have been making out with another woman while he has a girlfriend. He shouldn’t be getting rough with women he’s making out with for the first time. He shouldn’t be making out with women who are a lot drunker than him.
Like, you can put in the work to let him off the hook in all different kinds of ways if letting him off the hook is important to you. But since I’ve had a moment in my life where I was in a dark room with him and freaked out about the boundaries he felt comfortable crossing, and since I’ve been through having him and his buddy collaborate on making me feel crazy, I’m not inclined to let him off any hooks at all.
I’ve known this guy for a decade. He’s in his mid-thirties. If you haven’t figured out that you don’t get rough with girls who are drunker than you making out with you for the first time by your mid-thirties because HEY it might SCARE THE SHIT OUT OF THEM then you have reached a level of stupidity that might as well be malice. He knows what he’s doing. Also, how about this amazing girlfriend he has who he’s made this agreement of monogamy with?
I’ve known this dude for a decade. There are about 6 dudes who I’ve known for a decade because they were around my first year doing comedy. I swear, rather than growing up and losing bad habits, those guys have taken on the worst habits. They’ve all become worse people. Their treatment of women has gotten worse. The more success they’ve gotten the more they treat other people like they don’t matter.
It’s been so weird to watch. I used to seriously call these men my brothers. That was a thing I really loved when I was transitioning, this idea that I had these bros, that we had some kind of bond forged from the time doing comedy together. Now I literally warn women not to drink around them.
I guess it’s just about out-growing people you had illusions about. I guess it’s just about seeing people from your past more clearly. I can’t believe I let this group of dudes ever give me feedback about anything. About my comedy, about my relationships, about what I should let bother me and what I should learn how to ignore. I can’t believe I thought I had anything to learn from them. I can’t believe I felt any kinship with them.
It’s weird to realize you respected people you shouldn’t have. It’s weird to look at the past and think, “Wait I should have been way more upset, not less!” It’s weird to feel such disgust with people. That’s all I can feel about these 6 dudes- complete disgust. They’re not young men. They’re cooked. The growth process is over. They’re the adults they’re going to be. They’re just adults who have a terrible effect on the world.
I hope if I ever have a son I never feel this way about him. I hope he has not one thing in common with these men. I hope he doesn’t have the same ambitions, I hope he doesn’t have the same insecurities, I hope he doesn’t have whatever strange void inside of a person that drives this kind of power trip nuttiness. I hope he thinks about how he affects people and takes pride in having a positive effect on people. I hope he thinks hard about how to lead people to be better versions of themselves. I hope he thinks hard about how to develop leadership in other people. I hope he treats other people’s bodies as sacred, and his own body as sacred too.
I hope when he finds out other men are shitting on the world he tries to stop them. I hope he doesn’t for one second think shitting on the world is natural male behavior. I hope he never thinks the right to shit on other people is something you get for being a big fish in a small pond.
I’m not raising a man like that. Ever. Period. No one who enters the world through this particular vaginal canal ever gets to be such a shithead. Ooooh, folks, the shitheads I have known. The Shitheads of Cleveland, Ohio. That’s the title of the memoir. The subtitle is : They’re Really Something. And the cover is a picture of a steaming pile of crap in front of a brick wall with a spotlight and a microphone.