From I Once Had A Guy Tell Me:
I never really got much attention from guys in high school. They either made fun of me or just ignored me. When I started college,I started getting catcalled a lot on the street. I told my best guy friend that it made me uncomfortable and his response was was,”Why? Shouldn’t you be happy that guys are finally paying attention to you?”
There’s a premise in that statement, and it’s ugly.
You see, we don’t (need to) seek attention from people who we see as equals. If we are equals, we pay attention to each other. Or we don’t. It’s not a big deal either way, unless we’ve a preexisting connection. The people we (need to) seek attention from? Are those who, in one sense or another, have a higher social status than us.
If I need to talk to my boss, I make an appointment. If my boss needs to talk to me, they just pop over to my desk and say hey.
The idea that women should always be happy if men pay attention to us, regardless of who those men are? Would be utterly meaningless if we were seen as equal.
It’s a little icky.