So yesterday was fun. On my way home from the park, some dude charges up to me on the platform and starts asking me why girls "ignore you like that". I thought maybe I'd accidentally hit him with my bag or something, as I had my earbuds jammed in and was busy trying to break into a stubborn bottle of seltzer while I walked so I could take more painkillers, but no. Evidently he'd hit on me at some point in the past, and I didn't give him the answer he wanted. This is totally possible; I ignore guys who hit on me on the T, because that is not what trains are for. I don't want to reward asshat behavior.

I didn't give him the answer he wanted this time, either. I dodged him by not getting on the D train he thought he was following me onto, and called the transit cops in case he came back. Had a nice chat with one of the dudes in the info booth, who turned out to have a brother working homicide out in Phoenix. He told me that if the creepers do anything arrestable but the PD can't lay hands on them immediately, they pull the security footage and post it on the internet, asking if anyone knows who he is, and explaining exactly why they want to have a word with him.

The fact is, 99.9999% of people who hit on me are not going to get the answer they want. I can't speak for all 3.5 billion women in the world -- or even whatever fraction of them is interested in dudes -- but I have very specific taste in men, and the visible aspects are things I can spot from across the room. If I haven't made a beeline for you and started flirting myself, the odds that you are my type are very nearly zero. If you don't take your 'no' gracefully, then the odds are absolutely zero.

I am extremely choosy about my men because I can afford to be. This has nothing to do with my own assessment of my looks or any other way in which other people might consider me a "catch" --although if you have a lot of social capital in this respect, other people do bitch at you less for doing it. The idea is that, the greater overall value you have as a mate, the more suitors you will attract, and the better the chance that they'll be of high quality. Sheer numbers says that the more people you have to pick from, the greater your odds of finding one who fits your entire list of dos and don'ts, and whose list you fit in return. Break up with one, and you're more likely to have another guy of equal or better compatibility with you, lining up to take his chances.

All of these calculations are based on the assumption that the win condition here is "having a long-term mate" and the lose condition is "dying alone in a house full of feral cats and Precious Moments figurines". They fail on me, because I am not playing this game. I can afford to be as picky as I want, because I don't care if I never have a boyfriend again. I am happier without one, in fact. I'm not opposed to dating people or having lovers, but an "intimate/romantic relationship" as defined by most people in my home culture involves me having to devote way more emotional resources to another human being than I have available in total, much less free to give to one specific person. I don't take it well when I'm someone else's sole focus, either. I can and do involve other people in my plans all the time, but I resent the assumption that I will include some specific person in my life plans by default like you would not believe.

People are great, romance is nice, and sex is fun. None of them, individually or in combination, come anywhere close making up for how much I want to claw my own skin off and run when I feel suffocated. I don't even share the bed well -- I can't breathe with someone else wrapped around me, no matter how much I like them when I'm awake. It is an unimaginable source of stress. I smother easy, and I break down hard, so this is not really a difficult call to make.

I have been like this since day one. Even as a little kid, when I imagined "my future", grown-up me lived in a little house all by herself. I am intensely unhappy without any friends, but I have never once been seized by the thought that I had a boyfriend-shaped hole in my life. This has also never bothered me, although for a while it bothered me that I wasn't bothered, if you follow. It started right around the time I figured out that the reason a lot of people thought it was okay to treat me terribly was that they wanted me to turn into someone else, and they thought cruelty would make that happen, and it ended right around the time I decided they could all go to hell.

I vehemently do not want children. I'm apparently good with them, but I have no idea how. I didn't even babysit as a teenager. I am not interested in other humans until they are old enough to have a decent conversation with me. For some people, this is age five; for a lot of people, this is never. When my sister shacked up with my brother-in-law, I made it very very clear to my family that I was not to be listed as emergency legal guardian of any living thing that had less than four legs, ever.

I say all these things to everyone I date. I have broken up with men specifically because they started making noises about wanting to move in or marry me, because that means they didn't fucking listen.

I have spent a large portion of my life fighting with other people to get left alone on this matter, Random Creep. Don't think you're going to be different. I will make a scene when you don't go away. Ordinarily I try not to inconvenience people, but I have no qualms about letting out a horror-movie scream and bringing this entire fucking platform to a screeching halt if I have to. I'm not the one everyone's going to be pissed at if their train gets held for PD.

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