23 Things Men Can Do Rather Than Confront Their Friends Who Habitually Disrespect and Abuse Women
Are you a man? Do you have a friend who is also a man who seems to have a lot of what he calls “crazy” ex-girlfriends? Say no more, my guy — those exes definitely are all crazy, and he did absolutely nothing to make them that way.
…Or did he?
Lately, you’re beginning to wonder. Maybe, you’ve known him several years, and you’ve seen the same things happen a few times — nasty breakups, messy affairs that led to said breakups, etc. — and you’re a little worried. You’re thinking about finally staging an intervention: not in an intimidating way, of course. Maybe you’ll take him out for a drink and subtly bring up a few minor issues: e.g. the fights you’ve overheard him having with his former lady friends, the numerous holes that he’s punched in the drywall at all of the fellas’ apartments, and the times he’s made all of the fellas, including you, apologize on his behalf to women at bars for his unabashed creepiness.
But these conversations can be really, really, really hard. Who knows what could happen? He could feel betrayed by you asking him to take something called “accountability” for his actions. Nothing hurts a real man more than people naming or describing things he most definitely did. He might not know what that word “accountability” means, and that could scare him. He might feel threatened, and as a result, could lash out and degrade you by calling you a “beta” (the horror…the humiliation). Rather than risk all that, you’d prefer to save a confrontational conversation for when it’s actually necessary, like if he never Venmos you for his share of the mediocre blow you got for the crew the other night.
Men: we know you’d rather do any of these things than see the look of shock in your buddy’s eyes as you explain to him that his behavior is fundamentally despicable. So, the next time you’re feeling the urge to speak up, stop enabling, and do the right thing, feel free to pick from this list of far more tolerable activities.
- Stick your head in an industrial-size pot of hot oil until you emerge with an entirely burnt face. Hear me out: afterward, you can create inspiring TikTok content and gain millions of followers inspired by your story. Warning: highly painful, but not as painful as the loss of a true-blue friend (who may or may not have been buddies with convicted rapists until they lost touch because, you know, the rapists went to prison).
- Place blame on his victims for staying with him if it was so bad. After all, no worthwhile, self-respecting female would keep coming back to a man who has cheated on them multiple times, so why should he have respected them? They were a bunch of low-value 5’s at best, anyway. There you go. Mental gymnastics routine completed; friend off the hook!
- Jump into an enclosure filled with feral, hungry raccoons. AAAAAA!!!!!!
- Get into a physical fight with your friend to let that tension out in a healthy and socially acceptable way. Make sure you start the fight over something NOT related to the topic of women, e.g. fantasy football drafts or a similarly grave issue. You’re allowed to spill some blood, but don’t go as far as climbing up to his balcony and smashing his TV screen in a drunken rage. THIS IS KEY: You must “win” this fight, at least in the eyes of any witnesses, but never speak of it again, not in the group chat, not IRL…you must be like a real, egoless, enlightened man. Like Jason Statham. Like Leonardo DiCaprio. After throwing hands, the air will surely be cleared. Boys will be boys!
- Paint your nails black or grow your hair long so you can do a man bun. You may get some guff from the rest of your boys for this, as it is obviously extremely gay, but at least then they’re giving YOU guff, and not him! Phew! As a nice side effect, you’ll inevitably be able to convince some women under the age of 30 that you must be an empathetic, sensitive, progressive guy, which will most certainly get them to sleep with you.
- Spend hundreds of dollars on state-of-the-art video gaming equipment. In this scenario, you can practice becoming a mass shooter (see #11) and make a bunch of new, fun, online friends to curse out and tell off through your headset — instead of your problematic friend. Plus, showering is optional and you’re not obligated to do any dishes that accumulate on the coffee table. Also, if your friend lives with you and brings a girl over and they get into another argument and she starts crying audibly and it’s making you uncomfortable, you can just turn the volume up super loud in your headset and then everything’s fine. What? You didn’t hear anything.
- Gather an encyclopedic amount of knowledge on topics such as military history or alternatively, war history. The best strategy to do this quickly is simply to practice rote memorization of multiple battle sites, names of generals, types of guns, tanks, planes used, etc. — nothing actually meaningful in a historical context, but detailed enough to make someone think you really have a depth of knowledge. All of the mental energy spent doing this will take your mind off the fact that your friend is on a downward spiral fueled by whiskey, hard drugs and the dopamine rushes he gets from gaslighting as many women as possible simultaneously.
- Unfollow his latest ex on all social media platforms so she thinks she was the problem, not him. Encourage your other friends to do the same. If she stays following you and watching your story, you’ll know she’s still hung up on him, and then you can report that to your friend, and you guys can make fun of how lame and desperate she is. This will be very validating for your friend, who may still need an ego boost after the breakup, and it will certainly delay any type of meaningful conversation about the attachment wounds that continuously show up in his chaotic, short-term relationships.
- Do a massive amount of psychedelics — with your friend, of course — to help disassociate from the reality that he has toxic traits and just be silly li’l dudes for awhile :) You can go into the woods, to a festival or outdoor concert, up to the roof…anywhere that one of you could potentially die/get injured if you’re tripping hard enough. Then, perhaps, mid-trip, your friend will have a moment of spiritual growth so profound that he transforms into a better person, who now is so much more mindful of the connections and interdependence between all living things. Maybe he’ll even let down his guard and cry and you’ll hold him like the tender, supportive broham you are. Maybe you can even convince him to adopt a new healthy habit, that will (hopefully) lead to other improvements in his life. Bro bond strengthened; new ability to fool women into thinking you’re both “spiritual,” unlocked.
- Pursue a master’s degree or Ph.D. in Logic, Philosophy, or Political Science so you can develop a superior moral/ethical framework that enables you to excuse their behavior in relationships. This one may require a lot of you personally: pricey tuition, hours of reading nearly incoherent texts, and a heart-stopping amount of Adderall when writing your thesis or dissertation. But it will be worth it, because then your conscience will be crystal clear with your new and liberating personal theory of moral relativism/nihilism.
- Become the next big serial killer or mass shooter, so you can, like in #5, get any negative attention off your friend and onto you (for a few news cycles). #SoBrave. Remember how nuts everyone went trying to hunt down Brian Laundrie? That guy who lied through his teeth to police on camera two weeks before choking his girlfriend to death and leaving her body to rot? That was a HUGE distraction. Keyword: distraction. Bonus points if you write a cringey manifesto that you read aloud in your car before committing your murders. The more misogynistic your killings are in nature, the better — again, this is about making your friend feel no guilt about anything he has done, because at least he’s not like you. If he can make you the villain, and maybe talk about you in a mournful tone on a date with a girl (“I thought I knew him…but he was just this secret monster”), that girl may actually trust him to have a moral compass/ “conscience,” which chicks really dig.
- Get into crypto and become insufferable to be around because it’s literally all you talk about. Naturally, your friend — and all other friends — will drift away from you, because you are actually obsessive and refuse to discuss anything else. Once he’s out of contact with you, bam! Not your problem anymore. Then, make a massive investment in risky stonks and lose thousands of dollars in a single night. Still tolerable, compared to making your friend maybe feel bad about his actions for a few minutes!
- Get rejected by literally 90% of girls you swipe right on within every single dating app you’ve downloaded. OUCH! Again, still not as awful as holding your friend to the bare-minimum standard of treating other human beings with decency!
- Deep-clean the entire apartment — yep, you read that right. You’d literally rather spend hours scrubbing your filthy floors than confront him about his narcissistic traits. In the process, maybe try out a new chic interior design idea, like replacing the Jose Cuervo bottle on your shelf with a bottle of Jack Daniels (classier). You could also get some posters (frameless of course) to cover any holes he’s punched in the drywall. You’ll feel great in your brand-new home that no longer looks like a crime scene or frat house.
- Listen to Joe Rogan and random “experts” talk for literally 3 hours straight. No other comment.
- Play devil’s advocate in a conversation with a woman on an experience you have literally never had in your life. This type of psychological manipulation will help you to understand better how your friend thinks, maybe even turn you into him a little bit, and then you just can give him a break because you’ve become the same person.
- Memorize every single item in every aisle of Home Depot or Lowe’s. Again, this one is pretty arduous, but remember, it is highly masculine to learn about all the different products and tools one can use for a particular hobby. And yes, still better than coming across as a narc or worse, a feminazi.
- Take on a social justice cause like climate change/environmentalism, free speech censorship, etc. and post about it regularly on social media, so you can look like you care about justice and doing the right thing. Note: do NOT fall into the trap of affiliating yourself with #MeToo. All men who do that are simps anyway, and run the risk of being outed publicly for something they did, and then they have to write a stupid BS apology post for their audacious hypocrisy. This would actually be one of the only things WORSE than confronting your friend. Even worse still, if you start to actually subscribe to “feminist” ideas (*withholding puke sound*), you’ll be held to a higher standard to speak up about the other dudes in your circle who’ve had the police called on them by various women. Can’t have that! Those charges gotta stay dropped.
- Jump off a helicopter into an active volcano. #GoBig, my brother in Christ.
- Take a session of improv classes that conclude with a performance at a local venue, which ends with an extremely humiliating 20 seconds of scattered applause, fading to a deafening silence. You already know what I’m gonna say: the feeling of deep embarrassment you will have while walking offstage is still better than what you’d feel talking to your bro for even ten seconds about the substance abuse disorder that permeates many spheres of his life.
- Rescue a pitbull and be mauled beyond recognition by said pitbull. Similar to #1 in that you have the option of becoming an Internet icon, who had a good heart and just wanted to save dogue. Downside: lifetime of medical bills, probable cynophobia and constant night terrors/flashbacks. Upside: you and your buddy are still cool :)
- Go to Afghanistan, pretending to be a journalist asking questions directly of the Taliban leaders regarding their oppression of women; then show them a picture of Muhammad and ask if you drew it right. Then, you can surely die with all the secrets you know about your friend’s rampant infidelity. Whatever! Not your business! Your tortured soul is at peace, and your dismembered limbs will find eternal rest in the Arabian sands.
- Watch your beloved friend’s hairline recede and his beer gut grow as he continues to make the same choices, leading to a near-overdose or assault charge at 40 that lands him in either rehab or jail. Then he’ll ask you how he ended up here, what did he do wrong? All his crazy exes are married with kids now, and they all look happy. You’ll see vulnerability and maybe even self-reflection in his eyes for the first time (well, at least since your epic shrooms trip) and it’ll catch you off guard. You’ll have to swallow the guilt of knowing that you and your friends could have intervened long ago, and planted some seeds of wisdom that he would have maybe actually listened to, because he truly cared about your opinions of him. Maybe, that last bad breakup could have led him into therapy or treatment, not just another toxic relationship. Maybe, in this alternate universe, his gradual, hard-earned self-improvement over the past decade could have saved countless women from developing PTSD, body dysmorphic disorder, or catching incurable STD’s. You could have helped him start the journey to facing himself and his unresolved, unaddressed issues that led him to becoming a serial abuser. But you’ll tell him: it wasn’t worth it at the time because… bro code, right?