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Do you wish this happened like...NEVER?

singlesKristen Chandler

These cringe-worthy photos are are a turn-off for women, and the reasons men send them are even more disturbing.

If you've ever participated in online dating, you've likely been visually assaulted on your phone by a man who sent you an unsolicited photo of his junk. This isn't just a Tinder phenomenon, women report d-elfies coming from men on all dating sites! In fact, 45% of women say they've received an R-rated photo from a guy. How has this become a thing? There is so much wrong with this on so many levels. Laughing it off isn't the answer, and being offended doesn't make you a prude. 

In this article, Elizabeth Segran and Kimberly Truong investigate the problem and offer a little insight as to why men send d-elfies. To be honest, it's quite unsettling.

First let's be clear about how women feel after receiving one:

"I felt visually assaulted..."
"I just felt dirty after using my phone!"
"It's the online equivalent of the subway flasher..."
"At its worst, this is sexual harassment. At its best, it's a bummer — since it means you wasted your time chatting with a jerk."

No woman wants an unsolicited dick pic. Period. So why do men send them? The reasons are quite alarming:

 "It was a way of asserting power by making a woman squirm. Many of these guys have struggled to get a woman’s attention, and sending a dick pic is a sure way to get a reaction."

Is this the same as bad press is better than no press? Not true! Ask Chipotle. Unsolicited porn is about as appealing as E. Coli and it's doubtful that anyone who got sick there will ever go back. 

“I used to send dick pics to basically anyone who would have them… It's definitely an expression of power in some sense. It's the epitome of your masculinity; it's what makes you a man — what good am I but it?”

Wow, that's scary. Anatomy makes a male, and sending a picture of it has ZERO to do with the makings of a man, especially the kind of man women want.

This next quote summarizes the "anything goes" behavior that can happen in online dating. Profiles aren't people with feelings, so you can treat them however you want...WHAAAT?

“I think that 'lashing out' towards women on online dating sites, whether harmless annoyance or genuine harassment, is caused by being ignored so thoroughly by so many women. After a while, women on these sites aren't people with feelings; they're just thousands of profiles who all seem to dislike you for completely unknown reasons. Dick pics are, I think, a very specific form of this harassment...”

What's the best way to respond if it happens to you?

Ignore and block. The silent treatment speaks volumes without saying a word to the perpetrator. Don't send LOL, HaHaHa, or a snide comeback. All that does is continues the conversation with someone who isn't worthy of it. Laughing it off only lowers the bar on how we agree to be treated. Feminism is not about tolerating assaults, visual or otherwise. And, being a feminist is about being a woman who knows her worth, not just in the workplace, but in relationships. 

We have the power to turn this "talking to," "hanging out," "DTF" train wreck of the current dating culture around. At the end of the day, men want something women have, and if we make it clear offensive photos and disrespectful behaviors aren't going to bring them any closer to getting it, they'll stop. But we have to be united. 

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