I originally didn’t want to be on Instagram, but was told that as an author and an artist, it would be better to increase an online presence. Sure, it happens on all the apps, but damn, I’m really tired of it.
I’m talking about stalking. Men who follow me who I don’t know. They usually have no more than 3 posts, and a follower or two, which is never anyone I know. Which means I fit into some search parameter they’re using. Probably my age group, female, single.
Sorry, folks. That’s creepy and borderline stalking.
There are legit dating apps. If I was looking, I’d be on them. Unless Instagram is secretly a dating app and I didn’t know.
But they don’t read that. No, they’re creepy. They assume I’m on social media looking for a man and that I’ll welcome their attention.
They are always widowed or divorced. 9 out of 10 if them have some pithy saying about God…which tells me they really didn’t bother to find out anything about me (I suppose that makes it slightly less stalkery). Of course, if they’d made the least effort and read my profile, they see where I say I’m not looking for a relationship and to not message me unless they want to buy a piece of art I’ve posted.
But no, they try to message me, so my wishes, if even looked at, aren’t respected. So, right off the bat, you’re creepy and have no idea what I want. Which, you know, isn’t some fucking creepy stalker type.
They post pictures of themselves with wine, or a dog, or pictures of flowers, or a flag. Pretty clear the image they’re pushing.
So last night, I screwed up. I had a message from a Jane Lawson, who also follows a friend’s mom, so instead of instantly blocking them, I answered.
No, it was KANE Lawson. And it began with “hi” and the usual “let’s get to know each other” inane small talk. I responded with “sorry, I’m not really into chatting”, because even when annoyed, I try not to be rude. Not right away, anyway.
His response? Priceless. “Then why are you on Instagram?”
Wow. Did I offend him? Sorry, bro, I thought Tinder was the dating app. I thought messenger programs were for chatting. Oh, hey, I’m on Instagram to be harassed by lonely, prowling men who can’t see what kind of creepers they really are.
I finally responded with “To promote my artwork”. That was met with silence, and I was happy. I thought, he’ll stop following, he’ll go away. (He also did this thing where if I didn’t answer fast enough for his liking, he’d type a bunch of question marks).
But no. This morning, I see a new response. “Can I ask where you are chatting from?”
Well, it’s pretty clear why you’re divorced and still looking. You just don’t get it. A for persistence. But I’m done.
And this, friends, is one more example of what women, even those of us not so attractive, have to put up with.