5 Things Feminists Want In A Guy (But Have Trouble Finding)

Photo: WeHeartIt

I'm a feminist and I date men.

I know, pretty shocking, right? 

I'm a radical liberal feminist and I don't hate men! I know, it's nuts. It's almost like I was raised by an awesome father, have great brothers, and understand that people are complicated and that it's shortsighted to to write off an entire gender just because of the actions of some of them.

RELATED: Men With Beards Are Sexist Study Says

Joking aside, it's hard to date and be a feminist.

It's hard because if you are open about being a feminist, men may think you are a humorless, strident harpy.

That's because somewhere along the line, me thinking I deserve to make the same amount of money as co-workers with dicks made me a radical. Anyhoo. It's also hard because I hold men to a higher standard now than I did in my youth. 

But I hope that by sharing five common traits feminists look for in a man, I can save some of the younger folks out there some of the heartache I experienced. Men and women both have a right to ask for these things from your partner. 

1. Be respectful of my career. 

As a writer, I have very often worked from home or worked unusual hours, occasionally both at the same time. 

I know a lot of women who have careers that also make their work schedule unorthodox, but because we're all pursuing our passions, we wouldn't have it any other way.

When I'm dating a man, I expect him to treat my career with as much respect as he treats his own. 

Don't assume I can walk the dog so you can leave the house early just because I work at home. Don't think it's not big deal for me to play hooky just because you've decided that you want to take a vacation day. Don't assume I'm the one who'll quit their job to stay home with our potential children or be the one who calls off sick when they are.

I'm all about a healthy work-life balance, but my job MATTERS to me. A lot. 

A dude dating a feminist should be prepared for her to care about her job. It's that simple. 

This is one of those points I never thought I'd have to put into words, but it's been enough of an issue that here I am doing it. 

2. Be balanced when it comes to communication. 

I don't know what kind of handbook for fuckery some men are handed as soon as they become sexually active, but ENOUGH.

If I'm dating you, it's because I want to get to know you, and I should like to think that it goes both ways. 

Don't make me constantly be in the initiator every single time we get together. Your indifference doesn't make you seem cool and reserved, it makes you seem like you don't care enough about me to be proactive about SEEING me. 

If you're going to date a feminist, you've got to be prepared to communicate honestly and in a balanced way. 

3. Be open in the bedroom. 

Missionary is a fine sex position. Sure, it gets the job done, and I often enjoy it very much. 

But there are other sex positions, ones I happen to find more delicious, and I am going to ask if we can try them when we have sex.

It isn't my way of passive-aggressively saying that I think you're shit in bed, it's me furthering both of our experiences. 

When we have sex, it isn't all about your performance. You need to be receptive, game, and eager to explore with me. 

RELATED: 5 Foolish Unflattering Things White Feminists Need To Stop Doing

4.  Be accepting of my past. 

Here's a sad thing that I happen to agree with that sex genius Dan Savage once said: it is okay for women to lie about the number of sexual partners they have had. 

You know why women have to lie about that shit? Because unfortunately, we are often judged negatively for the amount of penises we have touched with our front bottoms.

I only date men who I can be honest with about my past sexual exploits.

One, because that's hot as hell and they need to recognize, and two, because it means I am dating a man who knows better than to judge a woman based on the number of sexual partners she has had.

I don't judge men by their level of sexual experience, and I expect to be treated the same way. 

5. Be an active ally. 

It isn't enough to just be kind to the woman in your life when you're dating a feminist, you need to be kind to all women. You need to treat all women like we are human beings, because we are. 

When you see a woman being treated unfairly, speak up. When you are hanging around with people who speak about women in a sexist or disparaging way, speak up. 

Life is tough enough being a woman, the man by our side and in our beds should also most definitely have our backs.