Broken Sexual Culture

Udita Pal
5 min readNov 19, 2018

Last Wednesday I woke up to a nightmare.

My Tinder match tried to finger me I immediately asked him to back off and said I’m not comfortable, he respected it, said sorry, turned around and slept. We didn’t exchange a word in the morning, but when I shared this incident with my fellow friends, a debate started — Bad Date or An Assualt?

Most Millenials in metro cities are active on Dating apps and are familiar with the concept of Hook-Ups, one-night stand, dating etc. But the question is, where exactly are we going wrong? Where can we blur the lines and where can we make it bold?

What you should do or How you should behave so that you don’t end up as someone’s #MeToo story five years down the line.

Well there is no denying people often confuse dating up for Hook-Up ones and that is precisely the point from where everything goes downhill, Every date won’t result in sex, and you should be okay with it (Yes, ‘Few’ guys I’m talking to you) and girls if you are in a position where you are feeling uncomfortable-speak up.

Men and for that matter, no one is a mind reader, and if a person is ignoring your physical and out loud gestures, then you need to go for an FIR.

Yes, women are harassed on a daily basis from that ‘Cab Driver’ who tries to brush thigh while sitting on the front seat, From that boss who keeps saying you will be worthless once you get married or have a baby. From those girls who slut-shame you for being better than them, from those catcalls to awkward stares, your husband, relatives, colleagues .. I can go on and lastly dates.

Now the date part is something which we need to discuss, With so many #MeToo stories coming out, a lot of them were only one-time encounter, dates so, how can we make dating experience better- how can we make dating culture a better and clear place.

Surveyed over 100K People between the age of 19–29 in metro cities (Done Via FB,Twitter and Instagram Polls)

For girls, we all have been in a position where we have swiped someone right, we have interacted, fell in love with the picture they portrayed of themselves and we have been in a place where saying yes to a few drinks got confused for consent.

You were drunk; you couldn’t help, your date made a move, you pushed him away and went home- you felt empty, lost, broken, unrecognised.

Girls, next time something like this happens with you react to it, hold the person accountable, ignoring it like a bad dream is a reason such behaviour gets normalise.

The reason those #MeToo stories felt relatable is because it is real and widespread. Over 100 women I interacted with, 78 mentioned being in a place where their date inappropriately touched them, kissed them or thought they would get action.

Out of 8900 people I showed this to, 7655 agreed to it.

For guys, a girl flirted with you, had a few drinks with you; you paid a considerable bill alone, you brought her to your place and thought if she is chill enough to have a few drinks she must be cool with making out but she wasn’t, she pushed you away.

You felt angry, rejected, unattractive and entitled. Please understand if someone is leaving your place abruptly, you need to ask for feedback- irrespective of cockblock or hook up.

In face, both genders need to give each other feedback about the date, period.

For Her!
For Him

Sexuality I believe is often a topic left untouched while we interact with someone on dating apps or while we ask someone out and that leads to misunderstanding.

A lot of assault cases start sounding vague when you mention being involved with someone via dating app, Mind you- I’’m not writing this article to bash a gender but instead talk about things we should clear while going on a date with someone.

Wrong dates leave us with two final choices- since there was no rape we should be okay with it or raise voice else it will become normal behaviour. I think there is a small problem called ‘miscommunication’ leading to more significant and career-ending chaos.

We never talk to our dates about their likes, dislikes, and expectations out of the relationship, as a woman, I refrain from talking about looking for something with potential on dating sites because often men call me ‘pussy’ and ignore or say you will never find anyone here. And more than 200 women I interacted with don’t want to talk about expectations because they are scared that guy won’t go out with them.

A lot of them are scared to say no to guy post reaching their place, that’s the problem, no gender should be scared of another gender. I believe people need to be more open and expressive about the relationship and in today’s world, more than ever.

As much as I believe we should use any form of pain relief we can go for to get over a trauma someone gave us, a miscommunication should be solved personally and not over the internet anonymously bashing someone’s career.

Would like to quote Charlotte Franklin “Grieve like a child in private if you must, but show the world an adult face of dignity if you ever want to be taken seriously.”

I’m pretty sure a lot of people will come out and bash me for writing this, but I’m saying it once and out loud- the problem with ‘dating culture’ is miscommunication. We don’t mention expectations out of the meeting from the very start, I know at times we don’t know. It is tough to know what you want, but it is easy to understand what you don’t want.

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Udita Pal

Co founder @salt.pe, making trillions of dollar industry more accessible globally