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15 signs of a misogynist (and how to deal with one)

A misogynist gets a dopamine high when they put a woman down. Likely due to past trauma, misogynists hold an unconscious hatred for women and will mistreat them without hesitation.

The thing is, they can be hard to identify, and they can be anywhere around you. In this article, I’ll show you 15 clear signs you’ve met a misogynist. More importantly, I’ll explain how to deal with one.

Signs of misogyny

It’s interesting to note that there are actually female misogynists, too. However, male misogynists are far more common, and so in this article, we’ll be focusing only on male misogynists.

1) He picks a target

While a misogynist has deep-seated hatred for women, he also has an obsession with them. He’s very predatory, simplifying women into objects, trophies, things for him to collect.

This predatory nature means once he picks a target, he’s going to pursue her, chase her, woo her, and do all he can to get this “object” of his desire. Put another notch in the belt, as they say.

He’s good at what he does, too. He’ll be charming, witty, irresistible even. With charisma, practice, and a complete lack of conscience, he’ll be good at saying whatever needs to be said to “get the girl.”

Before it seems any time has passed, though, he’ll have moved on to the next one.

2) Hot and cold

One minute, a picture-perfect boyfriend. The next minute—aggressive, rude, mean, and destructive.

This hot and cold nature points to the fact that he’s just playing a game. Misogynists, ironically, need women. They need them to validate their complexes, define their self-worth, and enable them to continue their toxic behavior.

Without women, misogynists are nothing. Because of that, then, these kinds of men are often very “Jekyll & Hyde” in nature. They do their best to keep you around by being nice, thoughtful, charming, and so on.

But when something sets them off, they need to get their way, or they just feel the insatiable desire to express their hatred for the female sex, they’ll do it. Without hesitation.

3) Punctual for men, late for women

There’s always going to be a disparity between the way a misogynist treats a man compared to how he treats a woman. This is going to manifest in any number of different ways, but a big one will be punctuality.

For instance, the idea of making a woman wait around for him is almost irresistible. Any way to inconvenience her is a good thing.

With men, on the other hand, they’re more deserving of respect (in the misogynist’s mind) and therefore it’s rude to keep them waiting.

Keep an eye out for signs like this one; when a man treats women worse than he treats other men, it’s a big red flag.

4) Breaks promises—with women in particular

Along similar lines to the last point, if a man is prone to breaking promises with women, it can be a big red flag.

This is especially true if he clearly tries to uphold his word with men, coworkers, friends, and so on.

Women, in his mind, aren’t deserving of honesty. His word means nothing to someone who is inferior to him in every way.

Even further, he gets pleasure from inconveniencing women, ruining their day, foiling their plans, and any other harm he can cause by breaking a promise.

Here’s a look at an article that details more tactics of manipulative people.

5) No woman can be better than him

If your successes upset your man, there’s a chance he’s a misogynist. If a woman receives praise, commendation, and so on, it’s a direct threat to a misogynist. He can’t handle the idea of a woman being better than him.

To put it another way, he doesn’t believe any women are worthy of any kind of success. They are inherently inferior to men, and inferior to him.

To imply anything otherwise is a direct threat to his masculinity.

6) Has an arsenal of ways to put women down

A misogynist will eagerly search for opportunities to put women “in their place.” He has a wide variety of tactics he can use to insult women, degrade them, make them feel bad, and ultimately make himself feel superior.

His jokes will be degrading towards women. In personal relationships, he may withhold sex. He may also steal their ideas, or borrow money without the intention of paying it back.

Putting women down is almost like a life goal for a misogynist.

7) Plays mind games

This is especially poignant for the women he has romantic relationships with.

How so?

When he goes on a date, he’ll enjoy doing the opposite of what the girl wants. If she’s independent, he’ll go out of his way to “be a gentleman,” rudely order for her, and so on. If she enjoys being taken out in a traditional sense, he’ll be rude, crass, make her pay, and so forth.

These sorts of mind games are where the misogynist thrives.

He does it to hurt women, he does it to lead them on, he does it all in an effort to continue the lie in his head that women are vastly inferior to him, and that they all owe him something.

8) Isn’t afraid to generalize and trash all women

A lot of the misogynists I know are easily identified by this trait. Misogynists are comfortable verbalizing how they really feel about women when they’re around other men. As a man, it’s often that misogynists will show their true colors around me.

They aren’t afraid to show their bitterness and thinly veiled hate for women. They’ll make cutting remarks, caustic jokes, and generalize the atrocious nature of women at large.

No woman is safe from their generalizations and trash talk, unless they’re a “saint,” in his eyes. We’ll talk more about the saint versus whore complex later on, too.

9) Serial cheater

Monogamy isn’t a common thing in the wheelhouse of a misogynist.

If you think about it, it only makes sense. Why would a man owe any sort of loyalty to a woman, when she’s an inferior object, a means to an end, something that should serve the desires of a man and nothing more?

This is often how misogynistic men think, and when they think like this, they act like this. No matter the relationship, they’re going to cheat if the opportunity arises (or if they create it).

Whether a new relationship, a well-established marriage, or anything in between, cheating is just one of the many ways that a misogynist can “get back” at women.

Here’s an interesting look at why some men cheat instead of breaking up.

10) Sex is only for him

No matter how charming and flirty a misogynist can be at first, when it comes to love-making, they’re so often terrible.

Sexual intimacy is about meeting the needs of the person we’re with and sharing a bond. However, for a misogynist, that couldn’t be further from what sex is actually about.

Here’s what I mean: sex for a misogynist is one-sided. You, as the woman, are there to serve his needs, to bring him pleasure, and nothing more. His performance is poor, there’s no foreplay, and he doesn’t care about your pleasure.

All in all, a terrible experience.

It can be hard to discern if someone is worth your time. But, you should never date someone who does these 15 things.

11) Vanishes without ending things

It’s common for a misogynist to just up and leave one day, no matter how serious the relationship is.

Think about it: if you’re a woman, you’re nothing more than a means to an end for him. At best, he has a certain amount of attachment to you, but as an inferior and lesser being.

It only makes sense that, if he sees fit, he’ll leave when he’s bored. Or when he wants something else.

Don’t be surprised if he comes back, too. It’s often a well-scripted ploy to keep you under his thumb.

Here’s a look at some big warning signs to help you spot a psychopath.

12) Treats women vastly different from men

In a similar vein to a few of the points we’ve covered, this idea is becoming kind of a theme. Misogynistic men treat women vastly different from the way they treat men.

They have deeply ingrained thought patterns that affect every decision they make. They view women as lesser creatures. They don’t think anything they do is legitimate. For that reason, they treat them like this.

They’ll break promises, lie, cheat, steal, gaslight, flatter, backstab, and belittle women in ways they would never dare or dream of doing to men.

It’s one of the biggest signs of a misogynist.

13) Fragile masculinity

A key sign of a misogynist is his surprisingly delicate image of masculinity. If anything has even a hint of femininity, he’s likely to reject it completely.

His ideas of masculinity center around being strong, avoiding emotion, never crying, and so on. Only “manly” interests are acceptable. Things like axes, sports, meat, hunting, cars, and loud noises.

Ask him to put a flower in his hair? Don’t dream of it, it might shatter his entire façade of masculinity.

14) Virgin/whore complex

Carrying on with this idea that women are just objects and pawns in the lives of men, the virgin/whore complex often springs from that.

Women aren’t individuals with agency, complex thoughts, emotions, driving factors—they can’t be. A misogynist has to reduce them down to simple objects and put labels on them.

That usually breaks down into two extremes.

A woman is either a saint, a virgin, and can do no wrong. She’s pure and unadulterated. Young, virgin, unstained, girl-like. Practically venerated, the ideal sexual partner for a misogynist.

If she isn’t a virgin, however, she’s a whore. She’s dirty, promiscuous, loose, and should be shamed for all of the terrible things she’s done. Especially sexually.

Essentially, as the Cambridge Diaries puts it, a woman who does is a whore, and a woman who does not is a virgin.

What the does or does not applies to is really anything a misogynist sees fit.

The whole concept is damaging, sexist, disrespectful, and really just doesn’t make sense. Hence why it’s a complex

15) Controlling and manipulative

A misogynist can’t help but be controlling and manipulative. With such a distorted view of women, he can’t resist the bait. He has to control them, use them to feed his complexes, his unhealed trauma.

The real irony is in how much a misogynist needs women around. Without women, there’s no misogyny. No matter how much he hates them, despises them, uses and abuses them, he needs them.

If you told a misogynist this, of course, he’d be livid. Women are worthless in his eyes, he doesn’t need them for anything.

The truth is, though, he’ll do anything to control and manipulate women to serve his needs and perpetuate his delusion.

How to deal with a misogynist

It’s clear that the misogynist is a destructive force and someone who should not be enabled or allowed to continue their damaging behavior without ramifications.

The easiest way is to, first, identify that they are indeed misogynistic. What comes next really depends upon the scenario, the person, and so on.

To explain: Who is this person to you? Is he just a coworker, a family friend, your boyfriend, or your husband? How extreme is his behavior towards women? Does he actively damage and destroy relationships, is he a real threat to the safety of women?

Misogyny can reveal itself in various ways. Sometimes it’s just a way of thinking, a subconscious thought pattern that many males just don’t realize they do. Being instructional, putting your foot down, and raising awareness could be just what some men need.

However, true misogyny is often rooted far deeper. It starts with deep-seated trauma, perhaps from childhood, and creates a complex that only grows larger and more entrenched as the years pass.

Don’t let these kinds of men have a safe space to perpetuate these kinds of terrible habits. Call them out, don’t let them control you, keep you and your close friends safe.

And remember, the best thing you can do when you encounter a misogynist is to refuse to play his games. Don’t give him a second thought, ignore his tactics, and move on with your life.

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Xandar Gordon

Written by Xandar Gordon

Xandar has seen the world through words his whole life. With both parents authors themselves, he was doomed from the start. He can always be found with a journal and ink smudges on his fingers. Xandar writes everything from music to poetry to personal essays. He has been writing professionally for over 6 years, and has written copy on countless subjects. His portfolio can be found at writers.work/xandar.

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