Women Wear Headphones For A Reason: Because We Don’t Want To Talk To You

September 1, 2016

Here’s how to talk to a woman wearing headphones: don’t.

In case you missed the viral buzz this week, an article published on the pickup artist site, The Modern Man, entitled How To Talk To A Woman Who Is Wearing Headphones, is yet again reminding us the only reason we exist in public is to be a source of entertainment or eye candy for men.

In it, the writer, Dan Bacon, describes that just because a woman is busy and wearing headphones doesn’t mean you can’t talk to her. I mean, after all, what could she possibly be doing that’s more important than you?

It’s full of your typical garbage about what women ‘really want’, and tells its audience of shockingly misguided men that women understand it’s the ‘man’s role to be confident’ and that it’s always appropriate to approach women to talk to them, whenever you want to – it’s practically a man’s God-given right. I bet it’s in the Constitution somewhere.

He generously adds that, ‘not all women are open to being approached because not all women are single and looking’. How nice of him. Naturally, the only reason a woman wouldn’t want to be interrupted by you is because she’s either not interested in dating at all or she’s already had a flag stuck in her by another man, and we all know it’s not cool to poach on another man’s property.

The only bit of credit I can give this breakfast snack is that he does at some point acknowledge if a woman doesn’t want to take off her headphones, you should just leave her alone. This kind of courtesy for women is rare among pickup artists, who largely seem to pitch the idea that any man can get any woman to do what he wants, it just takes the right form of trickery.

See how busy I am on my headphones? That’s your message to leave me alone.

Of course this piece of logic doesn’t last long. My fave part of his piece is, ‘Common Mistakes That Guys Make When Approaching Women Who Are Wearing Headphones’. It’s your classic sexist drivel. He tells his readers that, as men, they should be taking charge of the conversation (because women are weak and want to be led, I guess?), implying we’re keeping our headphones in because we secretly want you to interpret our “no” as a “yes”, and advising guys to include some skeevy flirting. Because what woman’s day is complete without some guy we don’t know approaching us while we’re busy and smearing his poor attempts at flirting all over our day? I mean, realistically the first and only point on the list should be ‘that you’re doing it at all’.

I have a newsflash for Dan Bacon, and anyone who lost five minutes of their life reading his misogynistic drool: women have headphones in because we’re focused on something else. We could be studying, we could be listening to an important recording, we could just be jamming out to our fave tunes. Whatever it is we’re doing, I guarantee it’s more important than talking to you.

Despite what sad articles like these might say to boost the confidence of men suffering from a case of fragile masculinity, our suns do not rise and set over whether or not men find us attractive enough to approach. We don’t have man-meters strapped to our sides that must be refilled by male attention every few hours or else we drop dead.

Here’s a short list of things that are more important than men talking to us when we have headphones on:

  • Emergency phone calls
  • Homework
  • The book we picked up last night
  • The latest episode of Welcome to Night Vale’s podcast
  • The new Blink 182 album
  • Whatever that spot is under our fingernails that we can’t get out
  • A conversation with our friend last night we’re still trying to work out in our head
  • Cats
  • Seriously, what is that spot? It’s driving me crazy
  • Debating whether or not it’s too hot to risk taking a nap in our cars

So, Mr Bacon, here’s the real answer to how to talk to a woman who is wearing headphones: don’t.

Comment: What’s your reaction to Dan Bacon’s article? Should men try to talk to women wearing headphones, or take it as a hint?


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