Do Men Respect Scantily Clad Women?

Tamara is a 20-something third year law student. She writes a dating blog for the Jewish Journal called Tattletales.

Watch our complete interview.

Luke: “How often do you find that your thoughts are not taken seriously because you are attractive?”

Tamara: “Often. It depends on where I meet people. If I meet people at a bar…”

Luke: “They’re less interested in the cognitive ability than some of your other attributes?”

Tamara: “I think so, especially because I can dress pretty scandalously, a tight dress, a short skirt, five-inch high heels, and I’m out at a bar and not every guy is expecting to hear someone’s Supreme Court analysis who just goes to law school as a hobby.”

Luke: “Do you expect men to relate to you the same way if you dress conservatively as opposed to scandalously? Do you expect them to be equally interested in your mind?”

Tamara: “I expect the same respect, regardless of how I’m dressed.”

Luke: “Even if you are dressed like a hooker, you still expect to be treated like a Supreme Court justice?”

Tamara: “Yeah. If you are hooting and hollering on the street, I don’t think there’s any dress that says that’s appropriate.”

Luke: “So you’re walking down the street in a short skirt and ripped tights and a man goes, ‘Yeah, baby!’, that’s inappropriate?”

Tamara: “Why do guys do that? What do they want? I don’t think it’s respectful.

“I would dress that way to feel sexual and I would never ask a man to ignore that. I would never dress like that around my parents, but I am entitled to dress that way when I go out, but I don’t expect it to be ignored, but there is a way to be respectful. I think men just assume you are one or the other and they make that judgment quickly. I tend to be attracted to men who are smart. I think they’re more likely to respect me on an intellectual level.”

“If I am dressed sexually at a bar, I don’t expect someone to come up to me and start a conversation on Nietzsche.”

“You can be attracted to someone and relate to them purely on a purely sexual level and be respectful.”

Luke: “Really? You can be sexual and respectful? Interesting.”

Tamara: “Clearly it is not even an option in your world.”

“Sometimes I get pigeonholed the other way, if I know someone from law school or the writing world. They can be surprised negatively in what I might look like.”

Luke: “In a little skirt with ripped tights?”

Tamara: “Yeah.”

Luke: “Do you think they judge you?”

Tamara: “I’ve felt that at my Christian law school.”

Luke: “When you wear ripped tights and short skirts.”

Tamara: “But I have a right to wear that. I would never complain about someone looking at that but if I am sitting in class and I’m talking but you discount my opinion because my shirt is short, I don’t appreciate that.”

Luke: “And your tights are ripped.”

Tamara: “You can look and you can also listen to what I have to say.”

Luke: “Do your professors relate to you differently when you dress provocatively?”

Tamara: “Probably. Yes.”

“I think there’s nothing more powerful than feeling sexual as a woman and feeling respected intellectually.”

Luke: “Simultaneously?”

Tamara: “Yeah. That’s when I feel on top of the world.”

“I’m never more turned on than in those moments.”

Luke: “Do you think you are sexually harassing men who dress in a provocative way?”

Tamara: “They’re certainly not complaining to me.”

Luke: “I could take you to an Orthodox synagogue on Yom Kippur and you wouldn’t shame me?”

Tamara: “Yeah.”

Luke: “Have you been a victim of sexual harassment?”

Tamara: “No. Not that I have noticed.”

About Luke Ford

I've written five books (see My work has been covered in the New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, and on 60 Minutes. I teach Alexander Technique in Beverly Hills (
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