Every Friday, BULLETT’s introducing our favorite Instagram profiles and getting to know the people behind the posts.
@doyouconsideryourselffeminist is the most relatable Instagram for any woman who’s ever spent a week on a dating app. Through screenshots and memes, Sarah, the Montreal woman behind the account, confronts the sad state of masculinity by asking guys one simple question: “Do you consider yourself a feminist?” In her words, the answers range from “ridiculous to atrocious.” From trying to level with French-Canadian dudes who don’t even know what the word means, to getting trolled by Sarah Jessica Parker’s son on Instagram, she’s seen a lot of shit since she started.
Beginning as an inside joke between friends, Sarah continued posting her conversations to the account and inadvertently attracted a huge audience. But unlike most Instagram users with 30k followers, she isn’t just posting for shock value and likes. The “Unapologetically Cunty Cult Leader,” as she refers to herself, keeps herself as anonymous as possible, and shares the good answers along with the bad. Having now cultivated a safe space online for people across the world, she now uses the platform to engage with followers and learn more about other people’s experiences with online dating.
And while a lot of good does come from Sarah’s account, her feed is likely to enrage anyone who’s ever dealt with fuckboys. Even worse, she also comes across the most insidious breed of guy we’ve all, at some point, matched with: the “faux-woke” kind. You know the type––the dude who wears a “This is what a feminist looks like” t-shirt in his profile pic, but probably abused his ex. And while it can be upsetting to face these guys––or even read their words––@doyouconsideryourselffeminist validates these experiences and reminds us it’s okay to call people on their shit.
Why’d you start the account?
I was moving back to Montreal while my ex was moving back to London, and we were both settling back into our respective cities and talking about dating. He was not impressed by the people he was meeting over there, because he said everyone was the same––smart, well-read and into social activism and feminism. I just burst out laughing, because that was certainly not my reality. But I wanted to show him how good he had it in his city. So I asked ten random guys on Tinder if they considered themselves feminists. I never meant to start a platform––internet fame is seriously my worst nightmare. But I kept on doing it because it weeded out people really fast for me.
Why do you think some of the replies you get are so bad?
Sometimes people take that simple question as an attack. But it’s not––it’s just a basic standard for me. I like dialogue and conversation and if you’re not intelligent, I can’t like you ever––even as a casual thing.
How would you describe the community you’ve created?
I see it as a community for women, and a space for people to tell their story because I’m non-judgmental. People from developing countries and red states DM me to say that nobody believes in their experiences where they’re from, but they have a space for acceptance and community with my account. I don’t have those experiences because I come from a liberal city.
But don’t you still experience those things, even in Montreal?
Totally. Montreal is an echo chamber of liberal thought, but even within that there are still issues. When I first started talking about soft boys, faux-activists and faux-allies people were like, ‘That’s not a thing.’ But as much as the term ‘fuckboy’ is a reality for most women in our generation, faux-woke guys are the story of my life.
How do you deal with negative feedback?
The only way I’m able to manage this Instagram is by being very private––if it were even remotely about me as an individual, I would have snapped a long time ago. People always assume that the hate mail I’d get would always be from an angry guys in their basement that nobody would want to date, but it’s a lot of guys in their twenties in our plain sight that are hateful. We don’t want to accept the fact that it could be men in management, or guys we went to college with.
How do you think the internet has affected feminism?
Fourth wave feminism’s main definition has to do with online activism; everybody has a voice now, and it’s great. Every day I’m amazed at the reach of my Instagram because it started as a joke among my friends. But I get DM’s from girls in Syria telling me that if it weren’t for my account, they would have nobody to talk to.
Why do you also post the good answers?
There are some accounts that exist for shock value––@tindernightmares was there way before I was. But for me, posting only the bad stuff makes no sense, because people already know trash is out there. There’s no post that goes by without people commenting saying they didn’t realize they’d experienced the same thing.
From which sites and apps do you get most of your screenshots?
Mostly Tinder. And recently, I’ve been back on OK Cupid. I was on Bumble for a minute, but I detest that app because, to me, it’s peak white feminism.
Is there a reason you chose dating apps for this?
A lot of guys think dating apps have to be lighthearted––they hate anything serious. I see things in their Tinder bio’s like ‘I don’t want to talk on here for a week before we meet,’ as though a week is a long time. They think we owe them our presence––they don’t understand that women need to feel safe to meet them. And any guy who doesn’t understand that necessity is an entitled asshole.
What do you want people take away from your account?
It’s all about education. A lot of my posts are repetitive, but that serves to illustrate the subtleties and different forms of abuse in the way men speak to women. Asking the important questions before meeting when you’re using dating apps is important. If as women, we’re not confident enough to bring up any subject we like, what does that say? We’re already scared of hurting our potential partner’s feelings––if somebody can’t step up to your standards then fuck it.