Dear Jane: How Do I Get My Grandpa to Realize He’s Acting Like a Creep?

Illustration by Jim Cooke/GMG.
Illustration by Jim Cooke/GMG.
Dear JaneWhat the FUCK is your problem? Write to me and I’ll help you figure it out! Dear Jane is a regular advice column here at Jezebel. I’ll take your questions, from the petty to the metaphysical, and dispense guidance.

Welcome to Dear Jane, Jezebel’s new advice column.

Dear Jane,

Glad to see you back. Here’s my problem: my grandpa has always been a lighthearted joker, sometimes to the detriment of my sanity. He’s the kind of guy who likes making the jokes but can’t handle it directed at himself. So, kind of an asshole. But that’s a problem for another time. Here’s the more urgent issue: Grandpa thinks it’s totally okay to touch me, a woman in her damn 30s, the way you touch a little kid (I assume). For example, one hot summer day, at my parents’ house for lunch, I happened to wear a crop top with a high waisted skirt. Grandpa immediately notices the sliver of skin at my midsection and says “when I was younger, if girls dressed with their bellies showing like that, we’d just grab it!” and proceeds to grab and my midsection. Okay Grandpa, inapprops. Another time Grandpa, my sister and I, all went to visit our grandmother’s grave at the cemetery. It’s something we try to do often, and it’s not necessarily a somber occasion either. We try to think of it as a real visit, go on nice days, and act in a way we would in a park but remembering my grandmother. I mention this to give context to what happened next. As we were visiting, I began to feel some back pain (something that happens on occasion due to an injury a few months back) and got on the grass to do some yoga stretches. Literally within five seconds of doing a stretch, my grandfather slaps my ass. Yes. Slaps. My. Ass. I sprung up horrified and yelled at him and he just kind of shrugged his shoulders and acted like “oh I’m just your playful old man grandpa ha ha joke!” So, how do I get it into Grandpa’s dumb thick head that you can’t touch women, not even your own granddaughter like that? I know that this isn’t sexual, it’s really him being an annoying idiot joker, but it’s still treating my body like it exists for his dumb amusement and I hate it. I’ve thought about asking my dad to talk to him, if only to force him to have the awkward conversation instead of me, but my dad was also the person who got angry at me for reporting a guy at work for sexual harassment because it was “harmless joking.”

So Jane, what do I do about Grandpa? Also Grandpa is completely healthy, physically and mentally. This is the way he acted with me when I was a little kid. He doesn’t like have dementia or anything and thinks I’m my grandmother or something.

- Granddaughter Really Asserts Moronic Pawing Stop


Are you my cousin? No, of course not, because my grandpa died and I had my and my daughter’s names removed from the obit because of nonsense like this. I’m being 100 percent serious.


Your grandpa is a fucking creep. So is your dad, but that makes sense seeing as how a creep raised him. It IS sexual, no doubt about it. Maybe you don’t want to call it molestation. Neither did I. I call it sexualization and it’s something that more than a few of the fucking hicks in my family enjoy doing to their relatives. It’s pretty gnarly, man. The only thing you can do is a) not hang out with him and b) if you must hang out with him, yell at that grabby motherfucker! Be like, “Get your nasty hands the fuck off of me you fucking creepy old man!” And say it in front of everyone, especially your dad. Be as forceful as possible with your language. Creep them out; it’s the only way.

Look, everyone needs to quit worrying about whether people like them and start taking care of number one. If they get upset, who fucking cares!? They upset you and they don’t care! Be more like them in that one particular way and protect yourself. In my experience doing so will give their other targets the bravery to follow suit, which is such a relief for everyone. Trust me.

Dear Jane,

I’ve heard all about the debate about penis size (length), but is having a long penis pleasurable to a woman? Or is having a thicker penis better for that?

Depends where you want to put it. Boring straight people only put it one or two places but even those places vary in size. I regularly put it like… lemme count... in or on at least seven places that I can think of? Wait, no, nine. But anyway, that opens things up a bit as far as what is pleasurable. So, short answer: there is no answer. Find someone who wants to bone and then find out how to bone in a way that is fun for both of you.

Longer answer: What the FUCK is up with your email address?! That’s what I’m really concerned with. Dear readers: you will not fucking believe this person’s email address. I wish so, so, so badly that I could tell you this person’s email address. It’s maybe the most ridiculous email address I’ve ever seen that wasn’t a joke one of my guncles made last Thanksgiving while talking about “them kids and their damn phones.” Let’s just say that if you were a 13-year-old whose only interests were Aqua Teen Hunger Force and XHamster and inhaling duster you miiiight be able to come up with an email address as bananas as this one. Maybe.


Dear Jane,

I know this is petty, but one of my great pet-peeves is people who begin text conversations late in the night during the weekday. Like, let’s start a group text chat at 10:00 pm on a Tuesday night about a trip months in the future (cue the never-ending responses). I usually ignore until morning and put my phone on silent. I’ve made a point of letting my friends know that I am in bed at that time (even if I’m not sleeping; I’m either catching up with my husband or having me time (#selfcare) and I don’t want to begin a non-essential conversation at that time). I hate putting my phone on silent in case there’s an emergency and the same goes for “do not disturb” (does this make me paranoid?). I always subscribed to the mentality that if it is too late to call someone, it’s too late to text (unless, of course, it’s urgent or it’s a weekend and my friends and I are out, etc.). Am I being ridiculous and old-fashioned? What’s the social etiquette here? Should I just get over it?

-Tired of Late Night Texters

TELL ME ABOUT IT. You know what’s extra-fucked? Texting or calling someone who lives in LA at whatever time your east-coast ass wants to. I am never the same level of drunk as you guys!


Just tell the perpetrators to leave you off of group texts after, say, 8 pm. They won’t get mad, they’ll just start a group text to shit talk you that night at 10 pm sharp, but you won’t be on it, so who cares?

Have a question for Jane? Email her at Please change names and identifying info; this advice column unfortunately is not aimed at destroying lives.


LW3: On the iPhone at least, you can put a single convo on Do Not Disturb. Learning this changed my life. I almost never had my phone on sound (until I got my Wonder Woman theme ringtone), but it vibrates with every message and even in regular hours group texts stress me out, all that buzzing while I’m trying to do anything is just annoying. Stuff with that much back and forth can be done over email.

Anyway, in the group text, touch the i at the upper right, and on the page that comes up you can turn on the DND for that convo.