Holding Doors and Opening Doors... Ladies and Gentlemen

Reading the thread Permission of Kissing got me to thinking about the times that I have opened doors or held doors open for women only to have them object. One woman actually berated me for holding the door open for her with the statement “I have my own arms! I can open doors myself!”

Like leaning over and kissing someone, I never really thought that it would be neccesary for me to ask before opening a door or holding it open.

When I have people who will be riding with me in my car, I unlock the door on the passenger side before I walk around to my own. I usually open their door and in some cases wait until whoever is getting in is seated so that I can close the door for them. If I am coming up to a door at the same instance as someone else, I will open the door and hold it for them. This was how I was raised and it is what my son is learning from me.

Am I terribly old fashioned? The few instances in the passed year where a woman objected to it really surprised me. Do you open doors for people? Do you expect people to open them or hold them for you?

Old fashioned? Absolutely not!

My husband always opens/closes doors for me, takes my coat, and positions my chair.

I find it charming.

We, too, have raised our son with this as the standard. I can tell you, however, now that he is 21, young women his age don’t understand why he would want to do this for them. Unfortunately, a lot of what we taught him seems to be going by the wayside in favor of the more “modern” woman.

Well, I am an equal opportunity door holder. Anyone whom it may be helpful for I will hold a door for. I will go out of my way to open doors for people whom may have difficulty with them (people carrying things, pushing buggies etc.) I have never had anyone object, and if they did I would politely tell them that I hold open doors for anyone as it seems to me the polite thing to do. I can only imagine someone complaining if you opened a door for a helthy attractive woman whilst ignoring a father with children that might justifiably seem like an unwaranted advance to the attractive woman, and rudeness to the father with children.
Keep up the polite action, but don’t just open doors for people you’d want to shag :wink:
Cheers, Bippy

I open doors as a matter of habit. It’s just polite. Although I don’t feel the need to knock someone out of the way to get to the door first. Do it with class and dignity and you can’t go wrong.

And when you hear “I have my own arms! I can open doors myself!” just say “Forgive me for treating you with respect, won’t happen again.”

Ok, I’ll state up front that I don’t mind having a door opened for me. It can be nice.
That said, I had a cow-orker who insisted on dashing in front of me to any door, and opening it with this little flourish/wave that was the most obnoxious “look at what I’m doing for you” thing ever. I hated him opening doors for me.

Well, I’m about 5 years younger than your son, but I most certainly do not mind having doors held for me. I find it quite charming. I won’t complain about someone not holding one for me unless my hands are full, but it does impress me when a guy holds the door for me even when it is unneccessary.

I had a roommate who yelled at a guy who held the door for her - that’s classless on so many levels. I thank people who hold doors for me, and I’ll hold/open doors for other people if I happen to be closer or if they’ve got full hands. Polite is polite.

I do feel funny when someone rushes ahead of me to open a door but I’d never be nasty about it. The one that kinda bugs me is when someone sees me coming and waits with the door open while I’m still some yards away. I feel obligated to rush so they don’t have to stand there waiting. Sheesh, if I’m more than 4 or 5 steps away, just move along. Really! I don’t mind!

You are not going to trick me with this again.

I consider holding doors open to be a courtesy. I’m another equal-opportunity door-opener. It doesn’t matter what gender you are, if I get to the door first, I’ll hold it open for you. I think it’s the polite and courteous thing to do and has exactly zero to do with someone’s gender.

I have actually had a guy get pissed off at me, because I happened to reach the door first and hold it open for him to go through. He wrestled the door from me and insisted I walk through first, because “You’re the woman”. That sort of attitude I find disgusting. Both women and men are fully capable of opening their own doors, it’s just common courtesy and takes two seconds to be polite to someone else no matter what genitalia they happen to possess.

I believe I always hold doors open for woman (within range, FairyChatMom!). I’ve also held doors open for Veterans on Veterans Day, senior citizens, even my kids. No one has ever complained.

I do remember a note left at a restaurant I worked at. Seems this competitive, female body builder had to hold the door open on a particularly windy day for some guy. She recommended that we lube the door, and never mentioned a complaint.

More and more, I expect others to be rude. Yes, I try to be considerate and courteous and helpful. I just wonder what happens during a stampede for the door when there’s a fire, etc.

Like the OP, I was once “dressed down” by a woman for holding the door for her. I was so surprised, I was speechless. It wasn’t even a situation where I was going out of my way to hold the door–she was walking towards the door as I was going through it. Also, this was a notoriously heavy door that slammed shut if you didn’t let it close gently, so holding it was more than common sense. (Penn State alumni Dopers, you may know of this door–it was the door at the top of the stairs leading up from the Bookstore, before they rebuilt it and the HUB in the '90’s.)

Fortunately, I did not let that prevent me from holding doors at all times in the future.

I can proudly say I usually open doors regardless of sex, age, colour or creed.

Although if I can’t be bothered I just talk through the door and use my hand to push it back for a sec or two so the next person to catch it.

Ja, equal oportunity is the way to go.

If I get there first I will hold the door open for the next person. The only time this has ever been a little problematic is if the next person just walks on through, and then the next person, and the next and so on. You end up standing there as a long line of people come on through and at some point you have to be a little rude and let it close in someone’s face so you can get to where you’re going.

I usually feel like a doorman. I hold doors open for everyone. Many times I hold the door open for one person and a crowd arrives right then so I feel obligated to hold it for all. Sometimes I do so with a flourish, or hold my hand out as if expecting a tip, just to toss some humor into it. I’ve been dressed down by the occasional feminist, but I just smile as they walk through. I do not and will not, however, open a door for any woman when I’m at work. The most I will do is hold it open behind me until the moment they touch the door then let go and continue on, avoiding anything resembling eye contact throughout. With some of the ridiculous sexual harrassment claims I’ve witnessed, that’s as far as I can go while still trying to maintain something resembling manners.

I’m in a different situation now. I’m in a wheelchair and, in a world without enough automatic door opening buttons, I appreciate it whenever anyone holds the door for me. I’ve had some people tell me they’re not sure if they should hold the door, that some disabled people find it insulting, but I don’t. I find it helpful.

When I was ambulatory, I would hold the door for whoever was behind me. If someone else reached the door before me, I appreciated it if they held the door. I hated having doors dropped on me and would try my hardest to avoid doing that to someone else.

It just seems like plain courtesy.

Gr8Kat: I’m in your boat (or chair, as it were. har, har) but for the fact that I’ve never been truly ambulatory. I’ve got a reasonably strong upper body, so I tend to swing doors open myself. OTOH, I never refuse a door-holding offer from someone whom it wouldn’t trouble. Hell, sometimes I even hold doors open for other people. :wink:

As for people who get pissy when you try to do them a simple favor (i.e. hold the door for them) in a non-ostentatious manner, I say screw 'em.

WooHoo, Go Lions!

Maybe if I’m in a really good mood I’ll do it.

Otherwise they can get the door themselves, haha.

See doing it as a courtesy as lame though, unless I’m in a relationship with her. Not really any reason I should do it for somebody I don’t know. Just because they look really good doesn’t make me value them to the point of opening doors for them, takes a LOT more than that. Beauty is common.

Yeah, My ex-wife taught me to do all that crap a while back ago. I was so bad back then that when we went to restruants the waitress would come up to take our order and I would damn near interupt my then wife just so I could give my order first!

Its kind of funny now that I think about it. It makes me wonder how I ever got girlfriends in the first place or at best, past the fist date. Jeez I was clueless.

Now its pretty much a force of habit.

BTW any woman that berates you for holding the door open for her has serious issues. That is of course unless you tried to give her a little pat on the ass as she walked on through. :smiley: