My friend B. just forwarded me the link with the note “Go get her!!”
Here are a few of the quotes that made my head explode. (Read the full article here.)
We learned to let men treat us like crap.
No, see..we allowed them to treat us like crap. Therein lies the biggest problem that prevents people – male and female – from finding a healthy relationship if they so choose.: Lack of Accountability. Thriving off of being wounded. Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, and I have horrible taste in men and need to re-evaluate.
Women of my generation are still the second-class citizens of fairy tales: only now, we don’t even have the chivalry or the ever-blooming roses to comfort us in our eternal boredom.
Oh, it’s chivalry we want? I thought it was to be treated as equals? It’s no wonder men haven’t a clue whether they should open a door or walk on the left side of the street…we don’t even know what we want. We want to be treated like equals in the office, and then like delicate little flowers on a date. Have you noticed that men don’t have such inconsistent requests? Men are expected to act the same way at all times. They don’t get to be vulnerable or demure. Lord knows that if a man were to write a woman some sacchariny sweet email in response to her profile, or an apology for behaving badly, she’d run to the internet and post it for the world to see calling the guy a pussy.
Our conversation eventually — and inevitably — led us to the topic of why she never married, and to illustrate the point, she told me a story. “When I was younger,” she said, “I was dating a man who told me: ‘You’re extraordinarily smart, and you’re extraordinarily beautiful. You need a man who is either so strong that he can stand up to you, or so weak that you can walk all over him. I’m just a normal man. I’m not the man for you.’”
Allow me to translate. You’re difficult. Note how he phrased this..by complimenting her first so as to soften the blow. He appealed to her ego. He took the hit. He made this about his supposed weakness, when it had nothing to do with that. In other words…it was a lie. And it’s a lie that some women have been telling themselves for years to help them justify their own behavior.
As I was leaving, she said to me, with a great deal of kindness: “You’re pretty, and you’re smart. It’s a curse. You’ll have a lot of difficulty finding a man.”
Holy Jesus Christ on a Cracker. Yes, men hate pretty, smart women. They abhore them. They all want to find submissive, docile girls. Not true, not by a longshot. Many, MANY men are looking for an equal. A partner. Has any man ever been told the equivalent? Has any man ever heard such a condescending, offensive comment? “Oh Gee, Don, you’re good looking and successful. It’s going to be hard for you to find a gal.” And what makes this worse is that it’s one woman saying it to another woman. I swear, it’s a conspiracy to keep other women single. Plant seeds of doubt in their heads, psych them out, take them out of the race. Or tell them what they want to hear because that’s what they would want to hear, thereby perpetuating this type of nonsense.
For the first time in my life, someone openly acknowledged the dirty dark secret of my generation of women. And that is that all of the qualities we cultivate in ourselves from our first overachieving moments in elementary school to our graduation from the best universities in the nation — confidence in our physical appearance, the ability to support ourselves, our cultured and well-read minds, the sterling pedigree of our schooling, our taste for healthy debate with our peers (both men and women) — actually won’t help us to find an equal partner. What it will do is make an “equal” man feel insecure, and what he will do with that insecurity is label us as “crazy.”
Are you including me in this generation of women of which you speak? Because I’ve never bought in to that crap. Oh wait. I did. It was when I was in my late twenties and early thirties and got dropped like a hot rock at every turn. What the problem here is that some women are offended at the fact that men aren’t impressed by their pedigree. The other problem is how some women cling to these accomplishments and assume, because they’re so impressed with them, that other people should be, too. The real hurdle is overcoming that huge chip that resides on so many women’s shoulders. Men aren’t impressed by words in the same way women aren’t. A guy can talk, talk, talk all day long about where he went to school and how much he knows. I don’t care. Don’t tell me how valuable you are. Show me. Show me what you bring to the table other than a bank account and a piece of paper on your wall. We’ve become far too impressed with qualities that do not matter, the flash, and forgotten about what really matters: substance.
I say to you, why aren’t you telling me that I should be going out to look for the men who wants a woman like me? (They do exist; some of them are my friends.)
Oh. Then why aren’t they either dating you or fixing you up with their friends? That’s what women who believe this should be asking themselves. If you have male friends who constantly tell you what a catch you are, but never seem to know of any single friends, there’s a reason for that. And it’s not that they don’t know any single men. Usually, at least.
Instead of being told I need to medicate my “craziness” to pander to a man’s itty-bitty oh-so-witty ego, I want a man who is every bit my match, and is not scared off by that. I want a man who is every bit my match, and is not scared off by that. I want a man who appreciates that I enjoy sex. I want a man who loves that I can fire back a sassy comment like Katharine Hepburn on one of her lazy days.
Great. You love The Cock. Who doesn’t? Do you really think men will hold against a woman for enjoying sex? REALLY? And as for this love of “sass”…this was something that came up in a recent workshop we held about writing an effective online dating profile. When the word “sass” was used in one woman’s profile, almost all of the men in the class kind of winced. Sass? Is not as fun as it sounds. Sass usually involves talking to or treating someone sarcastically or disrespectfully. Now, I don’t know about you…but I’m not too eager to date someone who’s always “sassing” me. If a man is turned off by a woman’s “sass” then it’s probably because she’s not being “sassy” she’s being obnoxious. As for the Katherine Hepburn comparison…Hepburn had what I call The Finesse. I am in awe of woman who possess this quality. It’s an ability to convey strength and vulnerability at the same time without ever coming across fragile. For a more recent example, watch The Good Wife on CBS. One of the lead characters, Diane Lockhart, is a 50 something partner in a law firm. Of all the female characters, she’s not only the most self-assured, she’s the most sexy. (Well, Khalinda is pretty smokin’, too.) Diane is portrayed as vibrant, sexual, and strong. She’s no-nonsense, confident of her abilities and she makes no apologies. She doesn’t broadcast or defend her sexual exploits (she’s the only female on the show who consistently has sex) , or feels a need to remind people she’s in charge. She commands respect with her demeanor, and she gets it.
I have a pedigree like an Arabian thoroughbred — double Ivy League degrees in art history, the ability to speak in five languages, a resume full of prestigious jobs in the art world, a history of international travel that even Bruce Chatwin would gape at — and it’s come to the point that if a man doesn’t immediately identify me as crazy, I question if he’s even listening to me when I open my mouth.
He’s not not listening because he thinks a woman with such accomplishments is crazy. He’s not listening because she probably sounds pretentious. And kinda boring.
But it’s clearly not a biological fact that a woman needs to be in a relationship to have a child. A decade from now, I know that I’ll be making a more-than-decent living, and so, assuming I don’t ask a friend to knock me up (hey, best friends make the best lovers, right?), I’ll have plenty of money to pay for in vitro fertilization. I have many, many good friends, five siblings, relatively young parents, and over 20 aunts and uncles who would help me to raise that baby.
I’m not going to knock anyone for wanting to be a single parent. I believe we can do anything we set our mind to. So if someone wants to be a single parent and they have that desire and commitment to it, then they will succeed. What bothers me about this quote is this idea that her large extended family will be around to help. Umm…you do understand that you’d be the primary care giver, right? And that while most people will enjoy watching your child occasionally, they have lives and relationships and families of their own and can’t always make themselves available to you, right? I’m actually pretty shocked at how the author tosses off this comment, as if she’d be giving birth or adopting a dog that sleeps in the corner and requires only to be walked twice a day.
All that I’m trying to say, ladies, is stop trying to frighten me; make me feel empowered. Speak to me like I can make my own decisions, and don’t demean the difficulties I may be having finding a guy who I think is worth my time and energy. Marriage is a rapidly-changing institution. Let’s discuss how it can be molded to fit our rising status, rather than trying to jam ourselves into some outdated ideal.
Can someone please point me in the direction of the articles that have encouraged or suggested that women stay home and lock themselves in the kitchen whilst barefoot and pregnant? Because all I’ve been hearing about lately is how women are comprising more of the work force than men. And I don’t think it’s anybody’s job to make you feel empowered. That’s our own individual job. But that’s what the real issue is today, isn’t it? That so many women are seeking the approval, not the affection, of men? Not just men..other women, too.
We’ve become so focused on proving ourselves, proving our worth, showing everyone what we’ve got, defending our choices….talking talking talking…that we’ve become completely consumed with ourselves. We’ve forgotten that a relationship involves being able to think about someone else. I just said it in today’s earlier post and I’ll say it again….emotional availability. That’s what both men and women want in a partner and in a relationship. They want someone to champion and to support, and who will give that in return.
All this time that women spend justifying their lifestyle choices could be put to more productive use if we just stopped needing the approval of faceless strangers and accepted – truly accepted – who we are and what we’re doing.