Growing up, all I heard was “It’s a man’s world”. Everywhere.
Fast forward a few decades and Sasha Fierce (Beyonce’s alter ego) asked a question, “Who runs the world?” Guess the answer.
In case you’re not aware, Sasha Fierce is queen B’s champion of feminism and women liberation.
Before I get into the meat of this post let me say this; a lot of what I’m going to say would very likely be termed as sexist. I’m not going to apologise for that, I’m just trying to analyse things from a male perspective.
First off I’m not totally sold on the concept that it’s a man’s world, at least the way a “man’s world” is described.
Men may have been at the forefront, may have even been the major players when the stories are written, but a lot of the decisions made centred around women.
Don’t believe me? Alright who gave Adam the fruit GOD told him not to eat? Not the devil, a woman, his wife. My dad likes to joke that Adam ate the fruit so there’ll be peace in the garden.
The battle of Troy where legend tells us gods got involved was fought over a woman, Helen of Troy.
Fooling around with Cleopatra (queen of Egypt, a world power in its time) got Marc Anthony killed.
Joseph got thrown into jail for a crime he DID NOT commit by the way, against a woman.
King Solomon lost his brains trying to manage a thousand women. We may never know their names but Israel was divided into two kingdoms by the time Solomon had finished wading through all of them.
Samson lost his hair, eyeballs and God given strength to a woman. Not to the mighty Philistines, but to a temple prostitute.
Ok those are probably bad examples, my bad. But you have to admit, women have a way of making us men lose our marbles.
It’s not all bad though, there are many examples of influential women who have commanded equal pages in the history books as men. For good.
Two of the great wonders of the ancient world ( the Taj Mahal and The Hanging Gardens of Babylon) were built by kings for their wives.
There was Marie Curie the brilliant genius whose groundbreaking work on radioactivity won her two Nobel prizes (one in Physics shared with her husband and another in Chemistry 8 years later).
Cleopatra ( I know I mentioned her earlier amongst seemingly bad examples). But what people fail to pick from historical accounts is that she was a brilliant queen and military tactician. It was due to her genius that Egypt held out against the mighty all conquering Roman empire for as long as it did.
Joan of Arc, the 19 year old girl who led France to war and won against the English.
In our time we have and have had “Iron lady” Margaret Thatcher, Mother Theresa, Beyonce, Madonna, Angelina Jolie (I’m referring to her work for the UN), even Kim Kardashian and Lady Gaga too are now icons of feminine empowerment.
There are A LOT of examples and I can’t mention all of them, but I will use the ones I mentioned above to buttress my points.
Here’s another common phrase I heard a lot as a kid; “Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus”. I remember thinking it was ridiculous. If we were both from different planets what where we both doing here on earth? (I know right? this weirdness in my head didn’t start today).
But as I grew older I came to appreciate the spirit behind the quote; that men and women are different, quite drastically I might add (regardless of which gender you “identify” as)
Males are wired to be prominent, it sounds sexist but it’s true. It’s down in our DNA, very much exhibited by the hormones we produce. Testosterone is an “active” hormone. There’s hardly any subtlety in it.
9 out of 10 ten times if a man finds you sexually attractive you’ll know right off the bat (even if he isn’t being an asshole about it) – except you’ve decided to be blissfully oblivious.
We’re generally not very good at concealing our feelings even though we might have an issue phrasing them the way you ladies like to hear them.
Women on the other hand are a lot more subtle. It’s not a weakness (on the contrary I think it gives them an upper hand over the more “visible” and predictable men). They’re definitely more emotional and tend to do their best work when it’s coming at you indirectly. I don’t know how many times I’ve walked right into traps with different ladies that I thought I had dodged several steps earlier. It’s an art, one that is unique to their sex and must be admired.
We tell you we don’t like all the rigmarole and subterfuge you ladies do but that’s largely BS, we love the challenge, it’s what keeps things interesting (Sherry Argove has a whole book on this titled “Why Men Love Bitches”, fascinating stuff). It’s one key difference between having you as a love interest and you as a best friend (except if you’re gay that is, these rules don’t apply…and you definitely need Jesus)
Having established that, here’s my problem with the versions of feminism I’m seeing now.
It’s great to be a strong, independent and successful woman. No real guy likes a pushover. But (now I’m entering shark infested waters) in a relationship the man is the head. There I said it.
It’s nice when you break the glass ceiling at your career and you’re on the up (any real man whose woman is doing this will be proud). And you can be all that at home and still not undermine your husband’s authority.
My mom told me the story of a couple whom the husband doesn’t want the wife to get a job because if she starts making some money she’d no longer respect him. He was in fact prevailing on my mom to convince the woman not to get a job.
My ma was very disappointed in him but I played devil’s advocate. I remember telling her she didn’t know the dynamics of the house. He’s the one married to her with a better knowledge of her character. If that’s what he’s afraid of, he might have valid reasons.
Personally many of the marriages I know ( I knew the wives long before I knew their husbands) the women are NOT pushovers and they are successful, but when it comes to their relationships they let the man take the wheel AND then THEY RUN the show in the background.
Here’s a tip ladies: men generally don’t mind you running the house and even manipulating our decision making as you do so well, as long you let us wear the trousers in public. It’s an ego thing. I can’t explain it.
Think of it as a car. The man’s the driver (the visible element) and the woman is the engine. He may control ( and I use control in this context loosely) the car but he sure as hell ain’t moving the car. The engine does that.
This is not to say the males are just figureheads. No. What I’m saying is, here you have an EQUAL partnership with two completely different types of partners and it works when both recognise the differences in their make up and adjust accordingly.
In a pride, you can’t have two dominant male lions. It doesn’t happen, one either gets chased away or gets killed.
A wolf pack has only one alpha male. If there’s to be a new alpha, the reigning alpha is challenged and defeated.
Ever wonder why it’s extremely rare to see a woman married to two or more guys? It does happen but it’s the exception. Not the rule.
Even as christians (as the bride of Christ) our partnership with Jesus (the bridegroom) has Him as the head.
I’ve seen some ladies say “I don’t need a man”, “What can he give me that I don’t have? Or can’t get for myself?”
If you want to be a spinster all your life that’s awesome, but if you want kids you need a man, whether you do the deed or they inject his little soldiers into your ovaries. Besides kids need balance. It’s just right to have a male influence in a kid’s life to even things out.
You see all the examples of strong female characters I mentioned above? They’re all married. Ok except Madonna, but she was married.
Here’s another point. Sexuality. Sexuality seems to be a key component of the strong successful woman. She’s either shedding it off to fit into the world of men or she’s accentuating it to show she’s not ashamed of it.
Neither makes any sense to me because it’s a catch 22 situation.
You want to be recognised in your work place that’s predominantly male so you shed or cloak your femininity and yet when you do eventually get treated like a man (because if guys start to see you as one of the guys, they WILL treat you like one of the guys) you get offended. Just be a woman who is ALSO good at her job. Simple.
On the other hand you’re also a sexually attractive woman who’s made a name for yourself based on your sex appeal. Then you find it demeaning when you’re considered a sex idol. You DID create that idol no?
Oh and another thing, stop with the men jokes/tags/insults if you want the men to stop tagging you. If you’re going to dish it, you should be able to take it too. You call us dogs and bristle when we call you bitches? By the way dogs are loyal to irritation if you treat them right. Just saying.
You say we’re all unfaithful yet you coil when we call you all materialistic or gold diggers? Like you don’t have fathers who were faithful to your mothers.
We might have to start a “Meninist” movement to survive.
Guys, it’s difficult enough being a man, don’t give a woman grief for being good at your job or even better. God did make the women to be our partners after all. If we didn’t need them we’d all still be on Mars, filling up the atmosphere with testosterone.
And ladies, I get that it’s difficult for women to break the so called “glass ceiling” in a male dominated world but that’s because you’re trying to do that like a man. You’re a woman, you’re wired differently.
Do it differently.