Well I would imagine that the photo got your attention as it did for me when researching today’s post. Yesterday’s post on What Do Women Want in a Man sparked a lot of debate from readers all over the web. I was given Top 10 Lists, essays, and passionate emails detailing the stories of countless men and women. I was amazed at the diverse opinions and approaches. I had some men that talked about the duality of relationships…that men need to approach interpersonal situations with two different mindsets. That men need to be able to be strong when required and calming other times. I had women write in that they were concerned about the next generation of boys and their conceptualization of girls and women. And…I had women write in that placed a lion’s share of the responsibility on women themselves.
So…I am of the mindset that in order for all of us to have a healthy and spirited debate, we should call each others bluff, lay our cards on the table, and stand accountable for the mixed messages our respective genders put out into the cosmos. What do you say? Are you with me? No tricks or backroom deals here.
If we are to truly make an impact for ourselves and those impressionable to our every move…we need to be honest with one another abut what we are truly facing. This, to me, is not about religion or spirituality. This is about day-to-day meteorites hurled through our communities and into the minds-eye of our children. I have been tricked in my day and probably the producer of a few myself. I, like many of you, have taken what I thought to be good information from the opposite sex and acted accordingly. I have incorporated better listening skills, I have worked to restrain my genders obsession with “fixing” things when an ear is all that’s needed, I have taken the lead at the junction of passion and justice demonstrating leadership and protection for those in need, and I have demonstrated domestic abilities that just might shatter the Mr. Mom/Michael Keaton soliloquy of the 80’s.
Yes, I have done a lot of good and a lot of bad in my day. I am guilty of working hard at the above and expecting even more in return. I am that human being! Know any?
I have ridden the great Trojan Horse into relationships looking strong and confident while domestically delicate when the occasion calls…only to turn around and expect the same level and display of love and compassion from my partner. Fair? Maybe to some, but in the spirit of laying it “all” on the table…not fair. How is it that I can be fair in relationship negotiations if I have an ulterior motive that gets me the “deal” and sets me up for failure to deliver on the agreed upon contract.
It really is simple when you boil it all down. It isn’t something that Oprah or Dr. Phil or your great Aunt Sue can tell you that will be the end all be all. Can you realistically expect others to “follow” you when you don’t even trust yourself? Think about it…if I am approaching relationships trying to be and expect the best, in the beginning, only to change course and expect more of my partner than I do of myself then what am I really doing? Can I even begin to understand the messages I am communicating and am I fair to this other, well-intentioned person?
Because if I cannot then I sure won’t be able to handle the outcome if my partner actually “comes through” and improves their actions and/or behavior. Which reminds me…the other day I entered my local YMCA to take a Pilates class with my fiance. It was to be my second class ever and I had been pleasantly surprised at the number of men in the room.
Calm, peaceful, a feeling of acceptance that was much more relaxing than the Peacocks and Silver Backs just steps away grunting for bench press supremacy. Don’t get me wrong…I have my strutting moments too 😉 But today was to be relaxing and a sign of commitment to my partner that her activities are important to me too. Well….halfway into the class the instructor demonstrates a stretch that she warns isn’t too feminine to the guys in the room. I appreciated her thoughtfulness and left it at that. Not so said the 20-something female two rows back who proceeded to laugh and look at the guys in the room during the stretch. I glanced over…saw another guy visibly irritated and I thought…
“What does this woman expect from us? Aren’t we showing that we are evolved?”
Looking back I almost wish I would have said something because I am still thinking about it two days later. A time and place I guess, but it begs the question of both genders: Why is it that we trick each other? When the other sex is doing what we want we aren’t prepared to swing back around and improve ourselves or acknowledge the effort of the other. It can be very perplexing and challenges men (in reference to the Pilates class) to wonder what women really want. And, are women approaching the situation in a thoughtful manner or are they too setting up girls to unknowingly trick males like many of their mothers do.
What? Really? I am serious!! To watch girls, I mean toddlers, parade around in flashy outfits, sporting fake teeth (on last night’s show!), and shaking their bodies in a sexually suggestive manner troubles me. I am troubled that these girls and their agents, I mean mothers, actually believe that there is benefit in supporting the very stereotypes that lead to eating disorders, a false sense of self, and misconceptions of what love and beauty are and how to attain them.
How will these young girls think about relationships and what to expect from them and the men they will be involved with? Their skewed sense of reality only supports the negative stereotype that women only want a Mrs. degree and to be pampered…which only supports men in their belief that they are only valued for what they can produce for the family financially. It can be a wicked system that requires honesty and real-time Feedback from both genders.
We all play a role in understanding what each gender wants in a relationship…for the good and the bad. Some women want to be treated like a princess when they act less than and some men expect dutiful women who pay daily homage to their fragile egos. Both foolish and both disrespectful for one another.
So I ask you…as we look at what women want in a man…What does your gender do to weaken your argument and what do you estimate is the fallout for the next generation?