Our sexuality is not a toy. Nor is it a device for control.
Neither women nor men should be used for temporary, meaningless
(or mindless) sexual gratification, or as a gauge of sexual prowess.
In Euro-American culture, our sex roles are defined through what we learn is expected of us, by examples set by our parents in child-rearing, role models outside the home, educational institutions, church/organized religion, and media influences. I found differences in gender role socialization in my study of other cultures around the globe. But in our society, as soon as a child is born, she or he is assigned a “color” based solely on gender—pink for girls and blue for boys. Obviously, a distinction was made at some point in the evolution of our society that pink is the color of weakness (or softness), and blue, the color of power. Of course, this is true in what behaviors we consider
appropriate for those who wear pink and those who wear blue.
In my research on color, I discovered an interesting fact. Those with the ability to see auras, say they can determine the sex of an unborn child by the aura (or “cloud”) detected around the mother’s belly—a blue aura for boys and pink for girls.
Further study explains that purple/pink denotes royalty since it was the most expensive color to produce. Pink is sometimes used as a wall color for its calming effect on prison inmates and mentally-challenged patients. The pink rose also symbolizes grace.
And, although blue (namely, darker shades) connotes respect and authority, it affects people in different ways. When a group of people was asked how certain colors made them feel, blue evoked feelings of relaxation, whereas red and black made them feel powerful. Based on the psychology of color, may we then conclude that those colors assigned to our respective genders have nothing to do with subservience and power, but everything to do with harmony? Clearly, both colors evoke the same feelings. So, although the patriarchy adopted blue as man’s color, I believe we have simply acquiesced to more patriarchal propaganda, learning to define (and prefer) certain colors through socialization. Apparently, this “color thing” is unique to Euro-American cultures.
My parents’ eyes
I am the middle child and Mom often confessed that, after I was born, she almost forgot about my brothers. It was her greatest desire to have a little girl to breastfeed and dress in frilly little pink dresses. My mother openly repented and begged forgiveness from my brothers for neglecting them while we were growing up. True to certain studies of infant socialization, my mother held me very close, while pushing (or encouraging) my
brothers to self-reliance and maturity. John Jr. was her little man. I was her princess or little girl. And Jimmy, the baby—well, he was the baby. As children, John Jr. played with other children. I played with Mom, and Jimmy played by himself. Mom and I had “teas” and such, but when I was a little older, I also played with my younger brother. A right I had to earn by proving I could make toys as well as he. I truly enjoyed our playtime.
…I will venture to affirm, that a girl, whose spirits have not been
damped by inactivity, or innocence tainted by false shame, will always
be a romp, and the doll will never excite attention unless confinement
allows her no alternative. Girls and boys, in short, would play,
harmlessly together, if the distinction of sex was not inculcated
long before nature makes any difference.
A VINDICATION OF THE RIGHTS OF WOMAN
My dad was also quite the doting parent until Mom interfered with our relationship. Until that time, Dad recalled how he loved to play “ballerina” with me, holding me in the air with one hand, or on his shoulders, while I proudly assumed very fanciful poses. I asked if he bathed, cuddled, and “goo-gooed” us when we were babies. “Sure!” he replied, as if I had asked an asinine question. “I treated you all the same way I do the grandkids.” But he stopped “roughhousing” (AKA physical play) with my brothers when they reached a certain age. His father taught him that if you play with children too much, especially boys, they can get out of control, e.g., hitting you back, forgetting who the adult is. However, this lack of health-giving touch, even through play, hurt us all. The deprivation, leading to a host of mental and emotional challenges throughout our lives. (For a long time, I thought I had done something to cause him not to want to be close to me, and I harbored that guilt for several years until my mother shared the truth when I first started work on this perspective.)
We were very poor, but I do not remember feeling deprived. I had my dolls, kitchen sets, and nurse kits. John Jr. had his King Kong, cowboy holsters, and pistols. Jimmy had his forts, trucks, and little army men.
Now let’s see…
my desire was to be a wife, mother, and a nurse or social worker. John Jr. is the grouch box with an awful temper, very macho. Jimmy, the most disciplined, never grew up—I believe they call it the “Peter Pan” complex. But we developed an incredible work ethic, though without financial success, identical to our parents.
Pretty in pink
Many little girls are immediately transformed into living doll babies. The dream of almost every little girl growing up in many cultures around the globe, but especially America, is their first doll baby. I can still recall the smell of the soft pink plastic of my “babies” and they still fascinate me. Although my taste has matured to a fondness for porcelain, I have spotted a few plastic babies for which I secretly yearn.
I was my mother’s doll baby.
Plump, practically bald, with round sparkling eyes.
There is little doubt my parents (particularly my mother) created the mold into which the nucleus of my self-image was poured. A pretty little box neatly wrapped and adorned with a pink satin bow. Mom fondly recounts how very much she wanted a baby girl. I wish you could have seen how she glowed, while describing the joy she experienced during my infancy. It is too difficult to put into words.
Surely, she was not aware that the difference in how she treated us would be detrimental to our well-being. Most women are influenced by society’s indoctrination that boys need less coddling and are, therefore, prematurely pushed to self-sufficiency and aggressive behaviors. Throughout our lives, Mom would refer to us as her princess, man, and baby. She finally stopped calling Jimmy “baby” when he married long ago, but I think the damage was already done. I stopped believing in fairy tales after I was beaten and raped at age fifteen. Although tempered by age, John Jr. is still a grouch and tries to boss everyone. He did not, however, attempt that with Dad.
And, by the way, although I love green and black, pink is still my favorite color, especially pink roses.
Most of my interests center on home such as interior decorating, sewing, clothing design, writing, music, art, and gardening; and I love ballroom dancing. I also love other activities, however, which have little to do with society’s traditional (androcentric) role for girls. Fishing, farming, construction, renovation, target shooting, chess, entrepreneurship, and football. (Although, I lost some interest when Joe Gibbs first left the Redskins).
A man who has been the indisputable favorite of his mother
keeps for life the feeling of a conqueror, that confidence of success
that often induces real success.
And contrariwise, a man deprived of his mother’s full attention and affection keeps for life the feeling of a defeatist, that assurance of failure that often induces real failure(?)
I have no idea how true this is, but I do know that because I was perceived as the favorite, John Jr. often complained that Mom did more for me than him. Not knowing how long he has been jealous of me, I can only assume he felt pushed aside for many years. And, at this point in his life, one could consider him a failure—all things considered.
No doubt Mom loved us, but I believe that during his formative years, she did neglect to give him all the nurturing he required as a child. She often shared how she rushed him to learn to walk and took the bottle from him early. She felt he needed to be her little man after I was born. A role much too big for a baby. After all, we are only eleven months apart.
One is not born a woman, one becomes a woman.
SIMONE DE BEAUVOIR
For most of us, pretty becomes the focus of life and purpose. Many of us slaves to our bodies, with images of so-called perfection haunting our everyday existence flaunted in fashion magazines, television, movies, social media, and on European runways. And by our seductive (and often sluttish) mode of outward adorning we mistake for sexiness, we point the way to our pussies, the ultimate mantrap.
Falsely, we equate wholeness with the outward show of success, attaching ourselves to wealth and prestige through legal prostitution—marrying our benefactors instead of our friends. (Others creating their own success in defiance of our man-made roles. Thank goodness.)
For too many of us, for too long, our quest has been pleasure and the fine art of pleasing others.
They who live to please must find their enjoyments,
their happiness, in pleasure!
A VINDICATION OF THE RIGHTS OF WOMAN
By the way, pink also connotes perfection. The attainment of which we never achieve because, as we know, we are never pretty enough, thin enough, rich enough. Breasts are not big or firm enough, or are misshapen. Butt not tight enough, legs not long enough. Hair too short, or too long. Too curly, too straight. “Nature has played a cruel trick on me!” we complain. The stress is relentless. Eventually, we are spent and angry. After years of wasted effort, we suddenly realize we do not know who we are. We pursued goals, which were not our own, but dreams of someone else’s design. A role scripted for us by a system with total disregard for the individual self. Why? For the sake of preserving the status quo—the power base of a male-dominated, imbalanced society.
Yet if love be the supreme good, let woman be only educated
to inspire it, and let every charm be polished to intoxicate the senses;
but if they be moral beings, let them have a chance to become
intelligent; and let love to man be only a part of that glowing flame of
universal love, which, after encircling humanity, mounts in
grateful incense to God.
A VINDICATION OF THE RIGHTS OF WOMAN
It is a shame what we do to our boys. When they are born, we gently wrap them in soft blankets, the shade of blue associated with tranquility and gentleness. Somewhere along the way, the socialization process begins and we lose them to a definition, which does not include those characterizations. Instead, to achieve manhood, they are reared within the confines of a darker shade of blue, equated with authority and respect. We then systematically sever them from their humanness to crown them with a distorted gender definition, one that connotes superficial and pernicious power.
Boys don’t play with girls.
Boys don’t cry.
Boys are strong.
Boys are hard.
Boys are tough.
Boys are afraid of nothin’.
Boys like blue; pink is for girls.
Biologically, we are both male and female. Mentally, we inherit the unblemished sensibilities of both genders. Spiritually, we are connected to both parents. Our thoughts dictate our emotions and are influenced by external stimuli—what we hear, read, see, and are taught by others.
Sissy, fag, wimp, henpecked, woman or girl, pussy, effeminate, weak, coward, sap, wishy-washy, gump, flute, sucker, punk, bitch. Tags to be avoided at all costs.
Paralyzed with fear of their own humanity, our boys are trapped in an insane struggle to meet the stature of man, as designated by their fathers, grandfathers, brothers, peers, and society. Many knowing within themselves it is an almost unattainable goal. And yet failure means to be stigmatized with cruel condemnation by the patriarchy and peers, and unenlightened females. The insensitivity of man’s definition of their own role in society forces the innocent to despise that essential part of themselves which is unequivocally feminine. (Men are just as much their mother as their father.) What a maze of confusion to have to work through from one stage of your life to another!
Instead of teaching men they will not lose themselves to their feminine side, they are taught to fear and hate it. Most probably believing they will lose to homosexuality, when accepting this essential part of their psyche has nothing to do with their sexual
preference or identity. It just makes them whole, more well-rounded. The same is true for women.
Femininity is an inner quality which complements,
or completes, the masculine.
Masculinity is an inner quality which complements,
or completes, the feminine.
Each day, our boys are confronted with these fears each time they see us (women/females). Mom, grandma, sister, aunt, cousin, teachers, principal, classmates, police officers, judges, politicians. At any moment we step out of our defined role, as he understands it to be, a struggle for power ensues. First within his thoughts, then his speech, then his actions.
We are socialized to see ourselves through the eyes of others for approval and acceptance. We are all crowded into one mirror.
As when one is indoctrinated into a cult, self is sacrificed to blind loyalty to a particular philosophy or set of beliefs. Accepting society’s role as submissives, acknowledges dependence upon the patriarchy for our subsistence, and its position that we are inferior. And our parents, church, peers, and schools instruct and reinforce this de-selfing process throughout our lives.
Likewise, men are stereotyped by society’s definition of their gender, and by their blind acceptance, inhibit self-growth.
We are each imprisoned within defining boxes made of seemingly impenetrable walls. Walls that confine and subdue our spirit, emotions, and intellect, where we are not permitted to develop to our full potential. We are equally inhibited by labels society puts on our boxes… masculine, feminine… boys, girls… weak, strong… thin, fat… black, white… Asian, European… smart, slow… winners, losers. All such labels have nothing to do with our innate character and strengths, or truth.
Our society propagated cultural patterns of gender, primarily based on the myopic views of men and women influenced by the trappings of wealth and the perceived power associated with it. Where struggle for survival ravishes a society, the value of men and women is balanced since both are needed in that struggle. They work together, fight together, for the survival of their families, communities, nation, and themselves.
History records that, as we entered the age of industrialization, women were devalued, confined to the role of the weaker sex. May we assume that since we are now fully
immersed in the age of information that society will no longer restrict women and other historically disenfranchised peoples from free participation due to gender, race, color, etc.? One organization, the National Center for Women & Information Technology (NCWIT), was chartered in 2004. It appears the formation of this community was deemed necessary. So are we getting there?
To heal humanity, we must somehow humanize capitalism.
For by its very nature, capitalism is dehumanizing because
it values the dollar above people—people are expendable
if deemed to have no dollar value.
A rosy perspective?
I am a hopeless romantic—don’t shoot me—so please indulge me, as I romanticize a bit with a few rose-colored questions.
Did some of our men succumb to a pattern of guilt?
We (women) helped them build this nation. Fighting side by side, we laid claim to foreign soil in hopes of establishing a free society.
Up to the era of the Industrial Revolution, our hands, our backs, male and female from diverse ethnic origins and cultures, were the tools of construction. While we fought, toiled, and succumbed during that struggle, did they (our men) promise their brides, “One day, I’ll give you a better life…
One day, you’ll never have to lift another water bucket, or harness yourself to a plow… One day, I’ll exchange those chore-torn rags for satin and lace…
One day, my baby girls will never have to suffer the indignities these labors have exacted upon you?”
And the less noble of our sex most assuredly complained about their lot. Nagging, threatening, some wishing they could return to Europe just as Lot’s wife longed for Sodom and Gomorrah. Subsequently, did our founding parents make the mistake of looking back, desiring to duplicate the wealth and vain prestige of their former homeland? Did they conspire out of love, tainted with guilt, to keep us from these struggles by creating gender-appropriate divisions in labor, deciding this was best for us?
Many of my sisters will probably insist I am giving men too much credit. I just refuse to believe all men possess the same mindset. These behaviors are learned. They are not biological. Genetic. And not all men have acquiesced to the role scripted for them by society.
Just as I refuse to believe the original intent of the women’s movement was based on vicious retaliation, I cannot submit to the notion that all men, everywhere in this society, reduced our humanity to a gender to feed some innate hunger for power and sex on demand. There are good men, good husbands, good fathers, good brothers, good sons. And many are sincere in their efforts to stand and fight with us to regain our title and full rights as queen of the castle. In defiance of the socialization game, there are men who have embraced individualism, while sensitive to the needs of the greater community, the world.
Now, are we to expect more from them than we expect from ourselves? Are we any better than men who refer to us as bitches, shrews, nags, hags, witches, and the like, while we reduce them to dogs, pricks, punks, dick-heads, and the like?
By the way, any man who refers to a woman as “bitch” cannot think too highly of his gender. (Think about it.)
Duel for dominion
One power should not be thrown down to exalt another—for all
power inebriates weak men; and its abuse proves that the more
equality there is established among men, the more virtue
and happiness will reign in society.
A VINDICATION OF THE RIGHTS OF WOMAN
My son’s power struggles were first reported to me by the school psychologist when he was around eight years old. She told me he had assumed some type of “Me, Tarzan. You, Jane” role with some little girls. She also explained he acted out this power struggle with her and his teachers—all females, of course.
I missed it.
The psychologist and I discussed his home life at length. We concluded the power struggles resulted from not only the single parent issue, but also the fact that my mother was the dominant influence in the home. Most important, during that year my mother began physically and verbally abusing him, while threatening, “I will kill you and myself,” before she would allow him to “be like” his father.
The primary function of our educational institutions is to prepare our children to become productive members of society. Traditionally, our schools have reinforced sex role socialization, as defined by the patriarchy (or male-dominated power structure), to
secure the position of the male power base. This must change on a universal scale. Resocialization must begin with our educators, so a curriculum can be established which will serve to eradicate the old norm. When we teach our children to think correctly about gender, their behaviors will reflect this process of resocialization.
If such a curriculum had been in place during my son’s early school years, the power struggles he waged with female classmates and teachers could have been addressed. We
definitely would have given more serious attention to his obvious emotional malaise from which spawned inappropriate behaviors.
In this regard, I take issue with the matter of traditional all-male educational institutions being forced to accept female students. Yes, denying females equal access is unfair. Nevertheless, I believe it is equally, if not more, unfair to force these young men to accept such a disruption and invasion (of sorts) when they are emotionally unprepared through lack of some type of comprehensive resocialization program. A program that should have started in elementary or, at the very least, middle school.
Without sensitivity to their need for emotional readiness, we traumatize them further, thereby creating more hostilities and tension between the sexes. And, if permitted to go unchecked, such hostilities will spill over into the workplace they will someday enter, as well as personal relationships.
The same power struggle is played out even when men gather to learn how to become better men, husbands, fathers. Promise Keepers, an interdenominational religious group, raises the ire of women everywhere due to their all-male stadium-filled meetings. Louis Farrakahn also incites female fury, as during the planning of the Million Man March (dubbed “A Day of Atonement”), primarily for African American males. As I understand it, the purpose of these meetings is not machismo reinforcement, but redefinition. Targeted resocialization.
We are still exploring the true meaning of masculinity and femininity, and the universal significance of equality between the sexes. And the age-old concept of “servant leadership” (as it applies to male-female relationships) espoused and taught by Promise
Keepers can be understood only on a deeply spiritual level. Distrusting women (and other advocates of radical feminist ideology), whose primary agenda is the unraveling of the fabric of masculinity, cannot possibly grasp such concept. Nor accept any “healthy” or noble efforts toward male resocialization. Neither can those who fear change.
Nevertheless, since organized religion played such a major role in fostering and cementing the bigoted ideology of male supremacy, one would think women would welcome such resocialization efforts by religious-based groups. (Nevertheless, as a woman, I do understand some of the trepidation.)
I wonder how many of those men, participating in these sessions, faced unresponsive/angry companions upon their return home.
“I’ve got a headache.”
“Don’t touch me!”
“So… what did you guys talk about?”
“…………” (AKA, the infamous silent treatment)
Cat chats, and other rap sessions or support groups are as common to women as stockings. Sometimes, under the guise of worthwhile uplifting exchanges, these sessions become no more than gossipfests and opportunities to emasculate and ridicule their men.
And men are just as guilty. My son told me so.
Any man (or woman), who has stepped off society’s “stage,” finding his individual innate strengths to overcome and become a well-rounded person, should not only be applauded but also knighted. Nevertheless, since all are not equipped to accomplish this on our own, group resocialization must be encouraged, reinforced.
From early childhood to the grave, we are prejudiced
by the thoughts we have about each other.
We should commend individual accomplishments, applauding each as if our own. Women scale mountains, we applaud. Skilled surgeons and obstetricians perform miracles daily no matter their gender. We gladly proffer kudos and accolades of appreciation.
Corporate America, traditionally, has not been so generous. Gender inequities in the workplace are all too evident, too prevalent. Sexual harassment has become the bogeyman, haunting offices and hallways of almost every enterprise. Incidents reported by women are ever-increasing.
But women are also guilty and getting away with it.
After his retirement, Dad shared incidents where female coworkers sat on his lap uninvited, planted unwanted kisses, and rubbed his baby-soft hair. (Most of them much younger than he.) One tall Rubenesque coworker pinned guys against the wall and blatantly growled, “Now where’s my kiss?”
Not only is this inappropriate conduct, but also in the absence of a dress code, they sashayed through corridors and offices in sheer blouses without bras, and very short skirts without panties. (Some wearing g-strings.) How did Dad know they were not wearing panties? They bent over, crossed/uncrossed their legs, climbed ladders, or flirtatiously told him.
If their male employees practiced such overt behaviors, the scandal would rock headlines around the globe.
This is not a small office, but a well-known, highly respected, government, medical research facility.
What if men came to work in sheer tees and tight-fitting revealing shorts? Could we then expect to judge a man’s advancement from the mailroom to the boardroom with
Of course, all women are not guilty of publicly dressing or behaving in ways that invite sexual responses; however, just as many women believe all men are alike, men are also human and subject to identical prejudices. All such prejudices, which are based on the actions of others within the same group, whether it is gender, race, ethnicity, or religion.
If we (women) continue to accept these behaviors by our gender, how can we hope to gain the respect needed to be taken seriously? Sure, men should not judge all women by the actions of a few. Yet, are we not guilty of this sin against them?
Women must realize this behavior and mode of dress are counterproductive to our quest for equality. These women and others like them are traitors to the dignity, the true nature, of our gender. Complacent acceptance of this behavior is not only irresponsible, but also dangerous to any society where gender inequities and inequality strangle its progress toward civility.
For without true equity and equality, there cannot be a civilized social structure. Wherever there is weakness, its foundation will be shaken.
A house divided against itself will surely fall.
Abuse of power
We know many of us cannot handle power, which is evidenced by abuses of power in the workplace. Women, once considered desirable employers and supervisors when more
opportunities were opened to them, cannot escape this criticism. Many believed, because women were regarded as naturally compassionate and more patient than men, they would undoubtedly bring these attributes to positions of authority in total contrast to their male counterparts. But many, however, have been shaken by the harsh reality that women are capable of less compassion and less than honest dealings with their subordinates. As fact, from personal experience and discussions with friends, I learned that women in authority can be so manipulative and cruel that when feeling threatened, can strip an employee of their dignity and self-esteem, as well as their jobs. These self-serving behaviors, often fueled by histrionics, jealousy, and paranoia, are detrimental to the morale (and even the overall health and well-being) of employees and subordinates, victimizing both males and females.
In a 2014 conversation with a brilliant teen, Lilinaz Evans, cofounder of the Twitter Youth Feminist Army, Kamla Bhasin commented:
I know enough women who are totally patriarchal, who are
totally anti-women; who do nasty things to other women,
and I have known men who have worked for women’s
rights their whole life. Feminism is not biological: feminism
is an ideology. Men who are against patriarchy and who
fight patriarchy are also feminists.(18)
Mentally and emotionally unhealthy women are no better than unhealthy men in any arena—personal or business. Their aggressive or passive-aggressive behaviors are equally debilitating and malignant to society.
We need women who are so strong they can be gentle, so educated
they can be humble, so fierce they can be compassionate,
so passionate they can be rational, and so disciplined
they can be free.(19)
KAVITA N. RAMDAS
And so we dance
Long ago, during a period of painful loneliness, I was convinced to attend a nightclub one evening, and instead of making some attempt to enjoy myself, found myself taking
notes. It was truly interesting to see how men responded to the sexual overtures of women on the dance floor.
I noticed a remarkable majority of the men were not as provocative as the women. The women appeared to be in total control of the dance, which had distinct ritualistic overtones. This contradicts the notion that men lead and women always follow.
Round behinds rocked and swayed to drum beats with lifted skirts in close proximity to zipped male appendages, which most assuredly were tempted to salute the sights. The wide-grinned guys were wild-eyed with hands extended, as if begging, “May I touch it, please?” Some ladies (rather, females) rubbed their ample derrières against them. The men blushed, undoubtedly welcoming what they were feeling, but went no further than the women allowed. When the music stopped, they simply parted company.
Although this is only a minuscule example, I was impressed by the fact that if women expect men to behave in nonaggressive (or nonthreatening) ways, then we must, as a cohesive group, set the tone of morality for them to heed and emulate.
Once our behavior is corrected, it will demand that men, whose practices we find so offensive and threatening, correct that behavior. First, subconsciously. Then, consciously. Of course, not all men will change their behavior, just as many of us will resist enlightenment. Nevertheless, women should demand no more from men than we demand from ourselves, our sisters, our daughters. Respect for self begets respect from others.
Our sexuality is not a toy. Nor is it a device for control. Neither women nor men should be used for temporary, meaningless (or mindless) sexual gratification, or as a gauge of
Dance is beautiful in most forms and a marvelous social tool. Such interaction can be pleasant and enduring, creating sweet memories, and occasionally, friends for a lifetime.
So who’s on top?
This dance continues.
Actually, it begins the moment boys discover they are attracted to the enemy. That pest of a girl in homeroom class who “makes me sick!” Sally Sue with the goofy purple glasses who was teacher’s pet.
Suddenly, those bumps on your chest are just large enough for the coveted first training bra. Impatient for a substantial showing, we learn the magic of stuffing rolled socks, or soft bathroom tissue. The boys teased you. You teased the boys.
Squeaky, squealy voices soon give way to fully developed “Adam’s apples” and deepen, at last. Clumsy, tripping over your shoes every time a girl winked in your direction.
Then, as Tammy (from the vintage classic Tammy movies) declared, “I’m a woman fully growed,” so do you.
For some boys, losing their virginity is a mandatory right of passage into manhood. Otherwise, “you’ll go crazy if you don’t get some.” Or “your balls are gonna burst!” (Imagine how scary that must be.)
Girls feign chastity, deceiving their parents, with secret rendezvous with the first boy, who put his tongue in their mouths and it felt good. Nowadays, our youngsters choose to put their tongues in other places to avoid intercourse, believing the practice is safe. “Sex is fun!”
Those boys and girls, who don’t want to “do it,” are ostracized by peers, becoming loners. Some bullied and goaded into “it” because they want to belong.
My own dating experiences were a waste of time and energy. Instead of searching for a husband and father for my son, I should have been looking for me. Somewhere midst the mire of my existence was my true self, waiting to be rescued and bathed. I had a ten-year period from age twenty to thirty, when I chose to remain celibate (chaste). It was the most creative and spiritual time of my life. I now appreciate the fact that the power I possess is (and has always been) in my creativity. But, in terror of becoming a spinster for life, I allowed myself to lose ground I had gained by becoming involved with my sick selfish psychoanalyst that led to nowhere, except a wall of regrets. Oh, the bricks.
Make the heart clean; let it expand and feel for all that is human,
instead of being narrowed by selfish passions; and
let the mind frequently contemplate subjects that exercise
the understanding, without heating the imagination
and artless modesty will give the finishing touches to the picture.
A VINDICATION OF THE RIGHTS OF WOMAN
I have never been truly loved. I am sure the men, who thought they loved me, would disagree with me to the death. But the truth…
I’ve been owned.
I’ve been used.
I’ve been rejected.
I’ve been abused.
I’ve been raped.
I’ve been manipulated.
I’ve been robbed.
I’ve been diminished.
I’ve been taken for granted.
I’ve been a fool!
The painful reality of those wasted years, misspent youth, is that I let them. With the exception of the rapes, I allowed it. All of it.
While permitting them to maintain the power position, I assumed the role of a perfect submissive, compromising my integrity and my morality. My hope was that if I could please and uplift a man like no other member of my gender, I would prove acceptable and desirable enough to marry. All I managed to accomplish was to become a perfect doormat.
For I will venture to assert, that all the causes of female weakness,
as well as depravity…branch out of one grand
cause—want of chastity in men.
A VINDICATION OF THE RIGHTS OF WOMAN
Sting of her whip
Some men are so pussywhipped that the pursuit of pussy has become paramount in their lives. Good sense, respectability, morality, and responsibility all take a back seat to the conquest of what they assume will be new or different. When I asked my then twenty-seven-year-old son why he pursued women so fiercely, he replied, “It’s the challenge, Mom.”
This pursuit is so intense, it makes one think they must believe they will miss some fantasized ultimate orgasm, not realizing mere mindless sex will never sate the void they are desperately trying to fill. They hunt, chase, attack, and rape us to prove a lie taught by a perverted male-dominated society—“I’m the man.” Such an irresponsible way to affirm the male ego.
Other than the challenge, my son refused to acknowledge he was indeed pussywhipped (ruled by his penis—losing all control of the self to sexual need or desires, the mindless want of pussy, made weak by women). And he had more than his share of available and eager booties. He also confessed difficulty saying “No” to overt sexual advances. My poor baby.
A man is not defined by his penis, no more than we are defined by our vaginas. Although some of us obviously prefer to be defined by such, as evidenced by our behaviors, and for girls/women, also our mode of dress.
Women are equally guilty. Realizing the power they possess over men, they become addicted to the thrill of having pussywhipped their lovers. From personal observations, it appears men come to their senses much quicker (than most women) after having experienced the “boomerang” effect often seen in the mating game. The man targets his sexual victim and looks forward to the thrill of the challenge of conquering another
pussy. The woman, however, who appears to succumb to his seductive foreplay, knows who the real victim is and readies herself for the hunt and capture. She baits him into her web with clever seduction and then sexually whips him into submission. He is tamed by the sting of her whip, while stripping him of the delusion of his sexual prowess. She is now the mistress, and he her slave. Know any married men, whose wives stopped being as intimate once they married? How sad.
Women need to keep their legs closed until
they know what it means to open them.
A dear friend shared her concern about a new relationship. She felt he was moving much too fast, and after explaining what was going on, I told her to “chill,” and I meant “chill.” She confessed she was contributing to the problem. Passionate kissing, leading to a soft “No…” precipitated by a few nights of fulfilling, thrilling phone sex.
I advised her to back off until she was ready to consummate the relationship without any reservations.
If you tell a guy “No” in the heat of passionate foreplay, your body responding to every twinge of pleasure, at some point he may interpret that “No” to mean “Yes” and become overtly aggressive. Next step, date rape. Or, a mutually agreed to different sexual encounter you may also later regret. Clearly, she was not ready, so why confuse him by entertaining and participating in the seduction? This was not fair to either of them.
The date rape I experienced when I was thirty-six could have been avoided if I had just gone home. I knew what he wanted, but I mistakenly believed he was mature enough to respect my firm religious convictions, my emphatic “No!” Of course, he was wrong but I definitely could have used more wisdom. Also, I was menstruating very heavily and felt safe. (All right guys! This should not be used as a license to “rape”—there is no such thing. When a woman says, “No!” she means “I-do-not-want-to-have-sex-with-you-right-now, or ever.”)
Gender has no relevance
I submit that if a man cannot adequately provide for his family, he feels powerless. If he suffers systematic abuses in the workplace, he feels powerless. If his wife (or companion) resorts to verbal abuse, or deliberately deprives him of comfort, peace, or sexual pleasure, he feels powerless. If she causes him to feel inadequate by expressing dissatisfaction with their standard of living, he feels powerless. If his children do not respect him and the home he has provided, he feels powerless.
Society defines “masculinity” and “femininity” to keep
women as servile and nonthreatening companions to prevent
men from feeling weak and emasculated, that they
may feel more powerful.(20)
When a man feels powerless, he is capable of aggressively asserting himself where permitted, where there is weakness. In his quest for some semblance of power, he will fight back. Unfortunately, this fight often ensues in the home, where he will insist upon ruling as king of his castle and endeavor to exert control over those he believes are weaker—the subjects who dwell within his domain. Or, worse, he will actualize the fantasy of ruling his own kingdom, and abduct, imprison, abuse, and rape children and women. (Some female captives are impregnated.) Many of his victims are murdered, or die while in captivity.
Spousal abuse, and child abuse and molestation are on the rise. So too are the circumstances, which fertilize the breeding ground for feelings of powerlessness, such as economic deprivation and work-related stressors (for those fortunate enough to be employed).
The media also contribute to these feelings of powerlessness by continually focusing on what is negative in our society. Daily, we hear news of senseless murders, thefts, abuses, and hopelessness instead of the thousands of triumphant overcomers and those who treat others with compassion and kindness.
The stress associated with such bombardment further promotes fear and feelings of powerlessness over one’s circumstances. Men feel the need not only to provide, but also
to protect their families. What happens when they are made to feel powerless to provide that care and protection? Fear brings torment. Often that tormenting fear can lead to familicide—defined as “The murder of an entire family by a family member, followed by suicide.”(21) This perpetrator, who, by the way, can also be female, is also called “family annihilator.” These individuals are, of course, mentally ill, even though the act is often viewed as altruistic. Narcissistic would be more accurate, in my opinion, because such an act is centered on a demented self. A torment-fueled (-driven) soul is not well.
Many of us (women) are so entangled with issues of women’s rights from the proneness of victim, we have grown insensitive to the pressures forced on men by society’s definition of manhood. Of course, we can insist this is their fault. More insensibility.
Still, the fact remains—accept it or not—that our men are also victims on this stage. Across the board, our gender roles are perverse and noxious. We are all injured, even those who stubbornly cling to archaic self-conviction.
Husbands and wives soon forget they are brothers and sisters of the human community, first. That is, if they ever realized it at all.
I believe studies have shown the best marriages are those in which the saying “Today, I married my friend” becomes the foundation of a new life together, instead of the much-dreaded, legalized Institution of Marriage. Both realize there is power in submission and understand that true power cannot exist without knowing how and when to yield. Gender has no relevance in true power or submission. Greatness is achieved when each is utilized by both genders, not in the abuse of power.
More doggone labels!
When unforeseen circumstances disrupt the pattern of our lives, a new role may need to be learned. This resocialization is often confusing and painful.
I had a definite plan for my life. After the trauma of the beatings and rapes by my first boyfriend, I had a baby boy to take care of and raise. I was so confused I could not choose a name for him—undecided between three or four before he was a year old. (The plan for my life included the name of my firstborn son, who would be named after his father, my husband.) Needless to say, I got some strange looks at the birth records’ office. This may seem silly to some, but this was forty-eight years ago. I was only sixteen.
I had to heal, regroup, find the courage to dream again, and set new goals. The most difficult adjustment was to believe I would be desirable as a mate since I was now damaged goods. (Seeking help, an older man once advised me to “play the game” to win a man. Knowing this meant resorting to head games, I told him I would just have to lose because I refused to be that type of woman. And then through the years, I was strongly advised by others, both men and women, to “dumb down.” Another game. Nope. I would remain true to myself.)
Likewise, when one suffers a divorce, or death of a spouse, a new role is assigned—divorcé/divorcée or widow(er). And if there are children, a separate set of problems is presented because the children also must go through a similar resocialization process.
Resocialization works very much in the same way as socialization. Yet, specific support groups for those suffering life disruptions are also prevalent and ready to indoctrinate gender-appropriate roles. More labels.
I hated the label forced on me, even though the experience did damage me. I loved and cherished my virginity—it was never a bad word to me. But not only had I lost my virginity after the rape, I also was stuck with the label of an unwed mother. My son was now illegitimate, or worse, a bastard.
Gender roles are no more than labels fixed to opaque blue or pink jars. Those whose judgments are shaped by such narrow practices, care very little about the true self contained within those jars. Until we can somehow manage to divest ourselves of
such prejudices, we will never evolve, become better than what our present (and history) speak of us. And, indeed, there is no room for equality.
Sharing this perspective is both disheartening and disturbing. It seems as if the more I study and struggle to convey my perspective, the deeper and darker the waters become. This tug-of-war for power has tragically rendered too many of us too mentally, emotionally, and spiritually impotent to effect profound changes in our personal lives, let alone our society. It saddens me to think how far we have moved away from basic decency and regard for each other. I stated this in my first publishing effort. However, I remain hopeful. (Then again, maybe my unrealistic expectations are at it again.)
But… while working on updates and revisions for 2017, I happened upon a statement made by divorcé Billy Flynn, who managed to lift my spirits from these pages; and I now have a huge secret crush on him. Here’s what he shared on social media:
It’s my ex-wife’s birthday today so I got up early and
brought flowers and cards and a gift over for the kids to give
her and helped them make her breakfast. Per usual someone
asked me why the hell I still do things for her all the time.
This annoys me. So ima break it down for you all.
I’m raising two little men. The example I set for how I treat
their mom is going to significantly shape how they see and
treat women and affect their perception of relationships. I
think even more so in my case because we are divorced. So if
you aren’t modeling good relationship behavior for your kids,
get your shit together. Rise above it and be an example. This
is bigger than you.
Raise good men. Raise strong women. Please. The world
needs them, now more than ever.(22)
YES! And even better, I know he’s not the only one… there are others.
Erum… okay, let’s move on to the next chapter—Dressed to Kill. For those who think this is a book of sermons… well, let’s go to the next dissertation. (Smile)
Final Note on Color
With respect to colors and spirituality, green is the most suitable color for males. In the study of Eastern religions, the chakra color of the “male creative force or Yang energy in the body” is green, not blue. In Visions of Reality, Elizabeth Joyce writes,
“It brings to us our desires, other people, and controls our emotions and physical power. The Solar Plexus energy helps to create our future and causes us to have gut feeling reactions or psychic impressions. When out of balance or holding negative energy, it can cause us to think and act in unhealthy ways.” She further explains that blue is the color of the throat chakra or “Mother chakra and begins the three Yin or female energy chakras of the body. You can inflict pain or kindness with the voice. What is more important to know is the voice represents our ‘Intent.’ We will decree a thing and it will be so. Therein lies the mystery of manifestation. As Louise Hay states in You Can Heal Your Life, ‘… where thoughts go, energy flows.’ Our life experiences come directly from our thoughts, then speaking it, then our actions.” The Throat Chakra brings “self-expression, communication, affluence, and discernment.” (23)
:::End of Chapter Two:::
Thank you for reading this portion of my perspective!
PUSSYWHIPPED The Emasculation of Humanity
© 1997 1998 1999 2000 2002 2009 2017 by Maya Emmett
Registered Copyright. All Rights Reserved.
(Previously retitled “KILLING ADAM” from the original title above.)
No part of this book may be reproduced, stored in a
retrieval system, or transmitted by any means, electronic, mechanical,
photocopying, recording, or otherwise, without written
permission from the author.
Library of Congress Control Number: 2017940936