The Fears Of Men
The Fears Of Men
I have always been surrounded by strong women and strong men. I have grown up with the definite, the delineated and the demonstrative; Scots are not known for their temerity. I have always known and respected people who stand for particular and specific things, who do not waver in their ideology and who know themselves as best as they could.
This does not mean mindless devotion to any particular calling, nor does it mean abusive aggression or heartlessness, quite the opposite. It means that I have always tried to surround myself with those of definite and fearless character.
Now we all have our faults, our foibles and our weaknesses. To try and say otherwise is a lie of mammoth proportion. There are things that I do that I should not, errors that I make that I should have known better and of course injuries that I have given that were undeserved. These I believe are faults native to mankind and part and parcel of the human condition.
What I do not understand however are people who live in fear and subjugation or those that feel the need to cause fear and subjugation. Now I am not talking about political prisoners or those who live lives of such abject terror and abuse that it makes the skin crawl. There are those that live lives of such mortal terror and horror that it bears not thinking about. I am talking about the little ones, the petty cruelties and injuries that are done on a daily basis. I am talking about the abuses and insults passed back and forth between men and women on a regular basis.
Now it is easy to blame the woman. It is easy to say that any woman who lives a controlled and commanded life is getting exactly what she deserves. It is easy to relegate her to the role of the weaker sex, the timorous, the little woman who can do no better. As a man I can say all sorts of things about the subjugated woman.
The greatest problem as I see it is the weakness and fears of man.
I am strong and I am secure in my strength. I know my capabilities both intellectual and physical. I know some of my strengths and some of my weaknesses and there is one thing that I know for sure. If I was to try to keep a woman in relational bondage then I would not be able to look myself in the mirror.
Some men live their lives in abject terror and fear that their woman will leave them or abandon them. This fear is so consuming, so controlling and so altering that they will do anything and everything to stop it. The woman is belittled and demeaned, insulted and denigrated all so that her own measure of self worth is destroyed. Once her self worth is destroyed then there is no possibility that she will leave because no one would have her.
Oh how manly I could be then! Oh what a hero, a saviour I could present myself as. Once I have taken from a person that which makes them a person it reasons that I am made better and fuller because of it, doesn't it?
What weakness, what cowardice and moral avarice! How any man that portrays such glaring character flaws can ever stand proudly in the company of other men I do not know!
Women suffer from the expectations and demands of society much more than men ever do. Women are expected to behave in certain ways, accept certain treatment and tolerate far more than a man ever would. If a man were to stop at the local watering hole after work, drop back a few drinks with strangers and then make his way home then that would be acceptable behaviour. If a woman were to do it then my god, someone break out the scarlet letter for that hussy!
There are such double standards maintained, such variable conditions and ideas on what is acceptable that I am amazed that more husbands are not beaten while they sleep. I am always making passes at a friend's wife. Whenever I am over I am always trying to pick her up and best of all he doesn't mind, he just laughs. I chat her up in full view and hearing of him and the closest I have ever gotten is him asking if he should leave, and leave us alone.
He can do this and does this because he is a secure male. He has no fears that she is suddenly going to throw herself into my arms and because of that he is able to relax. Now she is a very attractive woman, she is interesting and she is friendly and I enjoy her company. These are all the same qualities that he found in her so he cannot be surprised that others find the same things.
If she has not left him by now, she is not about to. They stay together not through his fear but through his strength. He is able to acknowledge her value and not be threatened by it, as she recognizes his. Of all the people I know they probably have the most stable and most secure marriage because it is a marriage of equals.
So what's the solution? Is there even a solution? I doubt it. The only solution would be for these weak men to realise that the greatest turnoff they possess is their lack of confidence. It would be far too difficult for them to recognize their own mediocrity; they would rather reduce their mate to their level. I doubt if there is any easy method for a small man to grow some cajones.
So if the weaknesses of men cannot be corrected then perhaps the strength of women can be amplified. Perhaps it will take the women to draw a line in the sand and use all of their abilities, all of their skill and fortitude at demanding to define what the relationship should be and the rules it will operate under. Perhaps what is really required is for the women to deny with great vehemence any suggestion that they be reduced to match the proportions of their mates minds.