Crossing paths with feminists
My wife is a feminist.
I just thought I’d shoot that in there to set the tone of this article. I’ll be honest and say that before I met my wife I didn’t have much respect for women. I mean I always thought I did because I had an army of women friends that I interacted with daily, and I did everything I could to make them happy in every way. But if I was truly honest with myself back then I didn’t do it because I wanted to, I did it because I secretly wanted to give them a good seeing to! But we all know that isn’t healthy, right? Of course on the surface I was acting all nice, sympathetic and empathetic but beneath the surface there was this secret hidden agenda. A contract that only I knew about, I wanted them in my bed, and sadly, for me I couldn’t see anything past the flesh. A woman was an objective to me and nothing more. It’s sad really because I lost out on so many awesome friendships.
Then my wife came along.
She actually opened me up to a mind that I wanted to fuck. It was a feeling that I had never experienced before, and for me, it took quite a bit of getting used to. Changing and learning is never easy. My mother had never respected herself so I had no chance respecting any woman until I met one that commanded respect. There has been times when Natalie has been awake with me at 1am, talking about the inner workings of the female mind, random things like the 18th century book classics, or her personal favourite 15th century sea faring. I’m not the best of book readers, truth be told the last book I picked up was “when the eagle has landed” and that was years ago. But the way she learned to impart her knowledge into me was amazing, and I just lapped it all up. Sometimes at 3am whilst she couldn’t sleep and was in the middle of an exciting read.
She taught me all that I needed to know about women. What makes them work and how to interact with them better. I also learned a great deal from living with her and observing, she’s always up for questions. Being a teacher, Natalie is in her natural habitat when questions are being fired at her. And from there I gradually changed from viewing women as objects of sexual desire to dangle from my chest, to absolutely amazing and wonderful humans. Let’s be clear here, I am totally smitten with Natalie.
But it’s so raw and new and intense for me right now. Women are these amazing people that I’ve only just awakened to realise how engaging and wonderful their friendships are, how delightfully nurturing and open minded they can be, and how empowering it can be to be friends. It’s interesting how we pull different strengths from our friends. I’m very much interested in my emotional development and that is probably why most of my friends are women. That being said I still have good guy friends! But these are men with lots and lots of women friends too.
I wrote a story that went viral on Pinterest the other day (before my site went down and I spent two days getting it back up, argh!) and I decided to join a Feminist community to give it a boost and hear what they had to say. It was interesting to say the least.
What was interesting that on more than one occasion these women sought to belittle my story. One likened it to be vomit inducing. And whilst I am -totally- open minded about feedback and constructive criticism I could not help but wonder if they were angry just because I was a man writing it. A Benevolent sexist I was called (an example of what this means here), and yet I struggled to grasp that from my 600 or so word article about my wife. Whilst there were some generalisations in there I don’t think you could come to the conclusion that I am a benevolent sexist. I am more than fully aware that some women are just incapable of nurture, others, some in business, can be just as able or even more so than the men in their office. I know! I worked with them before.
And let’s talk about the attitude. Because it stank. And whilst I did try and ask to be treated with dignity and respect, I was met with scolds of,
“I have no time to massage the male ego”
Whilst she had a point, she forgets that women have egos too, and her ugly inflated one was showing me no respect. In my world you do the decent human thing, treat others with respect, male or female, you get the same back.
And yet I fear it’s groups like these that seek to empower the voices of women whilst not giving a second thought to men. It’s groups like these that give feminism the stinking name it seems to be donning. When you look at a problem you need to see it from both sides, and if you have a mad bias then you do neither side any good. As a man that loves being in the presence of women I’m very dubious about entering any other feminist groups because I don’t have much time in this world to sit there being shouted at and defending myself.
Luckily I understand that it takes many, many people to make a world. And I’m sure there are many, many lovely women and men that seek equality for ‘humans’ and love all ‘humans’ alike. I had liked the idea of being a feminist because I want both sides to get what they want! We both have many, many problems!
I’m not too sure now.
Maybe I’ll just be me.
And instead of using a label so that I can be categorised and pigeonholed I’ll just love everyone as I see fit.
Yeah, that’ll be awesome 🙂
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