Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Email: Partners and equals [EH]

Yes, it's wrong for men to act like jerks and impose expectations on women to be perfect or whatever, but my point is that men don't abide by women's expectations to be the same -- they just say screw-it-I'm-doing-what-I-want -- and women's problem is that they accept men's impositions on them and that's what makes them insecure. Anytime a person looks to others for his or her security they will not find it; you have to find it in yourself first.

The person who takes the initiative has the key. Do you think a man would sit by a phone waiting for it to ring? Do you think a man would risk letting himself be the last dance partner to be picked (become a wallflower)? (Nerds, yes.) Waiting for someone else to notice or ask you is depressing, whether you're a woman or a man. Only "losers" (that's man-talk with its ontological and logical circularity) act in a self-defeating or self-deprecating way -- and no man wants to be a loser. That's why men are about "winning" and taking the initiative; men are strategic. For all the flaws of men's competitive nature, you don't usually see them whining about being put-upon and overlooked.

This is why I say that a woman can and should feel free to do anything that a man can do -- in dating and marriage and ministry, not just in the workplace. However, this only works with a dating or marriage partner with whom one is equally yoked (tested and committed). It does no good for the woman's self esteem if she is in the driver's seat of a relationship when the man is willing to get by on cruise control or to let her do the driving. (What kind of a man lets his partner do all the driving? One who is competitive until he crosses the finish line but then is too lazy to defend his title or act like a winner, respecting his biggest fan.) The man needs to step up and take an equal seat in steering the relationship and continually improving it.

Winning is not about doing only what you want to do or feel like doing, or what you know (or think) you're good at; it's about doing your best at whatever you are responsible for and letting the chips fall where they may. A man wins when he leaves doing only macho things behind and begins doing manly things in a relationship with his partner and equal.


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