Muchness

Living each day much muchier

Do independent women need men?

IMG_4945

Sisters are doing it for themselves. Men need to feel needed.

It’s a conundrum for which nobody seems to have an acceptable answer.

This isn’t a feminist versus chauvinist argument. We all grew up together in a society that seeks equality while being deeply rooted in rewarding gender roles.

For a woman, it can seem like the choice between conflict and loneliness, little woman or alpha bitch.

The independent woman is educated. She earns decent money. She owns all that she needs and probably lots more she doesn’t. She has good friends and an active life. It’s a wonderful life and she shouldn’t have to give up an inch of it.  Yet, that makes her intimidating.

It inspires men to feel like an accessory and why would they want that? It’s not chauvinist or unfair to want to be needed. They no more want to be our useless arm candy than we did theirs

Yet, to expect that we should return to a state of need feels like asking us to be lesser, unfulfilled beings and not strive for that which we know we are capable. The purpose of equality is to celebrate a fuller richness of life through diversity.

Conundrum.

On the outside, independent women don’t spend much time pining for love. I’d go even further to say that needing a man feels like some kind of flaw or feminist betrayal, but it’s not.

Of course we need men.  The question is as misguided as asking why be gay or lesbian if you’re already the man or woman.

The conundrum arises when we don’t need men the way it’s traditionally defined – the role they grew up expecting to fulfil – like earning (most of the) money or catching spiders.  We don’t need them to make decisions, fix things or plan and pack the car.

We don’t need a provider. We do need a partner.

The strong, practical, independent (straight) woman still wants and needs a man in her life. She needs him to put his arms around her and kiss her hair.  She needs him to be there in the morning when she opens her eyes to let her know she has someone to share her day with.  She needs him to be there in the evening to distract her and keep her sane. She needs him to share the load of living, paying, planning, packing, driving, cleaning, cooking, decision-making … everything, because sharing is better and so much more rewarding. She needs him to be the vessel for the outpouring of her love and affection.  She needs him to choose her and to love her every day.

Sure, she could live without him. She could build a different life and it might even be a good one, but it’s not what she wants.  It’s not what she’s chosen.

She chooses this life and him and he is crucially, pivotally needed.

 

Advertisements

4 comments on “Do independent women need men?

  1. Jai Normosone
    February 9, 2016

    The only thing I could possibly disagree with in this is that the independent woman is educated (if the intent was leaning towards formalised education as opposed to being well-read).

    The thing is: It is impossible to put people into categories where they need what they need when they meet the circumstances of their lives. Some people like solitude – some like people.

    An “Alpha Bitch” is the name given to a woman by someone who cannot handle the fact that she can run her life without his input. Of course, there are some who are labelled as such but are formally educated while being utterly stupid at the very same time. Perceptions.

    You will recall a certain dance teacher who would often be labelled as a bitch – but she really wasn’t. She was tough but extremely talented – and the bloke she chose to share her life with is there because they just work well together.

    The fact that you are questioning the norms that decree that people should get married and have kids is a good start. An even better idea is that a woman is with a bloke (who has the maturity to actually be a ‘man’) because she wants him there and he wants to be there.

    Existing together because it’s better than nothing is just wasting time.

    • livingwithmuchness
      February 18, 2016

      I agree. A piece of paper after a few years of sitting in lecture theatres and exam rooms doesn’t equal “educated’. Educated is an approach to life. Sometimes that can be through institutions. Mostly it’s about reading, exploring, trying new things and working through adversity. An independent woman seeks out the information she needs to feed her curiosity about the world and to accomplish great things.

      Women are often expected to be compliant and to seek agreement and smooth things over. They’re not expected to be independent and individual to the point of ‘Don’t like it? Well, whatever.’ That’s when they get labelled a bitch but it’s an unfair label. Sure, women can be bitchy, but call a bitch a bitch when they’re actively dragging others down or wielding social power out of insecurity – not when they’re simply going about their business and leaving others to theirs. We’ve attempted to take back the word, but I’m not sure it’s had much success.

  2. Andy
    March 16, 2016

    I don’t know if most men need to feel needed. We (like most women probably) want to feel important to someone in a relationship but needed? Not really. At least not in the sense of providing the mortgage cheque and food on the table.

    Personally, I like women who are educated, confident and independent. Someone who needed me would be a bit scary! Female emancipation has been one of the greatest things both for women and for society in general. It is sad there are still men out there who are fearful enough to band around terms like ‘alpha bitch’. If you are fearful that a women is too independent and confident, you need to do something about your own sense of worth rather than knocking down hers. The fact that she is with you out of choice rather than necessity is, to my mind, a much healthier state of affairs for both partners.

    • livingwithmuchness
      March 17, 2016

      I’m wrestling with the sweeping statements of ‘most people’ and ‘we all’ that’s so often used by bloggers (me included!). It’s problematic because as individuals, we never feel like we conform. We don’t think we’re like most people, but when we view everyone together objectively, there are definite, clear patterns. I’ll probably post about that in a couple of days.
      Alpha bitch was quite an extreme term and not one necessarily given by men. It just perpetuates in our culture like any number of unkind synonymous terms – dried up career woman, power suit ball buster, crazy cat lady…”
      It’s great to hear from intelligent, confident men who see and support women as people rather than as a gender expectation 🙂

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

Information

This entry was posted on February 8, 2016 by in Relationships and tagged , , , , , , , , .
Follow Muchness on WordPress.com

Archives

From my other blog: Wonder what's there?

Who am I?

Department of Words

Department of Words

Thinker. Writer. Dancer. Not necessarily in that order.

View Full Profile →

%d bloggers like this: