Men Ain’t Worth a Damn. Right?

After reading a few posts by fellow bloggers (Slim Jackson and his pal Seattle), and participating in conversations with friends about men and relationships and such, I felt moved to reflect on…::insert dramatic music here:: “the independent woman”.

In the last decade or so, a phenomenon has swept the nation…the “Independent Woman” craze. The original Destiny’s Child sang about her time and time again, movies put her up the big screen, and women embodied her. The message is touted all over the place: “We don’t need no man.” This may be true in a basic sense; a woman that has “her own house…her own car…she a bad broad,” doesn’t need a man to provide those things. I am a member of a class of women that fall into this “independent” group; we have our own cars, our own jobs (or loan checks) to pay our bills, we are relatively well educated, and thus on track to have high earning potential.

Now ladies, I’m all for being able to have your own. Lord knows its important. But if we are not careful, we may begin to fool ourselves (and our potential boos) and fall into the trap. What trap is this you ask? The one that says women don’t want or need men.

That’s hogwash. Don’t believe the hype.

What type of women does not want a man at some point in her near or far future? Maybe the woman that is highly embittered by her relationship experiences, so much so that she can’t move on to the next. Or maybe the woman riddled with high levels of insecurity, so she huffs and puffs and walks around like she doesn’t enjoy the affection of a man. Then, there is the woman that has been hurt so badly, that she just can’t stomach the idea of getting close to the opposite sex in the near future, if at all. There are also those who just want to play the single, sexy, and free game. To her I say, “Play on playa.”

Well I’m going to let you in on a little secret…even the strongest, most successful, well educated, high earning woman, wants a man…a man who will make her “feel like a woman.”

In today’s word, women have to do a lot to get a lot. If she wants top notch career, or lots of letters behind her name, she has to learn to “toughen up” and stay focused. She may have to compete with men in these areas. And then she has to date them too? Geez.

As she’s doing all of this, she may develop a layer of protectiveness that at times may keep people at bay. It sorta comes with the territory. But as my friend Slim points out,

“While every normal man with at least minimal confidence would love to have a strong and independent woman, there comes a point where that independent attitude becomes a turn off.”

Men realize this. It is just as important that as women grow older, more mature, and more experienced, we keep this in mind as well.

Let’s see what Mary J. Blige has to say on the subject. In her song, “Feel Like a Woman” from her most recent album Growing Pains, she says,

“I want you to rescue me…I don’t want to compete, I just want to be the only girl that you need…I only want to do what you tell me to…won’t you show and prove…I’m tired of screaming independent…I want to start depending on you.”

When I first heard the track, I must admit, I was like…this a little too much; “Only do what you tell me too?” Whoa Mary. But as I listened to it more, and tuned in to myself, as well as my male and female friends more, I realized how true the words were. Women want to feel protected, and safe. We want to feel like we have a strong man to stand beside. We don’t want to be all tough at work and at home. We get tired of being independent. It’s draining. We want to be able to make our boos happy, while they works to make us feel like the soft and precious gems that we are. ::insert batting lashes here:: hehehe.

Just as important as the words are in stating what women want, Mary J. raises another point. “…Won’t you show and prove.” My good men, we challenge you see beyond the facade. We want you to be the strong manly men you are, trust and believe. Ladies, I challenge you to tune into what you really want, whatever that may be. Sadly though, because you guys are from Mars, and we’re from from Venus, we often speak different languages, but often say the same things. We have a lot learn about, and from, each other.

Let the learning begin. Share your thoughts.

Disclaimer: Yes, I know I made sweeping generalizations. It’s fine.

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8 responses to “Men Ain’t Worth a Damn. Right?

  1. RightCoastLexSteele

    G’Mornin Edna…

    Independent women…another hilarity. But I dont think we can solely blame women for putting this image out there. In every facet of society, people are becoming more “independent” of one another. This is just a small microcosm of bigger problem. (Why isnt there a spell checker on this blog?)

    As time passes more and more people are shining the light on the individual than the group. You see this in sports w/ “stars” demanding the house, the car, the boat and the —– too. In entertainment, the “stars” of the group cant wait to break out on their own solo project, totally neglecting the fact that they werent anything without the group, despite how great they may be individually. Even in our relations as a people with one another, we are no where near as united for our causes as we were 20, 30, 40 years ago. I guess this is the end result of our long sought after American dream.

    As it relates to women in this sense, I think this recent idealogy is more of a response to what men have been doing for years. Now that they have their own money, it’s time to stunt. And that’s perfectly fine with me. I see nothing wrong with it all. But when it comes to one on one relations, you need to check that ish at the door. Dont get it twisted, men need to check their stuff too, and if he’s not your particular flavor, then move on sis. But like Tiff said, you build this wall up for whatever reason, and it just seems like there is an inability to lower the wall when necessary.

    Honestly, all these gender roles are hogwash anyway. If I’m not mistaken a lot of OUR ancestors lived in matriarchal societies. If you cant get to your dictionary fast enough, that simply means that women ran the show. And for all you independent ladies reading this post, I personally would have no problem being your house-husband. That’s right, make you breakfast, take the kids to school, clean the house up, do my handyman thing, make dinner, run you a bath with candles and rose petals, and then be there waiting on you in the bedroom wearing a bowtie and a smile. Yes.

  2. The last four lines of your comment made me laugh…hysterically. I don’t actually think you would do all that. Then again, I guess it depends how much she was ballin on the pay stub…

  3. RightCoastLexSteele

    Man listen. If she is making enough bank and we decide that somebody need to stay home, I am there. Think about it, by the time you drop the kids off and get errands done, it’ll be 10 am. Primetime to watch Sportscenter. Watch some Sportscenter while you do chores around the house, and you know if you miss a segment it will replay in an hour anyway. Do some more handyman stuff, by the time you come home from picking the kids up, you’ll be there just in time for Around the Horn and PTI, which if you miss those replays on ESPN2. Get the house ready for wifey’s arrival, put the kids to bed and grab your bowtie. Rinse, repeat.

    Yes, I have put much thought into this.

  4. Sasha Two Pistols

    I heard them talking about this on the radio a few weeks ago. But I agree that we do have to work extra hard to make it in ‘a man’s world’ so by the time we reach the peak where we feel we need to be, its kind of hard to knock down that tough exterior in all facets of our lives: particularly relationships.

    And I totally agree that no matter how I N D E P E N D E N T we think we are, there is nothing like a strong man by your side to take care of you and to be there for you. There needs to be a balance of being able to tear it up in the boardroom, and then letting your man be a man at home.

  5. I so agree, Tiff… Yes, I can pay my own bills and take care of myself, but shoot that gets tiring! Thats why i love Jill Scott’s song, The fact is…I need you. She articulates it perfectly.

  6. Is it just me or has Jill Scott become the answer for everything womanly? I asked what’s good with the short hair craze and was told Jill Scott. I asked why a chick put her man’s rocket in a vice grip and was told Jill Scott (After Jill Scott listened to Keisha Cole). I asked a girl why she was yelling at her man on the phone, and coincidentally she told me Jill Scott. Anybody wanna send me a CD?

  7. Pingback: The Strong Black Woman Strikes (out) Again « Three Ways to Take It

  8. Pingback: Maybe It’s Just Me, But I Need To Know « Three Ways to Take It

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