Sunday, May 20, 2007

What ever happened to the modern man?

This is not another rant about how twisted society is, so please don’t click away! But what is happening to the so-called modern guy?

I just had a long conversation with one of my male friends about his perceived expectations of a woman and I nearly strangled myself. If he has these views – and up until today I thought he was your archetypal modern guy; I think that’s partly why he’s one of my best friends (up until now!!!!) – then there’s not much hope for most guys out there.

Basically, it’s the age-old story of some guys wanting to have their cake and eat it. They want a woman who works, earns a good crust and is attractive. Fair enough, I thought. But, this drop-dead-gorgeous career woman also needs to come home, do most of the cooking, cleaning and then once she’s done, be ready for any ‘womanly duties’ – if you get my meaning – when the lights go out.

What makes me feel sad is that he admitted that this is a pretty hard life for any woman – if she’s mad enough to run herself ragged doing all these things while he sits on his derriere – but he basically said that he wants to relax when he comes home. Fair enough, but what about her? When asked what he would bring into the relationship, he backtracked a bit. To paraphrase, he basically said he would do a bit of washing etc, but not cleaning like dusting etc.

This is a guy who hasn’t even hit 30 yet, so what’s happened? I’m so perplexed by the conversation that I’m suffering from writers’ block, and that’s pretty hard for someone who talks as much as I do!

I don’t want this to turn into some stereotypical whine about how hard-up women are and what lazy dogs men are, so I’m leaving it up to the men to enlighten me on this viewpoint, because so far, I have lost hope!
I really think that a lot of young guys actually resent women working and being able to look after themselves. Afterall, it is the financial freedom we now have that means we don't have to stand for any chauvanistic views, right? In our grandparents' days women basically had to go with what the man wanted, and there would be no question that grandma would cook and clean and pander over her family. Yes, I don't see there being anything wrong with that. She was probably a housewife and her 'job' was to do these things.
These days, the working woman is almost penalised. If I think about my best mate's views, then it's like working is out of choice, but the woman still has to do all the homely things ON HER OWN afterwards. I'm still stuck at the question I asked my best mate: What are you brining to the relationship?
I'm still waiting for an answer...


D-1ne said...

I have read your article with such interest but maybe from a bit of a different view, please allow me to explain.
As a woman of the new millennium, I think we have done so well to get to where we are as women and will continue to excel past our male counterparts however; I think we are going in the same direction as men did when they were the more dominant species. By this I think as we claim our independence and realise we have more drive and can get what we want with the power of seduction and our private parts “bless them men they are getting a little too easy to manipulate” especially when we allow them to think they are in control all the while we take full control and pleasure knowing we have them exactly where we want them.
But in saying that are we heading in a destructive direction (maybe to harsher word) but with all the independence we have gained some of us still look to men to be men do we not? We want them to lead, to pay, to handle us once in a while “thank god for the rabbit” but when that can’t do they have to. At the same time we should look at home, as women we are the bench of the family structure and that has always been the way but now that we are taking over a Man’s world we are in danger of forgetting this.

It’s all good your friend saying what he did and we not agreeing but let’s face it there may be an element of truth to it, as a woman what is wrong with looking after our men and attending to them sometimes, it makes us or shall I speak for myself here but it makes me feel needed and having that satisfaction that he needs and appreciates me at the same time if we get to the point that we don’t need our men then we are just going to become a lesser race as the birth rate is already dropping with more of us women choosing a career before settling down but is that not ironic? When I was young I wanted to be a princess with a prince by my side I wanted to be married and loved playing mother to my dolls now that dream is past faded.

When we look at ourselves in the western world in comparisons with woman in other countries i.e. 3rd worlds or Muslim countries have we like today’s youth become displaced? I recently visited a 3rd world and have many friends from all over the world who share the view that western woman have become lazy and forgotten their way as they wake up so early do the cleaning, washing, getting kids ready for school, shopping, cooking etc, the word (SUPER WOMAN) was created for that very reason and now we are just women.

This is not to say that we are selling ourselves short dealing with the home but is the fact that we could deal with so many things and multitask the very thing that made us so special and an asset for all men and humanity.
But now I throw the question to you as we evolve and take advantage of our new fount power positions how long will we need men for and is there not a danger of men taking the women’s role and not needing us no more unless it’s for one thing only?
But to answer the question a relationship should be 50/50 but as a woman we will always do that little bit more and we should take pride in that at the same time as parent I would not want to get home and my child barley communicates with me because they are more closer to their father and I am just the poor git who carried you for nine months and has the connection with you emotionally.
And let’s face it if a man was to constantly cook or clean at first we may think how sweet soon we would wonder if he is having it away with the postman or the milk man, I think there is a slight shift in roles when it comes to men and women but there is only so much of what they do that we can and vice versa but we were built to be that cradle of life so domestics may not be expected but it comes naturally.
But as women do we now have expectations from guys when it comes to the home and without our input who’s to say how our homes and children will develop? We are the stability, and yes we would like more help etc but this is a conversation that should not even come up in a relationship.

Could this all have something to do with why the divorce rate has escalated so high now when compared to yester years? By that I mean when woman took care of home and men worked marriages lasted allot longer so has this whole independent woman thing gone to our heads that

Joycellyn Akuffo - likes to play with words said...

Hi there d-1ne,

Wasn't sure if you are speaking as a woman, or from a guy's perspective.

I agree that 99% of the time, yes, the woman is the anchor of the home. Especially when there are children involved.

But, the modern-day working woman (wife, mother) is also often lumbered with all the duties of a housewife to boot. My confusion is, if a woman is doing everthing around the house, what role is the man supposed to be playing? In yester-years, the man was the breadwinner, you're right. But if both parties work full-time and one party is work-shy around the house - like my friend - what is his purpose/role in the house?

D-1ne said...

I am speaking as a woman but all I and my lover are trying to say is that as a woman you have a choice and if you choose a career then family and home comes 2nd place to what drives you, hence why when men and women played a role there was that fine balance and a man knew he could not work and come home and then cook or clean as women knew they did not want to have to go to work and then come and do all the house work including kids.

I think this new mentality we have as woman will soon see us being very single or lesbian like myself and our only problem is which one of us power dykes is going to take the man’s role and who’s going to be the woman.

Today’s woman is only a house wife or playing second to a man if she is uneducated or the guy has lots of £££££££, but there are still a few who still have that classic mind which works well but what I am trying to say is for us to go forwards there will have to be a sacrifice and a great price to pay the question is it worth what is going to be the inevitable? There can’t be two captains running a ship just like there can’t be too many cowboys and no Indians.

Yes we should do it for ourselves and not depend on men but when two people come together they have to co-exist and share the responsibility and not expect one to do more than the other.

Joycellyn Akuffo - likes to play with words said...


Are you saying that women should put up or shut up? If my memory serves me right, a lot of women started working because they wanted to be financially independent from me. Imagine asking your husband for money everytime you wanted a bar of chocolate or something...

A woman working does not mean that she wants to be "captain of the ship" - as you put it! And if it did, what's wrong with that? Some men would willingly leave the decison-making to their other half!

Miss May said...

what is the man bringing to the relationship? hm..lets just forget about the "better half part" of my friends..a guy of course,...said a man needs good sex and a lovely woman...a superwoman i there we go...he brings sex to the relationship..

Joycellyn Akuffo - likes to play with words said...

I laughed for a minute when I read your post Miss May. I was half expecting this type of comeback when I posted, and it's a typical one, right.

But there are a lot of women who would argue that the men don't even bring that. I know the whole rabbit thing at Ann Summers and such is not bought solely by single women who need a 'bed partner' during a dry spell! :-)

Tracey said...

I'm always a little disturbed to hear of out-dated and illogical thoughts about the male vs female expectations. I think the recent census in Australia showed that women do 83% of all household chores, as for where they find the time to go to work and live their own lives...I'm not sure! I guess ultimately it is always going to come back to an individual as far as how they view their place in the world and what role/s they expect their partner to fulfil.

I'm very lucky in that my husband does more of the chores / cooking than me, but I know that many others are not so lucky.

Interesting and thought provoking's that friend of yours getting on with an answer to your question?

Joycellyn Akuffo - likes to play with words said...

Tracey - you have found someone of the male gender who actually does more than you around the house...? Bottle him up and sell him off - you'd make millions!

As for my guy friend, I don's see him responding any time soon... but that's hardly surprising.