Sometimes, we’re our own worst enemies. Sometimes we SAY we want change – we want men to be able to express their feminine sides, we want equality in our homes and places of work, and we want ALL of what women have to offer to be valued in the world.
BUT… then when change appears, we resist it. Sometimes the old way just feels more safe.
I’m sick today, so I’m spending some time in front of the television. I’m watching The View, which SHOULD be about empowered women showing a new paradigm for strong women, right?
In just a few minutes, two things frustrated me.
1. They were talking about men carrying iPads around in “murses” (male versions of purses). One of their male staffers had posed for a series of photos in which he was carrying a variety of bags that mostly looked effeminate. The women of The View proceeded to make fun of the photos, suggesting the old idea that “men need to look like MEN.” So much for men who want a little design or pizzazz in what they carry over their shoulder – that just makes them laughable. Let’s keep men stuck in old boxes, shall we?
2. Immediately after the “murses”, they had a message from the sponsor in which the young blonde woman (I don’t know her name) was promoting some kind of cold medicine, saying that it was “trusted by Moms for years”. Okay, so we’re still assuming that MOMS are the only ones who care for kids and make child-related decisions? When will we be done with that idea? (It’s ancient history in my house, since my husband was the primary caregiver for most of my kids’ lives and knows more about their health needs and remembers when school forms need to be filled out, etc.) When will we trust men to have wisdom when it comes to children and the ability to be nurturers?
The truth is, I think many women (like the women of The View) are stubbornly hanging onto their mom/nurturer roles by making fun of men for being effeminate. We assume that men can’t make health-related decisions for our children, and we marginalize men who want to move into new ways of being.
Let’s move on already.
If we want feminine wisdom to be universally valued in the world, then we have to be prepared to value it in men just as we do in women.