This is not an MRA article demanding that women desire weakling men. It is nobody’s responsibility but your own to love all aspects of who you are. So take this as an invitation for self-acceptance, not for another crusade for justice.
When it comes to healthy sexual relationships between the sexes, I pretty much share the – generalized – view that the man plays the dominant part, while the woman is submissive. This may not be the absolute truth in every last case, but I think it is a very fair generalization that at least describes a valid tendency.
But, if I were to give any advice, I would tell you to immediately forget this observation once you make it. Why? Because you should not have to be thinking about things like that. If it is the truth, it is the truth because that simply is what happens when you stop trying to control the situation or bring your ego ideas about correct or good relationships and interactions into it. Once you start acting dominant to do it right, you practically defeated the point of making such a point. If all of it was simply an act, all the time, in everyone, you could actually claim that it is a social construct. Hence I believe that the only way you can make such an observation in an honest way is to introspect and make some personal experiences.
You can only make a valid observation when the observed ones (that can include you) feel no obligation to support either view. That is, when they feel free to express themselves fully without thinking about it.
If you have to tell a man how to be a man, then you can not claim that you are making him more of a men, rather than less. At least when you, like myself, assume that being a man means to have the male biological sex – instead of abiding by some ideological construct like neo-masculinity. If being a man does not flow naturally from being born a man, then our concept of being a man logically must be flawed. Of course, that presumes that there are no forces in place during one’s formative years that restrict this natural flow.
The feminine Archetype
Now, I originally wanted to call this page Rational Male, but I quickly found out that this name is already taken by Rollo Tomassi. I do not regard his work too highly personally these days, although I respect it. But back then, I pretty much liked his, well, rational approach – highly loaded with all those funny PUA terms no less.
In his article The Curse of Jung, Rollo mentions his idea that feminism relied heavily on Carl Gustav Jung’s concept of the anima and animus – the opposite-sex archetypes of the subconscious – in its pursuit of male emasculation, shaming men from a young age and forcing them to get in touch with their feminine side.
Here is my take on it. I am a big fan of Jung. I personally think that one of the biggest reasons for being dependent on women is to not have incorporated one’s anima, so to speak. In other words, a man projects his feminine side – his idealized, perfect counterpart – onto real women. Since this feminine side is a deeply seated part of ourselves, losing it feels like hell. Of course, you can not really lose it. But you can experience the illusion of losing it, which is very painful.
Another name for anima that I have come across is Divine Beloved. I think it sums up shit pretty good. Here is the article. According to this theory, there is indeed the one. The one is your perfect counterpart, your feminine side. If you have not incorporated it, you project it out onto other people, making you fear to lose the one. Do you know how they say that love blinds you? That suddenly she seems perfect? Well, that’s not love. That’s projection. Your feminine side is indeed the perfect representation of your ideas of femininity. Hence it is logical that when you project it onto a real girl, she becomes perfect in your eyes. But you are not really seeing the girl, you are seeing your feminine side that you can and do not ever want to part from.
It makes me angry to think that somebody would use this concept to force a man to behave womanly. It is an abomination and it is an invasion into boundaries. No man should allow anyone – man or woman – to attempt to use his own psyche against himself.
As the title of the article implies, my main point is: There is a difference between having a feminine side and being female.
Having a feminine side does not fucking mean you have to grow tits and walk and talk like a woman – although I think you should, if that is what you want. It simply means to be confident in your own skin without being ashamed of doing something that may appear feminine.
In fact, I believe that shaming the feminine in men does, with perfect predictability, lead to things like one-itis and extremely polygamous behavior – if attainable. A man who is not in touch with his feminine side will need to satisfy that need through constant pursuits. Ironically, this would just as predictably lead to a focus on short-term and purely sexual relationships, because as long as there is no depth in the relationship, the real person behind the idealized feminine sex object will never shine through and destroy the illusion.
Note: I am not judging it. I simply think it is the logical thing that must happen.
Releasing masculinity instead of suppressing femininity
There are some abstruse and unjustified beliefs out there. Yesterday, I saw a comment on Return of Kings, arguing that men should never cry. Yeah, we have all heard it many times.
Fine. Maybe this guy has a point, right. I can not just dismiss it, that would be childish. So I ask him why. What are the pros and cons, the benefits and losses, the good sides and the downsides? I mean, we men are supposed to be rational, no?
This is his answer:
No explanation needed. Crying is for women and children and homos. Dont be a cry baby, Tom.
Well. Great. Will do very well for a propaganda poster.
Anyway, I am sure there are some men out there who have some good argument in favor of not crying and I think it should be given some room and understanding. Suppressing emotions is a natural behavior when our environment punishes us for their expression. This is true for both feminine and masculine emotions.
Nevertheless, I think if God did not want men to cry, he would not have given them the ability to do so. And I don’t think that any man should ever be told that he has to cry. I would agree, intuitively, that living in a male body comes with a certain emotional reservedness that is stronger than in women. Although this is just conjecture at this point.
If I had to guess, I would say that his shaming technique, calling me a cry baby, pretty much says everything about his real reasoning. He simply feels ashamed of crying, likely his parents shamed him for crying when he was a baby, hence the most shameful and insulting thing he can think of to throw at me is cry baby.
Here is a forum thread by a parent who became angry when her baby cried too much. She and the commenters wonder why that is. I think it is simple. They hate that expression of their babies because they were not allowed to have it themselves when they were infants. I would not be surprised if this was rather widespread. Anyway: Whatever you repress in yourself, you then hate in others. Whatever you feel ashamed of, causes pain and distress when brought to the surface – one more reason to want to drop the shame; it is unnecessary ballast and a weight on your shoulders.
That’s fine, of course. I find it pretty hard to feel confident about crying, too. And I let nobody tell me that I should cry more, because it is my business. Nonetheless, I think I would benefit from giving myself more room for it. Why? I think crying is, as suggested by another commenter, an autoregulating mechanism to release pain.
One fear of expressing things that are rather feminine, I think, is the fear that you become permanently female once you stop being ashamed of your feminine side. That you will lose your identity as a man. Which is of course ridiculous.
Suppressing femininity does not make you more of a man. How could it? Femininity has nothing to do with being a man. If you want to express yourself as a man, care less about femininity and care more about your masculine side. I really think that losing shame for one’s masculinity is infinitely more effective and important than an attempt to suppress one’s femininity. Unless your masculine side is strongly restricted by shame or fear – I know that too well – your feminine side is unlikely to just take over and turn you into a girl. In fact, I would say that the idea is absurd.
I have known a handful of men who were good with women. None of them seemed to care about suppressing their femininity. In fact, it was simply me who was at time shocked to see them express it from time to time. One male friend once insisted on me putting on a jacket for a walk we wanted to take. I was disgusted by it. In my eyes, it was as if he had turned into my mother. And yet, that was simply me projecting and overemphasizing. Overemphasis is typical when you feel ashamed of something. A negative attachment is an attachment nonetheless. This man was having one night stands and relationships with girls all the time, without worrying much about it.
And he’s just one example. For instance, the most masculine, strong and confident guys I knew in real life were the men at the martial arts gym I trained at last year. They were tough and masculine and not afraid or ashamed of conflicts or sexuality. And yet, there was always a lot of warmth and kindness in most of them. When they wrote to each other on Facebook, they used smileys to an extent that I am only really used from girls. I have to say it confused me. Well, guess what. They had trust in themselves and were joyful about their lives.
Sure, they were not perfect. I don’t mean to idealize. But you get the twist. There was not much bitterness or shame about them, and yet it took nothing away from their identity as men or their strength.
I think the more parts of yourself you put away, the colder and more monotonous you become. Again, not judging, because that is the instinctive response when you don’t feel safe to express that part. Defense mechanisms are not bad, they just are what they are. They work. And at some point, they stop working and get in the way of living.
Well, I draw the conclusion that a man is a man and a woman is a woman – whatever that means. A man should feel confident about being manly and a woman should feel confident about being feminine. If you had to pick a basic setup, I think this would be the best one. It is certainly better than the opposite – men only feeling safe to express femininity and women only feeling safe to express bitchy bossy behavior.
Nonetheless, I think that the opposite-sex archetype, for the sake of good spiritual and mental health, should be incorporated into the person to make it more complete and wholesome. This does not mean that women should coerce men into obeying them by appealing to their feminine side. This should be rejected by fostering personal boundaries.
Your mind, your spirit, your body, those are your personal business and nobody else’s. Not your parents’, not your friends’, not other men’s or women’s, not society’s. Your business.
If you want to incorporate feminine aspects into your self, do it for your own benefit, not out of guilt, shame or feelings of obligation. Or fear of not being your true self. Otherwise, you would end up running after one of those bitches, asking her whether you are doing it right, whether your behavior is correctly feminine. And she would say: Well, no, it’s still a bit forced. You gotta kiss my ass, then go shopping with me, then buy me dinner, then drive me to my fuck buddy and make me feel like you are my sweet brother. Tell that bitch to kiss her own ass. Or yours.
Having a feminine side does not mean to be female. It does not mean you have to behave like a woman. Ideally, it just means you are more well-rounded as an individual.