In a recent movie, there was a revealing scene where a man asks his girlfriend what women want. And she reveals to him a terrible secret that she says must never be divulged. Leaning toward him, she confesses in a whisper – “We ourselves have no idea what we want!”
This, of course, is not entirely true. Women are quite aware of what they want. If you ask the right questions, it is easy to surface the set of requirements and wishes that a woman would like to present a man.
But in every joke, there is a little bit of a joke. For all the transparency and obviousness of women’s desires, behind them lies a deeper and more complex motivation, which few women are aware of.
But before I continue, I must make a small caveat. The article “Why does a man need a family?” went viral on the Internet and generated a lot of discussion. Several times I have seen opinions from men that the article was written by a rabid feminist who hates men. Women, on the other hand, love the article.
This is because it is always more pleasant to discuss another person’s shortcomings. Women like to read about men’s foibles, just as men like to discuss women’s foibles.
This article is about women, and it is written for women. But I realize that men will be much more interested in it, and some women will strongly reject it. Well, it can’t be helped. Still, dear women, I hope for your interest and sobriety of your perception.
This article deals with the general case of women with self-esteem disorders, and the terms “pride” and “nothingness” are not emotionally colored.
So, if you cover the whole list of women’s “wants” at once, it’s easy to see their contradictory nature. Remembering the article about husbands and lovers, we can say that a woman expects a man to exhibit both behaviors simultaneously, which, by definition, is impossible. No man alive can cover the entire list of women’s demands. At best, only half of it.
But neither men nor women realize this. Every woman is looking for a magic prince, who will embody all the traits and qualities that she needs. And men, not understanding what is happening, break themselves to please women or rebel against the demands to change. But the outcome is always the same: the relationship, which, perhaps, began as a fairy tale and a gift of fate, is destroyed.
The woman does not understand her own inconsistency and cannot give up her desires. She is more likely to blame her man for not loving her enough to change. But even if the man indulges her desires, it does not suit her. The woman no longer needs a submissive man, and then begins a new round of accusations – this time of weakness. So until the relationship explodes to pieces.
The theme of the contradictions of the female character deserves all those books that have been written about it. The mystery of the female soul – a eternal question for both halves of humanity. Let’s try to figure out what’s going on here.
The Origins of Women’s Claims
For centuries, marriage has been quite a pragmatic step for women. By giving herself to a man, a woman shifted responsibility for her own survival and well-being to him. This was considered the norm and has been consistently cultivated from generation to generation.
Parents themselves sought for their daughters a good match, from their point of view. After all, if a son could stand on his own feet and provide for his parents’ old age, nothing of the sort was expected of daughters.
For a long time in social life, a woman had only an “appendage” value. Therefore, parents tried to marry off their daughters as soon as possible to their maximum advantage. Thus, they took the care of her off their shoulders and, with proper luck, gladly used her feminine attractiveness as a chance to become related to a wealthier and more influential family.
From the woman’s own point of view, there was nothing humiliating about the situation. Marriage was a transaction in which a woman received material and social benefits in exchange for the right to possess herself. Love, respect and affection may have been part of this, but they were never an obligatory attribute.
But with the advent of the new times, when relations between a man and a woman became increasingly based on the principle of mutual pleasure, and a woman gained and asserted the right to her full social autonomy, the institution of marriage found itself in an interesting situation.
The criterion for choosing a marital partner was “love” – an ephemeral set of emotional experiences that was now placed above all rational arguments. And even though no one has any idea what “love” means, it has become so important that a relationship without love seems unthinkable. Marriage of convenience, which has always been normal and natural, is now condemned as mercenary and insensitive.
Men and women play at “relationships” and believe that big and bright love is the main reason to get married. And men are even more sincere in this delusion, because under the mask of innocence in the female subcortex clearly sounds the ancient motive: “Man is the means to solve all problems.
This idea may be conscious or repressed, but, in any case, it seems quite natural to a woman. – Why else would a man be needed?
The old-fashioned marriage of convenience was a far more honest enterprise than today’s love marriages, which hide all calculation under a screen of emotional attachment. “Honey, do you love me? Fine, then you owe me…” – this is the inner essence of modern marriage from a woman’s point of view.
Many factors are involved in shaping this viewpoint, but mostly it is a matter of upbringing. From mother to daughter, from generation to generation, this principle of using men for their own purposes is passed on to every woman.
However, not everything depends on the parents, because the power of social pressure is already great enough to introduce the virus of female self-importance into the developing psyche.
Television shows, reality shows, “authoritative” glossy magazines and other means of social suggestion teach girls from an early age how to attract a man, how to attach him to you and how to use him afterwards. Coquetry is the martial art of manipulating men, which is part of the mandatory women’s education.
In addition, each girl, so that she does not shirk from maintaining a universal “conspiracy”, is introduced destructive idea that the inability to attract and marry a man – a sign of her poor quality. And it ends with the fact that a woman’s self-esteem becomes completely dependent on her attractiveness to men. Note, this is extremely important.
Here we move seamlessly into the plane of the psychological needs of women, the responsibility for the implementation of which she also shifts to a man. Now, on top of everything else, he should behave in such a way that the woman ceases to feel his inferiority. And if he does not, he is to blame.
This is the stumbling block that destroys most families. The woman tries to get out of her inner conflict at the expense of the man. But because he can not play conflicting roles, the woman, sooner or later, feels that the man is not giving her something.
She herself does not quite understand what she needs, but this does not prevent her from accusing the man of poor quality and demanding that he solve the well-known fairy tale problem – go there, I do not know where, bring it, I do not know what.
Meanwhile, the responsibility for creating this problem and for solving it rests solely on the woman. The man, at best, can help her realize what is going on.
The Female Pendulum of Pride and Nothingness
We have already discussed the problem of pride and nothingness in an article on the structure of social relationships. I hope you have read it, otherwise you may find some of the turns of the narrative incomprehensible.
Self-esteem in men and women is arranged more or less equally. In both, we are talking about two poles that need to be strengthened. Pride is played out through active interaction with the outside world – in comparing oneself with other people, in the struggle for power, in victories over rivals. And nothingness or self-pity is nourished internally, through mutual emotional support or self-congratulation.
Everyone wants victories in the social sphere and unconditional acceptance in the mental sphere. And the difference between men and women is only in the means used to achieve inner peace.
Men, on the other hand, are more self-sufficient – they may well cope with inner conflict on their own – for example, through careers, hobbies and male friendships. Women, on the other hand, are in a state of dependence – in order to relieve internal anxiety, she needs a relationship with men. Without men, a woman is unable to overcome her feelings of inferiority.
It is likely that such female dependence is not an innate predetermination, but a result of social conditioning. But the depth and energy charge of this program is so great that on the scale of its manifestations it is quite comparable to psychological instincts. There is a chance to go beyond the program, but the way is thorny and dangerous.
And as long as a woman follows this inherent imperative, she will play the game with men in two opposite directions, which create the external effect of the inconsistency and incomprehensibility of her desires.
This side of the game makes a woman choose the kind of man who will give her a certain status. The man must be a winner, a leader, a typical “lover. When a woman succeeds in attracting such a man to her, she gets a confirmation of her own importance and calms down for a while.
The main means of attracting “cool” men is sexuality. A woman challenges men, offering to fight for her favor, and then appeasingly gives herself to the winner. But even then, the woman continues to test the man’s strength by provoking him to show strength, a kind of test of competence. If a man is stronger, the test passed, if not – it’s time to look for a replacement.
There is a flip side to this. Along with the fact that the woman wants to see a strong man next to her and be defeated by him, she herself wants to beat him. Having chosen the “coolest” man among others and having achieved his attention, a woman soon begins to subdue him.
In fact, the woman seeks a complete and sole possession of a man – his attention, his time, his actions, his desires, his soul. Hence many family conflicts, when a wife demands that her husband give up his friends for her, advance in his career to fulfill her desires, share her values, accept her inner world, and so on.
To use the terminology from the article on male behavior patterns, the woman tries to reclassify the “lover” as the “husband. The man may or may not succumb to this pressure, but if the woman does not realize her game, the relationship will collapse anyway.
If the man refuses to submit, the woman will feel that she is not loved and appreciated enough, will fall into self-pity and will look for a man who will accept and love her. If the man submits to her will, the woman will feel stronger, which means she will lose the support of her pride in him. And now she will have to look again for a “tough guy” who will amuse her self-esteem with his attention.
In both cases the problem of pride is solved only for a short time, when the woman still holds out hope that she will succeed in remaking the man, or until she is faced with the fact that the remade and defeated man no longer attracts her.
But even in this short interval, the woman does not feel happy, because the satisfaction of pride is only one pole of the pendulum of self-esteem.
A woman’s worthlessness
The second pole of the pendulum causes a woman to seek a different type of relationship. At the forefront here are the spiritual qualities of the chosen one – the ability to empathize, constancy, loyalty, caring, predictability and the like. On such a man has a responsible duty – to love a woman.
In a relationship with a “lover” there is passion, admiration, playfulness, and for a while these feelings are enough to believe in mutual love. But the intensity and heat of these emotions means that they burn out as quickly as they arise. There is not that eternal love that every woman dreams of.
The lover makes a woman feel important, makes her feel sexually attractive, but he can’t get into her soul and calm her inner turmoil. Yes, he is not interested in it – he does not care about the woman’s experiences, because he is completely focused on himself.
Therefore, having played the game with “tough guys” woman sooner or later begins to pay attention to another type of men – those who show willingness to delve into her inner world, to understand her, to accept and love her.
The lover says to the woman – “You’re adorable!” The husband says, “You’re good!”
At the pole of nothingness, a woman wants to get from a man exactly that feeling that for all her faults and despite all the mistakes made, she remains good and beloved for him. Receiving such recognition from a man, a woman can for a while calm down and reconcile with herself.
When they say that every woman wants to love and be loved, we are talking about just this kind of infantile romantic relationships. Beautiful courtship, chivalrous behavior, serenades under the window, ardent declarations of love-all this creates a woman’s sense of inner peace. – “I am loved, so I am good.”
In addition, a relationship with a “husband” gives a woman the opportunity to strengthen her rear, feel safe and begin to forge a nest. The man’s predictability and submission to the woman’s desires (“I will do anything for your love!”) creates a sense of stability and security for the woman. The man becomes a safe haven where women return to lick their wounds after their encounters with the outside world.
This is how women imagine the ideal husband. He must love the woman, take care of her, fulfill her whims, pity and comfort her and, in general, be at her complete disposal. But, as with the pride pole, there is a flip side to this.
First, the man receives all the signs of love that you can think of, a woman still remains unsatisfied. At first it seems to her that she got into a fairy tale, but soon, the whole-hearted love of a man and willingness to look in the mouth, slowly begins to irritate her. The man-woman relationship suddenly turns into a mother-child relationship.
The man completely loses his independence and submits to the woman. As a result, he loses all credibility in the eyes of women, which means that his opinion can no longer be taken for granted. Now his exhortation “You are good” loses its magical power, and does not bring the former comfort. The woman loses the emotional support for which she entered into a relationship with this man.
Secondly, a relationship with her “husband,” which implies mutual fidelity and love until the grave, deprives a woman of the moral right to play on her pride with other men. This means that the pride pole is unprotected and prevents the woman from settling down permanently. The blame for this failure, in her eyes, lies entirely with the man.
The woman loses all respect for her chosen one, treats him badly, blames him for the years of her life wasted on him, demands strength and responsibility from him, but by doing so she only makes the situation worse. The man loses all free will, and the woman is again at the trough – both poles of her mutilated self-esteem are again tearing her soul apart.
Reconciling the Poles
As should have become clear by now, a woman needs the simultaneous protection of both poles of self-esteem. Ideally, it should be a man who combines all thirty-three pleasures – husband and lover in one person. But, in practice, this is impossible. A man, like a woman, is rigidly locked into the game into which his social upbringing has thrust him.
So a woman is left with two choices – to come to terms with her unhappiness or to look for some surrogate options. The harsher her moral upbringing, the more likely she is to choose unhappiness. On the other hand, women who are more morally flexible find a way out of their predicament through relationships with many men.
This can be the most obvious option – a husband at home and a lover on the side – or more streamlined options. Generally speaking, it is not necessary for a woman to have a sexual relationship with a man in order to play off her pride with him. It is enough for her to feel that a man authoritative for her appreciates her.
For example, the role of a pseudo-lover is often played by a tall boss at work. A woman can flaunt her professional knowledge and skills in front of him or openly flirt with him, not allowing him to unleash his hands. In both cases, the woman gets the male recognition she needs.
Another interesting example is the relationship between a woman and her psychologist. In such a relationship, the man is obviously endowed with great authority, and therefore his opinion is of particular importance for women. The problem of sexual relations between the psychologist and the patient is based on this very mechanism, since the woman wants very much to win an authoritative man and she deliberately provokes him with her coquetry.
In addition, it is necessary to understand that the woman can include many men in her game simultaneously. The role of the husband is likely to be played by one man, but there may be several lovers. One will confirm her feminine attractiveness, the other will appreciate her professional qualities, the third will admire her intelligence and so on. And all of this can be done without any real sexual intercourse.
As a matter of fact, this is how it usually works – it is easier to get from world to world than to find one lover who will give everything at once. In addition, this approach saves a woman from moral anguish about her infidelity. Every single man on her list falls short of being a full-fledged lover, which means there is no formal betrayal of one man for another. Only a mildly appeasing flirtation.
There is another important point in this whole situation. Having carefully distributed the roles in her male entourage, the woman achieves a high degree of inner peace, but still remains not completely happy. To be fully satisfied, the woman needs to reconcile the two poles with each other, because only in this way can she achieve inner wholeness and get rid of the last moral torment.
To this end, a woman strives to make all her men friends, and is only finally satisfied when she succeeds. For when there is no conflict between her “husband” and her “lover,” she is in the sweet state of not having to rush from one pole to the other – she finally has “everything at once.
The way out of the vicious circle
Although a woman can nullify her inner conflict through a relationship with a man, it must be understood that this is only a crutch-a very high quality crutch, but a crutch nonetheless. An ugly crutch that flaunts the mutilation of a woman’s soul.
A woman rarely succeeds in stabilizing her life situation and picking up a set of men that will bring her complete peace. But even when she succeeds, the situation cannot be considered stable, for her state of mind remains dependent on men. Costs one of them to disappear and her whole fairy-tale world collapses into ashes.
Even having calmed her inner conflict, the woman is in constant fear, because at any moment happiness can end. Therefore, it can be said that a woman is simply doomed to suffer of one kind or another… until she gives up the game of pride and nothingness.
Quitting the game is an extremely painful procedure. After all, at stake is a woman’s main mechanism for survival – a relationship with a man. Plus we need to remember the social pressure that the woman will have to overcome to completely change their behavioral patterns. Relatives, girlfriends, husbands and lovers will all insist on continuing to play the game.
It is well beyond the scope of this article to describe specific steps to overcome internal conflict and change attitudes toward the man. But for now, once again, I wish all readers to be honest with themselves and the people you care about. The only way to happiness is to overcome your inner conflict, not to find circumstances that will allow you to forget about it.