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The Transience of ManhoodFollow

#1 May 03 2012 at 8:43 AM Rating: Excellent
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At one point in life I was studying to be a counselor, and while I never finished that, human behavior has always intrigued me. After sitting through a rough few days in court with a lot of violence of all types, I flashed back to my Gender & Violence course. Two of the concepts that have resonated with me over the years are related to the concept of manhood, and its connection with violent behavior.

1. Manhood, unlike womanhood, is earned and not permanent. That is, a girl will inevitably become a woman, but a boy may not always be expected to become a man. This status can be withdrawn and withheld by others in his social group as punishment or threat.

2. The threat, implied or implicit, of withdrawing manhood is often enough by itself to precipitate violence.

This interests me not only because I have seen it play out, but because I am raising sons. How do you communicate that their manhood does not have to be earned? Do you think it does? If you are a man, do you feel you earned yours, and how, if you feel comfortable sharing?
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#2 May 03 2012 at 8:54 AM Rating: Good
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On one hand, I've killed and been blown up so I guess by some standards I've attained manhood. On the other I have a wife, and a daughter that I watch My Little Pony with, so any Man Cred™ I've built up has been crapped all over and flushed down the toilet years ago.
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#3 May 03 2012 at 8:58 AM Rating: Good
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Atomicflea wrote:
1. Manhood, unlike womanhood, is earned and not permanent...This status can be withdrawn and withheld by others in his social group as punishment or threat.

2. The threat, implied or implicit, of withdrawing manhood is often enough by itself to precipitate violence.


I'm probably missing something here, but I don't really follow. How is someone's manhood "revoked" exactly?
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#4 May 03 2012 at 9:11 AM Rating: Excellent
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I can imagine situations where someone's peer group metaphorically "emasculates" them. "Dude, you let her do that to you? You're a fuckin' pussy, dude."

I don't know if it has to be earned but I guess I equate it more with taking care of business. Being able to get a handle on a situation and have some measure of control of it or steer it somewhere. Arguably, this is the same thing as plain ole being an adult except that, as the OP sort of alludes to, I think women can get away with failing to develop these traits because it's still an option for a "man" to take care of her. When a male fails to develop these traits, he's a loser man-child.

Towards that end, I guess I'll put my own "earning" at the point where I knocked some broad up (not that action, of course) and took control of it with getting a place for us, making various sacrifices and trying to legitimately make the best of it for everyone. I had my own place and a job, etc prior to that but that was the first real crisis that I took ownership of.

Edited, May 3rd 2012 10:11am by Jophiel
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#5 May 03 2012 at 9:16 AM Rating: Excellent
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There was a time I think I cared a lot about doing things on my own, being self-sufficient and what not. Sometime around when I got out of college. But that's about as close as I remember being to really being into the whole manly thing. I mean I was the 7 year old boy running around and playing ponies with all the girls on the playground anyway. I suppose I was never very manly. Maybe I never really understood the whole 'being a man' thing. From what I could tell as a kid it was mostly just peer pressure to do stupid things. Not participating did cause problems though. I remember getting bullied by one kid for a while because of stuff like that. Then I slammed him up against a locker, squeezed my hand around his throat and pretty much scared the living crap out of him.

Who says violence doesn't solve anything? Smiley: rolleyes

It's been a while though, and really haven't thought about anything like that in years I guess. I'm more in lolgaxe's boat really. Wife and 2 daughters means you kind of have to give that stuff up.
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#6 May 03 2012 at 9:23 AM Rating: Excellent
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lolgaxe wrote:
On one hand, I've killed and been blown up so I guess by some standards I've attained manhood. On the other I have a wife, and a daughter that I watch My Little Pony with, so any Man Cred™ I've built up has been crapped all over and flushed down the toilet years ago.

When did you attain it by your standards? When did you first feel like a man, or like that was threatened or taken away?
(I guess the answer to #2 is every time My Little Pony comes on, but there is an argument that can be made that being a good father is also reaffirming manhood.)
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#7 May 03 2012 at 9:26 AM Rating: Excellent
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Eske Esquire wrote:
Atomicflea wrote:
1. Manhood, unlike womanhood, is earned and not permanent...This status can be withdrawn and withheld by others in his social group as punishment or threat.

2. The threat, implied or implicit, of withdrawing manhood is often enough by itself to precipitate violence.


I'm probably missing something here, but I don't really follow. How is someone's manhood "revoked" exactly?
When your father calls you a *****, when your wife tells you you're a piece of crap, when your boss uses a high-pitched tone to mock the moment you choked during a presentation... Sadly, it's any time you are made to feel female more so than childish. There's the assumption that boys may express emotion and indecision, but MEN don't.

Women don't have their chick card so easily impugned, unless you are a **** mother, then we'll let you have it.
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#8 May 03 2012 at 9:27 AM Rating: Good
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Jophiel wrote:
I can imagine situations where someone's peer group metaphorically "emasculates" them. "Dude, you let her do that to you? You're a fuckin' pussy, dude."


That's what I was guessing, but it just doesn't seem that significant to me. Situations like that seem more like one-off occurrences or remarks, not a full evisceration of someone's man-ness. I've said stuff of that sort to people before, but I don't think it's ever truly meant "That guy is not a man."

I see it being used as a catch-all for someone's confidence and empowerment. It's couched in terms of gender, but it isn't really about gender on any meaningful level, to me. It's not the same for women, but I think there are parallel versions. They might not couch it in the same terms, but the attack on traditional feminine traits are there.

I do think that both cases are getting less pronounced, as women aren't expected to hold to traditional "ladylike" types as much, and it's much less of a problem for a guy to not be butch.


But what do I know, I'm a chick. Smiley: tongue


Edited, May 3rd 2012 11:30am by Eske
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#9 May 03 2012 at 9:29 AM Rating: Excellent
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Jophiel wrote:
I can imagine situations where someone's peer group metaphorically "emasculates" them. "Dude, you let her do that to you? You're a fuckin' pussy, dude."

I don't know if it has to be earned but I guess I equate it more with taking care of business. Being able to get a handle on a situation and have some measure of control of it or steer it somewhere. Arguably, this is the same thing as plain ole being an adult except that, as the OP sort of alludes to, I think women can get away with failing to develop these traits because it's still an option for a "man" to take care of her. When a male fails to develop these traits, he's a loser man-child.
Yep to all of this. Women WILL turn on a woman who exhibit behavior they feel is immature and demeaning to the whole, (a la calling out Zooey Deschanel) but there is no real precedent for denying a woman's womanhood. The act of becoming an adult is a physiological one, irreversible. It doesn't seem to be as cut and dry for men.
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#10 May 03 2012 at 9:31 AM Rating: Excellent
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Atomicflea wrote:
(I guess the answer to #2 is every time My Little Pony comes on, but there is an argument that can be made that being a good father is also reaffirming manhood.)

He'd be watching it anyway. Because he's a girlie-man.
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#11 May 03 2012 at 9:31 AM Rating: Excellent
I don't know that I identify manhood as something that other people can give or take away from me, although I do see that in popular culture. I see manhood for me as more of a measure if I'm living up to the standards I set for myself.
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#12 May 03 2012 at 9:31 AM Rating: Excellent
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someproteinguy wrote:
There was a time I think I cared a lot about doing things on my own, being self-sufficient and what not. Sometime around when I got out of college. But that's about as close as I remember being to really being into the whole manly thing. I mean I was the 7 year old boy running around and playing ponies with all the girls on the playground anyway. I suppose I was never very manly. Maybe I never really understood the whole 'being a man' thing. From what I could tell as a kid it was mostly just peer pressure to do stupid things. Not participating did cause problems though. I remember getting bullied by one kid for a while because of stuff like that. Then I slammed him up against a locker, squeezed my hand around his throat and pretty much scared the living crap out of him.

Who says violence doesn't solve anything? Smiley: rolleyes

It's been a while though, and really haven't thought about anything like that in years I guess. I'm more in lolgaxe's boat really. Wife and 2 daughters means you kind of have to give that stuff up.

Feel free to not answer, but I'm curious as to your male role model growing up. Traditional? Not present?
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#13 May 03 2012 at 9:33 AM Rating: Good
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I sit alone with my giant *****. The ***** reaffirms my manhood and the solitude means no peer groups can socially emasculate me.

I've got it all figured out.
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#14 May 03 2012 at 9:37 AM Rating: Excellent
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Atomicflea wrote:
Feel free to not answer, but I'm curious as to your male role model growing up. Traditional? Not present?


It's no probs. Smiley: grin

Very traditional. Ex military dad who did mostly blue-collar jobs in small town and rural America.
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#15 May 03 2012 at 9:38 AM Rating: Excellent
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Jophiel wrote:
I sit alone with my giant *****. The ***** reaffirms my manhood and the solitude means no peer groups can socially emasculate me.

I've got it all figured out.


♫i'm a man
i'm real proud of my manhood
i like to smoke
ten thousand cigarillos
eight ball
i could climb any fountain
i never cry
i only bawl when i'm losing
and i've never been wrong
never been wrong
i'm looking so good
looking so good
got a big gold gun
got a big gold bullet
and i guess you could say
i'm real full of it
i'm real full of it
i'm real straight
you wanna see my peccadillos
hot dog 7:30 every morning
and i'm big into war
big into war
big into war
i am a *****
i am a *****
got a big gold gun
i shave with gillette
shave with gillette
and i'm patting my back
patting my back
got a big gold bullet ♫
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#16 May 03 2012 at 9:41 AM Rating: Excellent
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Eske Esquire wrote:
That's what I was guessing, but it just doesn't seem that significant to me. Situations like that seem more like one-off occurrences or remarks, not a full evisceration of someone's man-ness. I've said stuff of that sort to people before, but I don't think it's ever truly meant "That guy is not a man."
Certainly you could have never been in a situation that evoked this for you. The researcher who came up with this theory did research mostly among the gang and prison populations, if I remember correctly. If the entire concept holds no weight for you because of the nature or culture of your peer group, it's possible. I do wonder what would happen to you among a prison or gang population, though.

Quote:
I see it being used as a catch-all for someone's confidence and empowerment. It's couched in terms of gender, but it isn't really about gender on any meaningful level, to me. It's not the same for women, but I think there are parallel versions. They might not couch it in the same terms, but the attack on traditional feminine traits are there.
Not to any comparable extent. Confidence and empowerment are pretty much non-issues for femaleness when it comes to their womanhood. You get a period, you're a woman. Congrats.

Quote:
I do think that both cases are getting less pronounced, as women aren't expected to hold to traditional "ladylike" types as much, and it's much less of a problem for a guy to not be butch.
Again, depends on the peer group. As I said before, few things will get other women riled up like a woman who doesn't espouse the role of motherhood, which is very traditional.
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#17 May 03 2012 at 9:43 AM Rating: Excellent
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Jophiel wrote:
Atomicflea wrote:
(I guess the answer to #2 is every time My Little Pony comes on, but there is an argument that can be made that being a good father is also reaffirming manhood.)

He'd be watching it anyway. Because he's a girlie-man.
See? Like that!!!

Again, it's not that someone DOES take it away, it's that threatening to do so prompts violence more reliably than anything else.
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#18 May 03 2012 at 9:48 AM Rating: Excellent
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Sir Xsarus wrote:
I don't know that I identify manhood as something that other people can give or take away from me, although I do see that in popular culture. I see manhood for me as more of a measure if I'm living up to the standards I set for myself.
I'm not sure it's conscious, but bully you if this is the case. Also, this sounds awesome when I imagine Blondie saying it.
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#19 May 03 2012 at 9:48 AM Rating: Excellent
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Atomicflea wrote:
See? Like that!!!

Again, it's not that someone DOES take it away, it's that threatening to do so prompts violence more reliably than anything else.


I get the feeling female deer must be like this too: What the heck? They're smashing heads together again? Someone is going to break an antler. Why do they do that? How does that even solve anything? Ooo look clover! Om nom nom...
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#20 May 03 2012 at 9:49 AM Rating: Excellent
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Atomicflea wrote:
You get a period, you're a woman. Congrats.

What if you're not a girl, but not yet a woman?
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#21 May 03 2012 at 9:50 AM Rating: Excellent
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Atomicflea wrote:
Also, this sounds awesome when I imagine Blondie saying it.

Debbie Harry Blondie or Mrs. Bumsted Blondie?
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#22 May 03 2012 at 9:57 AM Rating: Excellent
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Jophiel wrote:
I sit alone with my giant *****. The ***** reaffirms my manhood and the solitude means no peer groups can socially emasculate me.

I've got it all figured out.
You've got two sons. Just give it time.
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#23 May 03 2012 at 10:03 AM Rating: Excellent
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Atomicflea wrote:
When did you attain it by your standards? When did you first feel like a man, or like that was threatened or taken away?
I guess a few years ago I'd say when I first became a Marine and got deployed was when I first felt like a man, but as the years passed it's hard to consider that when it's such an easy accomplishment. Now I say it was when I didn't pass out like in Generic Relationship Comedy Movie #65 during my daughter's birth. Weird mix of pride and fear I'm going to personally and directly responsible for someone's life. The realization that every situation I put myself in, and every decision I make is going to directly affect a life that can't exactly mitigate the damage for itself.

It was a fleeting moment, as being easily manipulated by a little girl is highly emasculating.
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#24 May 03 2012 at 10:06 AM Rating: Good
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Atomicflea wrote:
Eske Esquire wrote:
That's what I was guessing, but it just doesn't seem that significant to me. Situations like that seem more like one-off occurrences or remarks, not a full evisceration of someone's man-ness. I've said stuff of that sort to people before, but I don't think it's ever truly meant "That guy is not a man."
Certainly you could have never been in a situation that evoked this for you. The researcher who came up with this theory did research mostly among the gang and prison populations, if I remember correctly. If the entire concept holds no weight for you because of the nature or culture of your peer group, it's possible. I do wonder what would happen to you among a prison or gang population, though.


Mmm, that's interesting. I had forgotten about prison scenarios. I think I still feel like in that case, manhood is being used metaphorically (for confidence, assertiveness, strength, etc.); that it's not a unique feature of a person.

Atomicflea wrote:
Eske Esquire wrote:
I see it being used as a catch-all for someone's confidence and empowerment. It's couched in terms of gender, but it isn't really about gender on any meaningful level, to me. It's not the same for women, but I think there are parallel versions. They might not couch it in the same terms, but the attack on traditional feminine traits are there.
Not to any comparable extent. Confidence and empowerment are pretty much non-issues for femaleness when it comes to their womanhood. You get a period, you're a woman. Congrats.


Right, that's what I was saying: there are parallels, not in attacks on confidence or empowerment, but say, perhaps, in desirability.

Edited, May 3rd 2012 12:07pm by Eske
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#25 May 03 2012 at 10:07 AM Rating: Excellent
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Atomicflea wrote:
You've got two sons. Just give it time.

Don't think I won't bust the giant ***** out to make my points for me. Or to use as a pointer.
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#26 May 03 2012 at 10:09 AM Rating: Good
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And for the record, I figure I'll get my revenge on her when she starts bringing boys around and I start pointing shotguns at them and emasculating them.

It's my long term plan that gets me through walking down the Barbie aisle every time we go shopping.
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#27 May 03 2012 at 10:09 AM Rating: Excellent
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lolgaxe wrote:
Atomicflea wrote:
When did you attain it by your standards? When did you first feel like a man, or like that was threatened or taken away?
I guess a few years ago I'd say when I first became a Marine and got deployed was when I first felt like a man, but as the years passed it's hard to consider that when it's such an easy accomplishment. Now I say it was when I didn't pass out like in Generic Relationship Comedy Movie #65 during my daughter's birth. Weird mix of pride and fear I'm going to personally and directly responsible for someone's life. The realization that every situation I put myself in, and every decision I make is going to directly affect a life that can't exactly mitigate the damage for itself.

It was a fleeting moment, as being easily manipulated by a little girl is highly emasculating.
I imagine your wife/gf/babymomma feels the same, but my girlfriends all told me before the birth that there is nothing sexier than watching a man be a father, and I concur. Joph is never more of a man to me than when he is changing a diaper or telling Jr about dating.
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#28 May 03 2012 at 10:13 AM Rating: Excellent
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Eske Esquire wrote:
Right, that's what I was saying: there are parallels, not in attacks on confidence or empowerment, but say, perhaps, in desirability.
How so? In my experience, even the least attractive chick can get laid more than an equally unattractive guy. Maybe that's not what you're referring to?
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#29 May 03 2012 at 10:16 AM Rating: Excellent
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Jophiel wrote:
Atomicflea wrote:
You've got two sons. Just give it time.

Don't think I won't bust the giant ***** out to make my points for me. Or to use as a pointer.
So will they. Better stock up on Viagra if you want to continue to make points well into your old age, grandpa.
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#30 May 03 2012 at 10:18 AM Rating: Excellent
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lolgaxe wrote:
It's my long term plan that gets me through walking down the Barbie aisle every time we go shopping.
That's how I felt about Pokemon.
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#31 May 03 2012 at 10:18 AM Rating: Excellent
I think the whole "being a man" thing becomes more and more prevalent the tighter your social circle is, and the more you depend on your peers for advancement or prestige. This fits well with a prison or a gang. Basically manliness is just a measuring stick for how well you belong, it's the accepted metric. In looser social circles, belonging becomes less of a necessity and more of a choice and so how you define yourself rests more with you and less with others.

I'm not sure what would be a similar metric for women in the same scenario though.
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#32 May 03 2012 at 10:22 AM Rating: Excellent
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Atomicflea wrote:
So will they.

Who wants to pull their ***** out in front of their dad? Weirdo. Smiley: um
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#33 May 03 2012 at 10:23 AM Rating: Excellent
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Sir Xsarus wrote:
I think the whole "being a man" thing becomes more and more prevalent the tighter your social circle is, and the more you depend on your peers for advancement or prestige. This fits well with a prison or a gang. Basically manliness is just a measuring stick for how well you belong, it's the accepted metric. In looser social circles, belonging becomes less of a necessity and more of a choice and so how you define yourself rests more with you and less with others.

I'm not sure what would be a similar metric for women in the same scenario though.
I've found that it's motherhood, to a large extent. Women who are childless feel belittled by their breeding counterparts, even if these are single. They are told that there are conversations and topics that they are ignorant of. They are either outside or inside the birthing circle. Women outside are largely thought of as being carefree and unburdened by both the responsibility and power of motherhood. Even this can't "take away" your womanhood, but you can see how vicious we get with women who fail at it or belittle that status. Maybe other non-womb-fruit-harvesters can chip in.
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#34 May 03 2012 at 10:24 AM Rating: Excellent
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Jophiel wrote:
Atomicflea wrote:
So will they.

Who wants to pull their ***** out in front of their dad? Weirdo. Smiley: um
Smiley: eekUm, WTF? Trust you to take a hard left at Albuquerque.
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#35 May 03 2012 at 10:29 AM Rating: Excellent
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Smiley: laugh
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#36 May 03 2012 at 10:30 AM Rating: Good
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Atomicflea wrote:
Eske Esquire wrote:
Right, that's what I was saying: there are parallels, not in attacks on confidence or empowerment, but say, perhaps, in desirability.
How so? In my experience, even the least attractive chick can get laid more than an equally unattractive guy. Maybe that's not what you're referring to?


No, not quite. I was thinking in terms of how they're perceived by those of their own gender. I mean, even a man who's been emasculated among his peers can do pretty darn well with women.

I meant women attacking other women for their looks, or their sexuality. I feel like it's a little bit similar.

Edited, May 3rd 2012 12:31pm by Eske
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#37 May 03 2012 at 10:41 AM Rating: Excellent
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Eske Esquire wrote:
I meant women attacking other women for their looks, or their sexuality. I feel like it's a little bit similar.
I'm not getting this. It happens, but not sure it defeminates them. if anything, it overemphasizes femininity....
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#38 May 03 2012 at 10:56 AM Rating: Good
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Atomicflea wrote:
Eske Esquire wrote:
I meant women attacking other women for their looks, or their sexuality. I feel like it's a little bit similar.
I'm not getting this. It happens, but not sure it defeminates them. if anything, it overemphasizes femininity....


Smiley: confused

Saying that someone is ugly, a hag, or a spinster overemphasizes their femininity? I don't see how.
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#39 May 03 2012 at 10:58 AM Rating: Excellent
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Eske Esquire wrote:
Atomicflea wrote:
Eske Esquire wrote:
I meant women attacking other women for their looks, or their sexuality. I feel like it's a little bit similar.
I'm not getting this. It happens, but not sure it defeminates them. if anything, it overemphasizes femininity....


Smiley: confused

Saying that someone is ugly, a hag, or a spinster overemphasizes their femininity? I don't see how.
I was thinking the other way, as picking on women for posing in Playboy, or wearing a short skirt to work. Even so, someone calling me a hag doesn't defeminate me. Womanhood =/= sexual appeal.
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#40 May 03 2012 at 11:07 AM Rating: Excellent
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Eske Esquire wrote:
No, not quite. I was thinking in terms of how they're perceived by those of their own gender. I mean, even a man who's been emasculated among his peers can do pretty darn well with women.


Atomicflea wrote:
Womanhood =/= sexual appeal.


Agreed, appealing to one's own *** =/= appealing to the other.

With the guy's side I'd probably add the disclaimer that doing well amongst your peers can be a confidence boost, which can help you approach women. I don't know if it works that way for the other half as well or not.

Guys are weird in that there can be pressure to not get along good with a wife/GF/etc. You know if have a good relationship then there's something wrong with you, and you should be putting that much effort into a job to provide for the family or something. You know I hear a lot of "my wife hated me for years" "we divorced because I was too busy at my job" etc. and it's almost like a badge or honor or something at times.

Don't really get that either I guess. *shrugs*
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#41 May 03 2012 at 11:11 AM Rating: Excellent
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Atomicflea wrote:
Even so, someone calling me a hag doesn't defeminate me. Womanhood =/= sexual appeal.


I think Womanhood = Sexual Appeal as much as Manhood = Confidence, Empowerment, or whatever. They're catch-all words that embody a bunch of different standards, and desirability is one of them. We glorify those who're able to attract people. The ideal man is confident, handsome, savvy, a pillar of strength, etc. The ideal woman is, attractive, virile, attentive, kind, w/e. Men perceive that in other men just as women perceive that in other women, too.

Edited, May 3rd 2012 1:12pm by Eske
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#42 May 03 2012 at 11:24 AM Rating: Excellent
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Your manhood can only be revoked by someone else if you give a **** about what they have to say. Anyone who would seriously question your manhood isn't worth giving a **** about what they say.
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#43 May 03 2012 at 12:27 PM Rating: Good
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In retrospect, I think the first time I really felt like a Man was back in college. I was walking out of a concert with a friend, cutting through Millenium Park, and some random dude ran up behind us and punched us both in the backs of our heads, claiming that we had knocked him around while inside the concert. This, of course, was completely untrue; I spent most of the concert standing in the back and checking my watch wondering how quickly I wanted to leave (FYI: OAR sucks live).

Anywho, I was rather angry, as you might imagine. I advanced on the guy and socked him pretty good a few times, at which point he staggered back and fell. He seemed fine (physically), but it was at this point that we realized he was obviously high, drunk, or both. About then, I could have jumped on him and beat him silly, but I had already paid him back for the bruise I was sure to have, and I didn't really want to hurt the guy. So I grabbed my friend, and we left.

It's not the fact that I beat somebody up that made me feel like a man, but rather that I showed measured restraint when I had every possible excuse not to (i.e. "he started it").
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#44 May 03 2012 at 12:58 PM Rating: Excellent
Atomicflea wrote:
Sir Xsarus wrote:
I think the whole "being a man" thing becomes more and more prevalent the tighter your social circle is, and the more you depend on your peers for advancement or prestige. This fits well with a prison or a gang. Basically manliness is just a measuring stick for how well you belong, it's the accepted metric. In looser social circles, belonging becomes less of a necessity and more of a choice and so how you define yourself rests more with you and less with others.

I'm not sure what would be a similar metric for women in the same scenario though.
I've found that it's motherhood, to a large extent. Women who are childless feel belittled by their breeding counterparts, even if these are single. They are told that there are conversations and topics that they are ignorant of. They are either outside or inside the birthing circle. Women outside are largely thought of as being carefree and unburdened by both the responsibility and power of motherhood. Even this can't "take away" your womanhood, but you can see how vicious we get with women who fail at it or belittle that status. Maybe other non-womb-fruit-harvesters can chip in.


I've experienced this a little bit. Most of my friends from high school have kids now. The girl that was my best friend, a few years back made a bit of a snide remark to me that still irks me when I think about it. At the time, she was giving my sister piano lessons, and her older son wasn't even a year old yet (she hadn't even conceived the second one yet). My sister was 15 or 16, and having issues with my mom, I don't remember what. My friend and I were talking about it on the phone, and I took my sister's side and she took my mom's side. Then she made a crack about how when I'm a mother I'll understand. If she had said that to me in person, I would have been seriously tempted to smack her. Then again, she's had a habit over the years of being patronizing to me, so maybe that was why she said it. But yes, the holier-than-thou attitude, because she's had a kid for less than a year, so she understands what it's like to deal with teenagers and where my mom is coming from, that really annoyed me.

Most of my close female friends don't have kids, so it's not really an issue with them. But, I've also seen first-hand the patronizing that goes along with a woman saying that she doesn't want kids. ****, I've been guilty of dishing that out myself in the past. There's always this knowing laugh, and then the comment of "You'll change your mind!" Maybe, maybe not. Who the **** are you to think that you know how I feel about motherhood? I eventually did change my mind, but I have friends who have been married for a few years now, and they have no intention of ever having kids. For them it's more of a political statement though. The whole "The world is overpopulated as it is, and I'm not going to contribute to that!" sort of deal. Part of me feels some sort of sadness that they aren't going to have kids, because the two of them are both wicked smart. We need more smart people. >.< But I keep that thought to myself, and appreciate that they don't look down on me or our other friends who do want kids someday but just aren't ready for it now.

It's funny, when people at work ask me if I have any kids, I just laugh and say "I'm only 28, I'm too young to have kids!" They always give me this odd look and a nervous laugh. I'm not even purposefully trying to make them feel uncomfortable, that's honestly how I feel about it. Maybe in 4 or 5 years I'll feel ready, but I just don't right now.
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#45 May 03 2012 at 1:10 PM Rating: Excellent
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Eske Esquire wrote:
Atomicflea wrote:
Even so, someone calling me a hag doesn't defeminate me. Womanhood =/= sexual appeal.


I think Womanhood = Sexual Appeal as much as Manhood = Confidence, Empowerment, or whatever. They're catch-all words that embody a bunch of different standards, and desirability is one of them. We glorify those who're able to attract people. The ideal man is confident, handsome, savvy, a pillar of strength, etc. The ideal woman is, attractive, virile, attentive, kind, w/e. Men perceive that in other men just as women perceive that in other women, too.
Not in the context of taking away the woman/manhood. I think sexual appeal is way low on the female-to-female set of values, all said and done.
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#46 May 03 2012 at 1:12 PM Rating: Excellent
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Atomicflea wrote:
I think sexual appeal is way low on the female-to-female set of values

Not according to the movies I've seen.
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#47 May 03 2012 at 1:16 PM Rating: Good
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Atomicflea wrote:
Not in the context of taking away the woman/manhood.


Maybe so. I have to admit, this whole conversation is kind of nebulous, and I'm starting to have trouble following it while intermittently doing actual work. Smiley: tongue

Atomicflea wrote:
I think sexual appeal is way low on the female-to-female set of values, all said and done.


I'm sure. I just think that it shares characteristics with the kinds of attacks on manhood, when it occurs.



Edited, May 3rd 2012 3:18pm by Eske
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#48 May 03 2012 at 1:43 PM Rating: Good
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At any time I've felt my masculinity "threatened," I have, oddly enough, remembered a line from a Ray Stevens song I heard when I was a kid. I won't go into details, but it involves the phrase "I'm secure in my manhood" when confronted with an emasculating situation or an association with homosexuality. I know who I am, and to me it doesn't matter how manly others think I am.
#49 May 03 2012 at 2:01 PM Rating: Good
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Different social structures.

Women are more of a collective with each individual jockeying for position on an ongoing basis, their relationships are more fluid because they're a convenience not a necessity.

Men are more like individuals that co-operate not because we need to but because it benefits us to do so, strength in numbers. "Manhood" is all about how much control one has over his immediate environment. Men are hunters, as a matter of survival we need to be able to control a situation while co-operating with others that are also attempting to control the situation. Manhood = control, control over emotions, decisions, environments.

When your manhood is threatened it's really a threat to your control and since the bulk of a man's control comes from physical superiority violence is typically the most immediate answer. You general "feel" like a man when you gain a measure of control over your life and surroundings.

We no longer have to hunt for survival so over the centuries we've tamed a bit and that will continue but the instinct of "Must be powerful" is still there in varying degrees the same as "Must be a good mother" is there for women and determines how they view other women.
#50 May 03 2012 at 2:02 PM Rating: Good
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AshOnMyTomatoes wrote:
At any time I've felt my masculinity "threatened," I have, oddly enough, remembered a line from a Ray Stevens song I heard when I was a kid. I won't go into details, but it involves the phrase "I'm secure in my manhood" when confronted with an emasculating situation or an association with homosexuality. I know who I am, and to me it doesn't matter how manly others think I am.


No offence, but that's the most pathetic thing I've ever heard.
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#51 May 03 2012 at 2:21 PM Rating: Good
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This thread is emasculating me.

STOP MAKING ME TALK ABOUT MY FEELINGS!!!
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