Several weeks ago, I went through a strange break-up. Everything started in the best of ways. I thought I finally met THE Man. He was kind, supportive, helpful while having his own life, dedicated to his sport, with a career, a home, a car, he could handle his own thing. He was a mirror of me in certain ways. I know I am not the society standard in many ways, but especially my need for gender equality in dating has often been an obstacle. We had conversations about marital rape, equality in sports, my past relationships and to my greatest satisfaction, I found out this guy had a feminist mind. How delighted was I.
But as the time passed, he became cold, needy and we had long discussions trying to adjust to the relationship. Until a first breakup, a second and ultimate breakup all the while unsupportive, egoistic and disrespectful behavior started to develop. This is not the first time I end up going through such a hardship. While questioning my friends whom he met on various occasions, I ended up finding out that everyone agreed on the same hypothesis: I and the sole existence of my friends damaged his ego to a breaking point. He had to save his self.
Those female friends he met are of a special kind. All of them have great careers in sport or finance. They are on top of their industries while maintaining an exemplar kind and humble character. In numerous occasions and without intention, all of us shined in front of him and publicly in our disciplines. All of them received from him harsh criticism and deprecating comments from him during our private conversations. I patiently listened without taking any sides.
While “almost 90% of single men and women agree that equal pay is a top issue, as are workplace harassment and violence against women” (USA today, Tristan Bridges, department of Sociology The College at Brockport, State University of New-York), it seems the dating world reflects a different reality. What is going on out there?
From “ghosting” behaviors on dating apps to sudden unexplained breakups, we all go through hardships leading to self questioning. From weight loss to therapy, self-help books to males advices, we keep trying to make ourselves more “bangable”, more datable, better girlfriends, more independent… Why does it still not work?
Various dating self-help books suggest that preserving a man’s ego in a relationship shall be the top priority. From letting them lead the communication to becoming the “princess in distress”, all of them clearly are destined to turn you back to the old school female model that our mothers had been fighting so hard to change. They literally push you into hiding feminist views and behaviors. Eventually, we become a ghost of ourselves.
I do believe, however, that most men are willing to make this world safer for women, physically as much as psychologically. As throughout history, the subordinate relationship has been maintained between men and women, women’s need, especially the “non-measurable” were not only taken into account but not even expressed.
This blog aims at analyzing and deconstructing old dating patterns in order to create new options and possibilities for everyone of us.