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donderdag, mei 26, 2022

Do you want equality for all or just for yourself? (Longread)

Men are different than women. Biological of course. Just watch your mom and dad come out of the shower together (or with that friendly neighbour) without a towel: they have a few different bodyparts. Even the male and female brain are wired differently (click). It doens't mean half of humanity (also accounting for people who identify as male/female/indistinct/who cares?) is 'better' than the other half. Being different simply means men and women are different. 

This means women and men both have their strengths and weakenesses, qualifications and emotions. 

'Being a feminist is not about hating men showing their appreciation for women' is a piece (click) I wrote about feminism. There appears to be a lot of confusion about what feminism actually is. It even appears that some think it's all about bashing men for being different than women. It's not. All this attitude leads to is men being disliked for 'being a real man' who holds open doors for his lady (as if she could ever be his property. Tsss) and physically takes the upperhand during sexual encounters. While men who aren't afraid to cry over their dead cat in a woman's company are considered 'not real men', leading to a lot of frustration and men being afraid to show their emotions. Which in turn leads to the misconception that men don't have emotions, solely based on the fact they won't show them.

With her permission I'll now share a beautiful piece a beautiful friend of mine has written about this problem:

No compassion for men hurts us all
In the past couple of days I've been confronted with women who seem to feel that men do not deserve just as much compassion as other people, because they are men, and privileged and somehow apparently that makes them less human than other human beings. 
It was brought up in relation to a man's trauma, invalidating the man's right to be deeply affected by what had happened to him ('it would have been worse if he hadn't been a man') and it obviously colored someone elses compassion in response to me bringing up the subject of how much pressure men often experience in relation to the need to sexually perform. 
These kind of reactions hurt me. They seem to be related to some people's feminist outlook that thinks that being caring, supportive and compassionate towards men somehow takes away from the validation of women's trauma under patriarchy and from the fight for women's rights. I think this is fundamentally incorrect, needlessly perpetuating alienation between people and counterproductive: patriarchy doesn't solely take women as its victims but it does so to all people, regardless of gender (identity). If one wants to dismantle patriarchy rather than taking away compassion and support from men, we should learn to access so much compassion and support that there is enough for everyone to go around: More than just a lack of love and reverence for women  the most toxic aspects of patriarchy are characterized by a lack of love and reference for the whole of LIFE. Fundamentally it is this lack of love and reference that keeps patriarchy in place. 
Though I do think that women are (by far) disproportionally the most suppressed, violated and abused by patriarchy, simultaneously its always been clear to me that men are victimized by a patriarchical world just as well. Under patriarchy it is for example
- not safe for men to be sensitive and vulnerable and to be in need of emotional support (which becomes very obvious in the much higher suicide-rate amongst men compared to women)
- stifling and constricting to have access to a whole, rich, complex and multilayered identity as only certain roles and aspects of being are approved of
- oftentimes only through romantic relationship that men can gain access to emotional intimacy
- incentivized to dominate in oftentimes exploitative and aggressive ways, which deep down is immensely damaging to one's psyche and soul
while all the while men experience the other estranging, oppressive and traumatic effects of patriarchy just as well as women, as these effects take place in every goddamn area of our lives. 
You think p*rn is something that only degrades women? Though I am the first to admit that most p*rn is by far the most abusive of and exploitative towards women, one has to be quite blind not to understand that the emotional, sensual, intimate and spiritual poverty of most p*rn damages and impoverishes men just as well. 
I've laid in bed with several men who's only sexual education consisted of p*rn and who truly didn't know how to connect in any other way than through some charicature of pumped-up, toxic masculinity. I found that shocking. The immense emotional, sensual and spiritual, if you want to go that far, poverty that came to light in this makes my heart bleed. 
How about the men who can't relate to women who are strong and powerful? It's easy (while also true) to say that these men suffer from a superiority-complex and that they should emancipate themselves, but just think about how stifling, constricting, suppressive, alienating and impoverishing it is to only be able to feel like a 'real' man when you are in a position of domination? How much anxiety the fear of potentially losing one's dominance provokes in such a man? How empty the experience of a self that doesn't know any other way of having value in the world?
What about the inability to relate to and connect with the whole, infinite, incomprehensibly rich nature of the feminine, in women as well as in other people? There are countless tastes, textures, flavors and aspects of the feminine that most men never gain access to, as the way that patriarchy robs women and other predominantly female-identified people from accessing and developing the fullness of their being subsequently also robs men from the ability to have access to these qualities through relating to women / female identified people. 
Never to experience the limitlessness and healing power of unconditional love, deep tenderness, the riches of deep and uncensored sensuality, or any of the other countless faces of the feminine is just as much a loss to men as it is to women. All these things are related to patriarchy and their lack does not exclusively damage women, it damages the whole of humanity. 
The way out of this is not by depriving half of the population from support and compassion, but rather by acknowledging that the sick system that we live in takes everyone prisoner, and that it is uncompromising compassion, love, care, respect and reverence for the whole of humanity that is needed to transition to a new world. 
Not by vilifying men, but by ruthlessly loving and dignifying every human being, regardless of gender. There is no other way.

Yes, in cases of domestic violence usally women are victims and the men are abusers. And it sort of makes sense since men tend to be physically stronger. But how 'bout when it comes to psychological abuse? Generally speaking women seem to be mentally stronger than men. Remember the opening of this piece: there really are distinct differences between men and women. 

I wrote on the Johnny Depp versus Amber Heard case (click). At first people believed the Aquaman actress 'because why would a woman lie?' Until the defamation case 'Captain Jack Sparrow' filed against her brought to light that she had lied. On more than one occasion. Why, we might never know. Was she after his money? Was it a weird way to show and ask for love and affection?

I for one wish Amber Heard hadn't lied for now in future cases of abuse, people and law enforcement will always question the motives of the alleged victim

But if Johnny Depp abused Amber Heard or vice versa, Amber Heard is a victim nonetheless. If only from her own lies.

'Men are people too' is another piece I wrote (click) on the subject of differences between men and women. I wrote it because I often wonder why some women who state they want equal treatment refuse to treat men as equals. 

Didn't they read their own memo?

Want to read (more of) my short stories? My author page: Terrence Weijnschenk at Amazon
I just lost my part time job and am not making ends meet via entertainment because of covid, so a donation (click) is much appreciated: