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Liberal Feminism Is the Reason Men Are Clueless
I have some bad news for the ladies.
Actually, it may not be news, but it’s definitely bad, and here goes:
A lot of guys have no idea what they are doing when it comes to having relationships with women.
The problem presents itself in various ways: The guy who pressures women. The guy who persists in behaviors unattractive to women and wonders why he’s lonely. The guy bewildered before a woman’s changeable and sometimes capricious feelings. Even worse, the guy who treats women roughly or abusively because he cannot understand that they differ from his video game and sports buddies.
Finding a guy not afflicted in this way is rare. Pickings are slim. I see it with my own eyes on the regular. In my coaching practice, I work with men much more ensconced in this mindset than they realize. Some are so stuck in their false beliefs and dysfunctional habits dislodging them requires verbal dynamite.
Part of the reason is liberal feminism. Just as liberal feminism has had deleterious effects on women, so it has been a source of negative and limiting beliefs for men. The movement ostensibly about liberating women has actually burdened them with a dating culture in which neither they nor the men they desire are able to find what they want in a long term partner .
How does this work?
It starts with an idea. The central premise of liberal feminism is that men and women are equal because they are the same. I refer to this idea as sameness equality. Sameness equality admits no grounds for men and women to be equal in dignity if we are not, in every respect, the same. Thus, liberal feminism made repressing and punishing any admission or appreciation of sex differences a vital part of its project. The success of their efforts is so vast it is hard to describe.
The liberal feminist worldview has supplanted every competitor. At the heart of this perspective is the denial of what liberal feminists call essentialism. Essentialism is the belief that men and women have a core, a set of qualities, interests or perspectives that define them. In short, that men and women each have an essence.
Denying male and female essences frees liberal feminists to advance the claim that men and women are fundamentally the same, and that any differences between us are only apparent, accidental or the result of social conditioning.
This idea has now so pervaded our culture that most people accept it without thinking. The result is millions of guys who, because they don’t know how women differ from them, don’t know how to relate. Millions of guys who don’t think a significant difference between men and women exists equals millions of guys who disappoint women or, worse, abuse them unintentionally.
Nobody is happy with this situation. Women have trouble because they are themselves confused. Liberal feminist ideas conflict with their basic desires leading to oceans of shame and despair. Men miss out on the fulfillment that comes from exercising their masculine role in the context of relationships with women. The whole thing is a mess.
Straightening it out will require, as the Twitter trads are fond of saying, a return. Liberal feminism convinced millions that masculinity in men and femininity in women are bad. These traits, and any expectation that men and women respectively will manifest them, we have been told, are nothing but oppressive strictures laid on individuals by external authorities and meant to keep us in chains. Liberal feminists, in turn, positioned themselves as our liberators. To build a happier dating culture, we must liberate ourselves from these “liberators”.
This is starting to happen.
Liberal feminism still holds power in mainstream institutions, but a look at the cultural margins shows its time is over. The rise of online men’s movements and the corresponding rise of new forms of feminism that take a more positive view of sex differences are a promising sign.
Younger generations of adults have tired of sex sameness. They’re looking for a way to honor differences between the sexes in a conscious, compassionate and flexible way. They sense that recognizing these differences will allow both men and women to get a clue.
The next generation may bring with it new vision, one that, rather than seeing sex differences as something to be denied, celebrates them, that embraces rather than rejects them because know that in that direction lies not loss, but fulfillment, not emptiness, but joy.