The Private Man

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In Femininity, There Is Strength

The current social expectation is that femininity is considered a weakness. It’s an extraordinarily entrenched idea in our collective psyches. The denizens of the Manosphere continue to rail with gusto about the masculinization of Anglosphere women. It’s a 100% valid issue and the drumbeat against this must never cease.

The comeback from the politically correct crowd is usually a variation of “you want women back in the kitchen and submissive to their men!” Hey, I like a good straw man argument as much as the next Manosphere blogger, those are such easy arguments to casually brush aside. Yet the opposition clings to the notion that being feminine is somehow being weak.

Of course, the femininity-is-weakness model fits nicely into the overall victim ideology of the politically correct crowd. But that assumes that if a woman is a victim, she’s already being feminine because, ta-da!, she’s weak, and therefore a victim. It gets kind of circular and I don’t have enough beer to deal with that. It takes some serious drinking to break the circle of a circular argument.

“Never depend on a man!” stoutly states a previous generation of mothers hell-bent on preventing their daughters from falling into the trap of dependency. “It’s a man’s world and you’re got to be strong and independent!” This from two generations of socio-political and mostly female activists hell-bent on altering the social expectations that apparently had woman in some form of domestic bondage. But that apparent bondage occurred over 50 years ago, it’s almost ancient history by American standards.

Social history aside, we’re faced with a social expectation that demeans femininity while ignoring its strength. I’ll start and let my brilliant commenters follow.

The strengths of femininity:

  • Pleasantness in the face of rudeness
  • Happiness in the face of sorrow
  • Willingness to forgive
  • Desire to nurture and not control
  • Discretion despite anger
  • Modesty when others insist on exposure
  • Kindness in the face of belligerence

You get the idea? Chime in… let’s turn around the idea that being feminine is being weak. This, I decree!

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18 thoughts on “In Femininity, There Is Strength

  1. While I generally agree with your idea, PM, I think you’re not fully appreciating the strengths of femininity. Some of those strengths we do not like and do not work in our interests all the time, but they are strengths nonetheless:

    * Physical endurance — childbirth is no picnic. A woman’s life is on the line every time she brings a new life into the world, no matter how much we mitigate with medical science.

    * The innate power of Caritas (in the original Pagan Roman sense, not the tepid Christian sense of “graceful charity”) a woman possesses. That is, the profound power of maternal nurturing and love she employs to coax a squealing, screaming infant into being a fully-functional adult. That same power can add depths to her character and sexuality. Which is why a lot of feminists dispute its existence.

    * Strength in the face of adversity. Truly a feminine virtue.

    * The power to organize, communicate and network. Women know how to work better in groups, and generally network better (although not always as effectively) than men. Good communication and organizational skills are a hallmark of femininity. That bugs the crap out of a lot of us, but in our modern world that skill has allowed many women to flourish by developing it into a marketable skill. It has often frequently been used on our behalf, because they also have an . . .

    * Awareness of social nuance and position and ability to interpret subtle social cues. Traditionally women have been their husband’s interpreters, advisers and interface socially on their behalf. A woman will often understand subtle social nuances hinting towards incipient changes in the social hierarchy he’s involved in. She will often use this perspective to further her own goals — which usually revolve around security — but in the case of a good marriage that means establishing and maintaining good social position for her husband.

    * Protective of offspring. A profound feminine virtue is the ability to put the needs and welfare of their offspring above her own needs and welfare. There are, of course, plenty of women who have abandoned this, or have used it as a base excuse for hypergamy, but it has also gotten women and children out of abusive circumstances . . . and it ultimately serves to preserve the species.

    * Ability to entertain. This has been a traditional aspect of femininity in all human cultures throughout all human history. Women have always been expected to develop the ability to present themselves in a pleasing manner and entertain and put others at ease in social situations. Indeed, our civilization’s cultural life wouldn’t extend beyond beer-and-chips football games if it wasn’t for the feminine impulse to entertain.

    * Ability to recognize. When a woman observes positive behavior, it is a feminine virtue to call it out for praise in a respectful manner. That goes from posting macaroni pictures from her kindergartner on the refrigerator to promoting her husband’s virtues in public to acknowledging truly heroic or impressive feats. Men spend an awful lot of time trying to attract female attention. It is a virtue, therefore, when she grants it in a gracious manner.

    * Ability to convince and manipulate. Yes, we hate this one. It is, nonetheless, a feminine strength, perhaps their greatest. Women can be adept negotiators and uncanny salesmen. The ability to allure, to flirt, to subtly direct and steer a conversation has frequently driven us mad, but it has also worked on our behalf. The secret is to make them swear only to use their powers for good.

    That’s a few, and some of them are going to be controversial. But there are plenty more, and I’d love to hear others’ perspectives on this.

    • Equally Lined on said:

      I like both of your view points, but I am curious as to why you both associate femininity to women only. The strengths you talk about are possessed both by men and women. If we are to be fair and not bias, men and women have masculinity and femininity.

  2. Every guy in the Manosphere needs to watch the girl in this video… I was totally blown away by the message she sends. I have yet to watch her other videos as they are quite long, but seriously… Watch this:
    Feminism, Pt 3 – Manhood Criminalized

    This is the kind of woman that I’ll gladly haul the cat litter out of her car for… She gets it.

  3. just visiting on said:

    Wow, great examples by PM and Ian. My contribution…..

    The ability to know the differences in nurturing a man and nurturing a child. A strength that builds solid foundations.

    The ability to sacrifice self interest for the long term benefits of the family. Family life, especially with children is not particularly glamorous, exciting or ego boosting. Putting aside instant gratification for the longer term effects of bonding, nurturing, and a strong family has its own rewards to the individual, the family, and the community,

    Patience – A feminine strength . Lack of it can cause serious emotional, financial and even physical damage.

    Charity – whether towards others or the community strengthens and gives hope

    The ability to allow for vulnerability. – The strongest connections are through the heart, whether children or adults. And sometimes that can hurt. Requires courage.

    Beauty without vanity – A strength that inspires

    Conducting oneself honorably – A strength to the individual, family and community

    Gentleness- a strength that has it’s own power to sway.

  4. Now THAT’s womaning up.

  5. quarterlife_dc on said:

    Ability to convince others to open up–Many of the best therapists and social workers are female, not just because women are drawn to
    caring professions, but because it’s a feminine quality to make someone feel safe emotionally and able to open up. Women are naturally better communicators when it comes to such things.

    Ability to let go with grace despite strong love–If you ever see a mom let her child go when s/he grows up, you’ll see what I mean. Likewise, a girl will likely be incredibly hurt by a breakup if she’s invested a lot, but it is truly a feminine quality to be able to not be jaded by the experience and still be warm and open with the next guy.

    Ability to admit shortcomings–Parenting and being a wife are hard. Everyone will slip up. She’ll make mistakes, but she’ll be able to own up to them and apologize.

    Ability to provide a safe haven–Making your home a place where people feel comfortable, and having a personality that makes people feel safe (see the first one).

  6. Anonymous on said:

    You can definitely be feminine, yet strong and assertive. It’s just that many women don’t know how. Women today that think that being assertive and strong means being rude or aggressive. Nope. You can say no and stand up for yourself by still being polite and maintaining grace. If someone is still mistreating you when you’re being kind to them, walk away. The biggest mistake you can make is fighting dirty and feeling like you have to prove that you’re a bada$$ b*tch.

  7. The thing about femininity is that men find it attractive. The only ones that want to criminalize it or see it as a weakness is other women.

    Oddly enough, they want to criminalize masculinity too, at least when its being exhibited by males.

  8. Yeah she is fabulous, right in everything she says, isn’t exaggerating, plus she’s damn HOT!

    I’d give her an 8.5.

    I tend to like raven haired girls more, but hot nonetheless.

  9. A smart as hell farm family girl as well. Delicious.

  10. Anonymous on said:

    @L : “The thing about femininity is that men find it attractive. The only ones that want to criminalize it or see it as a weakness is other women.”

    I disagree, as I know some men that see it as a weakness too and will call the woman a “doormat” or a “wimp”. Then again, these men had their own issues.

  11. Gary Bauer on said:

    Are you kidding with this?

    The strengths of femininity:
    ■Pleasantness in the face of rudeness-Feminists are the rudest of the rude, in-your-face people
    ■Happiness in the face of sorrow-Really? Don’t they have national holidays for all of their sorrow?.
    ■Willingness to forgive-Willingness to sue.
    ■Desire to nurture and not control-Desire to abort.
    ■Discretion despite anger-When?
    ■Modesty when others insist on exposure-Like slut-walks?
    ■Kindness in the face of belligerence-Especially when they cause the belligerence!

  12. abcdef on said:

    Desire to nurture and not control
    Kindness in the face of belligerence

    These are naturally occurring processes at increased levels of estrogen and decreased levels of testosterone.

    I dunno about the other ones, but these are definitely good ideas-and have positive results!

    The problem is women feel like they’re being treated like cute fluffy puppies when they act like this instead of like people. Often they are.

  13. Anonymous on said:

    I kid you not–I once went on a date with a woman who:

    1. Didn’t offer to pay for dinner, or even say thank you when I paid for it 100%
    2. Told me about her involvement in feminism
    3. Proceeded to tell me all about how she’d used guys for free drinks

    Translation: Us women are so strong and independent! We don’t need men! Except to buy us sh*t, of course.

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