Remember my awesome roommate? She is very into self awareness and reads a lot of books with inspirational and motivational messages and the like. She often will come into my room with a book that I HAVE TO READ and I always get excited when she hands me something because she's so excited and the book is often quite good. Or starts off good anyways. I usually start one but don't have time to finish it before she hands me another and then I decide that the one she just handed me looks WAY BETTER! so I start that one. I have about 5 books going right now.
Anyhoo, we were talking one night about my ex and how his goal in life was to make me into a better person but he FAILED! Sucker. And she told me that she had a book that I HAVE TO READ about men and what they are really thinking. She got really excited about it because it was so good and said that every girl should read this book as soon as they start to like boys. Now normally, these kind of men vs. women books are ones that I stay away from because, basically, I think they're stupid, but I have to admit, she had my curiosity piqued. This one was written by Steve Harvey who is a comedian I guess and I like funny things so I decided, what the hell.
The book is called "Act like a lady, think like a man" and it's Steve Harvey's advice in book form(he also does a radio show) to all the women out there who want a committed relationship and can't seem to find one. He opens with a dedication to All Women: "My hope is to empower you with a wide-open look into the minds of men" and then goes on to talk about this great favor he is doing for all of womankind.
I couldn't make it past the second chapter. And, lord help me, I really tried.
Let me take you on my learning journey. Chapter 2 is titled: "Our love isn't like your love" which basically translates into: "We(men) love you(women) but don't expect us to take care of you when you're sick because that is not how we show our love." How do men show their love? If they really love you, they will do each of the following three things that, concidentally, all start with a P:
If a man really loves you, when introducing you, he will say something like, "This is MY girlfriend whoever" or "I'd like you to meet MY lady." etc. If he doesn't love you, or is not committed to you, he will just introduce you by your name, "This is blah blah". I don't have much of a problem with this one, it's fair and probably true a lot of the times, although when reading further, it seems that he may have mistaken the word "profess" for "possess" but whatever.
If a man really loves you he will provide for you and that's all he ever thinks about so if you want a man to commit to you before he is able to provide for you then you're shit of luck because, as a women, you can't possibly be the provider or even really contribute because that's not your job. It's the man's job. And if he can't do that job he has failed and you might as well just close the garage door and turn on the car. Oh, and ladies? If you are thinking that you might want to be independent at all in your relationship, don't even try because that attitude will keep you single forever. But what happens if you get divorced or something happens to your man and you have to provide for yourself but you don't know how because your man took care of all of that? Let me see if I can find that part in the book. Oh wait, that part doesn't exist. I guess it's not a real issue.
This is my favorite. The third and final way a man can show you that he loves you is to protect you. And how does he protect you? Well, if a bill collector or someone comes to your door and threatens you but you're too fragile to stick up for yourself and your man comes home from the plant and finds you crying into your apron and supper is NOT on the table for christ's sake what have you been doing all day and you tell him that the mean bill collector came and was very awful but what could you say because you are only a women? Don't fear ladies! The next time that jerk ass bill collector comes around he will be sorry he ever spoke to you that way because this time your man will be home. You will never have to stick up for yourself again! Oh and guess what else? Protection also means that your man can tell you to stop doing something if he thinks it's too dangerous. For example, if you like doing things like sky diving or white water rafting but when you go do these things your man can't help but worry? He can tell you to stop. Because he loves you. And if you loved him you would stop the things you enjoy. Because he worries.
And this is when I closed the book.
Now, just to clarify, I'm not some hard core, man hating, feminist bitch. I do see some validity in the premise of these 3 P's. I understand that, in general, men like to be the provider in the relationship and some will even feel inadequate when not given the opportunity to do so. The idea of men providing for women has been accepted as the societal norm for hundreds of years. I get that. But it's 2009 everyone. The majority of women now have careers, work full time, make their own money and have their own lives. This is something that I see as an achievement, not as something to hold us over until we finally find a man to do it. I don't ever want to be in a position where I am left alone in the world and, because I had relied on someone else to totally provide for me, I have no idea what to do. Who would want that for someone they love? Who would want someone they love to depend on them for so much that they are totally fucked without them? Because the reality is, people leave, and people die and the hand that feeds you today might be the hand that slaps you tomorrow.
I also get that men like to protect women and many women like to be protected. Even I like the feeling of safety and protection when in a relationship. I like when the guy I'm with takes care of me and makes me feel safe when I need it. But I also would like the opportunity to take care of him when he needs it. And the day that someone I'm with tells me I "can't" do something because he gets worried, is the day I close the book.
So, there you go. What little I read of this book got me slightly riled up to say the least. And before you ask, it was written in 2009. Do men still think this way? I would like to know because, if they do, I will never have a boyfriend and, really, I would be ok with that.
And, no, I did not read the whole book so maybe it gets better or maybe it's revealed in the third chapter that the first two chapters are actually a big joke and they totally sucked me in. I doubt it though.