.:Guest Post:.Stoic Male, Relationship-seeking Female: Stereotypes sustaining division amongst the sexes

As We build more bridges and connect with more thoughts on this plane, I realized I wanted and needed a better understanding of relationships. There are numerous questions bandied about in the Black community, many taken for granted, others simply not screamed through the loud speakers of media enough for an answer to say,”Hello!”

I have asked @ShePonderings to further this discussion as I find her candor enriching, and I knew she wouldn’t hold any punches regarding the topic of sex for the politically correct crowd. You know? I knew she would keep it Asylum. Now, as always with guest, I don’t agree with every angle of thought provided here, but I respect open conversations about topics that don’t get discussed often in a mature and intelligent fashion. So without further ado…

Today’s male perplexes me. I consider myself a very upfront, independent woman. I love traveling, languages, music & sex. Being in a relationship isn’t something I’m in need of right now until I am more established or have accomplished a few things. There are many women who feel like me, women who are willing to wait on relationships for a while. When it comes to casual sexual relationships, I tend to tell men upfront “I’m trying to study abroad in the next year-and-a-half, so I need consistent sex without the emotional attachment.” In the beginning, the men are overjoyed, but down the road, something happens: they get emotionally involved and begin playing the part of The Stoic Male. The Stoic Male is a man who rarely shows or feels emotion and tends to be a horrible communicator. I believe the Stoic Male stereotype is something pushed by society & the media at large to cripple men in the areas of the emotions & communication, which also leads to strained communication between the sexes; but bear with me for a moment as I give, you—the reader—a few examples.

I’d been involved with a man for about 3 months before things changed for the worst. Before this three-month mark, we were having sex regularly, enjoying each other with no strings attached. Although our chemistry in the beginning was extraordinary, the sex started getting longer and more intense around the 3-month mark. As a woman, I was overjoyed. With the way women are wired, we end up having our best sex with someone with whom we feel safe, a partner who takes the time to familiarize himself with our bodies. I’d argue that this is why casual sex is to our detriment, since casual sex often means racking up several partners who don’t stick around long enough to know our bodies, but that’s another blog. The point is, this man was definitely familiar with my body. He knew where to touch, how, and when. Our sex quickly got to the place of transcendence, where I’d black out and feel as though I were floating with the stars: pure ecstasy. Then, he took us to a place I wish he’d never taken us to.

After one such transcendent experience, my partner decided he wanted me to observe his son sleeping in the next room. I was shocked and a little concerned, but obliged him. Maybe this is what sex partners do, I thought. I complimented him on his son’s adorableness, and made for the door when I hear him request my presence in his living room. I obliged him yet again. This time he did the unimaginable: he pulled out his family photo album. I was convinced at this point of two things: I was good in bed, and the casual relationship would soon change if not end. And change it did! I saw him one last time for horribly distant sex and he disappeared shortly after, but I wasn’t surprised. Sex is one of nature’s glues; in other words, sex has the potential to bond people together. Sex can make a person who’s considered average and annoying graduate to beautiful and tolerable: it’s that powerful. When we add sex to a casual acquaintanceship or friendship, one cannot be surprised if a partner catches feelings over time. Consistent sex makes both partners familiar and comfortable with each other, and in time, emotional walls do come tumbling down. A study done by Dr Louann Brizendine suggests that when it comes to men’s emotions, they do feel things just as strongly as women; however, 2.5 seconds after feeling an emotion, the face changes to hide it. Whether this is due to nature (the way the brain is naturally wired) or nurture (the socialization process & gender roles) is up for debate (although science now says the female brain has evolved in order to handle everyday stressors better), but the “why” made sense to me, although the lack of sex made for one cranky woman. All I wanted was a consistent, honest sex partner, and all he had to do was communicate his feelings to me, like an adult.

Another source of confusion is the need of the opposite sex to say unnecessary things they don’t mean. The other gentleman I’d been involved with was a professional and presented himself as a sweet, simple man in search of one consistent, no strings attached, sex partner. After my most recent fiasco with the last partner, I figured I’d give him a try. After having a glorious sexual experience with him, he decided of his own free will to say, “I must have you at least once a week. I’ve never been so tired after sex in my life.” I agreed, only as the weeks went by, I’d heard nothing from this man. I deleted him from my phone, and decided to move on when I’d received a random phone call from him asking to see me again. Being the libidinous woman I am, I decided to accept his invitation. Upon seeing me naked, he said, “You might as well go ahead and just marry me.” Fortunately for me, I’m not one of the female sex to take male banter to heart right away. I merely smiled and seduced. He made the mistake of adding me to one of his social networking sites shortly after waking up from his sex coma, telling me I should have his babies; I say “mistake” because I tend to observe people’s profiles. Again he disappeared, this time, for a month. Curious as to what had happened to our “once a week” agreement,
I checked his page and found a gaggle of women leaving comments all over his page, one in particular being fiercely territorial, leaving messages of ownership on his home page and pictures. It was rather clear to me where my once a week was going.

Was it necessary to bring up marriage and babies, or lie about desiring to be sexual with one partner? Was it necessary to form a “sexual agreement” by stating “I must have sex with you once a month” if that was never the intention? Absolutely not! But some men do it. Was it necessary for the first man to get distant and disappear for fear of getting emotionally involved? No. In both cases, communication and consistency were the issues, but I blame society, the media and our culture for this shortcoming in men. It is my opinion that women are leaps ahead in the area of communication, as far as articulating & handling emotions, because of the stereotype still upheld by society: women are emotional beings ever-seeking relationship; therefore it is absolutely necessary that women know how they feel and how to communicate these feelings, a stereotype I’d argue isn’t true for all of the female sex. Women have benefited greatly from what I will call “the Oprah culture” where the topics of self-help, getting in tune with psyche, the connection between emotions & physical health are the norm to the point of being cliché; sadly, we have not paid this same attention to men. As a society, what we’ve neglected to give more attention to is, men are just as emotional and in need of developing their communication skills as women. As long as we give in to these stereotypes—the ever relationship-hungry female & the Stoic, emotionally evasive male—relations between the sexes will continue to be mysterious and strained. As a result, it makes even the most casual sexual relationships, such as a woman finding a decent lover, as difficult as finding a very fine needle in a stack of hay.

Sources

Face of male changes after 2.5 seconds:

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/men-are-obsessed-with-sex-hide-their-emotio/598647/

Evolution of the female brain:

http://www.livescience.com/health/060419_brain_wiring.html

Men & Women equally emotional beings:

http://www.scienceagogo.com/news/19980520132438data_trunc_sys.shtml

Other interesting reads:

http://www.cyberparent.com/women/mensex3.htm