Hurry Up and Get Married!

A couple of weeks ago I was having a conversation with someone about a man who I had been interested in, and he happens to be in his early 40’s. The person I was talking with drew the conclusion that the reason why he’s never been married is because he is either high maintenance or has some sort of commitment issue. At first, I agreed with this conclusion, until 15 minutes ago. If I don’t get married before my 40’s, that usually means I am a strong, independent woman who doesn’t take crap from men.

Why do we have this double standard? Besides bearing children, keeping up an acceptable appearance, housekeeping and being quiet, there’s very little that women have to do in our society. Men on the other hand, they must get married, bring home the bacon, be the boss, be dominant, be assertive, be a leader, be a rescue worker/superhero, have a lot of muscle, protect the family, be tall, dark and handsome, be smart and well educated, and if they don’t do these things then they are a freaking fairy. When was the last time you heard these expectations directed at a woman? Even feminists don’t put pressure on women to do these things, they just want women to have the choice available to them. But men don’t have a choice – well, they do, but they choose not to do what society expects then they are considered no good.

Looking at such a high pressure society for men, it’s no surprise to me that men like to immortalize themselves with mass shootings because in our society they have likely been overworked and/or shunned.

Furthermore, last night I was watching the 2011 film, Captain America: The First Avenger. I figured, why not, hadn’t seen it yet, might as well give it a go. I found the first few parts of the film very endearing, when Steve Rogers explained that he didn’t want to kill anyone, he would never run from a fight, didn’t like bullies and was this very tiny man. He’d get picked on constantly for it, and never tried to be someone he wasn’t. He was a good soul. Then they stick a fancy blue serum inside him, make him grow taller, gain muscle, and poof, suddenly everyone is looking at Steve Rogers like he is worth something. He always wanted to do great things, and the only time he was allowed to do that was when he looked the way they wanted him to look. Honestly, once he was transformed into Captain America, I lost all interest in him as a character.

What makes a man? Well, I think that man I spoke of in the beginning of this blog post is a good example. We don’t talk to each other anymore, but that doesn’t mean he isn’t a man. You see, when I first met him, I learned he had a terminal illness, and I’ve never known him without it. In the last year or so, he has lost almost all of his muscle mass, uses a wheelchair and is losing most of his mobility. He has a feeding tube and a colostomy. When I look at him, I see the greatest man in the world. When he looks at himself, he sees what his illness has done to him. I have often wondered why nothing ever happened between the two of us and my conclusion is this: because society likes to make men feel like they aren’t human, and shouldn’t love themselves.

A word to the wise… This man I speak of, I never have, and I never will meet anyone who is more of a man than him. Anyone who would look at him and think he is hideous, doesn’t know how to love him.

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