Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Is It Wrong to Want A Man?

I do not need a man. I do not need a man. I do not need a man.

I attend a great university, I have fantastic friends, a supportive family. My future is downright dazzling.

I do not, do not, do not need a man.

But man do I want one, and I am tired of feeling guilty for doing so. There is something about a male presence that is unlike any other comfort, and his absence is unsettling. I appreciate my roommate immensely, but she cannot salve the stresses of my day with a long, slow hug and a reassuring pat on the ass. My roommate will not pull me to the couch and rub my feet as we zone out to a basketball game. No one but my man can get away with tickling me, and he is the only one besides my teddy bear with whom I can cuddle at night. Not to mention my vigorous sex drive and the fact that vibrators, while handy, cannot kiss.

So clearly, I prefer male companionship. But why, dammit? I have been single for a record of 8 months now, and I really wish I did not mind. I am a fully functioning young adult. I am not looking to find myself in a man; I have already learned the futility of that endeavor. I have self-confidence, and I am not co-dependent. Even if I were, I have a roommate. I know I want to get married, but I am not anxious to do it soon. By all logic, there is no reason I cannot be happy and alone.

Yet, at the end of the day, I still want a warm body next to (and inside of) me. I decided to find out why.

Henry Makow was a feminist in his first marriage, which was long before he started his website, I found him while Googling around, looking for intelligent posts regarding woman’s need for man. The Canada-based theorist has been writing for a long time, has taught at the university level, and he makes a good argument that my troublesome urges to play the role of sweet, loving girlfriend are right on target with the natural way of things. He says men and women are complements, and so it is no wonder I feel incomplete without mine. He believes it is only right that I should crave a man's comfort.

According to Makow, "Women balance men." And vice versa. If women let men fulfill their roles as providers and protectors, men will make us feel safe and loved. In return, our safe-and-loved selves will be content, cheerful and productive. This harmony between man and woman does not necessitate strict gender roles, says Makow. In his marriage, he does the cooking and she mows the lawn. I take this to mean it is okay to keep my job as long as I do not brag about making more money than my theoretical boyfriend. The key, he says, is to respect our instinctive strengths.

Sure, he’s a little out there. But at a gut level, I not only understand his logic—I agree with it.

But I needed proof beyond some Canadian who launched a website to espouse his ultra-traditional views. So I searched more and found evolutionary biologist Jay Phelan. He would say that I agree with Makow at a gut level because of the DNA in my gut. When I read that my desire for a boyfriend was "fairly unavoidable," I had to slap my hand over my mouth to keep from screeching in triumph. Even so, I pumped my free fist up and down, and for the rest of the day sporadically muttered, "I knew it!"

According to Phelan, many of our natural desires pre-date modern society. Whether you want children or not, your body is wired to bear them. And success, in evolutionary terms, is defined by your ability to produce offspring and raise them to reproductive age. Personally, I would have been one hell of a success as a cave woman, but my urges to carry the children of every man I date seem out of place in the 21st century. Eventually, however, I will need a man to have kids. (Preferably, a respectful, high-earning, laugh-loving man who will not ditch me when my tits start to sag.) So maybe that solves the puzzle for me: I crave a man because my reproductive organs quiver every time I see a stroller. But there are plenty of women who want men, yet do not want to sacrifice their minds, bodies and bank accounts to offspring. So what gives?

Sex gives. It gives, and gives, and gives, and we all want to get laid. Turns out, you do not need to want kids to have this urge (duh). As Phelan explains, "the biggest factor in accounting for the 'need' women feel for men (and vice versa), even when it would seem that they oughtn't 'need' them, is the fact that our brains and emotions evolved in a world that was different from today's modern world."

What worked then, works now, no matter how much we wish otherwise.

I am not a doctor. I have gotten pretty good at healing my heart, but that is about it. What I heard from Makow and Phelan confirmed the lessons my heart has already learned: I want to be loved, and I want to be laid. Two guys, telling me why I feel like a girl. So what do my female peers have to say? Some women find it traitorous for me to verbalize these desires. I am encouraged to plan my career: I get enthusiastic approval when I outline professional goals. But mention marriage, i.e., my long-term plan for being loved and laid, and it is rolled eyes all around.

Why don’t these bitches want me to be happy? Perhaps they lack the pesky genes that push me onto Craigslist, or maybe they buy the idea that professional success can be as fulfilling as raising a family. I don’t know.

What I do know is that I need a man. Maybe not yet — maybe now I merely want him. But it is only a matter of time till the need kicks in, and there should be no shame in a need that is natural.

How dare you reject ME?

Rejection hurts. Nobody is a fan of it. Being rejected by your job. You're family. You're lover. No matter what the situation is, it's a downer.

I've been thinking about rejection that I've faced in my life--from my father to my boyfriends--and what impact it's had on me. I hate to admit that I have "daddy issues" but the truth is, I do. All the times he's lied, broken promises, and disappointed me beyond measure, have all affected me...Or defected me.

I'm one of "those" girls. The one who channels all of her unresolved "daddy issues" towards her boyfriends--hoping they'd fill the void her father left.

Well, at least I recognize it, right?

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Does anyone even read this?

God, I hope not.