Wow, reading Carol Fox's essay about how to choose a husband has really gotten me thinking.
Ladies, don't let the men treat you less than you are worth! Because you are worth A LOT.
Because of a few of my own unfortunate relationship experiences, it has taken me a while to come to this point, but I have become particularly sensitive to this. Making it my mission to empower girls with the self-respect and confidence to realize that they deserve to be treated as great as they are since we all carry our own spark of greatness.
The other day I was at my fitness gym doing swimming laps in the pool. Now don't think I am Miss Fit and Healthy or anything, but... I am working at it though. That was a workout!
Anyway, as I was attempting to keep my focus on this strenuous exercise routine I was undertaking... a couple of youngsters came in and stole the spotlight of my quiet splashing in the, up until then, empty pool area. I tried not to notice the very intimate...er... communications... this couple engaged in, though they so obviously did not mind if I did. What did catch my attention was the girl's sudden screams as her "oh-so-considerate" beau shoved her suddenly into the shallow end of the pool. She was obviously not in the mood for this sport, and let him off with a brief comment of displeasure.To which his only self-defense was to turn macho and protect his ego by waving away her warnings and calling her petty. The next 45 minutes were filled with the boy trying to have fun with this girl in the way my nephew has fun with his sister's rag doll. I watched as this boy attempted picking up and throwing this girl in the pool. I say attempted because each time was a failed attempt at what could have been clean fun but was so evidently hazardous to both their healths. The boy apparently had a few more runs to do in the weight training room because he was having a hard time lifting his not-so-heavy girlfriend. Resulting in several near-death experiences by the poolside.
I was quite bothered and very concerned. Why was this girl letting her boyfriend get away with such inconsiderate and hazardous behavior? Why was she allowing him to throw her around like a rag doll after she repeatedly ask him not to? …and then afterwards allow him to “communicate” with her in public, when she so obviously was not comfortable with it?
Which brought me to think of all the more subtle ways we allow ourselves to be walked all over and taken advantage of by men. Don’t get me wrong; this is not a male-bashing blog. Just pointing out that there are good guys out there, but we have to have enough confidence in ourselves to find them, and not try to make ourselves acceptable to the "just anyone" in front of us. I see it a lot, in my girlfriends, and my own past experiences. We ladies try to rationalize the bad guys, and make them into good guys… maybe because we don’t believe that we will ever find the good guys… so we give the bad guys too many second chances, when they shouldn’t have even gotten a first. Our bodies, our minds, our emotions are ours to give over to whom we see fit; we shouldn’t lessen our own value by giving it to just anyone.
This girl was very aware of this complete lack of respect her boyfriend was showing her. But hoped that by acting agreeable and undemanding as well as sexually available, by lowering her own standards of respect she deserved, he would like her even more. I ended up approaching her later in the change room to let her know that I thought she deserved to be treated better.
I hope she took my advice.