Friday, March 26, 2010

Call a spade a spade.

Not long ago I see a female person verbally attacking a man, telling him off and putting him down, and when he reacted in the same way she accused him of being 'afraid of strong women.' I felt like telling her there is a BIG difference between a strong woman and a bully. It is another case of calling something obnoxious by a fine sounding name in an attempt to make it better than it is.
I know some strong women. I've been privileged to be involved with several strong women, and none of them needs to be abusive, critical, loudly in my face or hostile. None of them tries to be intimidating to get their own way. That is a very important difference. There is some self-serving dishonesty in confusing the two, by calling one the name that belongs to the other.
One strong woman I know stuck by her husband and family, doggedly working hard to help keep the family's struggling farm going. She is my mother. Another strong woman has coped with a lot of grief and disappointment, been through two lots of cancer surgery, and still works while still being there for her friends.
Another strong woman has overcome a miserable childhood to work at her marriage and raise five children. I should know. I'm married to her!
None of those, and others like them, is a strident harridan who pushes people around and belittles them.
Some pushy, bullying women I know try to walk on a man's face and then accuse him of male chauvinism when he simply insists on not being treated that way.
A good woman is worth more than rubies, as the Bible says - and I don't mean that condescendingly. It is true. But let's get the definitions right. Strong need not be loud. Real strength is not the same as vindictiveness, or personal ego. Some female bullies, like male ones, have a problem with fear of their own. They are scared stiff that someone might see their uncertainty so they cover it up with bluster, and try to intimidate others with abuse.
For pure strength, look at the Messiah. He could have called the vengeance of God down on His tormentors, but he asked that they be forgiven instead. Strength and brutality are two utterly different things. We all need to know the difference.


Marshall Art said...

Some have taken the concept of women's rights and twisted it into some monster that attempts to adopt all that was wrong with men who never respected women. It would be no different than if we were to encourage our children to stand up for themselves and they became bullying little bastards.

Some women lip off because they believe that being a woman protects them. They believe they won't get smacked so they say whatever they want. They take advantage and the man on the other end is damned if he does and damned if he doesn't.

From a Christian perspective, dealing with such women can be as taxing as dealing with the bullying men they emulate by their behavior. I pity the guy who no longer is able to maintain self-control and lays out such a dame. At the same time, if she survives it, I hope she learns a lesson. The vast majority of men do not want to hit anyone, least of all a woman. But such women do push their luck at their own peril.

Greg said...

Good distinction, Andrew! Applies to men just as much as women... if not more so. Oh, if only more were willing to be weak, so that they would let God show Himself strong in them. :)

Andrew Clarke said...

You're right on, Art. In some situations the bully can do what they like because if there is retaliation they claim to be the victim. And another thought: is female chauvinism any better than male chauvinism? Not to me!

Andrew Clarke said...

I agree, Greg. People try to show that they don't need anyone, and reject the most essential help in the Universe. Tragic!