Grace loves to write commentaries on psycho-cultural and sociocultural dynamics in their myriad forms.
She Is Such A SWEEEEET Person- She Causes No Trouble!
Women have made great strides in the past four decades. In the 21st century, there are more women working outside the home than ever. Many of them are in high powered and managerial careers. Women are owning their lives and are the masters of their individual fates. There is a loosening of what it means be a woman and feminine.
Women are also becoming more aggressive and assertive in their personal lives. They refuse to let others, particularly men, tell them how to live their lives. They believe that they are equal and/or sometimes superior to men in every way. They strongly assert their intelligence and being proudly and if men do not approve, %^$&$@! them. They are true to themselves and simply refuse to play antiquated and atavistic gender games just to assuage the male ego.
Then there are women who seem to be from an earlier era. They would be classified as submissive women. They steadfastly adhere to more traditional gender roles. They believe that because they are women, they are somewhat lesser than them. They portend that the female is subordinate to the male. They further assert that women and men are not equal.
These women also subscribe to the notion that a quintessentially feminine woman who one who places the man's needs before her own. They maintain that a true woman never outshines a man in any way. They fervently decry the modern woman who they believe is becoming more masculine leading to the destruction of the family and subsequently, society.
These women contend that the modern woman is not happy because she veered from the traditional feminine role. They maintain that women innately are more submissive and yielding. They further purport that women do not wish to be powerful but instead be accepting and acquiescent.
These women add that if women wish to exercise power, it should be covert power, not overt power. They maintain that men are rightfully threatened when women usurp men's gender roles and take them as their own. They assert that the true feminine woman is never interested in power but would rather be the power behind the throne. They staunchly insist that women should follow and submit unquestioningly to male authority.
Why are these women submissive? Well, they were often raised in very conservative and traditional homes. Some of them came from extremely religious homes while others came from homes which were very authoritarian. In such homes, women were relegated into strict dichotomized gender roles.
Furthermore, in such homes, men were the dominant ones while women were the more passive individuals. The rules in such homes were often exceeding strict. Children, especially girls, were expected to obey authority without question. Extreme obedience was de rigueur in that type of home environment. Any deviation from the house rules was often severely punished.
Girls raised in such homes was expected to be the nice girl. She was told to sublimate her own needs and desires and put others, especially males, first. She was further inundated that women were to be as unobtrusive as possible. The message conveyed in such homes was that nice girls, if necessary, should never assert themselves. They are further instructed that men are their superiors who make the ultimate decision in their lives.
Girls in such homes are taught that they do not have power. They are furthermore taught that they are insignificant in themselves. They are also taught that they did own their lives and what they do and say is quite invalid. They are told that they must always submit to authority, especially male authority, because "those authorities" know the best.
Girls in such homes are taught that the life of a woman is quite difficult and circumscribed. They are also given less freedoms than their brothers, especially when it comes to dating and other explorations. They are told that the main duty of a woman is to be a wife and mother and everything else is quite secondary. It is further inculcated in these girls that the husband is the head of the house and they are just the silent partner in the relationship.
Women who grew up in such traditional homes ultimately learn that they as women do not matter and have no voice. They further portend that they are total nonentities with no voice in their lives. They have little or no sense of self-worth often giving more credence to those who they deem "more authoritative" than they do themselves.
In the work world, these women, even though they may be good workers, do not advance into major decision making jobs. They are quite content being in subordinate positions even though they are capable of much more. They usually help their superiors only to have these superiors either taking credit for their work and/or ultimately taking advantage of their supposed kindness.
These women believe that they are not supposed to assert themselves and voice their needs in the work place because it is not feminine and/or nice to do so. Because of their demeanor, they are routinely taken advantage of by superiors and employees alike. They are often passed over for promotions because bosses deem them to be quite incapable of being leaders. Even though they are supremely competent, they remain in lower positions, never exercising their enormous human potential.
Since these women are taught to be extremely self-abnegating, they do not talk about their accomplishments at work. They were inundated to believe that being boastful is not befitting a woman. As a result of this total unobtrusiveness, they are all but ignored at work until an undesirable and/or unglamorous assignment which no one else wants to do comes up. This woman is often the dumped upon, unappreciated, and overused employee.
Regarding relationships, the submissive woman often attracts men who either dominate., manipulate, and/or abuse them. Men who are mature, self-assured, and intelligent are not drawn to submissive women. They desire women who are highly assertive, intelligent, and quite confident. They also want women who are on an equal parity with them. In essence, they want women they can talk to, not talk at so to speak.
Men who are attracted to submissive women tend to be those who believe in more traditional male roles. These men maintained that they have total hegemony because of their gender. They further believe that the only good woman is unobtrusive one. They contend that women are not and never will be equal to men. They want a woman who they can easily control, bending them to their will.
Such men are inwardly insecure in that they prefer a more obedient and subservient woman than one who is more independent and assertive. The latter type of women threatens this man because he is a weak man himself. If he elects to enter a relationship with the more assertive woman, he will be quite overwhelmed by her. If not, this woman would completely demolish him and tell him where to go and to stick it! So he prefers a more diffident woman whom he is more dominant with.
In relationships, the submissive woman sublimate her wants and desires to be the person her husband and/or significant other wants her to be. She also often the silent partner in the relationship. She has as little input as possible in the relationship with her husband and/or significant other making the final and/or ultimate decision. Even though she thinks that the decision is wrong and/or illogical, she goes along with the decision because she believe that it is her duty to so and to never dispute him.
This is the woman who is most likely to be abused physically, verbally, and emotionally. If she is abused, she feels that she has done something either advertently or inadvertently to cause the abuse. She was so conditioned from childhood that women should be passive in their relationships that she does not stand up for herself and assert her rights. This action is totally anathema to her. She prefers to take the abuse as being the duty of a woman, suffering in silence. Even though she is submitting to her husband and/or significant other in order for him to respect her, he actually does not because she is "easily conquered" so to speak. The relationship between the submissive woman and her husband/significant other is one of a quite unequal paring and one of unmitigated power on the latter 's part. Sadly, this woman indoctrinates her daughter with the same passive ideology thus continuing the pathological cycle of a new generation of submissive, self-abnegating women.
In summation, although women have made great strides regarding the loosening and freeing of strict gender dichotomies, there are woman are more traditional regarding their gender roles. These women believe that they are not equal to men but should be subordinate to them. There are reasons for this. They were raised in very conservative and more traditional homes where girls and women were inundated to be as unobtrusive as possible. They were often raised to be unquestioningly obedient to authority, particularly male authority.
Because of this rearing, such women are often taken advantaged of by people as they are nonassertive. They are also more likely to be abused by their husbands and/or significant others because of their acquiescent nature. Women who are raised to be submissive are only giving their power away. In return for giving away their power, such women are owned by others instead of owning themselves!
© 2012 Grace Marguerite Williams
Guest on December 09, 2013:
@debbiepinkston-Even women can't compliment a man for fear a man will bitch and put them in their place because they think she's sexually harassing them and trying to strip them of their manhood. Men still want to be men in the relationship and for women to not be equal nor superior to them. Men want a real feminine woman who cannot speak to them first. And most men are really bitchy whenever a woman comes up to them first, turning good women into wallflowers which they always want just in order to feel like men.
jenny on November 25, 2012:
They will come to believe how important freedom ans equality are in their lives. At that.point, once.they.know.all their choices, they can decide.whether to live.as.free people-or.not.
Debbie Pinkston from Pereira, Colombia and NW Arkansas on July 31, 2012:
I agree that extreme feminism has scared many good men into being wallflowers. They are afraid to compliment a woman, for fear of being accused of sexual harassment. It must be confusing to many men to hear that women want a real man, but some women already are the man in the relationship.
Pop Culture World from United States on July 30, 2012:
I am feminine and somewhat submissive. My husband is quite masculine and is the leader of our house. I wouldn't have it any other way, and I am in my mid-30s. I think most women are way too aggressive and manly these days.
The key is finding a man who is masculine, has leadership qualities, yet listens to how his partner feels and looks out for her safety and well-being at the same time.
Feminism has destroyed a lot of these men. Feminism has made men of the last few generations more interested in video games and sleeping around than finding a woman to love, care for, and marry.
The last bastion? Get yourself a military man. They are still noble and masculine.
Darkproxy from Ohio on May 26, 2012:
Yes threats of sexual harassment lawsuits and passing your work off onto the nearest man makes a woman so strong and liberated. This is fine on an individual level but keep your anti-masculine man crap out of the schools.
C E Clark from North Texas on May 19, 2012:
Being submissive or not is not so much dependent on age or background, but on personality. Some people are simply uncomfortable rocking the boat or challenging accepted authority or norms.
What makes a relationship equal is equal respect for each other. Each person brings unique qualities, talents, skills, knowledge and experiences to any relationship. If that is not respected and the differences that can equal advantages for both people are not appreciated, then the power balance is upset and things tend not to work so well in the relationship. This is true whether a married couple, a couple in a romantic type relationship, or 2 platonic but close friends of the same or different sexes.
It is important to know your own strengths and your own power and it is important to recognize those things in a friend or partner.
Very interesting hub. Voting you UP and interesting!!
Kiss andTales on April 17, 2012:
well I must agree with you on a few points !true we give to another our power ! but notice you said give ! no one is taking it , we allow our self to give this power. next I believe the couple can share equal responsibilities , but what they contribute can not be equal in value.maybe the man or woman is better with money and saving a dime. then the other, maybe the other is better with domestic care then the other ,maybe the other is better with keeping up with the relatives then the other , So here is how there could be no equal means.the other knowing that there mate is good with money allows them this power of trust. and it works for them. the might not be a good cook.but the other provides the solution. I am just saying that people do what makes them happy even if means giving their power to be happy.
Grace Marguerite Williams (author) from the Greatest City In The World-New York City, New York on April 16, 2012:
To b. Malin and debbiepinkston: I believe that each one, whether man and/or woman should always be on an equal paring with each other. I believe that anyone who elects to be submissive is actually giving one's power away. It is egregiously wrong to give one's power away to another person. Everyone should be equal in relationships.
Each time a person is submissive to another, the other person has ABSOLUTE POWER over a person. This relatioinship in essence is unequal. Unequal relationships are pathological in nature as such relationships are often abusive and manipulative. I contend that no one should EVER be submissive and follow another person and all is and/or should be equal as equality garners respect for all concerned.
Debbie Pinkston from Pereira, Colombia and NW Arkansas on April 16, 2012:
B.Malin, I agree with you...each and every couple has to find what works for them. The problem comes when one of them wants something but the other one isn't comfortable with that. Also as you said, some people are natural leaders and are good decision makers, and others are less opinionated and prefer to follow. There really is no one "right" way that fits everyone!
b. Malin on April 16, 2012:
So GmWilliams is there a Happy Medium? There will always be Followers, be it Men or Women...Some must lead and are comfortable in their shoes...While others need to Follow. For some women being the Submissive partner works for them. I say whatever makes you Happy. There really should not be rules...for they outdated EVERYONE...No one Wins! Good, Provocative Hub.
Kiss andTales on April 13, 2012:
I do appreciate your hub sujects ,thank you again for words of thought. I believe all happiness is custom made. True there are many women with different background and many different outlooks of life dealing with men ,the same for women .Yet happiness is like you shopping for that special shirt ,or shoes , something that fits you and your taste ,and that is your choice! We must admit that many choices are not good choices ,Some people like the man to lead while others don'nt , But people buy what they want! and get what they buy in a figure of speech.
yoginijoy from Mid-Atlantic, USA on April 13, 2012:
Great topic! As a university professor who teaches feminist material at times, I still find it amazing that some of today's youth still think like this. It does have a lot to do with their culture, family expectations, and also their religion. We must teach women and men that we are all equal! I am happy to see you write on these subjects. Thank you! Voted up and awesome!
Grace Marguerite Williams (author) from the Greatest City In The World-New York City, New York on April 13, 2012:
To debbiepinkston: You are quite welcome!
Debbie Pinkston from Pereira, Colombia and NW Arkansas on April 13, 2012:
I'm in my early 50's and when I got married at 20, I was one of the women you described and my husband (ex) was very dominating and abusive in some aspects. I was taught as a child to be a "good girl" and not make waves. Fortunately I taught my daughter and son too, to speak up when they don't agree with something, and respect themselves.
Women go through various emotional stages of life (future hub topic), and often a woman will have an awakening and realize she's in an abusive relationship. The best outcome is if she can communicate openly with her husband and changes are made. Unfortunately, most husbands in this type of relationship are not about to change and give up some of the power by allowing their wife to be on an even playing field. The other option is to get out (I did) and learn from the experience. I'm no longer afraid to say "NO" when I don't want something and I voice my opinions. I have a wonderful husband who has helped bring healing to my life...I'm blessed.
Thanks for speaking about this topic!
Vegas Elias from Mumbai on April 13, 2012:
Interesting and thoughtful writing on a difficult topic. I feel many women who are in their 40s and 50s now are of the submissive type as they were brought up that way and also they find it much easier to live that way.