IN THIS previous entry, Fitzgerald argues that men suffer in subtle and little-recognized ways from women who are criticial or demanding. Male fortitude is not simply self-generated. His point is similar to one I have made before: that gentleness is one of the most important forces for the good.
A recent New York Times article makes a similar argument. Men are more sensitive than is commonly believed. Gee, they even seem to need love. Could it be that men are human beings after all? Unmarried men, a major study has concluded, are more affected by unhappy romantic relationships than women:
According to the report by Robin W. Simon, a sociology professor at Wake Forest University, and Anne E. Barrett, a sociologist at Florida State University, “It appears that young men benefit more than women from support, and that they are more harmed than women by strain in ongoing romantic relationships.”
For women, whether they’re in a relationship at all — no matter how awful — is what counts.
This is startling and troubling news. It violates one of the core concepts of feminism: that men have everything, and way too much of it. This isn’t the only unsettling insight here. The authors of the study were peeved at evidence that, despite the strides of feminism, young women still want boyfriends:
“It’s a little bit pathetic,” Ms. Simon allowed. “Even though there’s been so much social change in this area, women’s self-worth is still so much tied up with having a boyfriend. It’s unfortunate.”
Truly pathetic. Why can’t women care less about love and more about money and power?
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