El’s Rabbit Trails: A Mama’s Thoughts

I’m going to wander way off the reservation here. This is one of those topics that make me want to either write, scream, or cry.

Anyone who has followed my various writing pursuits for any period of time is aware that we have 3 daughters of marriageable age. It’s also no secret that their mother’s vision of ideal manhood is a primitive, patriarchal, visceral archetype; the opposite of post-modern masculinity, such as it were. They have been instilled with a bit of that mindset as well.

It is also clear to anyone with a modicum of observation skills that the lines between masculinity and femininity have bled over into each other so that finding good examples of either requires an exhaustive search.

Much has been said about women being too male identified, particularly with regard to black women, and I’ll concede that charge could accurately be leveled at me. What I never thought I’d see however, is a day when men would readily and without reservation self-identify as being anything less than all man. Even if he has his doubts, he used to have enough man in him to fake it till he made it.

This is however, exactly where we are. From The Decline of the Manly Man at PJ Media:

Research from YouGov shows that the muscular masculinity of decades past is a fading feature of American life for the young. Americans were asked to rate themselves on a scale of 0 to 6, there 0 is ‘completely masculine’ and 6 is ‘completely feminine’. 65% of men over the age of 65 say that they are ‘completely masculine, while only 28% of men aged 30 to 44 and 30% of men aged 18 to 29 say the same. Among under-30s, 13% put themselves halfway between the masculine and the feminine, while 12% say that they are at least slightly feminine. Only 4% of over-65 men say that they are at all feminine.

My first instinct to to dismiss this out of hand as so much nonsense.ย  How many men did they survey and what part of the country was this survey taken in? This can’t be true! Then I remembered that in every walk of life, you get more of what you reward. We reward femininity and praise men who are in touch with their feminine side.

I’ve never believed that 80% of the women are after 20% of the men. I literally laughed at the notion that 95% of the women are chasing 5% of the men. But if this is to be taken at face value, it is pretty clear that 100% of the women are after about 30% of the men. Those are some daunting stats.

If it takes our girls a while to stumble onto, click with, and commit to one of those 30%, I can certainly understand why now. The pickin’s are slim.

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36 thoughts on “El’s Rabbit Trails: A Mama’s Thoughts

  1. All I got is a 15yo boy, he’s a bit young for your girls yet. He’s all boy, but not in the usual way. Which confuses people in this new, and stupid, age. I want to talk about that, but he just called and wants an early pickup from school (he’s done with class). In a bit!

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  2. The gender roles in our culture are beyond messed up. On the one hand, you’re expected to display stereotypical preferences in everything from leisure time to adornment – with no wiggle room at all – and on the other hand, men are supposed to embrace emotional weakness while women learn to compete with strangers. In other words, you’re supposed to be a boy’s boy who only likes blue and black and grey and red… who plays sports and avoids the arts… but who would never dream of standing in the way of a girl who wanted to express herself. You’re supposed to be a girl’s girl who dresses in pink and sparkles until one day she decides to become class president, who embraces the expression of her lusts without thought, and simultaneously stays skinny. Of *course* everyone is confused!!! Add to that that we’re all helicoptering our kids so they don’t learn to do for themselves at all when there’s a nice safety net to fall into… just keep ’em wrapped in cotton wool until we kick them out of the nest completely… oh no, we’re doing our children no favors, none at all.

    You can’t have a color preference or like to do something off-center with your leisure time without someone calling your sexuality into question, but if you act more deeply masculine or feminine (embracing provision/solace) someone is going to get on your case about your choices, and if you’re devout, your associates think you’re stupid.

    And you wonder why we have problems… :p

    But I figure those sane young men are looking just as desperately for some sane young women. They get hungry for a mate a bit later than girls do, usually, so yeah – your girls will probably marry later than we did. After all, our kids are practically forced into endless adolescence, it’s a scandal if they grow up and assume responsibility at the same age that we did. Consider the social pressure NOT to be looking for a mate for the kids our kids age!!!!!! I tried to get a college aged friend of mine to ask a girl on a real date and you’d think I asked him to propose marriage … it was a *shocking* idea. -sigh-

    Meh. I know my son, I know he’s going to want a good wife. He’s a deep well of peace, but he needs someone to love. But he’s 15, so no sales just yet. ๐Ÿ˜€ (Anyone with a daughter with lots of energy and brightness who needs some peace and stability, call … )

    That’s all we can do for our kids, raise ’em sane and teach them to be who they are, who they are in Christ, and teach them to love.

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  3. On the “bright” side, a decreasing portion of girls are feminine…we got wine cooler girls and Coors Light boys, and we wonder why our world is going south in a hurry. I am rejoicing that I’ve got Roy Rogers/Hopslam sons (4 and 9) and Anne of Green Gables/Chambertin girls. Now to get them to visit Burgundy/ Kalamazoo as appropriate, rhetorically speaking.

    For my part, I’m afraid that for a while when young, I was also a Coors Light boy….praise God that my stepdad showed me a better way. Maybe a lot of it has to do with what the adults show the kids?

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  4. When everybody wants “hot”, good is at a decided disadvantage. I have two pretty, clever, marriageable girls; I would think they’d get snatched up, but the 24-year-old, after actively seeking a husband, is starting to lose hope and thinking about pursuing a demanding career instead of sticking with the one that would be a good back-up income. Their older sister found an excellent husband, however, so I’m not without hope. For every man that a parent could approve as a husband there are about 10 girls vying for his commitment. The girls that tend to get married are the ones who offer sex. It is a practice among young Christian women to choose a man, offer herself, then assume marriage will follow.

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  5. Yes to all that Eavan. It’s what we see also. Ours are 20, 20 and 21 so there is still a bit of optimism left there. For now thankfilully.

    We’re praying and keeping the faith.

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  6. And while I am at it Eavan :

    It occurs to me that I would rather my girls marry a manly, competent, and confident plumber than some blustering, so-called intelligent, overly introspective post modern masquerading as a man. Oh, and yes, He needs to love Jesus. I hope that goes without saying.

    I’m kind of on about this for a whole bunch of reasons right now. True fact:

    My husband heads a team of about 20 men (and 1 chick) at work. A plurality of them are as wussy as all get out. He has about 4 or 5 excellent men. Each of those older than he is. The rest want to their hands held, want to slack, want to take shortcuts, you name it. Except my husband is this:

    https://www.16personalities.com/entj-personality

    How do we know this (since my man puts zero stock in personality tests)? Because the company had all the management take a stupid personality profile and this is how his came back. The exact opposite of me on the E and T, by the way. We have us some fun around here, LOL!

    The verdict (I am not kidding with you!): He needs to be more sensitive to the guys’ feelings.

    So yeah, I’m on about this big time right now. Big time. The PJMedia article did nothing to extinguish the fire.

    I left the thread open since the comments are relatively benign.

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  7. On the light side, I’d have to guess that a characteristic of ENTJ would be putting little stock in personality tests. Along the same lines, I’ve got memories of going to a conference led by the late Gary Smalley where I wondered “saying things like that to his wife, and he’s still married?”

    (things like being asked at a hotel “can I help you with your bag?”, with the response “nah, I think she’ll be fine”….it seemed beyond insensitive to me at the time)

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  8. Well, mostly he tells me that I’m silly. ๐Ÿ™‚ Does yours know how to do things he has no reason to know how to do? I’m still blinking over the fact that mine knows how to properly operate a scythe.

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  9. Mine thinks I’m silly too but of late I’ve needed his depth of wisdom so he’s bearing with me.

    Does yours know how to do things he has no reason to know how to do?

    YES! All the time. I used to be utterly amazed but now I save that for the few things he cannot pick up and figure out in 5 minutes.

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  10. Iโ€™d have to guess that a characteristic of ENTJ would be putting little stock in personality tests.

    And you would be right. I read the whole profile and compared it to what I know of him but he found the whole exercise rather silly. Does nothing in his opinion to advance the team’s agenda. Personalities don’t need to be examined or mesh for the job to get done.

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  11. I once gave false answers to such a test because I felt that the company was trying to manipulate us, kinda like Kris Kringle’s response to the psychiatrists in “Miracle on 34th St.”, but without quite the same drama and hilarity. And of course without Maureen O’Hara and Natalie Wood.

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  12. >… it is pretty clear that 100% of the women are after about 30% of the men.

    I don’t know about this. I think that a woman’s culture/”class” influences what she considers a desirable man to be. So the type of man she considers desirable may be lower/higher than the 30% depending on her culture. From my early 20s until now (I am in my mid/late 30s) the women that are regularly interested in me are Caucasian, Asia, Middle Eastern or Latin and are from the same middle-class/upper-middle class background that I am from, although they are not Christians (I never really have any interest from those that are sound Christians, but the area in which I live is mostly pagan.) The few African American women that are from my same background show very little interest in me. Trying to find a Christian woman, especially an African American one who wants to be married and understands Biblical headship has been very difficult for me at least.

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  13. Yes, black American women who understand let alone embrace Biblical headship are few and far between.

    As to class, we have a daughter who is facing some of the same challenges.

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  14. @Elspeth

    I have thought that maybe something like the following may be helpful to help those of us that want to be married to connect:
    http://www.tedkluck.com/?p=918

    If I may ask, are your daughters open to what we call an “interracial” marriage or are they looking for an African American man? I kind of go back and forth myself but theologically there is no problem marrying someone from a different culture.

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  15. Our daughters are open to interracial marriage. They have been raised in an environment that made them open to all kinds of people and they recognize that their odds are longer if they limit themselves to black men.

    They do not go back and forth about that (nor does their father) but I readily admit that I do go back and forth. That said, I am open to whatever the Lord does and whomever He brings.

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  16. I realized (or rather was made aware of) why I am the only one in our house who goes back and forth on the issue of our girls marrying out: I am the only one here whose formative years were lived almost completely segregated. Until 12 years old. My husband did date out a little and our girls have been raised around and approached by men of various races.

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  17. There just seems to be a desire of many African American women to have a husband of the same ethnic group, at least from what I hear online. So sometimes my thoughts go along the lines of “Well, I can meet that need!” I was raised in a predominately Caucasian area so one could think that I would be a “catch” to the few African American women that were raised in my same social context but it didn’t work out that way with them or other African American women that I interacted with later on who were from a different context. I too am open to whoever God would have me marry (if it is His Will that I marry.)

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  18. Our kids were raised in neighborhoods/schools where they have always been in the minority as well, and have done fine with it. This is why they are not in what black female empowerment writers call “nothing but a black man” women. They like men of all races and just want a good, godly, masculine man of whatever race.

    But you’re right that most black women (particularly those over 30) are pretty hard wired to desire a black man and only a black man. That is rapidly changing though, as I see it all around me down here. But you still have an advantage and options among women like our girls (oldest will be 22 in a few weeks). The challenge is that women like them of any race are rare.

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  19. Can I chime in and mention that I had the pleasure of meeting Els’ oldest and that she was a dream? Mature beyond her years, and a most pleasant companion.

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  20. LOL. Yes, she’s pretty. Slim, tall, nice eyes, easy laugh, shy smile. But I’m advertising here… ๐Ÿ˜€ Pretty, slim young woman who can cook up a storm, devout, and a pleasant companion, line forms to the left. Willing to put up with nutjob California girls who threaten them with octopus tacos after long plane rides.

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  21. @Elspeth

    God willing I will be 37 later this year. So she is too young for me, at least I think… ๐Ÿ™‚ I was initially surprised at the women in their early to mid 20s that have been interested in me. The Manosphere was right about that ๐Ÿ™‚

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  22. You’re only 5 years younger than her father (who is also my husband fwiw) so yes, a little past the age we’d prefer. Our daughter will be 22 in this summer.

    She graduated college 1 and 1/2 years ago so we kind of expect her future husband to be about a decade older (as Hearthie mentioned, she is mature beyond her years).

    I initially thought you said you were in your early 30’s. I’m sure you’ll do fine as you sound like a catch. Good luck although I don’t think you need it.

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  23. So I ran across an article last night at Beyond Black and White titled, Get Mad If You Want…Femininity for the Win.

    She has some good stuff in there for the first half, things that touch on a truth inconvenient to men and women alike.
    Rather than link it directly from here I’ll do this:

    There is a statement in her article that has a definite ring of truth however, and it is the reason I am referring to it at all. She says here:

    Women Canโ€™t Be Feminine By Themselves!!

    In order for true femininity to thrive, a masculine force MUST be present in order to PROTECT, INSPIRE, and PRESERVE that femininity. Because at itโ€™s core, femininity requires a yielding, softness and receptiveness that can only be SAFELY expressed when there are MEN who understand how important it is to step up and slay the dragons necessary for it to flourish. The very men who complain that black women arenโ€™t feminine are the same ones who make it unsafe to express it. In a patriarchal society, the masculine MUST be present FIRST before femininity can manifest.

    Now she’s referring specifically to the problem as it relates to black women, who are actually a very good test case to study for what happens to women who are raised sans a loving father/mother example of what masculine presence and feminine yielding to it looks like.

    She loses the plot in the second half of her article when she offers a video which is supposed to be a great example of a feminine black woman. While the woman is beautiful (great physique, love the hair and shoes!), she comes across as sexually aggressive which in my opinion is the opposite of feminine.

    One can only wonder about the chicken/egg question since the same things that cause women to miss out on examples of femininity cause men to miss out on stellar examples of masculinity.

    Just a couple of residual thoughts.

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  24. Praying for you, SBM. I grew up with a young man a bit like yourself–he started me towards Christ by asking me quizzically “you don’t know the Lord’s Prayer?” when we were praying after wrestling practice. His sister was the first girl I remember flirting with, his father a surgeon who installed my mom’s chemo port. All of them ended up going to a boarding school so they could get more contact with black culture, believe it or not:my hometown was a place where people fled from Gary in the sixties.

    Both ended up “marrying out”, the son to a white woman, the daughter to an asian (that flirting never went anywhere). Long way of saying that I don’t have any special knowledge here, but I’ll pray.

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  25. @Elspeth

    >In order for true femininity to thrive, a masculine force MUST be present in order to PROTECT, INSPIRE, and PRESERVE that femininity. Because at itโ€™s core, femininity requires a yielding, softness and receptiveness that can only be SAFELY expressed when there are MEN who understand how important it is to step up and slay the dragons necessary for it to flourish.

    I wonder if the abuse that many (most?) African American women have had to deal with keeps them from recognizing when they are around a safe, masculine man. It seems that it takes a long time for the African American women in my context to develop any interest in me if they develop it at all, maybe due to what they have had to put up with from men and/or have been told about men. As these are secular women I’m not interested in a relationship with them but they do seem to have more guards up then their Caucasian/Asian/Latina, etc. counterparts.

    > The very men who complain that black women arenโ€™t feminine are the same ones who make it unsafe to express it.

    I guess she is saying this from her experience. I’m not sure she is talking about abusive men or those who are less masculine than they should be.

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  26. @Bike Bubba

    Thanks man. As I mentioned to Elspeth there is no Biblical prohibition concerning marrying out. But I sometimes wonder if I should try to go where the greatest (assumed?) need is. There are things such as:

    “We are the only minority in America that is on the decline in population. If the current trend continues, by 2038 the black vote will be insignificant.” – http://www.blackgenocide.org/planned.html

    That really concern me. If there is a need/desire for African American men as spouses couldn’t I just be practical (within God’s Will of course) and find an African American women to marry? Although, if the marrying out rate in increasing anyway maybe I shouldn’t worry about it and just say “Your a good woman; I’m I good man…” and that’s it.

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  27. The woman who wrote that article was addressing black women specifically. Given the reality with which many black people in general are raised, her experience is one that isn’t all that isolated.

    It wasn’t MY experience as I was raised by my father almost exclusively for the first decade of my life, and he was always my primary parent, protecting me and teaching me what to look for in a man. So like you, my history isn’t one marked by lack of (black) male dependability. I in fact had several wonderful, strong, godly men pour into my life during my formative years. But I am rare among my ethnic group, and I am well aware of that just as our girls are rare.

    However, I thought (at least the part I quoted) was relevant for the same reasons that I wrote this post. As we see a decrease in men being what is historically heralded as masculine, we’ll see less and less femininity.

    I think she is referring both to abusive men and men who are less masculine and responsible than they should be towards those who should be able to look to them for guidance and protection.

    Now one could argue whether its the chicken or the egg and all that. I get that feminism screwed things up royally and that women’s refusal to reject it has its part to play. But still…

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  28. @Elspeth

    Concerning the chicken or the egg: I have been reading Manosphere/Red Pill literature for about a year (trying to sick to the Christian Manosphere sites.) I also understand what they are saying about Feminism. However, take the situation in the military. What I understand now is that without the support of the men within in military (who still have the overarching power) there wouldn’t be the agreement with/push for “equality” that we have been seeing. The same thing plays out with those in the other sectors of society who are against femininity (either on purpose or unwillingly.)

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  29. Truth be told SBM I have similar thoughts concerning the demise of solid black families and what it means if more and more women like our daughters marry out.And to be sure it is educated, childless, middle class black women marrying out in increasing numbers. Black men have been doing it for along time now, but without the same level of long term success, ironically.

    But in the end we lean towatds having our girls well married and having lots and lots of grandchildren raised in the Lord first and foremost.

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  30. It strikes me that masculinity is never safe. I remember being told once, when I tried to excuse myself from a conversation where young ladies were discussing man problems, that it was OK because I was “safe”. Humiliating! :^)

    My take on the world today is, except in certain isolated areas, people are afraid of masculinity, but they’ll put up with the wimp and be swept away by the thug.

    SBM, my major counsel to you is that you seem to have met a lot of young ladies outside of Christ, and I wonder if you need to mix up your routines a bit to meet young ladies who are in Christ and in the church. I assume you’re in fellowship, right? Given the imbalance between women and men in a lot of churches, you should be able to at least finagle a date or two.

    And the choice of black vs. other? I’ve got no qualms with you preferring one over the other–I obviously prefer Mrs. Bubba and that’s that–but hey, get out there and see what you can do to meet Christian ladies.

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