The Battle of the Sexes
The Battle of the Sexes is a theoretical concept applied to the constant strife occurring between the two human genders. But if it were a veritable battle, then by secondary implication it is unlikely there would ever be any successful mating and/or procreation. It is also true there would never be an ultimate gender winner or the world would not continue its proportionately 50/50 gender split after the ensuing onslaught of “gendercide.” A nation of Amazons only exists in romanticized fictional accounts.
This in notwithstanding the fact of how many times you might hear a spouse iterate the phrase:
- Sometimes, I just feel like killing him/her.
Closer to the truth is because as a species we have evolved with two genders, and because we do use sex, both for pleasure as well as for reproduction, the terminology “battle” really applies to the fact that women and men essentially must tolerate each other to achieve the means to both of those ends. This of course is no to demean or to degrade the concept of love.
All relationships at any level are either dominant-submissive, co-dominant, or co-submissive, such as that between a boss and an employee, between two business partners, or too exceptionally lazy co-workers. Some relationships are co-dominantly cooperative, whereas others encompass the infinite variations of extremes in the dominant-submissive domains; such as the physically beaten housewife or on the opposite side of the coin, the verbally abused, eternally henpecked husband.
What it really boils down to is that men and women are wired differently at the genetic level such that relationship conflicts a-priory originates in a biologically immutable substrate. Then when personality is layered on top of the genetics; a Pandora’s Box for potential conflict irreversibly opens the window that lets in an eternal contest of wills.
Relationships that work well are those able to achieve satisfactory compromise, whereas those that fail are constantly at war.
Some couples resolve conflict and achieve harmony by compromise, capitulation or just happen to be the rarely encountered phenomenon of “soul-mates.” Some conflicts are only resolved by physically splitting up the warring parties, some resolve by self imposed emotional separations or emotional isolation, and sometimes the final resolution does end with murder.
- You mean you really meant it when you said you felt like killing me?
The best example of capitulation I can recall was when a man came into my office for a first visit. In the consultation room, his wife answered all his medical questions. When I put him in the exam room by himself and asked him some follow up queries; he told me to wait until he turned his hearing aid on.
- Do you mean to tell me you didn’t hear one word when I asked your medical history?
- It’s not you, doc. It’s her. Doc, I haven’t heard a word she said in over ten years. I learned a long time ago if I just nod my head up and down every time she opens her mouth that we get along fine. And if you blow my cover, I’ll just have to find another doctor.
To make matters worse, beside gender genetics and variable personalities, one also must take into consideration hormonal factors; with the only thing testosterone, estrogen and progesterone having in common is that they are all organic molecules. Women must deal with male testosterone surges, which despite a male’s massive repositories of maternal mitochondrial DNA, for some reason still cannot be suppressed; while men have to deal with the estrogen/progesterone flux that creates the unpredictable emotional imbalance of the notoriously dreaded monthly PMS; followed a potentially decade long menopause.
In fact, one of the most curious, self fulfilling and self defeating paradoxes about PMS is that even though every month a woman knows it is coming, for some strange reason about a week before it occurs, the hormonal combination in play at that time seems to specifically block the female brain from even remotely thinking about taking any sort of medication that might abort it.
On the flip side, the only way to eliminate testosterone rage rushes would be by castration; which is fine as long as one’s life ambition is to be a limp-dick cherub singing Soprano in the Vatican Choir or some pervert priest’s anal sex slave. Although, yet again, there are undoubtedly not just a few bored, lonely, sexually harassed or just plain pissed off housewives who wouldn’t really mind at all sending their husbands over to the genital guillotine.
My office manger’s husband, Fred, and I once decided we could take care of his wife’s PMS problem like the sedating method used on animals in The Wild Kingdom when laboratory studies or tagging is required. In so “Stalking the PMS Female” we would tag-team by waiting until late at night, then by stealth and cover of darkness creep up, slowly open the bedroom door, throw a piece of chocolate onto the center of the bed to bait the prey. Then when she came out from under the covers to get the chocolate we would shoot her with a Motrin dart fired from a safe distance with a mini-bazooka gun.
- When I tap you on the helmet, Fred; that means she’s going for the chocolate, so “fire.”
His wife was not amused and had a much simpler answer. She said just bring chocolate home everyday for two weeks starting one week after her period is over, even if she adamantly says she doesn’t want it because she’s feeling bloated and fat.
- No matter what. I’ll still eat it.
In truth, the only thing that men and women really have in common is that they are both Homo sapiens. The best long-term relationships between men and women, then, are those entirely predicated on friendship and compatibility with the ideal relationship being that occurring between those people who truly find that they are soul mates.
But this is by far the exception to a rule that probably occurs less than 5 percent of the time; if that much; leaving little wonder as to why the U.S. divorce rates consistently hover around fifty percent.
Falling in love is often exceptionally easy to do and even easier to justify as an expedience. Unfortunately, it often then becomes only a flimsy, transparent, poorly thought out excuse for heading into a lifetime of spousal sparring and jousting. Staying in love is the real test; a test that can be made significantly easier if the emotion is conjoined with a few ounces of proactive correct rational thought.
But therein lays the rub. Emotion has nothing to do with logic and ergo the tiresome but sagacious expostulation that “Love is blind.” Why stop there and not add in the “Deaf and Dumb,” too?
The problem is that too many people mistake love for the myriad factors having nothing at all to do with it as an emotion; which can be summarized in part by the following short list of caveats:
Do not mistake sex for love.
Do not mistake money for love.
Do not mistake superficial physical attraction for love.
Do not mistake pity for love.
Do not mistake nostalgia for love.
Worst of all do not fall into the trap of “The Salvation Army Complex;” in which love is mistaken for the ability to save someone from a self-destructive behavior; and then attempt to change them for the better. The latter is why the ex-spouse of an alcoholic will marry another one or the idiotic rationale that the drug addict will change simply because of the juxtaposed angelic aura of the non-addicted partner.
Then there is the “Bonnie and Clyde Syndrome” in which love becomes linked to societal rebellion, accounting for why some women are especially prone to fall in love with bad boy criminals who ruin their lives or help them make their way to jail alongside them. Or also why some men believe that women of notorious sexual reputation, proclivities or persuasion will bring them the bliss they feel to be missing at home.
Nearly everyone is also aware of at least one situation in which: the rich old codger who in either denying his own mortality or in flaunting his wealth hunts down a trophy bride; that gold digging woman who marries the old coot while she alternates having illicit sexual liaisons with prayers for his expedited death. This is akin to the self-centered pedagogue who props up his insecure ego by wedding the Pygmalion student; the father who marries someone who reminds him of his daughter or vice versa; or the middle aged female Cougar who attempts to retrieve her evaporating youth in the arms of the pseudo-flattering sexual boy toy.
I can speak with a certain authority on this subject because I have violated just about every one of my own caveats. And even though I think I finally got it right when I married my second wife; when we do have a fight, which gets me really pissed off, I all but abandon rational thought by boiling the problem down to the emotionally simple irrational fact that no matter what:
Women just simply do not at all think the same way that normal people do.
My misogynist loan shark friend was less kind in his view of the Battle of the Sexes and put it in a simpler nutshell when he would opine that there is one rule in life that he could absolutely guarantee is a rule without a single exception:
If it has tits or tires you are inevitably going to have trouble with it.
That certainly may be true. But it still does not explain the other countervailing but paradoxically axiomatic truth that given enough time overall, women always seem to win the battle of emotional attrition and consistently wind up getting just whatever it is that they ever seem to want.
That is because they go by another rule without exception:
If you can’t nag them to death, drop back, assume the fetal position, start to cry and then if that doesn’t work either, no matter what else, just say ‘no’ to sex.
Let us put men and women together
See which one is smarter
Some say men, but I say no
The women got the men like a puppet show
It ain’t me, but the people who say
The men are leading the women astray
But I say that the women today
Are smarter than the men in every way
That’s right, the women are smarter
That’s right, the women are smarter
That’s right, the women are smarter
The women are smarter than the men today
(Cartoon/ Unknown artist: may violate copyrights)