Victim or Pleasure Seeker?
I recently noticed a pattern as I flipped through older notes from past women I have worked with. Bear with me as I share it.
Many of my past clients have talked to me about feeling victimized by the men in their lives. Some of the most common comments I heard went like this: “He treats me like a doormat “, “He acts as if he doesn’t care about me “, or “ I don’t think he even likes me “. These women pulled out all the stops to please the men in their lives. They dressed a certain way; they talked a certain way; they kept their hair and their nails done; they drove long-distances to see these men; and they were still left wondering if the men really cared about them.
I love animals, dogs and cats in particular so, I pay a lot of attention to animal behavior. One thing I’ve noticed about dogs is that when they feel that someone or thing in their “pack” is in authority over them, they get into this submissive position, rolling over on their backs and putting all four paws up in the air. However, they will also do the same thing when they’re lying in the sun scratching their backs in the grass.
If you’re watching from a distance, what appears to be submission might actually be pleasure. You have to take the behavior in the right context if you want to interpret it. I wonder if we are always observing relationship behavior in the right context. Sometimes I think that the women I have counseled in particular, may prefer to be in a bad relationship as opposed to being in no relationship at all.
When asked if they’re dating someone, they may prefer to say, “Girl, this man I’m dating is such a puzzle to me “, as opposed to saying, “No, I’m not seeing anybody”, because that seems to imply they haven’t been chosen or there is something wrong with them. Being submissive to a man who treats them badly might be preferable to having to acknowledge that they have no one in their lives.
Until we learn as a culture to see single women as those who are strong enough to choose themselves over the wrong life partner, we stigmatize them and make it the standard for them to end up in bad relationships. We send a very dangerous message that says they are damaged goods if they are not paired up with someone, anyone. Let’s not victimize women who choose themselves and education and prosperous lives.
There’s nothing wrong with waiting for the right person or for choosing to go out alone as opposed to traveling with the wrong person at your side. Let’s teach our daughters and our sisters that as long as they’re traveling with Jesus, they’re always in the best company available.