In the war for righteous affirmation of the sexes, marriage so often comes up as a bone of contention, both parties trying to agree on who and why is more oppressed by this arrangement.
Feminists usually argue the following:
- Women are oppressed by marriage and motherhood as a cultural prerequisite for becoming respectable;
- Unmarried women are oppressed by the stigma sex out of wedlock puts upon them;
- Some married women are expected to remain in the home and are therefore oppressed by not fulfilling their potential;
- Married women who work are expected to fulfill both the traditional role of homemaker at the same time as working;
- Women are regarded differently when they commit infidelities;
- The physical and emotional abuse of married women is very prevalent and generally overlooked.
Meanwhile, MRAs have arguments of their own:
- Women demand fidelity while growing farther apart from the traditional mandates of a wife (perpetual attractiveness maintained overtime, efficient homemaking, motherhood, behaviour);
- Women’s demands have increased substantially overtime, culminating in their current attempt to dominate men;
- Women use their sexual appeal to ensnare men in the disadvantageous legal arrangement called marriage;
- Marriage limits men by stigmatising their natural poly-amorous nature;
- Women are culturally brought up to expect too much out of men;
- Women are ravenous when it comes to divorce and are favoured in terms of child custody.
- Women often make false claims of abuse in court.
Arguably, one cannot reach an informed conclusion without considering all the available data, from the origins of marriage to present day. When diving into history, it appears that marriage was, primordially, a form of ownership (the physically dominant sex, namely the male one, owning the physically weaker one, namely female). Later on, through religion, this was consecrated as a divine bond, for the same purposes of control through the control of sexuality (which has been one of the main focuses of Abrahamic religions). It is fair to say that in past times, marriage has been a form of ownership and enslavement; in certain societies it continues to this day (Islamic theocracies, for instance).
Today, in civilised countries, marriage is voluntary (excluding cults, which make their own constrictive rules, as well as religious minorities, which preserve their foreign traditions).
However, both men and women enter it with preconceived ideas regarding the ideal spouse and the perfect life they envisage. Both men and women, therefore, enter this arrangement with a set of illusions, which do not match the reality of their ancestors, nor the one of their peers and therefore, their own.
Women’s typical marital illusions are as follows:
- A man will not fall out of love when initially in love, unless they do something major to cause it;
- A man will not lose interest (sexually or altogether) when her body modifies, through pregnancy, age or otherwise;
- A man will reject thoughts of infidelity as well as resulting actions, out of love;
- A man who has pledged his role as the head of a family will always comply with it out of duty, where his children are concerned;
- A man who has not been violent has no potential to become so;
- Kindness, attentiveness and fidelity on her part ensure that a marriage will not fall down the drain, at least not without attempts of it being rescued.
Men’s illusions, as far as my modest observations go, tend to be these:
- A woman will do her best to remain as attractive and sexually interesting as initially for the whole duration of their marriage (for life), expecting competition and being fully aware of it at all times;
- A woman biologically yearns to please men and will do her best in that sense;
- A woman is less likely to cheat and more likely to forgive if she is being cheated on;
- A woman is primarily emotional, not practical, and that aspect can be used, in terms of making her happy regardless of reality (his thoughts, intentions and actions);
- A woman should be protected from the truth and in doing so a man is succeeding in creating a harmonious environment.
Marriage is changing because the roles of the sexes are changing, as well as the general perception on fidelity. These alterations are proving dramatic compared to a few decades ago; some for the better, and others, perhaps, for the worst.
With the constraints of religion no longer applying, morally or socially, this union is therefore being put through the fine test of reality. Free will at its best. It is free will to remain devoted to someone even if they treat you badly, and free will to cheat or become disengaged.
In a way, both men and women cling to a glorified mirage of what the opposite sex thinks and behaves like, partly based on tradition, partly on fictitious narratives, and partly on religious ideas, where that applies.
Culture fails young women
When a girl swaps her taste for fairy tales for syrupy novels, poetry or soap operas, the narrative remains the same. That she will find “the one” who she can “dedicate herself to”, which will result in reciprocity in turn.
Whereas, in reality, men are simply biologically programmed to not remain monogamous.
That doesn’t involve a fault or vice on their part; it is simply their nature, restrained, if barely, so far, by religions (some of them, anyway) and social norms, which are now almost gone.
Monogamy is a conscious choice and an effort for men (and I say this after observing generations I’ve lived among). And infidelity is not some far distant threat but a high probability, always lurking in the shadows. Try as you might, you will never change someone’s nature and neither can society, through laws and ideologies, gods and threats of hell.
The men whose instincts are overcome by devotion, for one reason or another, are few and far between. And typically, they are not the ones women tend to go for (the alpha males), but rather the introverts, the artists, the ones who reach beyond the material realm.
Women are not equipped to deal with this sort of thing; to accept it and move on. They tend to hold on to an illusion, a complete reciprocity that never was, or existed fleetingly, in many cases. Sadly, all the drama around men cheating is needless heartache on the woman’s part.
The answer to this is not the SJW hysteria that all men are potential rapists and sketchy sexed-up animals, which is a sad cheapening of human nature, but the simple realisation and acceptance that this side of them is much stronger and regardless of a man’s intellect or personality, it is likely to someday kick in.
Culture fails young men as well
By not telling them their wives will not necessarily be like their mothers or grandmothers, in the way they organise and conduct themselves. Times have changed and women have changed; that much is true. When men decry that, they decry the traditional feminine ideal, which is under ripples of transformation. And although I do not agree with feminists, in their radical aspiration to elevate women above men, I do agree that the tendencies young women embrace nowadays are not their fault, as they are culturally-induced. These trends may change their attire or superficial behaviour but do not change their biological instincts. Men are taught to separate “good, obedient women” from “whores”, neither one being a realistic label for someone’s actual nature.
The objectifying, self-gratifying side of life advertised to boys and men is also hardly realistic and plays on their instincts (or preys on them, better yet). And therefore, they expect their wives to be the fulfillment of their intimate fantasies, to the letter, and remain as such throughout the years, which, when pregnancy appears, tends to swiftly modify. This is turned back not on questioning the unrealistic expectations they have of one individual, but on the individual in question, should she fail to meet them.
And nowadays, it fails them by telling them their nature is somehow defective and they should embrace a feminine perspective, which is contrary to their biological inclinations. Which is not the answer to anything and only results in a poisonous backlash of anger, sometimes manifesting as variations of the Alt Right.
The truth is no side, male or female, can dominate and change or subdue the other if equality really is sought. And the truth hurts. You cannot mould someone into an ideal partner. You either take them as they are, with the good, bad and ugly, or move on. No social or political movement will ever manage to change human nature to the advantage of one sex.
Those who have genuine intentions, aware of the effort they will be engaging in, and manage to find each other will thrive in it; those who do not, will fail at it. It’s as simple as that. Mutual love and respect can be achieved, enabling people to work through their differences with no authority hanging over their heads but these two concepts. Marriage isn’t even necessary for that to take place; it simply grants legal advantages.