May 28, 2004

Men and Women

There has been a lot of discussion lately about the different roles men and women play in the dating game. The discussions have been taking place at the site of, what I hope soon to be, a friend of mine, The Anonymous Blogger.

Something of particular interest to me about the recent discussions has been the debate over whether or not women should be more aggressive in asking men out.

I wrote about this before so if you remember that posting, posted when I first started blogging forgive me. You can skip over this altogether. If not, I'd like you to consider the following.

Gen X'ers are in the interesting position of being raised between two worlds. We were generally raised by two kinds of baby boomers.

The first kind of baby boomer is more traditional and transferred down old fashioned values, more than likely taught them by their immigrant or first generation American parents - in terms of families that have been here for generation upon generation, the more conservative values that existed at the beginning of the 20th century. I'm sure many of us have a grandmother who was a flapper, but when it came to family, she most likely married within her religion, race and gave it up all her shenanigans for the sake of the family. I personally fall into this category, where the dad went out and worked and the mom worked to raise the family and keep the home.

Others of us were raised by the boomers who decided to rebel against established societal norms as well as societal evils. Very important. These rebels were feminists, civil rights activists, war protestors and brought a lot of attention to the fact that we need to watch our government closely. Great. But with all that, they also rebelled against traditionalism. Women were freer, they started working more outside of the home, they started attending college more. These men and women also had families but they raised them against tradition and not necessarily by it. Either they raised children as atheists, or women had kids on their own, or people started divorcing more, etc. People started changing those aspects of their worlds they didn't like and started to feel more empowered.

Where does that leave us their children? Completely confused.

We don't know whether to scratch our watches or wind our asses.

Gender roles are completely turned around and seem to have lost all meaning.

Men and women don't know which models to follow. Should we follow the traditional model which is more patriarchal, granted favoring the man, but leaving no question as to what are the gender roles.


Should we follow the more modern approach, where it doesn't matter who does the asking - where men and women are on more equal footing; where a woman doesn't need a man to create her identity.

And which type of man or woman are you or are you a modern traditionalist or a traditional modernist? And how do you find someone that matches how you?

I think a lot of what we are going through now has to do with us not understanding how gender roles are changing and being caught in the middle.

And I think that's why the Anonymous Blogger is probably so ambivalent (this has been changed from ambiguous).

What do you think?

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