The roles between men and women often become blurred in today’s society. We are not living in the 1950’s household or society where women’s voices were squelched or unheard and barefoot, pregnant and in the kitchen is the norm. Today’s woman has many of the same opportunities as men and the dilemmas in the household are different as well. When finances, parole status, education inequality, and/or baby mamas and other sorts of dilemmas occur expectations and roles can be conflicted.
Essence magazine’s Jai Stone who calls herself the Emotional Nudist, begged the question of submission in her article “Emotional Nudity: Ladies, Is He Really A Submission-Worthy Man?” This is a question that many women have taken to their therapist, counselors and pastors around the country for some time; especially women who are committed to a christian life and what their pastor has instructed as their role in the home.
The interesting aspect of the dilemma really is beyond detecting the man that is submission worthy, as Stone suggests. The real question is whether the woman is interested in being submissive at all. The article is focused on the choice the woman has made in a spouse before she asks herself that question. Many women grapple with whether submission is warranted based on his actions, but it’s quite possible that a woman who is not programmed to submission based on her experiences will miss out on the “submission-worthy” man because she hasn’t dealt with what prevents her from submitting even when she might think he’s worthy.
But this is not a criticism of Stone’s article because not only does she ask valid questions, but she speaks of being “beat over the head” with the proper role of women in their households and that is indeed a problem:
“For the past 20 years everyone from the honorable pastor to dishonorable playa has been beating Black women over the head with the word submission. And the way it’s used feels more like a four-letter word being flung at us…I have observed many relationships over the years and found that certain types of men can get even the most ornery women to submit without asserting force. So, why does every Tom, Don and Hassan think that their gender simply entitles them to an “I Dream Of Jeanie/ Yes Master” lifestyle?”
Valid question! Why is “submission” not “commitment and compromise” at the top of the conversation for both men and women equally? The houseshold of today still needs a leader, but just as Stone states:
“Before she passes him the keys, she wants to be assured that he is a good driver – just as good, if not better, than her. She is not giving up those keys to an unskilled loud mouth with a boat load of DUIs. And it seems that most men are unwilling to earn the keys by taking the time to show her that they won’t to land the vehicle in a ditch.”
Amen! Now for women who don’t have any attachment to the church rule and live a more experience and/or openly spiritual-based life, what do you believe should be the rule of the household? Stone contends that women hold off on submitting when they encounter jerks:
“Women ain’t about to submit to a man who lies or cheats to serve his own selfish needs. She is not likely to cater to an ego-driven, verbally abusive jerk who treats her like he is doing her a favor. She won’t trust a man who makes poor decisions then refuses to be accountable for the fallout. She won’t respect a man who does not take an unprompted leadership role in matters of morality.”
But I have to disagree here because there are also plenty of women who do. Are they going by their mother’s example? Do they find that attractive or sexy? What motivates the women that submit…for whatever reason?
Read Stone’s article here and give us your take on the “submission” issue.