We don’t. Not about the things women care about. I’m sorry, womyn, you’ll simply have to deal with it because you can’t change the man to meet your expectations. Didn’t your momma tell you that?
But it was only a matter of time until the equal-outcomes-for-everyone crowd turned to (literally) the oldest bastion of manhood to survive the undying progressive fire-rimmed eye. Fatherhood.
I only saw this opinion piece titled “What ‘Good Dads’ Get Away With” published in the New York Times (which, it seems, will publish any level of word salad–I mean anything–except conservative opinion) because Seth Mandel mockingly tweeted it.
So I read the article.
The author, Dr. Darcy Lockman, has a beef with normal nuclear family marriage, in that men don’t seem to care about the stuff women care about.
Of course we don’t. I can walk by a Lego-strewn living room a thousand times on my way to my recliner, while my wife reacts as if Ragnarok was just re-enacted in our home. Yet Lockman writes:
Too often I’d spend frantic days looking for spring break child care only to hear him ask, “Oh, there’s no school tomorrow?” Or we’d arrive home late with two tired kids, and instead of spearheading their nighttime routine he’d disappear to brush his own teeth. Unless I pointed out these lapses (which he’ll tell you I often did, and I’ll tell you I often did not), he was unaware.
Sounds like a normal marriage to me.
And that’s really the issue here. Today’s progressives don’t like marriage as a concept, but the intelligent, well-raised, and affluent among them see the benefits of it. A stable marriage has less to do with red or blue, and more to do with education and income.
So people like Dr. Lockman complain that her husband, her kids’ dad, is just being a man. And that mothers “still shoulder 65 percent of child-care work.” She rails against “male resistance” and the discrepancy between “mothers’ expectations and reality.”
Go scream at the sky, lady, because it’s not going to change. You can heap guilt on a man’s head for his entire life, and get him to admit “I have justifications.” (Seriously, she got a man to say that in an interview.) But really, men will say anything to keep a woman happy in a stable marriage.
I really think that progressives like Lockman want to pretend they don’t know what a stable marriage is. I’ll tell you what it is: If you feel like you’re giving 90% and getting 10% back from your spouse, that’s about right. Ideally, you should both feel that way.
The biggest issue is that women want men to care about what they care about. And men are puppies trying to get attention and petting. Women get frustrated because men don’t care that the kids don’t have their entire summer planned out day by day, so men promise to make more of an effort.
Whatever effort is promised, it cannot be enough, because we just don’t care enough. We’re not callous, by any means. I’d give my life to protect my family. Certain things are, by design, going to catch men’s attention. Danger. Money issues (for most, though some women run the finances). Kids’ attitudes.
The kick in the head for Lockman’s opinion piece is her acknowledgement that conservatives have a better lock on reality than progressives.
This resistance is not being led by socially conservative men, whose like-minded wives often explicitly agree to take the lead in the home. It is happening, instead, with relatively progressive couples, and it takes many women — who thought their partners had made a prenatal commitment to equal parenting — by surprise. Why are their partners failing to pitch in more?
There it is, boys and girls. Marry someone who thinks–socially and spiritually–like you. Because women have this Galahad complex that they’ll take you as you are and somehow your agreement to marry her becomes an iron contract signed in blood for “equal parenting” or some such pie-in-the-sky unicorn food.
Women have expectations because women’s minds work differently than men. Men expect to be listened to when something important (to men) surfaces, like danger, money issues, or the kids acting up (but not horseplaying). Women expect men to care that the living room is strewn with Legos. In service to my wife, I do my best to care. But I’m a man, and the “care” switch is not automatic.
These progressives want men to be rewired to be women. In sitcoms, cultural references, and books, they’ve largely done it. But in real life, it will never happen.
But that’s the whole thing about progressive values. They are mostly fantasy, and the more educated and affluent among them recognize they are selling swill they themselves refuse to eat.
If anything is going to change, men have to stop resisting. Gendered parenting is kept alive by the unacknowledged power bestowed upon men in a world that values their needs, comforts and desires more than women’s. It’s up to fathers to cop to this, rather than to cop out.
Sorry lady, your word salad is fantasy. It’s never going to happen.