Tuesday, April 25, 2006

Embracing Management

Update: Several parties have accused me of being unduly dramatic; my apologies. I was tired when I wrote this and the "ironical" tone I was looking for failed to show through.
I found (via Alas) this fairly interesting post on "husband management". The whole concept isn't the fault (or invention) of feminists, but I don't think that feminist women are any less guilty either. Based on my experience it looks like this particular approach to relationships is practiced by women on both sides of the feminist/traditionalist aisle. I think about the het couples that I know (myself and wife included), who range from vaguely progressive to positively crunchy, and I suspect (and sometimes know outright) that the men in these relationships are being "managed" to a greater or lesser degree. And it gets better... a lot of the men (myself included) know that we're being managed some of the time. We think we know when we're being managed, our wives are open about the fact that they're managing us, but is that possibly just cover for the times when they're managing us and we don't catch on? But the larger issue here is the question of alternatives. Resistance doesn't get us anywhere in the long run, and the management is benign or even beneficial. I used to be concerned with the idea that I should be acting as an autonomous individual, but that stance eventually led to more problems than it was worth. Frankly I've just given in... what point in being principled if the only outcome is that it makes you miserable?

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