This is a comment by Lucy Montrose on the post “Nice Guys Again“.
“Why do men take it as a personal judgment when they’re turned down? Because ALL of us, men and women, are getting the message every day from society, media, and especially pop health and pop psychology, about how vitally important relationships are. Because we’re being told, constantly, that without relationships we will not only be lonely; we’ll be sicker, may die younger, are more prone to cardiovascular disease, more prone to poverty, less employable, more likely to have our character called into question, more likely to be listened to and taken seriously compared to the not-so-well connected … I think even that organ transplant recipients are knocked further down the list if they have few social or family connections.
“That’s a lot of serious pressure.
“And most of us DO, subconsciously, take the presence or absence of relationships (especially romantic ones) as a referendum on that person’s likability and social skills. That may be one of the reasons married men still make more money than single men; we feel, deep down, they’re more ‘inter-personally qualified.’
“Certainly, we think less of our public figures if they’re not coupled up or family-ed. Which makes me wonder; how many unhappy marriages and dysfunctional families begin only because someone wanted to be a politician and felt they had to do whatever it took to ‘connect’ with constituents? Or wanted to prove to a boss that they could be responsible, dependable and sociable?
“With all this pressure today to be good at relationships, a lot of us can’t help but crack, and go to ever-more desperate lengths to get favor from others. But it is not by any means restricted to men. ALL of us are having this fuckery shoved down our throats.”
Photo credit: Flickr / Horia Varlan