Pamela Madsen imagines a day when women and men can flirt without fear.
I just spent several days in an all female sexuality workshop. The women danced and played in their sexual energy among themselves. In this world, I had several opportunities to talk with women about sexuality and their relationship with men.
It seems that so many of us want the attention of men, yet greet their attention with anger or fear. We want masculine attention, dress for it, flip our hair on the street for it, but when we get a response—we often respond with silence or angry looks. Our eyes often don’t greet the smile of masculine appreciation with warmth—often we return it with a “how dare you notice!” Sometimes we even cross the street, and look very busy on our cell phones.
What if women could feel supported by men and see their appreciative gaze as a simple acknowledgment of our feminine power? What might happen then?
A lot of how women respond to male attention has to do with the way it’s delivered. It’s not that most women don’t want men to notice them; many do. In fact, when we walk in our sexual power down the street and are admired by men in a gentle non- aggressive way, sometimes it can even be healing for us. I think it might be healing for the men too. For 30 seconds, no one is invisible. We are allowed to be sexual beings, with no strings attached. It’s just a moment. And it can be so much fun.
For sure, cat calls, loud whistles and lewd gestures are not the way into a woman’s heart. I don’t know many women or men who welcome that. I’m talking about men who know how to smile into a woman’s eyes and wink as she passes by. A male friend of mine tells a story about how he was on a motorcycle, stopped at a red light. There was a woman dressed up to be seen and noticed. So he noticed her, and their eyes met. He simply mouthed the word “Beautiful” with a smile. The light changed, and away he went. If it was me, I would have melted on the spot. I don’t know if she did or not, but she returned his gaze and smiled. It was a moment, and my male friend still remembers it. I still remember the story. So what about that?
So many women want this kind of gentle attention. I think so many men want to give it. So why do women usually just look away and pretend that we didn’t notice. Why do some of us react in fear or disgust? At least on the surface anyway. Why does the appreciative gaze or soft comment of men sometimes scare women and make us return the favor with the word, “pig”? Is it the fear of the cat call? Or the fear that if a woman so much as acknowledges a man’s smile on the street that it becomes an invitation for rape and pillage?
What if women felt safe enough to simply take it in. I would love to welcome back this ancient dance between men and women. Those brief moments of appreciation between us that lead to nothing more than a smile.
What if men learned to softened their gaze and women learned the art of accepting the gentle quiet compliment? What might happen then? What if us women, could feel welcome in the warm attention of men as we walked down the street? What if men practiced sending us low vibrational appreciation? What if women could feel supported by men and see their appreciative gaze as a simple acknowledgment of our feminine power? What might happen then? I think so many of us—male and female still want to enjoy these old customs of public smiles and drive by flirting—but are frightened of it.
I asked a man in his fifties about this, and this is what he had to say:
“I love being older, I can smile at women of all ages because I am happy to see them. Some, many, smile back, we may even pass with a greeting. I know it makes a pleasant moment for me, and I hope it does for them. Shame on me – I may even turn and admire a shapely pair of legs. I tell myself I’m an artist and allowed to appreciate beauty.”
I had an African friend who once who told me his tribe had a special vocalization—almost a grunt—reserved for meeting any stranger, that merely said, “I acknowledge your existence.” Perhaps we need such a greeting.
In this day and age of feminism, could we all possibly feel secure and safe in this gentle exchange between the feminine and the masculine energy? Is there even some healing in that? I think there is.
In the land of male smiles, many women are able to tap into owning their sexual power. What is wrong with a little public preening? And why not permit men so that they too can feel safe in giving the compliment? Empower men, not shame them when they see us and smile. If you don’t want to smile back, you don’t have to. But do you have to snarl?
Read more on The Good Life.
Photo credit: -Benedikt-/Flickr
Hi Pamela You article generates a lots of response. I know nothing about all the unwritten rules in America about men looking and women responding,but this debate is interesting. Here is some of my thoughts: 1: Unfortunately one in five of the women walking in the streets carries an emotional baggage of childhood sexual abuse. A man looking at them with the same kind of interest as their abuser can make a woman feel uncomfortable or even panicked. The body remembers everything,especially eyes. 2: In a society where women( or men) are brought up to suppress their sexuality it can… Read more »
Firstly I would like to say that I work as a senior executive and I love wearing heels, I find them attractive and appealing aesthetically and I wear them because of this. I also wear flats, sneakers, slippers, bare feet, work boots, and gumboots, all of which I enjoy wearing and wear for myself and myself alone. I enjoyed this piece. I think it hits the nail on the head from my perspective. I love getting compliments from gentlemen. I do not behave in any way in particular to gain the compliments but I still love to receive them. I… Read more »
Not sure if you have any but do you wear high-heeled boots? Do they offer better support and less damage than the same angle n height open dressy looking typical “high heel” (not sure the official name, the sandal looking things women wear to gala events:P). I’d much rather women wear whatever is comfy and doesn’t destroy their legs, high heels make the calves more pronounced but it doesn’t really do all that much for me as a man looking. I usually end up thinking “Ouch, that must hurt”.
I do wear boots when it suits. I have found that the difference between an uncomfortable pair of heels and a comfortable one is more about shape of the foot, and quality of the shoe. Boots offer a little more support around the ankle but the advantage of a good fitting quality sandal is that the feet can bear the weight in a more natural way rather than being squished up in an unnatural shape. A beautiful pair of shoes can be comfortable as well as aesthetically pleasing it doesn’t have to be an either /or.
Ah ok, thanks for the comment!
I’ve never been able to wear really high heels, first because at 5’9″, I already feel like I’m too tall and I certainly don’t want to be taller (especially if I’ll be taller than my date) and second, I have bunions that make anything over about a 1″ heel very painful. I’ve always felt bad about this because it seems like high heels are essential to looking sexy. There are many outfits that you simply can’t wear without heels, e.g. a little black dress. You have to have heels to complete the “look” or you just look weird. A sexy… Read more »
Ah ok. I just got myself some steelcap workboots that lift me an inch or 2, and I am already 6’6 naturally. It’s a weird feeling when you see the world slightly higher! It’s sad that those guys didn’t realize you were already trying to dress sexy, flat shoes can be sexy!
1. I love this. I’m bookmarking it again.
2. Each year, I go to a writers’ conference in Joseph, OR. Women outnumber men. Eroticism there is diffuse. Compliments are okay. Looks that you wouldn’t use in the outside world are okay. But nothing gets too intense. Alcohol is banned there during the day, so it’s not like Squaw, with groupies and stuff.
3. My sister says that Jim Harrison, the writer, can make a woman feel incredibly desired. He’s 75, fat, and missing teeth.
Re: number 3, tell your sister to speak for herself.
I am sure she was
Im concerned that this article seems to be saying that women can find sexual empowerment through the male gaze. Women who are sexually empowered have no need for male attention to validate their sexuality or power- they also have no fear of the male gaze and can enjoy it when its given as a gift of appreciation from one human to another. Which is different from the type of gaze some men give that is about their feeling of entitlement to objectify attractive women until they get a response. I have been called a Master Seductress- Im a burlesque performer-… Read more »
Rosie, Pamela might or might not be saying that she finds empowerment through men’s appreciative gazes. I don’t think it means she has a pathological need of men, only that we all need one another: we’re social, sexual animals.
I invite you to write in more detail for us on the male gaze. My email address is [email protected].
Rosie, First off – I never say ALL WOMEN about anything. Or ALL MEN. And, women and men find empowerment in all kinds of places. As a performance artist, you might even find empowerment on some level in “being seen” on stage. That is not any more pathological than what I am talking about here. I am talking about men and women allowing each other to see each other in a sensual way. I am talking about smiling! Meeting a gaze. Offering a compliment. Why is this so hard? You say: “Women who are sexually empowered have no need for… Read more »
Emphasizing difference rather than sameness has gotten us into the mess we’re in now – increased animosity between men and women. Gender apartheid is good for big corporations – they’re laughing all the way to the bank. Example; girls clothes and boys clothes are no longer interchangeable. Parents need to spend more money to buy kids clothes. Toys likewise. There are maybe a handful of online companies that sell gender neutral clothes. Pink is the designated color of the inferior gender. Almost ALL girls wear some kind of pink at the school I work at. While the boys clothes represent… Read more »
This was a response to goodguys2greatmen
who decided that pink was the colour of the inferior gender? Please find and reference so I can read this for myself.
You will find all the references you need in the world around you. Just open your eyes.
Do you see any little boys wearing pink? What color clothing do little boys wear? Right, all colors of the rainbow. The girl’s section in toy stores is completely pink. What color is the boy section? Right, all colors of the rainbow.
To call a boy girly is considered an insult. To call a girl a tomboy is not.
I walk with my open eyes open all the time, I make a habit of it. My son, husband, fathers, uncles and nephews as well as many of the most masculine sports stars I know wear pink, hence my confusion with your statement. My girls have always worn all the colours of the rainbow with the exception of a three month period when one of them was 6 when she decided that she wanted to be a frog, and green was the only colour that would possibly do. I guess my point here is, that we should be careful what… Read more »
Your and my personal experiences do not the world make. You don’t notice the hypersexualization of girls in society?
Check out this phenomenal woman’s FB page – Melissa Wardy is her name. She does more to bring men and women together than anyone I know. She knows where the change will have to begin …… with the children. She is a very astute observer of society. She’s a sage – a profoundly wise woman.
Following is how Melissa Wardy begins to teach her young son about rape without mentioning rape.
So why does that Sage not teach girls to stop raping n abusing boys, when I posted stats proving they do so in quite significant levels? Unless she teaches girls to stop raping boys then she IS teaching boys and girls 2 separate things.
You are right the world is made up of a plethora of experiences and this make generalisations even less wise. I have noticed the hypersexualisation of girls in society, it is there for sure. My point was that we should be very careful not to limit our girls to victimhood lest we consign them there for good. We need to say to our girls (and boys) “Hey guess what, the world thinks this of you…. stick your thumb to the end of your nose and do what you want” I read the facebook page, she is wise and has much… Read more »
“To call a boy girly is considered an insult. To call a girl a tomboy is not.” Bullshit, I saw “tomboys” get heavily bullied, people who step outside of gender roles cop shit for it. Maybe it’s different where you live but if you are near me, then open your eyes. “Tomboys” also cop homophobia as well as the boys called “girls”, one gets called “butch”, the other gets called “fairy”. There is more acceptance of women to step outside of gender roles in some cases but there is also heavy resistance to men stepping outside of them too, ie,… Read more »
@Pamela Madson For God’s sake Pamela, the world your are demanding “healthy flirtation” is one that needs to be nurtured from the ground up. It requires open, realistic and healthy sex education. It requires that boys learn to respect and view girls as their equals from a very young age. Jesus Christ, you can’t expect women grown up on slut shaming to feel feminine in their sexual power. Healthy flirtation is not a sudden apparition that falls from the sky. If the Good Men Project wants a genuine conversation than why don’t ‘concerned’ men discuss ways of counteracting the damaging… Read more »
@Johanna Gibson. First of all, please don’t “Jesus Christ” me. I am a sex educator. I work with women who have had sex abuse. I run retreats for women who have never even seen their vulva up close. I get my hands dirty. And I am not going to wait for some kind of global world change. I am going to work with one woman at a time, because that is what is real right now in this world. There is too much shaming. YOU ARE SHAMING ME. I can support women, every day women to start with their RIGHT… Read more »
Pamela, I know you don’t need any back up or anyone to come to your rescue. But like I said, I don’t ask permission to give compliments like, “Lady, you’re one gutsy woman who is providing the world with some incredible, much needed value and I appreciate that in you and anybody with your dedication and commitment. Thanks for being you. Hope we can have coffee someday and chat.”
Steve (no, really, I’m not hitting on you) ;^)
I apologize for using “Jesus Christ” but I stand by what I said. Your article offered advice to a large audience. Your personal work with individual women is admirable but the topic under discussion is what you wrote here.
Again, apologies for using “Jesus Christ”.
@Johanna Gibson. I am talking to individual women here. That is why I blog. It is a way for me to reach individual women and men. Change happens this way too. Yes, sex education for young people is important. But in this piece that is not what I am talking about. I am talking about what is with grown men and women in this moment. What might be possible now. All the best to you.
@SteveHosman, Thank you.
The subtitle of your article:
“Pamela Madsen imagines a day when women and men can flirt without fear.”
I imagine that day too, but unfortunately, it is not today. Thanks for starting this important conversation.
“If the Good Men Project wants a genuine conversation than why don’t ‘concerned’ men discuss ways of counteracting the damaging messages girls and boys receive from the entire entertainment world, the celebrity gossip garbage industry, and from sexist advertising etc. and as well, demand realistic sex education for our children.”
They already do run articles on that stuff, look around. I’ve commented on all of those issues.
Pamela, A few things: I think you can enjoy and invite flirtation and appreciation in a sensual/sexual way from another person without needing it to validate your sexual power. I think it’s dangerous to rely on outside validation to base our sexual worth, attractiveness and power. If we are willing to base our sexual power on another persons gaze then it also holds true that when the gaze is removed or when people are not attracted or repulsed by us we will feel less powerful. Im all about people feeling powerful and enjoying their sexuality fully! When we are able… Read more »
It doesn’t have to be the “gaze” literally. There are other senses — sound, smell, etc….
Sexual and romantic interaction between men and women have long been framed as essentially adversarial. Popular evopsych gives a seemingly scientific explanation: Men benefit from spreading their seed, but women need to make sure she’s supported before she risks pregnancy. However these ideas existed long before Darwinism. Seduction is often depicted as a chase. The man has to pursue love while the woman plays hard to get. A lot a romance books and movies feature the woman initially rejecting him, and the man going to great lengths to win her heart. The movie and book “The Notebook” features the man… Read more »
“The idea of feminine and masculine energy might seem nice, but it reinforces the idea that the sexes are opposites, which forms the core of the hostility between them. Men and women can’t set aside our differences when we constantly emphasize and exaggerate those differences. Even if one casts it as a good thing, eventually it will come back to men pursuing women far too aggressively, whether they like it or not.” Yes, let’s call it “energy”. It’s a great word to describe “feelings” which are exactly what men and women feel around each other in a variety of situations.… Read more »
A man is on the verge of doing something suicidal, so that means that his partner is the victim? Jesus, what a mixed up way to define the situation.
If it were my daughter on the ferris wheel, I’d tell her to let him jump. Like I said, I’m a “right to die” kind of guy.
The abuse is that it’s coersive because the other person doesn’t want them to harm themselves. I know someone that kept talking to an abusive ex because he threatened suicide, it’s a cold n evil act to do. It’s guilt tripping and coersion, manipulating the other into an action they do not wish to do but do so out of a duty of care to try avoid the person harming themselves. Quite frankly if anyone tries it with me, I will point them to the suicide hotlines n help services, if they are a threat to themselves I will grapple… Read more »
I like this post.
But I think it’s better to leave well enough alone.
We’ve all done pretty well by fear and suspicion so far. Why do we need to be any happier?
Lowering the sensible barriers between strangers is just asking for trouble.
You want men to give women overt attention. It’s clear from your article what women get from this. What are the MEN supposed to get from this? Whatever men are supposed to get from giving open attention, it has to be worth the risks. It has to be weighed against the possibility that I as a man have totally misinterpreted her receptiveness to compliments. It has to be weighed against what I know about my own attractiveness when estimating how well my compliments would be received. Whatever men are supposed to get from this, it has to be more than… Read more »
If the message to men is that they need to make their appreciation known, then there needs to be a comparable message to women – if you want men to notice you, then tell them that intention. If men are supposed to be brave and honest, then women need to be brave and honest as well. Why not just ask him, “what do you think of my shoes?” You expect men to simply read your clothing and attitude and act accordingly, in precisely the right way that is the perfect balance of appreciation, respect, and sexual attention that all women… Read more »
Apparently, you should try wearing yoga pants…. : – ) Seriously, though, a lot of men feel like they’re getting very mixed messages about complimenting women or overtly noticing how a woman looks, particularly someone they don’t know. For many men, what has evolved is the best practice of playing it safe. The possible social consequences of coming across as a creep are such that it’s better to be silent than sorry. Hopefully men learned enough to know that no one can say what all women want or all men want. I guarantee there are people out there wondering if… Read more »
Agreed. If you want something, ask for it. Don’t expect someone to read your mind. How the hell do I know why you chose that outfit instead of another outfit?
“It’s okay, baby, I’m not out to objectify you or anything. I just want us to playfully exchange sexual energy, you know? I want to recognize your sexual power. That’s why I grunted at you. It’s an African thing.”
Well said! Seriously, if I’m the ‘spit tin image’ of ,say Bradley Cooper or Ryan Renyolds, I’m sure any compliment I throw out there would be accepted with a smile, but being me (old, fat and ugly) I really don’t think she put on that high and tight little number for me to notice. So, I’ll just enjoy the ‘eye candy’ and keep any comments I feel compliments I feel like saying to myself.
ROFL. Thank you for the great big belly laugh!
As a man, many’s the time I wanted to compliment a woman, but was fearful of being labeled a lech and designated to “pervert” status. This applies not just to complimenting a woman’s looks, but anything we find attractive: wit, wisdom, an appreciation of a viewpoint they have that we hadn’t considered. Sadly, the fear and disgust that Ms. Madsen talks about from women is all too common, and only reinforces the fear men have to lend a compliment to a woman who deserves it.
Why do you need to give compliments? I mean, seriously, why is it important to compliment someone, especially someone you don’t know? I greatly dislike being complimented, personally. There are a lot of other interesting things to talk about than how great someone thinks I am. I find it icky, Compliments always feel empty and somewhat manipulative to me. Even talking about the weather is preferable.
Sarah, my opinion is the some people are not able to easily accept “gifts” like an honest compliment. The reasons are many.
I used to have a big problem with compliments because it embarrassed me and I didn’t think I deserved it. I learned to look at them and say “Thank you, that was nice”. Their motive? Don’t know…don’t care.
I think you are brave for bringing this up so honestly. A lot of people feel like that.
Sarah, What’s wrong with paying your respects to someone for something you find interesting or even attractive? As Steve said, a simple “Thank you” and moving on is all that’s needed. It’s not that it’s important, Sarah, it is, simply put, a nice and good thing to do. Life is far too short to assume the worst in everyone. I’m a happily married father of four, but if I want to compliment a woman in any capacity, many women (and men) would assume I’m attempting to get in their pants which couldn’t be further from the truth. Why not enjoy… Read more »
It sounds like giving a compliment is all about YOU. It’s about your need to give compliments, not whether the other person wants them. That’s the problem. That’s why I don’t like compliments.
“It sounds like giving a compliment is all about YOU. It’s about your need to give compliments, not whether the other person wants them. That’s the problem.” @ Sarah Part of having freedom includes the freedom to err. Having the freedom to express oneself, openly and honestly, (be it giving a compliment, or disagreeing with someone else’s opinion) is not an unreasonable expectation for any one to have. It’s a “problem” when that expression is inappropriate- and the devil is in the details. I love to curtail freedoms when they aren’t ones that I utilize or value. And I love… Read more »
Cuz sadly they come with threatening behaviour at times, leaving many women on edge about them. Schroedingers rapist/creep/asshole type behaviour.
I FIRMLY believe that a man owes it to himself to simply NOT CARE about the reactions of ANY woman when he is giving a gift, assistance, compliment, or acknowledgement to her. When this is coming from an authentic place of respect and appreciation, do not worry yourself over their reactions! You’re not trying to GET anything from her anyway. You are simply GIVING her something you want to give because it is who you are. No apology needed. Men can get SO tied up with self-doubt and fear because of someone else’s reaction. We owe it to ourselves to… Read more »
Again, though, as I said above, it sounds like it’s all about you wanting to “give” something, maybe because it makes you feel good about yourself, regardless of the other person’s wants or needs. I find that odd.
Not caring about the reactions of offended female persons can cause a man a world of trouble. And “authentic” intentions of “respect and appreciation” will save him.
will NOT save him, rather.
Yeah, I hear you. It seems that if your polite and respectful to everyone like mom told you to be, you’ll attract more than your fair share of ‘Weirdos’. I imagine that for a woman, it can be sometimes even more stressfull , depending on the circumstances.
We watched “The Outsiders” with my 12 yo son last night (he is reading it for English class)…. The movie stars C. Thomas Howell, Matt Dillon, Diane Lane, Ralph Macchio, and Emilio Estevez (among several other young stars)…. There is a scene where Dallas (Matt Dillon) is trying to hit on Cherry (Diane Lane) at the drive in and while he is pestering and drooling all over her, she literally has to push him off and shout at him to back off because he is so rude ( and yet she secretly finds him attractive)… Finally, she throws her drink… Read more »
Agreed, somehow the only guys who ever show me attention on the street or in public places are, I don’t know, a little “off.” I’ve said this before in other comments, but over the years I’ve learned to completely avoid talking to strangers because 90% of the time when a guy approaches me, the conversation veers off in a weird direction because. I recall a guy in a coffee shop started a conversation with me and started spouting off on some racist sh!t about immigrants, then he got angry and shouted at me when I told him I disagreed with… Read more »
Was he hitting on you? or just talking about his medications?
I initially got a vibe like he was flirting or hitting on me, yes.
“I initially got a vibe like he was flirting or hitting on me, yes.”
So it FELT like he was, but was he really? You’re making a guess as to him hitting on you and casting assertions of his behaviour without being sure??
@Sarah— I’m with you— I just assume a strange guy is gonna be a weirdo to me on the mean streets of NYC…and yes, there are lots of homeless, crazy guys just walking the streets here…. On the train, unless it’s a lost tourist or some harmless old person, I keep to myself….even at parties, surrounded by friends and husband, if the new person I am talking to is a guy, there is a good chance he will try to hit on me (even if he tells me he is “happily married and has beautiful kids”)…..now I have been through… Read more »
“Ignore the perpetually offended.” An ironic comment – and I think this speaks to a larger point- Sometime, conflict and indignation can fulfill some people as much as goodwill can. In a society that rejects (in principle) more and more expressions of overt aggression in social discourse, passive aggression is still a relatively benign and acceptable outlet- an outlet that some people want and need. Sometimes, unfortunately, a sincerely encouraging word is worth less to people than having a dragon to fight. If one views oneself as a courageous dragon-slayer on a crusade in life, a compliment is worth much… Read more »
I think its not only women that like get a warm admiring looks from opposite sex. I remember met an old lady who suddenly smiles really warmly and tell me that I’m handsome, and it felt so good. But I also remember got a completely different feelings back in high school , when a young women, several years older than me said that I’m handsome, with intimidating and aggressive attitude in my bus to school . She suddenly asked me if I’m single while keep repeating ” you’re so handsome, you’re so hot” . I don’t know if shes high… Read more »
It’s a growing ability, within our culture, to be able to do that consensual meeting in sexual power. I wasn’t able to do it for years and also, in my past, I was with women partners that could not recognize when I did it to other women with respect; my partner felt offended regardless, and there was no convincing otherwise. Nowadays, I’m among people with whom I can graciously and respectfully appreciate appearances with. All of us are growing in joy and happiness, able to live with freedom from feeling oppressed on either side of the equation. In fact, we’re… Read more »
Nice. Great work if you can get it.
“A male friend of mine tells a story about how he was on a motorcycle, stopped at a red light. There was a woman dressed up to be seen and noticed. So he noticed her, and their eyes met. He simply mouthed the word “Beautiful” with a smile. The light changed, and away he went. If it was me, I would have melted on the spot. I don’t know if she did or not, but she returned his gaze and smiled. It was a moment, and my male friend still remembers it. I still remember the story. So what about… Read more »
The ways the author is describing are almost entirely difficult to describe in words, and can really only be understood best in the context of watching it. It’s the difference between verbal and non-verbal communication. Too difficult to argue about on paper without people reading whatever they want to read instead of having the right context.
Also, women usually distinguish, and don’t mind of an attractive man checks them out, it’s men they don’t find attractive that usually makes them feel like they need a shower. Or so I’ve been told.
@PursuitAce Not really. The ‘official doctrine’ is that you need to be confident and aloof or mischevious, and show higher social value – ie either come across as more dominant or at least suppress any signs of subordination and insecurity. Compliments are next to useless if you come across as a nice guy or socially inept, and are best kept subtle and light hearted rather than serious or grandiose if you fancy yourself a true master of the seductive arts. (Which I am of course, after only a few months of intensive online study at the school of the dark… Read more »
Yes, I’ve often wondered about the safe but dangerous dichotomy. This kind of complexity always seems to come with some deceptive aspect to it. A trait that I find completely unattractive. They are definitely the more interesting gender when it comes to field study. I’m always trying to unravel the next layer.
I, for one, love the idea of ANY of us acknowledging the beauty of ANY of us regardless of gender, nationality etc. Beauty is beauty, love is love and it’s well past time that we all started realizing and appreciating them both for what they are.
“I, for one, love the idea of ANY of us acknowledging the beauty of ANY of us regardless of gender, nationality etc. Beauty is beauty, love is love and it’s well past time that we all started realizing and appreciating them both for what they are. Great article.”
Your comment is awesome, and you should feel awesome.
Stay positive & Cheers!
Caitlin, I am with you!
This is beautiful article that illustrates how women embracing their sexuality and engaging in playful energy exchange with men can heal and uplift us all.
Btw, it’s not a smart idea to push high heels on women (see image). “What we do know about the effects of high-heels is that they increase the incidence of foot deformities such as neuromas, hammertoes and bunions. They also increase the pressure placed on the ball of the foot during ambulation, causing pain and joint inflammation. We also know that long-term wearing of high-heels leads to tightness or the contracting of the Achilles tendon. Over time, this will lead to increased pain and difficulty with ambulation,” says Dr. John Giurini, chief of podiatric surgery at the Beth Israel Deaconess… Read more »
Showing an image of high heels indicates the opposite of power. It shows women are encouraged to be slaves to fashion and, as a result, inflict considerable physical harm on themselves.
My take. She is simply trying to explain that women like men, they like our attention, they are sexual beings, they think about sex…..and they want to feel “safe” being that way in front on men. Women might think about lightening up a bit.
And I say, Lord help the man who gets good at making them feel safe. Don’t forget to hydrate.
You gave me the biggest grin of all with this comment. THANK YOU. And yes, please hydrate!
So can women initiate a smile too when they see a handsome, powerful in his masculinity, man?
Can they? They totally should! It’s awesome the very rare times it happens.
Unfortunately, the only reason it’s rare is because society discourages authentic female sexual expression. Truth is, women are as visual as men no matter what the evo psych nutheads say.
I see this as an excuse. “Society” has no power over our ability to choose our responses. Be who you want to be a damn those in “society” who don’t approve.
I “beat up” men all the time for worrying about “what she’ll think” when he wants to act in ways that are in line with his values. Excuses. Hrumph. ;^)
Can you tell me the last time a man made you feel bad for doing so?
It’s a rhetorical question, the answer is never.
Please do! I promise not to leap at you, fangs bared, bash you over the head and drag you off to my lair. I’ll probably smile back and then trip. It doesn’t matter if I fancy you: a genuine smile makes me happy. I hand them out like candy. I hope you won’t slut shame me for it.
I do it all the time!
Oh yes, they should actually come up with a phrase to describe what happens to men who get crucified for making comments that certain women hysterically overreact to.
I was “Adria Richardsed” sounds good.
1- there is something vaguely bothersome to me vis discussing “sexual power” as it sounds slightly adversarial.
2- I’m confused are we still not supposed to admire women in yoga pants? Really confused. How can we tell the difference between comfort and sexual allure?
3- what constitutes a “gentle non- aggressive way” ? Blushing, a self deprecatory grin, a $ 1,200 suit, a puppy or a child?
I think the ideal we’re seeking here is a consensual power exchange, not adversarial but toward a mutually desired outcome. Comfort seekers and sister-dressers aside, there are women—and men, too—who put on their clothes in the morning with a consideration for sex appeal. I dare someone to say “but I wear stilettos because they’re comfortable.”
Love this comment! Dead on.
Wow…well how about this. Great article and I hope that we can get back to an equal exchange of sexual energy. I hope not having any progressive credentials will affect my post. Well here goes…pushing “Post
Many women want men to notice them. Really? Because every woman I ever asked said that they dressed for other women. Either this article is way off or I’ve been lied to many times.
Let’s face it. Women just want to e be noticed. Male, female, child, pet, tree. 🙂 We are the receptive side of the reality game…we love to receive male and female attention, as long as it is wholesome and heartfelt. Doh.
Hmmm……II think we dress to be noticed by admiring eyes whether it be male, female or our own. To been seen. We are like eggs or flowers….we like to attract! Yes, like Lori Anne said, we are often receptors….
I think this includes men, but men have so few and boring options that it’s hardly possible unless you go all Boy George, and then everyone thinks you’re gay – so it won’t romantically impress the girls anymore.