SPEAK UP: Do Women Become The Men They Want

There is nothing nicer than the beginning of Spring. The red-breasted robins are back and the dogwood trees are budding beautifully. The days are getting longer and the nights are not as cold.  Before we know it, short sleeves and shorts will be our ‘everyday wear’.  We can’t wait!!
As we continue to celebrate women this month, we wanted to include a thought-provoking quote from American feminist, journalist, and social/political activist, Gloria Steinem, stating “some of us are becoming the men we want (wanted) to marry”. We find this quote to be very interesting, to say the least! Many times, women become self-sufficient in nontraditional ways, especially when they are responsible for a variety of tasks … from changing a flat tire – to making a cake from scratch. Some women become ‘the men they want(ed) to marry’ because there is no other choice and no other support. We are interested in knowing how you interpret this attention-grabbing statement.

How do you understand this week’s quote?  Do you believe women ultimately become the men they want (wanted) to marry by taking on the qualities that they would seek in a companion (i.e. fortitude, provision, intelligence, toughness, etc.)? Why or why not?

I've been thinking about this topic recently, which is funny because I'm not getting married anytime soon. But when I was thinking of qualities that I want my husband to possess, provider was at the top of the list. Which is ironic considering the fact that I am quite an independent person. "Why seek that in a man when I can provide for myself?” Traditional thoughts of society have impacted women to think that way. I agree with Steinem, women are becoming more like the men they want to marry. Thanks to a new wave of feminism, women are becoming more independent and establishing new approaches to life. – Christa (Style Reporter)

I find this quote thought-provoking and oddly intriguing. Until now, I had never thought of women taking on non-traditional duties as "becoming the men they want(ed) to marry."  I always saw it as women simply being independent, self-sufficient, and learning to lean on themselves to get things done instead of another man. Taking this quote into consideration, I can wholeheartedly agree with what Gloria Steinem has to say, but I just happen to perceive it in another context. In this day and age, we currently live in a society that has embedded the idea that a woman needs a man, mainly to take on the responsibilities and tasks that are seen as "masculine." As a result of this idea, woman who take on these perceived to be "masculine" responsibilities are not always accredited for their strong sense of independence -- but that instead gets overshadowed with the question of "why don't or didn't you get a man to do it?" – Jazmin (Music Reporter)

Woman can have and contain the qualities they look for in a man. They are able to perform everything that they put their minds to, and have so many other special features that men just can't seem to grasp. I am not completely certain that women want to become the men they are searching for. I think possessing the qualities and still being a graceful, empowering women is just perfect. – Marianna (Sports Reporter)

I do believe that women become what they want in a significant other. This quote reminds me of Katy Perry's song Roar. Katy becomes her own independent and strong woman after the man that was supposed to be protecting her was mauled by a tiger. Women have the capability of being the crutch they needed all along. I think single moms can speak to this quote as well. They are often times both the mom and the dad, showing that women all over the world don't need someone to have the "manly" qualities that any woman can obtain herself. – Renée (Hair Reporter)

I'm not really sure what to make of this quote. I dislike how Steinem compares women to becoming men, even though she means that we are only becoming more independent. However, I think that women should not become the "ideal man"; she should just be a woman and whatever choices she makes, feminine or masculine, she is still proudly a woman. – Veronica (Culture/Celebs Reporter)
I believe women posses specific qualities of fortitude, provision, intelligence, and toughness in general. As a women, I would like a man to have certain qualities and the ability to perform specific tasks. The purpose of obtaining certain responsibilities or possessing certain qualities would never be to play a man's role in life. – Antoinique (Intern)
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Nicole Johnson Roberson, LCSW is continuing her mission to provide ethical, creative, and clinically based therapeutic support to today’s youth. She delivers clinical direction through articles that address various mental health concerns and provides education and information about community resources. Nicole has also been involved with other aspects of TEEN DIARIES including the formation of Dear TD (formerly Dear Nicole) and Project Butterfly. Originally from the Washington D.C. metropolitan area, Nicole currently resides in Atlanta, GA and provides confidential, clinically sound and creative services to youth and adults alike by serving as the clinical director of a small medical solutions company and through her own private practice. The proud member of Alpha Kappa Alpha, Inc. Nicole is also a doctoral student at the Institute for Clinical Social Work in Chicago, Illinois.