CTNAHM: Dealing With Drama Queens—And Every Woman Is One

Guest Post by Aletha

Originally posted on Yllom Mormon

Created To Need a Help Meet, pp. 92—94

Today we’re talking more about those “female creatures”. In an, I’m sure, flattering and equalizing light. Oh wait. Wrong book. Nope; it’s more of the sexism we’ve come to know from Michael. Here goes!

Drama, Drama, Drama

As a rule, women occasionally like to be stirred up. Visionaries and command men supply all the tension women can stand, but the Steady man provides only dull stability. If you are the steady and cautious type, and your wife has a little more of the impatient romantic in her, which most women do, then she may not see your value as clearly as do others. She may chafe at your cautiousness in taking authority.

As a rule, I think more women want to be heard, than just sitting around, hoping for an argument. Since when is stability dull? I remember, when I was a child in a dysfunctional home, literally ALL I wanted was stability. I can’t imagine why being stable is being insinuated as a bad thing.
And again, not all women are impatient romantics; though he does say “most women”, so I guess that’s an improvement over his blanket “Womenz are teh craz0rz during their time o’ the monthz.”

Here’s a thought. If you don’t think your spouse (partner, boss, co-worker…)doesn’t see your value, talk to them. You might have to phrase things differently, but tell them how you feel, and why you think what you’ve done -and give examples-deserves respect. If they don’t agree, then you might have a problem.

Women like to fill a vacuum, and they will fill it in a hurry. But hurry is not in the tool kit of a Steady Man. When you appear to drag your feet at making decisions, it will agitate her. A dominant woman sees her husband’s lack of hasty judgement and calls her Steady husband “wishy-washy”. His steadiness makes him the last to change, the last to react; he is seldom out front forming up the troops. The Steady Man is just too practical to understand his wife’s aggressive need for excitement and immediate action. That is the great impasse.

Is it just me, or did any one else snicker at the double-entende “Women like to fill a vacuum.”? Heh heh heh.  I have to admit, I sort of agree with Michael. My husband is mostly Steady, and sometimes it bugs the heck out of me that he takes AGES to make a decision. (That’s what makes me the better disciplinarian to our foster kids).  I get the feeling that Michael uses the phrase “dominant woman” like it’s a bad word.

I think it’s a lie that the Steady Man can’t understand his wife’s need for excitement. It might just take time. When my husband and I just started dating, I was always “Let’s do this! Let’s go here! Let’s talk about our FEELINGS!”  He had no clue what hit him. But eventually, as we talked more to each other, and as time went on, I learned to slow down a bit, and he learned to speed up. There are very few impasses when there is good communication.

Be assured, Mr. Steady, your wife will prod you to make up your mind and take a stand in church or business conflicts. She will whine that you seem to let people use you. Most of the time she will wish you would boldly tell her what to do so she would not have to carry all the burden of decision making. The pushing and pulling wears her out. These wives equate their husband’s wise caution and lack of open passion as being unspiritual. Good Brother, you are in trouble, and it just doesn’t come on the full moon.

What’s wrong about occasionally taking a stand? Sometimes sticking up for yourself, ideas, or family is actually a good thing. Perhaps it’s wrong because the wife prods him to do it?  And those poor wives, having to shoulder the burden of decision-making all alone, because their husbands won’t tell them what to do.  There are times when I’m annoyed at my husband’s lack of decision-making. So I talk to him, and tell him how I feel. I should be used to it by now, but I am continually irritated how Michael never councils communication or compromise.

Not all wives equate their husband’s wise caution (who decided it was was wise? just because it took long?) and lack of open passion with unspirituality.  I think there’s a phrase for this, actually…still waters run deep. While a man’s stoicism will sometimes be aggravating, it does not always equal trouble.

Oh, and thanks, Michael, for making another crazy-woman-period reference.

To compound your problems, you may be married to the type of woman my wife calls a “Go-to Gal”. Other people have known to refer to them as bossy. Steady Men seem to be drawn to dominant women. I think in courtship Mr. Steady is not aggressive, so when some beautiful babe continually tries to get his attention, he is awed. Mr. Visionary would rebuke her, Mr. Command wouldn’t even like her, for he is attracted to gentle, quiet girls that posses a natural desire to serve; whereas Mr. Steady enjoys her aggressive interest in him.

Stop the cows. Look! Not all women are the same! He doesn’t actually say it, but he hints at it; which is a lot more than he’s done the whole book.  And again, there is nothing inherently wrong with the woman being dominant. But maybe I’m biased because I’m bossy. Or a woman. Or something.

I do think it’s true, though, that mild people often find spicier partners. (Sorry for the analogy; I’m blogging before breakfast) Perhaps that’s why there’s the phrase “opposites attract”.  In fact, one of the things my husband says attracted him about me was “how alive [I] was.”

I don’t like the insinuation that every “bossy” woman is aggressively throwing themselves at men, apparently hoping to land a steady they can rule over.  And I really don’t like the comparison Michael makes between the bossy, dominant woman, and Mr. Command’s gentle serving girl. Please, Michael, show your biases; you’re being far to subtle for us!

But this is a book dealing with marriage, so what happens after you say “I do”? She is still the aggressor, and you are still the guy that finds in interesting just to watch her in action, but now that she has won her man she has no challenges, and is not as ready to settle down as are you. Trouble is brewing!

Are there that many men surprised that their wives personality mostly remains the same after the wedding? I know a few couples that have been shocked that the personality changed after they got the ring, but being blind-sighted by the same personality one enjoyed enough to propose sounds a bit…silly.  And I’ll say it again “There is nothing wrong with the woman being the aggressor!”  Also, there is no correlation between a dominant wife and not wanting to settle down. I don’t even know why he made that point, except as a possible scare tactic.

In a tug-of-war between husband and wife, the Command Man commands his wife to drop her end of the rope and join him. The Visionary hooks his end of the rope to a tractor, and Mr. Steady just ties the rope to his butt and sits on it. Some women would much rather argue with a Command Man and pull against a tractor than to pull against a seemingly indifferent stationary object.

I honestly hope my husband doesn’t consider our marriage a “tug-of-war”. Just because we have differing personalities doesn’t mean that our entire relationship is a battle. And honestly, none of these rope scenarios sound happy for either party. Either the wife is being bullied, dragged, or ignored; and the husband is domineering, inconsiderate, or indifferent. Is this really the best way to paint pictures of marriage? I don’t think so.

In fact, I think coloring marriage and relationships as adversarial—warlike even!—is a great way to cause disharmony. It leads to the mentality that men and women are two different species that can’t get along. Guess what? They can! It really happens. Despite differences in temperament, pasts, or lifestyles, people really can get along and have mutually fulfilling relationships-without the war.

Because really, why be married if everything is a battle?

About Libby Anne

Libby Anne grew up in a large evangelical homeschool family highly involved in the Christian Right. College turned her world upside down, and she is today an atheist, a feminist, and a progressive. She blogs about leaving religion, her experience with the Christian Patriarchy and Quiverfull movements, the detrimental effects of the "purity culture," the contradictions of conservative politics, and the importance of feminism.


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