Well, he sure gets points for consistency. I suspect he’s constantly baffled and frustrated by the failure of the world to live up to the gendered scripts running in his head. I mean, for God’s sake, HE’S following them! He attempts to be the dashing, noble, protective, dominant, aggressive, macho, sex-obsessed dude that he’s scripted to be, so why aren’t the women he’s interested in adhering to their proper submissive, passive, biddable scripts?
Why, for example, do they recoil when he gets a little frustrated with them and maybe raises his voice and sometimes throws things and [okay, just that once] sometimes slaps them? Men are aggressive, passionate…that’s how they express themselves. It’s okay, nothing serious. He never really hurts them; women are just kind of whiny and fragile that way. Look at ’em cross-eyed and they’ll start crying. It’s just a momentary storm; it’ll blow over. His mom knew that; after his dad’s tantrums, she was always there like nothing happened, trying to soothe him. ‘Do you want a drink? Why don’t you cool off in your room for a bit?’
No such luck from the girls he dates. They start off so excited and charmed — they love the flowers and the doors opened for them — but get a little pissed off at them, and suddenly they’re all about their "boundaries" and "personal space" and "hurt feelings." What hurt feelings? Can’t a guy express himself, blow off a little steam? You know what hurts HIS feelings? When he does all this stuff — listening to her favorite music, watching the movies she likes, giving her presents [what is it with women and stuffed animals and mermaids and unicorns?], making dinner for her, doing all those "active listening" noises and nods when she goes on about what she did all day — and, after all that work, he thinks it’s time for some action. Not only does he really want it [because who wouldn’t with a pretty girl?], but he also thinks he kind of deserves it.
And she says NO. He tries to tell her that he’s been waiting a long time, that he really likes her, that he’s really turned on, that a man has needs, but she just comes up with excuses, excuses, excuses. She has a stomach ache, she says, so he asks if the steak was bad. She says no, she just doesn’t feel like it tonight. He asks if she doesn’t like the candles; she says she does, but she just feels as if they’re moving too fast. What the hell? They’re all into it at the beginning; he really feels a connection, that lightning feeling in the beginning when they first look at you, kind of surprised that chivalry isn’t dead, and their eyes and their whole faces and their whole beings just kind of open up, and you know right then that you’ve gotten to them and you can get inside them. THAT’S love at first sight, and you’re supposed to ride it, plunge into it, FALL in love… Don’t give a shit about how crazy it seems; just go with it…spin through the flowers and the silly poetry and the sleepless nights and the thousand phone calls. And then she stops…she forces herself to stop falling in love, closes herself off from him, denies that she wants him. She says NO now, but she’s been saying yes all along.
Can you blame a guy for listening to her heart instead of her words? Can you blame a guy for trying to take it to another level? Can you blame a guy for pushing? Can you blame a guy for taking what he knows is there?
Well, CAN you?