Anyone who rejects that women are smarter than men need only look at the recent statistics for students enrolled in the graduate schools of business, law, medicine, and dentistry. Women now outnumber men in those graduate schools and will soon hold the majority in those lofty careers. Does this make women smarter? I don’t see how anyone can deny this. They came from way behind fifty years ago, and are currently leaving men in their dust, proving that all they ever needed was an equal opportunity.
Women endure physical pain in a manner men could never consider. Think childbirth. And single mothers are raising half of the children in America by themselves, while holding down full-time careers. Are women tougher than men? Clearly they are. There are few jobs any longer that require brute strength alone, and even physically challenging careers in firefighting and police work are being handled capably by women.
But women’s greatest power is in their enormous emotional strength that they call upon when necessary. They can capably provide the love and emotional care their children need, and support their husbands’ needs simultaneously. They aren’t afraid of their emotions, and, unlike men, don’t hide from them out of fear or ignorance. They know how to deal with their feelings as they arise. Men who think women are weak because they cry more easily than they do are delusional. Women cry to release their pent-up emotions, instead of holding them in and blowing up. Men have yet to learn this simple lesson.
What does all of this mean to men? It means that its way past late for men to respond to the deafening wake-up call and become fully embodied men. That means becoming men who are confident in their manhood and can express, feel, and control their emotions. It means men who don’t feel threatened by women, and mistreat them because of their own inadequacies. It means that men are now the ones behind the eight-ball, and sadly, many still haven’t figured that out. Men are being left behind in so many arenas that they are becoming angry instead of resourceful, which makes no sense whatsoever.
Men used to wield all of the power in relationships and were responsible for the day-to-day, general well-being of the women they were in relationships with. That was a burden that men didn’t handle very well, and that women decided to assume. Women have beaten a path towards success and independence that is faster than any social change I can recall. They accomplished all of this with a minimal amount of fuss and noise.
How could women have achieved this if they weren’t smarter, tougher, and more emotionally centered, and what are the lessons men can learn from women? Men who fail to answer the wake-up will be left holding the bag of discontent and loneliness. Women are clever enough to realize that waiting for men to come around is going to take too long. Many now view men in the same way men used to see them, as necessary sexual partners with little else to offer.
Men should feel threatened, at least enough to change their dysfunctional behavior. Fathers who don’t spend time with their children damage them because they deny their children the most important aspect of fatherhood, emotional support. Fathers who cheat their children by withholding child-support because they don’t like the notion of supporting their ex-wives too, have to be plenty stupid, or in serious denial, to believe that baloney. Men can’t choose whether or not to be fathers. If you have a child, you’re a father, end of story.
Men are portrayed as jokes on television, and while it’s grating for me to watch, it’s not entirely out of the realm of reality. Most of the male dysfunctional behavior that causes so much pain to everyone, including men, is related to their inability to respond appropriately to their own feelings. Angry men aren’t angry at women; they just take their anger out on women because women are convenient and physically smaller. Imagine a man trying to rage against a male friend. How long would that friend be willing to tolerate that dysfunctional behavior before he said good-bye and good luck?
While women have been working hard together in small groups to find their places in the world, men have been sitting on the sidelines, watching helplessly as they’re being left in the dust. Men should be angry, but not with women. Men should be angry at their own emotional laziness, which causes them so much unnecessary pain and suffering. Men who continue on a path of emotional laziness will wake up one day to find that not only are women in charge, but that their services are no longer required.
The solution is for men to begin a dialogue with each other that’s entirely directed at their lack of an emotional center. I’ve worked with men for over twenty years, and I’ve seen how easy it is for men to engage each other in this dialogue. The results are men who aren’t afraid of their feelings, and who know how to use them appropriately to work through their issues. I hope I don’t see a time when men are permanently left behind, but all indications are that I might.