- Livin' Outloud
- Alhambra by way of Long Beach, California, United States
- About me: Everyday I am evolving, everyday growing, trying to conquer the fears that keep me from embracing the unlimited possibilities. I am working at creating a loving relationship with myself, making no apologies for who I was or who I am becoming. This is my life outloud.
Saturday, September 5, 2009
Men versus Women
On Sunday, August 23, 2009, my sis-in-love, Valarie, invited me to explore why I prefer men over women as friends, stating (and I paraphrase) that if I don’t resolve or come to an understanding I would end up rejecting an intimate/quality relationship with her or any woman who would want the same. Now mind you, this conversation doesn’t surface until I’m getting out of the car at the airport. We’ve just spent 4 days together—celebrating our fiftieth year on the streets of uptown New York and Pennsylvania—so why on earth would this conversation not surface until now?? If anyone could help me understand “why?” and help me process through my preference of men over women it would be her.
I told her I didn’t know why the preference. She said (as only she can), “If you did know, what would it be?” What the hell??? I had to repeat her question aloud: “If I did know, what would it be.” I guess she could hear in my voice that I didn’t know how to begin answering that question. So she asked another one (as only she would): “What’s the first thing that comes to mind?” “Hmmm.. . Attention!” I belted, and I continued to share that it could have something to do with not getting it (attention) from daddy. She agreed adding the lack of attention from my brothers as well. It didn’t sound or feel right to use this as the possible “reason” for my preference, and she noted that’s why I concluded that I didn’t know. She says often time we use that excuse (“I don’t know!”) when what we’re thinking doesn’t sound or feel like it is or should be the “right” answer. I agree. But I think we also use that excuse when the answer is so right that we don’t want it to be the answer—it’s too embarrassing or painful. Or it evokes an emotion we don’t want to overcome. . . takes us to a place in our souls that we don’t want to be.
As I got out of the car she made it clear that she wanted to stand for our relationship, and was going to call me on it. . . but only for so long. Then she would stop. . .stop if there is no reciprocity. I get it. I understand. But my fear? I don’t know that we agree on what the relationship will look like for us. What are the expectations? She knows that as a result of my experience through Landmark I’m transforming, but I’ve only walked in my transformation as “Janice on vacation”. I haven’t added work and church and my day to day routines yet. That piece won’t filter in until September. So what if I fall off the “transformation” wagon. What then? And now we’re leaving each other with only the phone to uncover it all. Damn.
On the flight home it was all I could think about. Why do I prefer men over women as friends?? I’m sure it does have something to do with attention—I guess I like having all of it on me. I get what I want (from men) and most times (in the relationship) I get to be right. I run my racket and getting what I want becomes the payoff (revelation gained from attending Landmark). And I can have an intimacy with men that I can’t have with women. Not sex, i n t i m a c y!! And that piece of it may stem from what took place in my childhood—I was taught how to be sensuous with a man—with my body, my hands, and lips—without engaging in sex. . . or rather intercourse.
And men like that attention. . . which in turn gets me their full attention. I’m able to hold hands and lay close and feel like or be treated like a female, a woman. I’m protected and adored. I’m hugged and loved on. So we both benefit. I don’t have to concern myself with engaging in or holding a stimulating conversation—which I feel is my weakness. Conversation becomes secondary. I capitalize on what I’m good at. . .and what I’m good at I can only do with men. . . so men become my preference.
With women. . . hmmm, women. I don’t know. I really don’t know. At this point Valarie would ask, “What’s the first thing that comes to mind?” And my response would be, “Competition.” But that’s as far as I can go right now. I can’t think about any more right now.