Point Of View
Bitter Women= Battered Men
by Jake Housen
The other night after watching the game, a few of the fellows decided to grab something to eat. At dinner, the topic segued from basketball to women to complaining. One complaint was unanimous. The ideal woman was hard to find and a well-balanced woman is harder to find. Through various encounters with a number of women, I’ve found most to be very bitter towards black men. The reasons were varied, but those I met had a tale of self-inflicted woe. Unfortunately, they didn’t see themselves as bitter.
My friend Maria is a good example. She’s angry with a serious hostility toward men. Her resentment, in general, has become a part of her character. Her manner is often profane at best. She doesn’t need a man, she says. They’re just not worth the effort. Maria dated Joe for five years, who by her own admission told her repeatedly, that he was not interested in marriage or a monogamous commitment to one woman. According to Maria, he dated other women openly and encouraged her to do the same.
However, she did not do the same. She was hopelessly bound because of her emotional tie and her desire to have what she wanted. She became devoted to him and his program. She grasped for the tender moments and held on for dear life. She dedicated her existence to changing his mind through hope, devotion and drastic measures (fake pregnancies, etc.) In the sixth year, Joe announced that he was marrying a woman he ‘d only been dating three months. Maria admitted to contemplating suicide and murder simultaneously. She felt deceived and violated. But was she? No.
Maria knowingly practiced self-deception and became bitter as a result. She was deceived by her own desires and tunnel vision. Joe had told Maria often that he loved her, but love did not carry the same meaning for him as it did for her. To her, it meant emotional commitment in spite of his actions. To him, it was a momentary expression of his feelings. Joe was a free bird who functioned without restraint. His behavior and attitude were sanctioned by her acceptance of it. The impact of his marriage to another woman is still prevalent in Maria’s life eight years later. She wears her resentment of all men on her sleeve. Therefore, she emits bitterness from a self-inflicted wound.
Sadly, there are thousands of women like Maria who are bitter because of what they term as emotional abuse. This is not to say, that women are not being victimized in relationships by men. Many are and are justified at least temporarily, in housing feelings of bitterness, because of deceptive practices that have actually taken place. However, these same observations indicate that much of the bitterness shared by many women could be reduced if there were a more concentrated focus on seeing things as they really are and a discarding of the powerless approach often used by women in attempting to change a man, which is indeed a fruitless effort.