Men are important, but women rule

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Susan Deitz

DEAR SUSAN: The media are buzzing about maleness and its decline. From where I sit, men hold the important positions and are paid the important figures. Are men becoming less and less important in society. Any thoughts about this? -- From the Single File blog

DEAR BLOGGER: My initial brainwave happened to be deeply negative. (Actually, "Are you kidding?" was my gut reaction.) Just look at all the men in politics, in big Wall Street brokerage houses. Go look for a female in any one of the decision-making areas of our society and the pickings will be slim.

But then again, went my thinking, those are the dollars, the paychecks, the monetary signs of male dominance. What about the women at home, the spouses of these obscenely paid chaps? Who makes the really important decisions in the bedroom and the family room? When you come down to it, the little woman isn't so small when it comes to family life; it turns out she is the decider. In fact, when the woman isn't the biggest influence in the family unit, things don't go so well. In the bedroom vs. boardroom choice, my money's on you-know-who -- in her flimsiest nightie and highest mules. Men earn the dough, but we knead it into a life.

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DEAR SUSAN: The man I love talks about space all the time. Not Mars or Jupiter but here on Earth. He is constantly telling me he needs his space, time away from me. What's wrong with this picture? -- From the Single File blog


DEAR BLOGGER: As I mosey around this old world, I'm hearing that refrain, louder than ever and in different forms. For instance, there is the woman who sees her man only on weekends, confiding to me that being with him two consecutive days every week is enough; she wants to spend time alone or with her girlfriends. She's committed to him, and he to her, but part of the time, she wants to make her own schedule of things to do and people to see. Or not. She treasures her time alone and is upfront about it.

The unmarried reading this might just have a great laugh about the contrariness of it all -- singles sighing for company, the cozily coupled craving just a tad more alone time. The longing I'm seeing all around me is for more space, more alone time, more freedom. Your man wants more time with his best buddy, himself? Be the understanding woman in his life who graciously encourages him to space his togetherness with you. It can only improve the strength of his respect for you as well as your time together.

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