Monday, April 30, 2007

On Desperation

Megan writes:
So, it is particularly cruel for you to tell me that this desperation, which is more painful for me than for anyone else, is simultaneously the reason I can’t have what I am desperate for. I didn’t WANT this bind to start with and I refuse to feel like I am doing something wrong. It is not wrong to want children, even to be a woman and want them very, very much. So if some men think my urgency for kids is unappealing, F**K THEM.
This is too bad. Out here in flyover country, men want kids too . . . or at least recognize that it is normal for women to want them, and their expectations are conditioned accordingly.

But it also struck me as something very similar to what I thought and said back when I was single, and not wanting to be, about all the times I was told or was told about some other young man who was single while not wanting to: "don't be desperate." Aside from the paradox, that by the very act of wanting a girlfriend/fiance/wife meant that I couldn't have one, was this: since when did wanting to meet a young woman that I would like and who would like me back, courting for a while, and then getting married become somehow abnormal, somehow anything other than an honorable and moral objective for a 23 - 24 year old, professionally employed man to have?

So I'm sympathetic to Megan.

And I also know the answer to my own question. The label of "desperation" has less to do with anything that its bearer actually says or does than it has to do with the reactions of the women around him. He is "desperate" because the women don't want him.

1 comment:

Amanda said...

I'm female but if I was dating a guy who told me he was desperate to have children I'd think it was unappealing too. Then he'd only want me to fulfill a particular purpose rather than for myself. Being perceived as a source of sperm or a womb is most unattractive.