ON MEN AND WOMEN, THE TWO SIDES OF A COIN
“Women do not really know as much about men as they think they do. They have developed, over the centuries, considerable expertise in the techniques of adapting to men, but that is not the same as truly understanding them. Women often labor under the delusion that life is really pretty easy for men, at least when compared to their own lot, and have no idea what a complicated struggle is really involved in the transition from male childhood to real manhood. They have no idea of the long arduous road that must be traveled by the male child who must separte himself from the original, indispensable, nurturing mother and venture forth into a way of experiencing himself that is not her way and that he cannot learn from her either by example or by instruction. Considered in these terms, it is easy to see that a girl must learn to be like her mother, while a boy must learn to be different from her without this difference deteriorating into either antagonism or fear.”-Robert A. Johnson, Understanding Masculine Psychology
“There’s evidence that some women are now functioning very much like men, doing what men do, seeking the same kinds of short-term goals that men have been taught to seek. There is also evidence that discussions go differently when there are women involved, that there are changes of tone and attention….
“We talk now about the conflict that women have between work and the home, and how terrible it is to be torn in two directions. But women have always been torn. We forget that when a woman who’s been married for a period of time gives birth to a baby, she has to serve two masters. She has to respond to two different kinds of needs….
“This is what it is to be a woman. And this is what it is to keep a household going, to have multiple skills, to deal with transitions, to deal with the health of the whole. There is a sense in which women have retained the capacity to be generalists, to live in an ecology in which there is more than one life, and you have to balance them off….
“You know what people say about women–that they’ve easily distracted, and that success has to do with focusing on specific goals. But what if the health of the world depends on the same kind of capacity that allows you, while you’re feeding one child, to see that the other child is reaching up and about to pull a cooking pot of hot liquid on his head? This capacity to see out of the corner of your eye, and care about the health, not just of one child, but of three or four and a husband and other members of the family-that is the beginning of the capacity to care about the health of a multitude of nations, or an environment of many species.” -Mary Catherine Bateson, Bill Moyers, A World Of Ideas
A Sweet Enhancement
“Young people are incrasingly preoccupied with their capacity to love as well as be loved…..Sexual relations….come about less frequently from a desire on the part of the boys to present trophies to their own male vanity than to secure themselves against the anxiety that they many not be truly and deeply loved, or capable of love. Many men and women agree that when physical sex is part of a postive, caring relationship, it ‘sustains, supports, and heals in the individual life journey.'”-David Riesman