The term “emasculate” is plum strange. It’s often used in the context of a woman outmanning the man in question. Like if Danielle pays for Daniel’s Chipotle, Daniel may feel emasculated. If Betty Joe changes Billy Jim’s tires – emasculated. If Claire Bear benches more than T-Gainz – emasculated. But.. why? How? Shouldn’t masculinity be something within a man, that external forces cannot change?
This is especially confusing because there’s no equivalent term for women (is there?). If Daniel can change a diaper more efficiently than Danielle, she won’t feel “effeminated.” No lady I know gets resentful when any Jo-Jo can style hair, cook well, talk a lot, dress fashionably – or whatever other qualities are stereotypically female. Au contraire, most women I know praise those sort of qualities in the men they know and love.
How can anyone’s degree of any one trait change how much someone else characterizes that trait? If a man just happened to be as good or better at all the “womanly” things I’m good at, I would probably not marry him — for the sake of symmetry and balance, of course – but I really doubt I would resent him. And if he generally tried to downplay my womanliness.. he might be a d-bag*, but my femininity would escape unscathed. Yes? Yes?!
So why does a woman doing stereotypically manly things subtract manliness from a man, but a man doing stereotypically womanly things does nothing to change the womanliness of a woman?
Galloswag wants to know.
— EDITORIAL NOTES —
*I mean doo-doo bag. Simmer down.
FYI: one of my next few posts will also be about manliness because I’m strangely obsessed with the topic rn. But this is more of a ramble than an actual statement. STATEMENT TO COME.