Dear Ms. Behaved,
I realize that you’re a “feminist she-woman man hater,” and it is understandable after I read your memoir. I’d just like to ask “what’s wrong with wanting a prince charming?” My friends and I belong to a book club and recently read 50 Shades of Grey Some of my friends and I agree that there was nothing wrong with accepting gifts from men in exchange for fulfilling sexual fantasies. I’d like to live in a fancy house while wearing expensive clothing and dining on fine cuisine. If having sex with a hot guy will give me that, why not? Other people at the table considered it sending women back to the dark ages when they were considered a piece of meat. I guess I don’t really have a question, but I’d just like to say that women like you should just back off the rest of us who would be more than willing to “settle” for being taken care of.
Rebecca (North Carolina)
Easy there, Spark Plug! Let’s take it down a notch, shall we? I can promise you I am not a she-woman man hater. If that is the conclusion you came to from reading my memoir, I failed to reach you. My book was based on events in my life that I take sole responsibility for. It was because I didn’t listen to my intuition and made poor choices that I allowed myself to be led down an unhealthy path. I also acknowledge in the book that there were a couple of wonderful men in my life who helped me tremendously in finding my way out.
I am a feminist who also happens to believe that there is nothing wrong in wanting a Prince Charming… or Princess Charming if that is your preference. For me, being a feminist means women have choices to live their lives as they see fit. I see no difference in a woman wanting to run a major corporation or being a stay at home mom, so long as that is what she has chosen for herself. What I do constantly preach is that everyone should find what makes them happy in life and pursue it. If I’ve said it once, I’ll say it a million times, “You get one shot at this life, make it a good one.” That means different things for different people.
It might surprise you to know that in my own relationships I actually prefer more stereotypical male/female roles. I am currently in a “relationship” (I quote it because we are still in the new stages and haven’t defined what we are) with a man who lives out of state. I spend about three weeks out of the month staying with him, and then I go home for a period of time. While I am “living” with him, I cook dinner every night, do the laundry, housekeeping and grocery shopping. In return he works on my truck, does the yard work, all the heavy lifting and general repairs around the house. This works for us and I am happy taking on the traditional female role.
But here’s the flip side. I also continue to make my own money and support myself through my writing. I write this column and I am working on my next two books. I do this for two reasons; One, I love it, and two, at the end of the day I am responsible for my own financial well-being. What bothers me about your letter is the idea that you think exchanging sexual favors for gifts is “being taken care of.” It is not. And I don’t think it’s going to get you what you want. There is nothing wrong with enjoying the finer things in life and there are countless relationships that work with one person acting as the sole bread winner, but those are committed long term relationships. Sex with a hot guy is not a relationship and you have to be able to support yourself in the event Prince Charming jumps on his horse and rides off.
If you still desire to act out a fantasy, go for it! Get your groove on and be safe. Just remember that it is a fantasy. I think maybe you’ve confused a fictional tale with real life. I haven’t read The 50 Shades series, so I won’t speak about it, but considering the amount of copies they have sold, I can’t imagine E. L. James is out banging sexy strangers in the hopes that one of them might buy her a fancy house. She used her creativity to turn her fantasies into bestsellers. My hope for you is that you will follow your dreams and find your own success. That is the best gift you could give yourself.
Jonna is here to help you over the mid-week hump every Wednesday. Send your questions about love, relationships, life, and grabbing life by the balls to firstname.lastname@example.org. Read more of her posts here.