bitchy wife header

Bitchy Wife

Bitchy Woman

Do you bitch at your husband and would like to know how not to be a bitchy wife or how to stop being a bitchy wife? Are you married to one and want to know ways how to deal with a bitchy wife? I wish I could wave a magic wand and make it all better for you, but lacking that, I can refer you to a man who knew more about it than anyone: Solomon with one thousand wives and concubines addresses this issue a few times in Proverbs. Tacked on near the end of Proverbs are the words of Agur who remarks on a wife not socialized for marriage, third on his list of four causes of stress to society. I'm going to look at how that manifests itself in our current society. Understanding and being aware of a problem is the first step to any cure.

Four Menaces to Society, by Earl Gosnell
Part 3, A Bitchy Wife

(Proverbs 30:21,23) "For the earth is disquieted, and it cannot bear: For an odious woman when she is married."

For someone who prefers a more visual treatment of this proverb—and for all that, my study doesn't cover every aspect of it anyway—, I recommend seeing Sex and the City the movie, and following my review, how I treat the same subject there. Or see my review of Clash by Night for related material.


Four Menaces to Society
Part 3, Women Not Socialized for Marriage
by Earl S. Gosnell III

We are examining various ways our whole society can get stressed out, based on, (Prov. 30:21-23) "For three things the earth is disquieted, and for four which it cannot bear: Now, we want to look at the situation of an odious woman being married, a bitchy wife. How can that stress out society? Well, we do have a good example in scripture:
(Esther 1:10-22) "On the seventh day, when the heart of the king was merry with wine, he commanded Mehuman, Biztha, Harbona, Bigtha, and Abagtha, Zethar, and Carcas, the seven chamberlains that served in the presence of Ahasuerus the king, To bring Vashti the queen before the king with the crown royal, to shew the people and the princes her beauty: for she was fair to look on. But the queen Vashti refused to come at the king's commandment by his chamberlains: therefore was the king very wroth, and his anger burned in him. Then the king said to the wise men, which knew the times, (for so was the king's manner toward all that knew law and judgment: And the next unto him was Carshena, Shethar, Admatha, Tarshish, Meres, Marsena, and Memucan, the seven princes of Persia and Media, which saw the king's face, and which sat the first in the kingdom;) What shall we do unto the queen Vashti according to law, because she hath not performed the commandment of the king Ahasuerus by the chamberlains? And Memucan answered before the king and the princes, Vashti the queen hath not done wrong to the king only, but also to all the princes, and to all the people that are in all the provinces of the king Ahasuerus. For this deed of the queen shall come abroad unto all women, so that they shall despise their husbands in their eyes, when it shall be reported, The king Ahasuerus commanded Vashti the queen to be brought in before him, but she came not. Likewise shall the ladies of Persia and Media say this day unto all the king's princes, which have heard of the deed of the queen. Thus shall there arise too much contempt and wrath. If it please the king, let there go a royal commandment from him, and let it be written among the laws of the Persians and the Medes, that it be not altered, That Vashti come no more before king Ahasuerus; and let the king give her royal estate unto another that is better than she. And when the king's decree which he shall make shall be published throughout all his empire, (for it is great,) all the wives shall give to their husbands honour, both to great and small. And the saying pleased the king and the princes; and the king did according to the word of Memucan: For he sent letters into all the king's provinces, into every province according to the writing thereof, and to every people after their language, that every man should bear rule in his own house, and that it should be published according to the language of every people."

When queen Vashti grabbed too much power, it threatened to disrupt the peace of the whole kingdom. We have various women's rights movements today which meander into family life.

The Women's Lib Movement is a product of the restlessness of our time. When American women got the vote, their sexual roles were sorely disoriented.

But they have the vote, and that's that. Many women are casualties of the disaster. Instead of lobbying for passage of the Equal Rights Amendment, these disturbed souls should be lobbying for the repeal of the 19th amendment. That is where the mischief started. ...

One thing is for sure: It is unlikely that anything American women have discovered about sex in the past ten years is likely in the long run to disturb the accumulated wisdom of thousands of years and hundreds of cultures. The sexual roles are as natural as the foliation of trees or the formation of rock. This is a position the Libber finds it difficult to accept. None of the libbers has quite come out to say that heterosexuality is a perversion; but that is surely the drift of much of their talk. ...

British anthropologist Ashley Montagu in a new book called The American Way of Life argues that the ladies, though still marvelous, are rightly mixed up about their roles in life because they went a bit too far when they battled for the vote and equal rights in this country.

Dr. Montagu says that women in this country have undoubtedly made good in areas where they would never have thought of entering a half-century ago. The price, though, has been what he calls "psychic masculinization — the tendency to identify themselves with males, to think and act as males, and aspire to masculine roles with resulting turmoil and confusion."

As a consequence and corollary of all this, there has been the feminization of their males, Dr. Montagu says. He adds, "American women in great quantities go to their psychotherapists and complain that their husbands are not as they would have them be, he-men. American men visit their therapists and complain that their wives are not as they would have them be, she-women."

Millions of women nowadays do not know, and never will know, what a gas it is to be a girl, even a confused and put-upon girl of the Jane Austen or Emily Bronte school. The pleasures of pursuit and coquetry (yes, even the pleasures of purdah) are gone as the snows of '66.

Things are better for women in Europe, Dr. Montagu says. "Her life is focused principally on the happiness of her husband and children and this is likely to be satisfying to everyone involved."...

Women's Lib is a radical, even revolutionary, movement which grew out of the radical brouhaha's of the 60's. The Women's Rights Movement is conservative, has a long and distinguished history, and has been responsible for the Equal Rights Amendment, adopted by Congress a year ago, and now before the States for ratification. ...

The chief U.S. Senate opponent to the measure, oddly enough, is that distinguished civil libertarian, Sen. Sam J. Ervin. When the measure was debated in the Senate, Ervin said in an emotional speech that it would "repeal the handiwork of God" who created men and women differently, and would destroy Constitutional government by in effect outlawing existing legislation that recognized these differences.

The Women's Rights Movement asks for equality under the law and for freedom of choice for a woman to decide what she does with her life. It does not tinker with the institution of marriage, or impeach the institution of the family, or seek to alter the ordained, and indeed natural, role of the sexes. When the distinction between the two movements is understood by one and all, women's rights will be constitutionally assured.

—Charles McCabe, Tall Girls Are Grateful104

We will attempt to study freedom of choice in part 4 of this paper; suffice it to say that even the moderates are not necessarily family friendly.

The moderate feminists do not admit any basic hostility to the family. They say they want to change it only to make it stronger. But the same "moderate" leaders who in one breath piously aver their support for marriage, in the next testify before Congress in favor of "more equitable" tax treatment for single people. If one observes politely that tax treatment for singles is far more favorable in the United States than in any other industrial nation, one is met with incredulity. If one points out that, in general, better terms for singles mean higher burdens for families, the feminists just raise the pitch of their voices and proceed with further poignant description of the plight of the unmarried. In fact, the intensity of their concern for this economically favored group is one of the most revealing aspects of their program. Only the willfully single, moreover, will appreciate their concern. Other beneficiaries either aspire to marriage or recognize its primacy among our social relations.

On this issue, the moderate feminist position thus represents a rather extreme minority view. At a time when the real need of tax policy is to strengthen family finances, these women would weaken them. But such perversity should not surprise us. It is characteristic of the entire moderate agenda and is well exemplified in the "Bill of Rights" promulgated by the National Organization for Women (NOW).

This "historic document of feminism" consists of proposals, including abortion, equal pay, and daycare, that are accepted by the entire movement and in several instances have been enacted by Congress and endorsed by both political parties. Because the positions are so likely to become law, they represent the real cutting edge of the movement. Far more than the appeals for revolution or lesbianism, these proposals will shape our national future. Yet there is scarcely a single one that is sound or desirable. Nearly all would subvert our most essential institutions and relationships.

—George F. Gilder, Sexual Suicide105
There is, fortunately, some awareness of this problem.
Some men, including those who are neither rich nor powerful, distrust a social movement (especially in its more radical expressions) that advocates socialism or seeks to abolish traditional marriage, family, and parenthood. Further, for some men, feminism threatens an important basis of their status and self-respect: their masculinity. Men who have been socialized to value strength and dominance understandably feel uneasy about the feminist notion that they can also be gentle and warm.

Some women, as well, shy away from feminism. For example, women who center their lives around their husbands and children may consider feminism a threat to their most cherished values. From this point of view, feminism amounts to an effort to revise the law, the workplace, and the family — in short, to remake all of society — according to the radical political agenda of a few. Feminists, then, would dispose of the traditional values that have guided life and protected individual liberties in the United States for centuries. Additionally, some women believe that, in the process of recasting the conventional "feminine" spheres of life, including the home and the family, women will lose rather than gain power and personal identity.

—John J. Macionis, Sociology106

Even some of our more progressive women are drawing back.
There has been a lot of male bashing going on in the last quarter century. Some of it is deserved, as women fought to take some control over their own lives. We still see a lot of it in the movies where men are portrayed as the Darth Vaders of the Evil Empire. But as we achieve more equality, many women feel that it is time to stop treating men as the enemy.

Sherryl Connelly, in the New York Daily News, wrote an article entitled "Is Male-Bashing Right? Or Does It Just Keep Them in Their Place?" In the article she says, "We tend to stereotype when we feel a loss of control or where there is an element of unpredictability, which is a good enough definition of the relationship many females have to males. Stereotyping provides us with a ready sense of how to deal with an ambiguous situation." But she goes on to quote other commentators who say that such stereotyping is a form of male bashing. Although it temporarily relieves frustration or anger, it doesn't really serve women all that well in the long run. She quotes Gina Luria Walker, head of social sciences at the New School, who says: "That kind of humor can be corrosive—we're making ourselves angrier..... We're feeding each other self-righteousness."

—Carmen Berry & Tamara Traeder, Girlfriends Talk About Men107

The new woman has introduced a certain amount of stress into both the workplace and society. We hear enough comment on it. Although I find radio talk show host Rush Limbaugh woefully deficient on science when it comes to analyzing, say, the environment, he does make some valid points from time to time on social issues.

Anita Hill and the Sexual Harassment Issue

—Rush Limbaugh, The Way Things Ought to Be108
To me, this illustrates what the polls have conclusively shown. The vast majority of American women, 63 percent according to the polls, didn't believe Anita Hill and don't think sexual harassment is the most important issue of our time. Plus, they also think they can handle the situation themselves.

Helen Gurley Brown, the editor of Cosmopolitan magazine, wrote an op-ed piece for The Wall street Journal at the height of the Anita Hill frenzy. She made some valid points about sexual harassment must be clearly defined for there to be a legal problem. Otherwise, a lot of creative energy at the office would be stifled. She described a game called Scuttle, which was played at a radio station she had worked at forty-odd years ago. The object of the game was to chase a woman, catch her, and pull her panties off. Brown claimed the game was enjoyed by all concerned.

Feminism and the Culture War109

— Ibid., pp. 186, 190f, 192.
The truth is that although those in the leadership of the feminist movement, such as NOW, do not speak for anything close to the majority of women, they presumptively purport to represent their interests. "Their" interests are not the interests of the American female, but rather the political agenda of the feminist leadership, which is decidedly leftist.

These feminists had been conditioned to accept the whole feminist ideology, which went way beyond equal opportunity. The roles defined by nature for men and women had become clouded in their minds. This led to all kinds of confusion, suspicion, and distrust between the sexes.

Men and women eventually just didn't know how to function around each other. It degenerated to the point that men would wonder if they should open a car door for a woman. Men weren't sure if they should still walk on the outside of a woman as they went down a street. The confusion was running rampant. Chivalry had become synonymous with male chauvinism. Roles, defined by nature, were now obliterated and everybody was running around trying to be what they thought they should be, which was certainly everything but themselves. For a while it became sensitive to cry. It was a beautiful thing. After a few years of that, women started complaining that there were no real men anymore, so men stopped crying. It wasn't pretty. The feminist leadership vowed revenge and retreated to plot a new destructive and divisive strategy.

It's almost as if America went through its own Cultural Revolution in the 1970s and early 1980s. Everything went mad for about ten years, and only now are we seeing young people who now view those years as somewhat bizarre. But, of course, things aren't yet completely rational or back to normal. There are plenty of people who want to resurrect and supercharge the feminist Cultural revolution.

Men have not reconciled themselves to all of this. There's a lot of resentment out there against feminism. It's being forced on people. Changes that might happen naturally are being shoved down people's throats. It's not what most men want. It's not what most women want. Time magazine reports that 63 percent of American women reject the feminist label. Increasingly, feminist groups are viewed as a fringe element who, because they are incapable of assimilating into mainstream society, are exacting their revenge on it. They are trying to change society to make it conform to them, rather than accept the fact that they are not the mainstream.

Here's some thought provoking material written by a Ph.D. that adds a little more scholarship to an already good treatment:

Sex and Liberation

—Bernie Zilbergeld, Ph.D., Male Sexuality110
But there is another side to the [liberation] picture, one that has to be understood lest the opportunity for constructive change be lost in a sea of confusion and chaos. Sex roles and other societal institutions, no matter how harmful they are in some ways, perform useful and necessary functions. They provide the framework in which one can live a meaningful life; they supply the guidelines for thought, feeling, and action, and the standards by which to measure oneself. These guidelines ensure a predictable and orderly world, thereby giving a sense of security. These are not minor matters.

When institutions and values lose their influence, predictability and security are diminished. Nothing can be taken for granted. Issues that before had been ritualized and therefore made trivial now become subjects for thought, debate, and anxiety, with no clear guides for behavior.

A woman told this story about a man she knows. He had always performed small courtesies for women. One day a woman for whom he had opened a door in a large department store loudly lambasted him ("Don't you think I can open my own door, you pig?"), which was quite different from the smiles and thank-you's he was used to. He was embarrassed and gave serious thought to the matter. He decided that the new order was here and he would have to conform to it—no more courtesies. Things went fine until one day when he was roundly criticized for not offering a seat to a woman on a bus. He thought about this for some time and came to a conclusion: "There's no way of doing things right. If I act the way I was brought up to act, that's wrong. If I don't act that way, that isn't right either. I'm going back to being the same old asshole I've always been and I don't care if it's right or not."
Friends who work in restaurants have told us how often they overhear disagreements and arguments in couples, about who should pay the bill. When opening doors and giving up seats and paying for dates become subjects of debate and dissension, where it is no longer clear what is expected or who should do what, you know the old order is in trouble. And so are we all.

The world becomes a strange and frightening place when nothing can be assumed or predicted. A man used to know that sex would happen, if at all, when he wanted it to happen, because God knows women didn't initiate.

Let's return to another example a custom of courtesy for a gentleman to open the door for a lady. Women do a lot for men, and I suppose that's a way to show our appreciation. Some women who want to be regarded as our near equals consider this custom a put-down as they are usually able to open the door themselves, and they don't want us reinforcing the notion they are weak.

Genesis 3:16b tells us that men are not supposed to relinquish their control to women, so I have no real incentive to let women open their own doors so they can appear as strong as men. I do appreciate women and feel there is all too little I do to show it, so I'll open the door for her if I remember. The custom is not confined to opening doors only for ones wife, but there is a general appreciation shown here, just as women are not supposed to be our bosses, generally speaking.

For the sake of this illustration and example I divide women into four types, any of which may be encountered upon opening a door for an approaching woman. The first type is a woman who expects the courtesy of the door being held for her. She may or may not be weak, but she has put herself out and accepted with grace a role to please men, so it's the least we could do. If we forget, she doesn't complain, because she is the epitome of courtesy herself. The second category is a woman who although she doesn't necessarily expect men to hold doors open for her, nevertheless when they do, she accepts it as a courtesy and custom she is familiar with. The third category is the woman who may not be familiar with the custom of a gentleman opening a door, but she enjoys the attention when he does. The fourth category is the feminist. She puts a motivation onto the gentlemanly action, that of trying to say she is too weak to open the door herself: part of an overall effort to keep her from her supposed God given place in control of men, by saying she's too weak. And unlike the first category who is quiet when we fail to open a door for her, this fourth category will speak up, although in my experience of opening doors objections are few and far between. A lot of men have been intimidated by the movement and won't hold doors any more, to the disservice to category-one women.

Trying to give women economic parity with men means sexual integration.

Throughout man's history, and above all, among primitive peoples, work groups have always been sexually differentiated. Men work together and women work together. But we rarely hear, either in history or in cultural anthropology, of work groups of mixed sex. Men hunt and women tend the village. Men build boats and women grow yams. In Europe women have traditionally milked cows, in America men; but on neither side of the Atlantic has milking been done by sexually mixed groups.
—Peter F. Drucker, Management111
That's how it's always been done, but now men and women are glommed together in the workplace. It used to be that an employer's responsibility was to have categories of work for men, and some for women. He was to mind his own business if co-workers got together socially and only intervene in extreme situations where he had to. Now he puts them all together and feels he can intervene in any situation no matter how minor, according to the whims of the current politically correct thinking. What else would you call a policy of "zero tolerance for sexual harassment"? The employer was never given the task of educating people how to treat with the opposite sex. Look at the list.
Who can lay down the rules?—Physicians, teachers, ministers and parents are often called upon to establish definite rules for the conduct of the unmarried. When such questions come up they must be answered freely and honestly, but before they can be so answered, the instructor must know what he is talking about. The whole subject of sexual science has been so neglected, its essentials have been so clouded in mystery and modesty, that not one man or woman in ten actually does know what he is talking about when he attempts to give advice.
—J.L. Nichols, A.M., Safe Counsel112

Employers are not on that list, and just because one is on the list does not mean he knows what he is talking about. It's up to parents, teachers, ministers and physicians to instruct the unmarried about relations with the opposite sex; the employer is not to get involved except in extreme cases.
To take on tasks for which one lacks competence is irresponsible behavior.

An institution, and especially a business enterprise, has to acquire whatever competence is needed to take responsibility for its impacts. But in areas of social responsibility other than impacts, right and duty to act are limited by competence. ...

What the limits of competence are depends in part on circumstances. If a member of a climbing team develops acute appendicitis in the high Himalayas and is almost certain to die unless operated on, any medical man in the group will operate, even though he may be a dermatologist who has never done a single operation in his life. The dermatologist, though a qualified physician, will be considered irresponsible and vulnerable to both a malpractice suit and a conviction for manslaughter, should he operate on an appendix in a place where a qualified surgeon, or even a general practitioner, are within reach.

Management therefore needs to know at the very least what it and its institution are truly incompetent for. Business, as a rule, will be in this position of absolute incompetence in an "intangible" area.

—Peter F. Drucker, Management113
It is the minister, the teacher, the parent and/or the doctor who instruct us how to behave with the opposite sex. The most an employer should do is assign tasks to men and women most suited to their sex, or at least where they will work with their own. That's about all they should do to minimize conflict because it's an intangible area where they are least competent. Of course, they should intervene in cases of outright harassment, which is like the dermatologist performing an emergency appendectomy on Mt. Everest; he had to. But down here in civilization relations develop at a routine pace and we have available counselors in the form of parents, doctors, teachers, and ministers. All the dermatologist is supposed to do is work on the skin. What the employer is supposed to do is keep things peaceful by having men and women in their appropriate fields.

I worked at a certain plant for twelve seasons. One year I was dating a coworker. Our lunch hours were staggered, and they were strict about punctuality, so she had to hurry back to work at the end of our lunchtime date while I went in the opposite direction to go get my own lunch. One afternoon she made to hurry off as if forgetting our kiss goodbye, so I had to hurry after her. She just craved attention and that made her day.

A female head supervisor witnessing that final act informed the assistant plant manager who called me into his office out of a concern for sexual harassment. When they couldn't pin anything on me, they found an excuse to fire her.

She had gone to the same church denomination all her life that I was raised in. In our high school youth group, our youth minister had led discussions on dating behavior. When the question came up whether we should kiss our dates goodbye, the answer was to go for it. I don't suppose this girl's religious instruction was all that different from mine. We clicked just fine. She needed some attention that I was willing to give her. She was my girlfriend and as such was aware of my "purpose and intent," as it were, in pursuing her for the goodbye kiss.

Together with the energy required to initiate, sustain, and complete a movement, the other factors which help constitute the total also add — in some undetectable way — to send forth what may be called a fragrance which attends each movement. This fragrance is really that which most of us refer to as "attitude," it carries the aroma of purpose and intent.

In matters of communication, this fragrance (attitude) is most often the major feature of the movement taken into account by one or the other of the communicants. If the fragrance is what they believe it ought to be, then the movement itself (the sequence of acts, the direction, etc.) may be almost anything. It is for this reason that friends may greet friends with movements which, when viewed by others, can easily be categorized as hostile or weird or unwarranted.

—Dominic LaRusso, The Shadows of Communication114
It is these intangible factors, which "add—in some undetectable way—to send forth what may be called a fragrance," that made this an area of incompetence for the employer who does better to leave it to the minister who was there for religious instruction. We were not on the Himalayas needing emergency care.

Neither was this some weird religious custom that should have thrown a chance onlooker.

Chicago Stories

—Dr. J. Fred MacDonald, "Those Films You Saw in School"115
Remember the old black-and-white educational films of the 1940's and 1950's, with titles like, "Dating Do's and Don'ts," and "Appreciating Our Parents?" Nowadays these films, known as "social guidance" or even "mental hygiene" films, are considered campy and simplistic, but in their day, they were the ideal teaching tool used in schools. ...

These products of Chicago filmmakers helped generations of American children grapple with serious personal issues. Were they idealistic?-yes. Impractical?-again, yes. But, did they offer wisdom? Indeed, these shorts contained distillations of practical Midwestern sensibility. Without being preachy, they offered models in proper living. Whether accepted or rejected by youthful viewers, the basic message of these Chicago filmmakers endures: how to find a comfortable balance between the demands of the individual and the society.

When Chicago Taught the Nation, By J. Fred MacDonald

At first glance, the school films made in Chicago in the 1940s and 1950s may seem hopelessly unrealistic. The Pleasantville world they project is predictable and therefore easily repairable. It is a Caucasian fantasy of small towns and suburbs where families are idealized, young people respect their teachers and elders, and towns are communities where friendly people constructively interact. Here, children strive to improve themselves: their studies, their manners, their interpersonal relationships. There is minimal disharmony in this worldview, except, of course, for the problem that prompted the making of the film-but, that incivility is resolved in about 10 minutes.

In retrospect, it all seems so campy: an awkward lunge for that goodnight kiss, a boisterous preacher excoriating nicotine, a girl warned against red nail polish because it would accentuate her stubby fingers. Amusing, yes-but not to be ridiculed. These films embodied the voice and value-system of American parents in the first decades of the baby boom. Using the inexpensive, ubiquitous medium of 16mm film, Coronet, Encyclopedia Britannica, and the other Chicago movie companies communicated that parental consensus, assisting American educators in their roles both as teachers of subject matter and as civic agents operating in loco parentis. To be commercially attractive to schools and libraries throughout the nation, school films in the 1940s and 1950s could not challenge social mores. They were not instruments of social transformation. These films would change only if and when American society changed—and that would have to emerge from debate within the society itself.

Still, despite their simplistic contexts, school films communicated socially-responsible messages. And these messages are still being taught in homes and schools many decades later. What parent does not want a dating daughter treated with respect by her escort? Children still require instruction in proper table manners and the fundamentals of good grooming. The drug problem has only worsened since the 1950s requiring even greater adult intervention than the old films proposed. "Stop, look, and listen before you cross the street" or "teenicide" may sound amusingly quaint today, but abuse the rules of the road as a pedestrian or driver and you have a good chance of being struck by an automobile.

So, laugh at their superficial gloss, as one might snicker at clothing styles worn in earlier times. But beneath the surface, much is unchanged. Laughing at school films from our youth does not mean they were wrong-or that we have solved the problems they recognized. It does not mean that society in the middle of the last century was "square" and today we are "way cool." Style changes, but social dilemmas endure. And so we are left with the realization that those school films did not—perhaps could not—solve the problems of their era; and that we must fashion our own style in addressing most of those same problems because we have seen the past and it is us. One issue of Ladies Home Journal circa 1949 ran a piece on "What Makes a Perfect Teen-ager?" which included a photo-demo of "The Perfect Good-Night Kiss" timed at "Ten seconds—not too hard, not too long," a description that would be hard to improve on.

Another person delegated to give instruction is a parent. Our crews were milling about one day waiting for our boss to show up with our assignments when one of the female new hires came over to ask me to explain the ropes. I obliged, answering all her questions. She was just out of high school and this was her first job. Furthermore, her family was not from American culture.

Our female crew boss coming upon the scene of us talking together started to berate me for bothering this young innocent girl who herself had to tell the boss it was okay.

I had known the girl, and her family, for years. I was friends with her dad. He was the translator in our church. I saw him and his family every Sunday. The daughter occasionally sat in the same row next to me. We went to the same church camp once a year. I'd eaten lunch with her dad many times. He had me over to his house for dinner with his family. He was trying to persuade me to teach an English speaking Sunday school class. For me to refuse to answer his daughter's legitimate questions about her new workplace would be to insult our friendship. What was the boss doing trying to interfere in our conversation, wondering if I were bothering the girl? This wasn't a Himalayan medical emergency, and the father's judgment is all that really mattered.

A fellow who used to be a mechanic at the plant—but took another job after they gave him a hard time—one day was pulled into the plant manager's office for a lecture about sexual harassment after he was seen staring at a woman (in a plant where there really is not much pleasing to look at). He was warned about it, so he transferred to job where they wouldn't bother him. He looked up harassment in the dictionary to find that he would have had to stare repeatedly for it to be that. He was a smart guy; his teachers had taught him how to look stuff up, and I cannot really fault his research.

    The eyes serve as the most common form of social touch; they provide the first information concerning other persons, including such things as sex, size, shape, age, colouring, status, and mood. But, Morris reminds us, "while we view others, they view us." 116 In this activity it is natural that,
From time to time ... our eyes meet, and when this happens the usual reaction is to look away quickly and break 'eye contact.'

If we have locked eyes with a stranger, then the rapid looking away is the typical reaction, as if to avoid the temporary invasion of privacy.
If one of the two strangers does continue to stare after the eye contact has been made, the other may become acutely embarrassed and even angry.
—Dominic LaRusso, The Shadows of Communication117
His teachers taught him well enough; there was no need for him to be called onto the carpet for something quite natural.

The instance that took the cake is what happened to a talkative fellow there. He sits with the guys in the lunchroom on breaks shooting the breeze. One day a girl walking by within earshot and feeling insecure heard him remark, "Dolly Parton has big tits." That bothered her, so she talked to some other women there who hated him and made up a story that he takes women out to his van in the parking lot for sex during lunch hour. They complained to management, he got called into the manager's office and used for a defense, "But Dolly Parton does have big tits." The manager agreed but that was not the point and the guy got suspended for a few days without pay for sexual harassment. He complained to the union that got involved and pointed out that he did not have a van; he did not even have a driver's license for that matter; the story was made up by girls who hated him. As for his lunchroom comment it was hardly worthy of punishment. A professional magazine118 might make remarks like: "Bottom Line: A fax-oriented receiver with more goodies than Dolly Parton." Guys speaking informally in the lunchroom aren't going to use professional speech—"Dolly Parton has lots of goodies"—but informal speech—"big tits."

For all that, the management would not reinstate him until the union threatened them with a million dollar law suit, and then they admitted they had gone too far.

I used to be chief engineer at a country radio station, so I know a little bit about Dolly Parton. She had her breasts surgically enlarged saying, "I know what you boys like." Seems to me that was her doctor's decision how far to go, and he made them big enough to draw attention so that in some groups of guys they would get mentioned. Going back to the four groups of female entertainers, Dolly Parton was in group one; she did something to enhance her breasts knowing that is what the boys like. A group two female entertainer is one who though she does not do anything to accentuate her bosom, nevertheless she is aware that is what the boys like and takes their comments in stride. A group three female entertainer is blissfully unaware of men's interest in that part of a woman's anatomy, but she appreciates all the attention she gets. Group four is like one of UO's "Girls of the Pac 10" in Oct., 1999, Playboy119, who said, "I wanted to be congratulated for good grades or my work ethic, not for how my cleavage looked."

The trouble they gave my friend is just another example of: "The Lib female really doesn't hate men; she hates the women men love." 120 It is really the doctor's ultimate decision how far he will go with cosmetic surgery to get men to admire the gal. In the old days at the plant men and women were segregated in the lunchroom and there is still a tendency to sit on their respective sides. This fellow always sits on the men's side. If we can respect the good doctor's discretion to make Dolly Parton look good enough to be talked about, then it is the fault of plant management for desegregating the lunchroom so the sexes mingle and sensitive women overhear something not meant for them.

We can accept the role of an employer to segregate sexes somewhat, to reassign someone where there is a power conflict with regard to someone he is having relations with, and to intervene in extreme cases of harassment, but this company's policy of "zero tolerance for sexual harassment" has pitted them against the doctors, teachers, parents, and ministers who up until now have been regarded as the ones to give sex instruction. The employers are incompetent in these intangible areas. Nor was my plant an isolated case.

If Anita Hill's testimony at the Clarence Thomas confirmation hearings seven years ago turned into a "teach-in" that mainstreamed much of the radical feminist ideology on sexual harassment, then the Clinton sex scandals may become a counter-teach-in that brings us a step closer to a more balanced view of the sexual dynamics between men and women in the workplace. ... The Thomas-Hill episode established a dominant paradigm of sexual harassment. In this paradigm, any manifestation of sexuality in the workplace, from romantic pursuit to racy humor, is abusive if someone decides — perhaps long after the fact — that it was "unwelcome." Even if they don't mean harm, men who "just don't get it" bear all the blame for sexual conflicts.

...Legal scholar and former Democratic strategist Susan Estrich declared that it was healthy for feminists to make the point that "not all women necessarily are telling the truth, and not every complaint deserves to be used in a way which destroys a man."

...Faludi writes that women who are true adults "acknowledge that sexual encounters are often muddy and fumbled affairs and that, in the case of sexual harassment, the response should be nuanced and in the scale of the offense," which sometimes means not reporting it.

...Judging from what talk show callers say, people may not approve of a middle-aged, married man carrying on with a young subordinate, but they find it at least as outrageous that a sexual harassment complaint should open the way to invasive questions about a consensual affair.

They are also quite willing to recognize that encounters subsequently labeled as "harassment" may involve complex, reciprocal dynamics.

...Most people ... surely recognize that women contribute a great deal to "sexualizing" the workplace. They probably are ambivalent about making it illegal for a man to pursue a female co-worker after she has told him she isn't interested: Too many marriages started that way.

Right now, there seems to be a great deal of public support for the view that an individual's noncoercive sexual behavior is no one else's business and that a lawsuit based on sexual misconduct should involve actual damage to the plaintiff.

—Cathy Young, "Groping Towards Sanity"121
Here is an analogy to help us understand the concept of limiting the authority of employers to regulate social behavior only in extreme situations. The violent crimes unit doesn't concern itself with vice squad issues.
       "You do go out with girls?"

Banks smiled almost bashfully. "Sure."

"Where do you meet them?"

"Oh ... around. You know."

"At the library?"

Banks laughed. "Do I look like the kind of guy hangs around a library?" he asked. Then his expression grew thoughtful. "I remember that library stuff," he said. "That's what they wanted to know about that other girl. Was that who you were talkin' about, the one that was at the library?"

"Terry Fillmore."

Banks shrugged. "I don't know no more now than I did then," he said. "I don't see why anyone would think I was hangin' around a library."

Loomis nodded. "Can you give me the names of some of the girls you've gone out with recently?" he asked.

Banks blinked, his bland expression turning wary. "What for?"

"Just routine."

"I don't know all their names."

"Just the ones you do know."

Banks looked down at the floor, and chewed at his lower lip. "There was a Jennifer," he said finally.

"Jennifer who?"

"Beats me. I never asked."

"You mean she was a prostitute?"

Banks shrugged.

"Are there any girls you've gone out with since you've been back in Wichita who weren't prostitutes?"

Banks squinted at Loomis as though trying to remember, then shook his head, smiling with faint embarrassment.

"I know it's illegal," he said. "But ..."

"You're on parole, aren't you?" Loomis asked.

"A man's gotta have an outlet," Banks said. "That's human nature."

Loomis moved a hand dismissively in the air. "I'm not your parole officer," he said, then asked, "Exactly how long have you been back?"

"Uh ... since November. I came here right after I got out."

—James Preston Girard, The Late Man122
Loomis is not concerning himself with so-called victimless crimes, and neither should the employer. If complained to, he should likewise wave his hand in the air and say, "I'm not your parole officer," but for parole officer substitute: who are the ones to confront an outlet of human nature which had no real victim. Let's take a for-instance here:
It was on Rachel's third flight that she was introduced to the "manual flush" routine so popular with cockpit crews where a new girl is concerned. It was a light flight and dinner had been served when the little light flashed in the galley indicating that service was needed in the cockpit. It's an unwritten rule that the junior girl handles the cockpit chores, unless a senior has something going up front. This day, Rachel was the one. The other girls had simply sworn off crew members for the week and simply pointed to Rachel.

She nervously pranced the aisle, fluffing her dark hair and straightening her skirt. The flight engineer patted her fanny as she slid by him, a gesture Rachel assumed was normal cockpit procedure. Besidss, she wasn't about to be labeled a square so early in the game. She stood silently, in back of the captain's right ear, his head just reaching her chest.

"Rachel," the captain said with a smile as he turned to show his wrinkled profile, a must for all captains, "we seem to be having trouble with the flushing apparatus in the lavs."

What could she say?

"Yes, sir."

"It looks as though we'll have to go to manual flushing this trip," he continued, frowning to indicate the gravity of the situation.

Rachel quickly flipped through her mental file of procedures and could remember nothing of a manual flushing problem. But that didn't prove a thing. Would a captain lie about something like this?

"We're very busy up here, as you can well imagine, Rachel. I'm placing you in complete charge of the manual flushing procedure. That little button in front of me, the one farthest away, activates the manual flushing operation. Every twenty minutes, I want you to come forward to the cockpit and flip that button. You'll flip it and hold it for forty-five seconds. Got it?"

"Yes, sir."

"Better give it a try now, Rachel."

The only way Rachel could reach the button was to lean over the top of the captain's head. She strained to get her finger to the switch, her breasts melting comfortably around the captain's ears. Finally, after much squirming, she managed to reach the button and flip it.

"Hold it steady for forty-five seconds," the captain commanded, his head rigid back against her bosom.

Rachel started to sweat as she kept her finger on the switch. She kept shifting her weight from foot to foot, each movement rearranging her breasts on the captain's head and neck.

"Manual flushing completed," snapped the co-pilot in crisp military tones.

"Roger," the captain confirmed.

"Whew," Rachel sighed.

"See you in twenty minutes, Rachel."

Most new stewardesses are put through the manual flushing routine. Some come back to the galley cursing the captain. Some, embarrassed, say nothing. Some can't wait for the twenty minutes to pass. Good old Rachel's attitude was that it could have been worse.

—Trudy Baker & Rachel Jones, Coffee Tea or Me?123
Here is an example in print of the four kinds of women. Type one figures out what men want and then actively tries to please them: "Some can't wait for the twenty minutes to pass." We are reluctant to label that harassment of them as it "may involve complex, reciprocal dynamics."

Type two women understand what men want and passively go along with it. "Some, embarrassed, say nothing." Here we would find "invasive questions at least as outrageous" to the quiet one.

When I joined the crew of a Christian mercy ship, a female crew member gave me a hug from behind thinking I was someone from an earlier crew. She was embarrassed and ill at ease around me after that, although I understood what had happened. One day she and a bunch of us went and saw the movie "Crocodile Dundee" which was so outrageously funny that the laughing two of us were then back to being at ease. It is humor that overcomes such embarrassment, not making a federal case of it.

Type three women do not exactly understand what men are wanting, but they enjoy the attention. "The flight engineer patted her fanny as she slid by him, a gesture Rachel assumed was normal cockpit procedure. Besides, she wasn't about to be labeled a square so early in the game." They do not want to be ignored, so they are not going to act like squares. "Women contribute a great deal to 'sexualizing' the workplace."

Then we get to the type four woman. "Some come back to the galley cursing the captain." Even here there is no real harm done, and "the response should be nuanced and in the scale of the offence, which sometimes means not reporting it." She curses the captain and is done with it.

But now employers are not leaving well enough alone. They develop policies against harassment, which do not stop at that airplane routine, but affect my friend with his comment about Dolly Parton. Or it could be about legs.

He was in the company of a couple of attractive older ladies who turned out to be about my age. Once introductions were exchanged, I learned they were original Copa girls, part of a fabulous chorus line sharing the stage with Sands headliners throughout the years. One of the ladies said she did not even know how to dance when she was hired. "Jack Entratter told us that all we needed was to be beautiful, and that he would teach us how to dance." The other lady added that the chorus line never went topless. "Jack wanted us to be sexy but ladylike. We mainly showed lots of legs."
—Barney Vinson, Las Vegas Behind the Tables124
The employer sets the type-four woman on top, and in areas increasingly less sexual and more ladylike she stays there until men are intimidated into not holding doors open for the ladies anymore. Too many cooks spoil the broth.

We already have instruction on male-female relations coming from parent, teacher, doctor, and minister, which is as it should be in order that family, culture, health, and God all get represented. Their efforts result in a type-one woman ideal, who wants to please men and fit into his world, and the men hold the doors open for her. These days people put the type-four on top, which is ultimately anti-family. The ideal for an employer, from his business perspective, would be the prostitute.

The old order changeth ...

Writer Jim Stevens provides us with the following priceless prose describing the entry of the troops into Seattle:

One fine day a lumber schooner from San Francisco tied up at the sandspit dock, and there appeared before the incredulous eyes of the hangers-on a marvelous parade. Down the gangplank tripped a dozen white damsels, all dazzling in form-fitting bombazine frocks, french-heeled shoes, silk stockings, and the war paint of their profession. The parade, escorted by Pinnell, marched daintily on to Illahee ...

Recovering from its first surprise and enchantment, Seattle whooped in jubilation, shook hands all' round, and bellowed a new defiance at Tacoma. Again, stirring news grapevined up the skidroads into the deep timber ... an overwhelming tide rolled into Seattle ...

The arrival of the ladies from San Francisco was greeted with as much enthusiasm as the arrival of the Mercer Girls. But the objectives of the two sets of girls were different. The Mercer Girls came here to get married.

[Chief business owner] John Pinnel's girls did not.

They were professional and business women.

They knew their business and their profession was an old one.

—William C. Speidel, SONS OF THE PROFITS125
Here we are not trying to pass moral judgment on the men. In the context of this study we are looking at the socialization of women, how they may end up married as odious women, and one way that can happen is for society to overly accommodate "the Lib female [who] really doesn't hate men; she hates the women men love." The women men love "know, what a gas it is to be a girl, even a confused and put-upon girl [enjoying] the pleasures of pursuit and coquetry." And eventually married, "her life is focused principally on the happiness of her husband and children and this is likely to be satisfying to everyone involved." By accommodating the lib female in fighting so-called sexual harassment, the "business, as a rule, will be in this position of absolute incompetence in an 'intangible' area." This incompetence produces stress in society, which is what we are writing about. That men behave poorly sometimes could be the subject of another discussion, but here we are looking at the reactions that are most stressful for society.

Biblical Courtship Basics

Includes Christian dating vs. courtship debate.

Since the minister is one of the people expected to instruct the unmarried, it helps to look at what his reference book, the Holy Bible, has to say about it. You may order my Biblical Courtship Basics or just read the pertinent excerpts below:
Biblical Courtship Basics order form
First edition First edition e-book in HTML format
bound copy with student discount (browser presentable)
Price: $14.95 Price: $11.95 Price: $1.69

Name of your school:

Email address to
have it sent to:

Our subject here is stress within society from wrongly constructed marriages resulting from wrongly practiced courtship. One place to look at is this "sexual experimentation" in these liberated courtships.

The [sexual] preliminaries provide time for careful judgments to be made, judgments that may be hard to form once the massive, shared emotional impact of double orgasm has been experienced. This powerful moment can act as such a tight 'bonder' that it may well tie together two people quite unsuited to each other, if they have not spent sufficient time exploring each other's personalities during the sexual preliminaries.
—Desmond Morris, Manwatching131
Going too far, all the way, before marriage, creates an unwholesome bond.
Pat Allen in her book, Staying Married ... And Loving It, writes, "Most modern, liberated, sexually active women believe they can maintain control over their emotions after making love. What they don't realize is that when a woman gives her body to a man, there's a strong chance that she's going to bond to him—even after only one good sexual encounter."

Allen's position runs counter to the belief that sexual involvement isn't any more bonding to a woman than it is for men. Some of the women we interviewed claimed to have had non-bonding sexual encounters. However, when a woman is relating to a man in a meaningful, monogamous relationship, often the attachment strengthens through sexual expression.

While exceptions do exist, most men do not bond through sex alone. Rather, Allen asserts that men "bond through the commitments they make and keep." By being sexually available, we risk getting bonded more deeply than the men in our lives. We also weaken one of the forces that have compelled men, through the ages, to face their fears and move toward deeper love and commitment.

—Carmen Berry & Tamara Traeder, Girlfriends Talk About Men132
Men can also fall prey to this one sided bonding.
One of the male's biological defects, he decided, was his inability to stop loving a woman. Oh, you can dump her, avoid her, hate her, love someone else, but once love has struck it cannot be completely eradicated. The wound may scar over nicely, yet some shards of the arrowhead will remain permanently embedded to remind you where you were hit. If you are a man.

Women, Toad well knew, didn't suffer from this biological infirmity. Once a woman ditches you her libidinal landscape is wiped clean by Mama Nature, clean as a sand beach swept by the tide, ready for the next victim to leave his tracks like Robinson Crusoe. And like that sucker, he'll conclude that he is the very first, the one and only. Amazingly, for her he will be.

—Stephen Coonts, The Red Horseman133

Instead of bonding through intimate sexual activity, the "girlfriends" quoted above suggest "bonding through the commitments they make and keep." From my book on courtship we already saw in Esther the queen negotiating a commitment from the king on a date. The book of Ruth gives further tips on negotiations.
(Ruth 3:16-4:13) And when she came to her mother in law, she said, Who art thou, my daughter? And she told her all that the man had done to her. And she said, These six measures of barley gave he me; for he said to me, Go not empty unto thy mother in law. Then said she, Sit still, my daughter, until thou know how the matter will fall: for the man will not be in rest, until he have finished the thing this day.

Then went Boaz up to the gate, and sat him down there: and, behold, the kinsman of whom Boaz spake came by; unto whom he said, Ho, such a one! turn aside, sit down here. And he turned aside, and sat down. And he took ten men of the elders of the city, and said, Sit ye down here. And they sat down. And he said unto the kinsman, Naomi, that is come again out of the country of Moab, selleth a parcel of land, which was our brother Elimelech's: And I thought to advertise thee, saying, Buy it before the inhabitants, and before the elders of my people. If thou wilt redeem it, redeem it: but if thou wilt not redeem it, then tell me, that I may know: for there is none to redeem it beside thee; and I am after thee. And he said, I will redeem it. Then said Boaz, What day thou buyest the field of the hand of Naomi, thou must buy it also of Ruth the Moabitess, the wife of the dead, to raise up the name of the dead upon his inheritance. And the kinsman said, I cannot redeem it for myself, lest I mar mine own inheritance: redeem thou my right to thyself; for I cannot redeem it. Now this was the manner in former time in Israel concerning redeeming and concerning changing, for to confirm all things; a man plucked off his shoe, and gave it to his neighbour: and this was a testimony in Israel. Therefore the kinsman said unto Boaz, Buy it for thee. So he drew off his shoe.

And Boaz said unto the elders, and unto all the people, Ye are witnesses this day, that I have bought all that was Elimelech's, and all that was Chilion's and Mahlon's, of the hand of Naomi. Moreover Ruth the Moabitess, the wife of Mahlon, have I purchased to be my wife, to raise up the name of the dead upon his inheritance, that the name of the dead be not cut off from among his brethren, and from the gate of his place: ye are witnesses this day. And all the people that were in the gate, and the elders, said, We are witnesses. The LORD make the woman that is come into thine house like Rachel and like Leah, which two did build the house of Israel: and do thou worthily in Ephratah, and be famous in Bethlehem: And let thy house be like the house of Pharez, whom Tamar bare unto Judah, of the seed which the LORD shall give thee of this young woman.

So Boaz took Ruth, and she was his wife: and when he went in unto her, the LORD gave her conception, and she bare a son.

One principle of negotiation between the sexes is the indirect method: they were talking about the transfer of land, but the issue was marriage to Ruth. Couples are more polite to go over issues indirectly rather than use brazen bluntness.

The second point is the transfer of a shoe to seal the bargain, which would correspond nicely with our handshake custom, or perhaps for a dating couple sealing it with a kiss.

The third point I see is that there is a set place for a recognized negotiation to occur, at the gate in the presence of the elders. Just take the "d" from elders and the "ate" from gate, put them together, and you have date, which is where any and all major negotiations should take place. For the purpose of this subject, I think society in general will be under much less stress if we take the focus away from dating as an occasion for fornication to dating as a format for negotiating agreements one is expected to keep. Here is a good illustration:

"Remember that in Spain," Greville had said, "Casino doesn't denote gambling in the sense you or I would understand. It's the name given to the local businessmen's meeting place, their private club. There's one in every town and they'll gamble between themselves of course. But much more important, the casino is where every transaction takes place."
The Shadow Spy134
In the kingdom of God, the Bible says, a date doesn't denote dancing and conversation in the sense a person of the world would understand. It's the name given to the Christian lovers' trysting ground, their private preserve. There are some in every relationship and they'll dance and talk with each other, of course. But much more important, the date is where every transaction takes place.

Lessons From Various Proverbs.

Now we shall look at some proverbs.

         (Proverbs 5:15-21)
         Drink waters out of thine own cistern, and running
         waters out of thine own well. Let thy fountains be
         dispersed abroad, and rivers of waters in the streets.
         Let them be only thine own, and not strangers' with
         thee. Let thy fountain be blessed: and rejoice with
         the wife of thy youth. Let her be as the loving hind,
         and pleasant roe; let her breasts satisfy thee at all
         times; and be thou ravished always with her love. And
         why wilt thou, my son, be ravished with a strange
         woman, and embrace the bosom of a stranger? For the
         ways of man are before the eyes of the LORD, and he
         pondereth all his goings.
Here a father is telling his son to take his wife and go paint the town red rather than going with a bunch of his fellows to the Geisha house to embrace the bosom of a stranger. God sees what he is doing even if society is indulgent at times.

The wife of his youth is the one he used to have fun with, to enjoy her company. Thus they did pleasing things while they were courting, so the idea is to go set the woods on fire with one's date. That way, after one has been married a long time and wants some excitement, he knows whom to find it with rather than go catting around.

         (Prov. 6:27-35)
         Can a man take fire in his bosom, and his clothes
         not be burned? Can one go upon hot coals, and his feet
         not be burned? So is he that goeth in to his neighbour's
         wife; whosoever toucheth her shall not be innocent.

         Men do not despise a thief, if he steal to
         satisfy his soul when he is hungry; but if he be found,
         he shall restore sevenfold; he shall give all the sub-
         stance of his house. But whoso committeth adultery with
         a woman lacketh understanding: he that doeth it destroy-
         eth his own soul. A wound and dishonour shall he get;
         and his reproach shall not be wiped away. For jealousy
         is the rage of a man: therefore he will not spare in the
         day of vengeance. He will not regard any ransom; neither
         will he rest content, though thou givest many gifts.
The idea here is that to remain free of guilt, one must keep relations with a married person on a platonic level, ("whosoever toucheth her shall not be innocent.") Otherwise one is playing with fire and will likely get burned.

If one steals food when hungry, society will not hold it too much against him. Yet if caught, he will be penalized and must make restitution.

The thing about adultery is that once a man has defiled another's wife, there is no way he can restore what he took. And the husband is likely to get very mad and who knows what he will do?

No, it is better to play it safe and stay away from the married women. Only platonic relationships are safe with them.

         (Prov. 12:4) "A virtuous woman is a crown to her husband:
         but she that maketh ashamed is as rottenness in his bones."
Men say they want a lot of things but they end up marrying the "good girl".
    (Prov. 14:1) "Every wise woman buildeth her house: but
     the foolish plucketh it down with her hands."
The wise girl keeps a hope chest for the time she will get married, but a girl without any smarts throws away every advantage she has.
    (Prov. 15:27) "He that is greedy of gain troubleth his
     own house; but he that hateth gifts shall live."
A man who marries for money will marry trouble. The man who cannot be bought will find his life worth living.
     (Prov. 18:22) "Whoso findeth a wife findeth a good thing,
     and obtaineth favour of the LORD."
Wives know they are a good thing. They cook and they clean and take care of all the little things which the man never quite excelled in when he was a bachelor.

And as for obtaining God's favor, men were marrying and giving in marriage before the flood, yet it was Noah who found grace in the eyes of the Lord. The righteous are the ones who find favor with God.

Thus man's second benefit in marriage, besides a good wife, is that it tends to make him more responsible.

Therefore in the proving grounds of courtship, the woman should be able to cook her intended a good meal, and the man should begin to show some fiscal responsibility by paying for the expenses on a date. After all, if a gal cannot come up with a good meal on occasion, how is she going to provide satisfying grub for her future family every day? And if a man cannot take the responsibility of paying for the dates, where is the indication he will be an economically responsible husband?

    (Prov. 18:24) "A man that hath friends must shew himself
   friendly: and there is a friend that sticketh closer
   than a brother."
"A friend that sticketh closer than a brother" is another way of saying a non-platonic friendship, what we call a girlfriend for a fellow or a boyfriend for a girl. But did we not earlier just see that non-platonic friendships were trouble? Yes, that is if the other person is married to someone. Therefore if there is such a thing as boyfriends and girlfriends, there needs to be an available pool of single people to fit into that category.

The strategy I pointed out in Esther provides such a pool. And as both friends and brothers are entities that commonly exist in the plural, so a girl should be able to accommodate a few boyfriends and vice versa. Just go out with different ones on different days. In fact if marriage is the ultimate goal, devotion to one another full-time, then adequate preparation would mean being able to handle more than one girlfriend or boyfriend at a time when it's not a full time job. This is because the commitments to such relations are lighter than in marriage, therefore one should be able to carry on more than one of them.

Going steady is a bit of a sham. There have been no witnessed vows before the licensed authority to make that an exclusive relationship. Yet the time spent exclusively with each other could well lead to temptations to give in, where one would normally reserve something for the marriage relationship. And it subtracts from the available pool which the Proverbs say should be there.

But dating a few different ones on alternative nights, say, gives one the better perspective of the time of preparation. Therefore the need to show oneself friendly in the physical sphere is going to be tempered with limits, as the final mate has not yet been decided upon.

Because one's boyfriend/girlfriend, the non-platonic "friend that sticketh closer than a brother," fits the friendship scheme, we may expect, say from the woman's perspective, that she could have one best boyfriend, a few other close ones, a number of good ones, and so on. To have just one boyfriend is not the healthiest mode.

It is quite logical to believe that some kind of dating is necessary to the development of the judgment and pair interaction that is at the root of real objectivity in mate selection. Those who have dated more than one person have a chance to compare and to learn some of the usual behavior patterns of members of the opposite sex. They learn to distinguish between those whose personalities seem to promise a durable compatibility and those whose personalities obviously do not. Dating is an exploratory experience through which young people learn. In most circles today, therefore, it is considered desirable that young people "circulate" rather than "go steady" from the beginning, that some variety of dating experience is favorable to ultimate mate choice. The girl who is considered desirable as a date by a number of fellows is presumed to be the one most likely to be sought after in marriage.
—Paul Landis, Making the Most of Marriage135
friendship hierarchy romance / friendship hierarchies
Friendship leads to romance.
Dating relations are okay.
Now, some people feel that they should develop a deep friendship with a member of the opposite sex before letting the relationship get physical at all. Look at the logistics of such a scheme.

The Proverb says, "A man that hath friends must show himself friendly." Since friendship incurs obligations, the closer the friendship, the more the obligation. But our capabilities to fulfill obligations have human limits. Therefore humanly speaking, the more intimate the friendship, the fewer these friends are. Jesus himself had an inner core of twelve disciples, and some were closer than others.

A man may have many acquaintances, but fewer true friends, and only a very few intimate friends. So now let us suppose that from these few or very few real close friends he is going to develop non-platonic relationships with the opposite sex.

First we must reduce their number yet further. Usually, but not always, one's real close friends are of the same sex—we can eliminate them right away.

Next, of the ones remaining, some will be either too old or too young, so scratch them off too. And if there are any still remaining, there is nothing to guarantee that some of them will be interested in dating in the first place.

We are going to be lucky to find any in an available pool to date. This is just the opposite of the king's example with his broad selection of acquaintances with whom to make dates.

But let us say we are lucky, and that a fellow has at least one close friend of the opposite sex who is single, of the right age, and interested in boys. Should he then try to date her?

Well, I once heard a gentleman on the bus offer all of us some sage advice: "Marriage can ruin a friendship." Once the physical element is introduced, many things can go wrong and the friendship itself can break down as a result.

If you have cultivated a close friendship with somebody, that friendship is valuable. Do you want to risk its disintegration for the sake of some minor physical needs? But if you date an acquaintance, you are developing a friendship along with some level of physical fulfillment. She is your girlfriend, and all the dimensions are growing together. But if something goes awfully wrong at the start, you have lost only an acquaintance, and you have plenty of those.

Note how this Proverb is worded, "...sticketh closer than a brother." In Genesis the word was "cleave" and in Proverbs "stick". Same difference.

The popular song "My Guy," by Mary Wells expresses it this way:

    I'm stickin' to my guy
    Like a stamp to a letter
    Like birds of a feather
    We stick together.
    I'm tellin' you from the start
    I can't be torn apart
    From my guy.

Not only do we have sticking/cleaving, but birds flocking together in migration is also a powerful image of going somewhere else, of going out, of leaving father and mother. Such is the boyfriend-girlfriend relationship in the mating ritual.

Those who have dated more than one person have a chance to compare and to learn some of the usual behavior patterns of members of the opposite sex. They learn to distinguish between those whose personalities seem to promise a durable compatibility and those whose personalities obviously do not. Dating is an exploratory experience through which young people learn. It no doubt contributes to the development of the ability to feel at ease with the opposite sex and the love play sanctioned in dating may well be an important factor in the development of a normal heterosexual orientation in the psychosexual area.
—Paul Landis, Making the Most of Marriage136

(Prov. 21:9) "It is better to dwell in a corner of the housetop, than with a brawling woman in a wide house." This is a cost-benefit analysis of things like the women's liberation movement. The costs outweigh the benefits.

A woman wants to remodel a man's house at the expense of his peace of mind. That is not her purpose. Nor is it her purpose to restructure his language or the common work roles while befuddling him so he does not know whether he is coming or going.

Also (Prov. 21:19) "It is better to dwell in the wilderness, than with a contentious and angry woman." Men are better off with no society at all than with a society permeated with women's attitude problems. That is not what God created them for.

    (Prov. 27:15, 16) "A continual dropping in a very rainy
  day and a contentious woman are alike.  Whosoever hideth
  her hideth the wind, and the ointment of his right hand,
  which bewrayeth itself."
There is no letup from a contentious woman, neither can she be muzzled. It all comes out and it never stops.

You are better off without this. Leave her for someone who does not read the Bible and does not know any better.

    (Prov. 30:18, 19) "There be three things which are too
 wonderful for me, yea, four which I know not: the way of
 an eagle in the air; the way of a serpent upon a rock;
 the way of a ship in the midst of the sea; and the way of
 a man with a maid."
Let us put these in terms of baseball pitches. The swift eagle would be the fast ball, the slithering snake the curve ball, and the tossing ship a drop ball. Watching the game, we cannot project what course the ball is taking. It is too distant from us and too small.

So is the way of a man with a maid. It is a close relation, an intimate affair which turns on nuances beyond our ready perception.

The umpire calls the strikes, to be sure, and one way or another things will work out or they will not. It is enough that we know the lineup and who the players are. We know some of the girl's friends, and whom she is dating lately, and if she gets married. There is a lot we do not perceive.

    (Prov. 31:3 ff) "Give not thy strength unto women, nor thy
    ways to that which destroyeth kings...It is not for kings
    to drink wine; nor for princes strong thy
    mouth, judge righteously, and plead the cause of the poor
    and needy."
The king should not be weakened by women, nor intoxicated with alcohol, nor silent in the face of oppression. This is a threefold exhortation against wine, women, and song.
    (Prov. 31:12) "She will do him good and not evil all the
   days of her life."
The virtuous woman will do only good to her husband always, including the days when they were still just courting. The particulars listed in this well known passage are only readily applicable to the housewife, so for the days of courtship, we will let it go simply with the general, "good and not evil."




View My Guestbook
Sign My Guestbook

Author of this site:
Earl Gosnell
1950 Franklin Bv., Box 15
Eugene, OR 97403


Copyright © 2003, 2005, 2006 Earl S. Gosnell III Creative Commons Licence
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Licence.

Permission is hereby granted to use the portions original to this study—with credit given, of course—in intellectually honest non-profit educational material. The material I myself have quoted has its own copyright in most cases, which I cannot speak for but have used here under the fair use doctrine.

I have used material from many sources for teaching, comment, and illustration in this nonprofit teaching endeavor on A Bitchy Wife. The sources are included in notes. Such uses must be judged on individual merit, of course, so I cannot say how other uses of the same material might fare.

Any particular questions or requests for permissions may be addressed to me, the author.

Web page problems?

Valid XHTML 1.0 Transitional    Valid CSS!

A Bitchy Wife.