Ever had one of those moments where the answers to some of life's deepest questions become clear? Well I had one yesterday thanks to my friend The Mad Black Man. He's not really mad about anything, he just likes to imagine himself angrier than he really is. Anyways, we had a 10 minute chat while I was driving to my dentist appointment after work. During our talk he lets me know that he's swearing off women for a while so he can recover from his last girlfriend. In his opinion she was "crazy." Now, we all know where I stand on the topic of female insanity. It's usually caused by male stupidity/inconsistency/ambivalence/breathing. Now I knew he and old girl were having issues and I tried my best to give him a female perspective on why she was always complaining. Obviously, it did no good, cause they broke up anyways. I could honestly care less that the relationship came to an end. I don't know the chick personally and time with her took time away from me (and I'm the most important thing in EVERYONE's life). The thing that struck me is that his relationship began to end the day she exhibited what he believed to be crazy behavior. He never saw her in the same light again, so no matter what she did that was normal, all he could see was "crazy girlfriend." It's like a line was crossed and there was no turning back.
So this got me to thinking. In relationships nothing stays perfect forever. We're human so we err. But for some reason men and women view these errors differently. While a woman can take error after error after error from a man and still see the same sweet guy she fell in love with, it seems that it takes only one error by a woman for a man to see "the crazy bitch." If that's not a double standard I don't know what is. I don't know if women are just more forgiving, more lenient, more optimistic, or just more desperate, but for some reason we sure can take a lot of bullshit before we stop seeing a nice guy who just happens to have asshole tendencies and just see an asshole. A guy can break up with us over voicemail and not say a word for 10 months (ode to the Idiot Who Made Me Cry) and we'll still think that he's a great guy, just a great guy who's going through some issues. Why is that? How come through all the b.s. women can still see the guy they fell for in the first place. I'd like to think that I'm a pretty good judge of character. When a man slips, bumps his head, and starts acting a damn fool, I'd rather believe that it's uncharacteristic, than believe that I just chose the wrong guy. I mean, truthfully speaking, who wants to be wrong. Who wants to say that they fell for a completely insensitive jerk who'd rather clip his toenails than consider their feelings. So we look past all the bad stuff to see the man way down deep inside who is charming and caring and smart and funny and all the things we absolutely adore. I mean, he's still there, it's just covered in bullshit, right?
Well this same optimism or benefit of the doubt doesn't seem to be afforded to the XX choromsome set. We're sort of on a one strike and you're out policy. One instance of suppposedly "crazy" behavior (i.e. nagging, insecurity, arguments, whatever) and we're no longer the awesome girlfriend. That look of love in a man's eyes turns to a wary look of paranoia that says, "oh she's cool now, but when will she snap." Personally, I don't think it's fair. Why does one bad day or night or even hour erase all the great stuff preceding it. It's as though an either/or proposition exists. A woman can either be cool or she can be crazy, but in a man's eyes she can never be both. This sets up quite a paradox (am I using that word correctly?). If one drop of craziness can overtake a gallon of normalcy, it stands to reason that normalcy has to reign all day everyday. But that's virtually impossible. As I stated earlier, no one and nothing on this earth is perfect, so there is gonna come a time when we as women are gonna be less than pleased with our relationships and we're gonna wanna discuss it and it may sound like complaining and it may seem irrational. Passive aggressive silence is immature, so the logical step is to voice our issues. But with this paradox, how can we? In order to appear normal, venting is not allowed, cause when we vent, we're crazy. And once labeled crazy there's no coming back. It's like walking a tight rope and I must say I don't have balance like that and it's too exhausting to try and get some.
Maybe, just maybe there would be parity if somehow the tables were turned. Maybe if women started dumping guys at the first sign of bad behavior, guys would get a taste of their own medicine. Maybe they'd be the ones walking that tight rope with us watching their every move for a mistake. It would serve them right to be suspended high on a tiny thread, exposed for everyone to see, trying to stay on track wearing nothing more than some purple tights, ballet shoes and a tank top.