How feminism undermines a woman’s ability to attract a husband

Painting: “Courtship”, by Edmund Blair Leighton (1888)

A while back, Duane Caldwell mentioned this article from Life Site News in the comments of this blog post.

It says:

Fewer young men in the US want to get married than ever, while the desire for marriage is rising among young women, according to the Pew Research Center.

Pew recently found that the number of women 18-34 saying that having a successful marriage is one of the most important things rose from 28 percent to 37 percent since 1997. The number of young adult men saying the same thing dropped from 35 percent to 29 percent in the same time.

Pew’s findings have caught the attention of one US writer who maintains that feminism, deeply entrenched in every segment of the culture, has created an environment in which young men find it more beneficial to simply opt out of couple-dom entirely.

Suzanne Venker’s article, “The War on Men,” which appeared on the website of Fox News in late November, has become a lodestone for feminist writers who have attacked her position that the institution of marriage is threatened, not enhanced, by the supposed gains of the feminist movement over the last 50 years.

“Where have all the good (meaning marriageable) men gone?” is a question much talked about lately in the secular media, Venker says, but her answer, backed up by statistics, is not to the liking of mainstream commentators influenced by feminism.

She points out that for the first time in US history, the number of women in the workforce has surpassed the number of men, while more women than men are acquiring university degrees.

“The problem? This new phenomenon has changed the dance between men and women,” Venker wrote. With feminism pushing them out of their traditional role of breadwinner, protector and provider – and divorce laws increasingly creating a dangerously precarious financial prospect for the men cut loose from marriage – men are simply no longer finding any benefit in it.

As a writer and researcher into the trends of marriage and relationships, Venker said, she has “accidentally stumbled upon a subculture” of men who say “in no uncertain terms, that they’re never getting married.”

“When I ask them why, the answer is always the same: women aren’t women anymore.” Feminism, which teaches women to think of men as the enemy, has made women “angry” and “defensive, though often unknowingly.” 

Actually, feminism teaches men to regard certain men as the enemy: men who are chaste before marriage, and who want marriage and who want children and who expect women to stop working when young children arrive are the enemy. But bad boys who don’t want marriage, and just want to have fun and thrills without imposing any pro-child structure on the relationship are still very much in demand.

As I read it, the problem is that women have a natural desire to get acceptance sexually from “bad boys” men who exhibit traits that are entirely opposed to the traditional tasks of a husband in marriage.

Instead of preferring men with abilities as protector and provider and moral / spiritual leader, women have been pushed by feminism to deny the value of these traditional male roles. In the past, women were taught to resist the temptation to pick the bad boy, because there was widespread suspicion of single women’s ability to make rational choices about men. Their fathers and brothers and churches pushed them towards men who had marital ability: chastity, self-control, communication skills, personal responsibility, enterprise, etc. Today, no one is telling women to pick men who have demonstrated ability in husband behaviors. So, they just pick the ones that look the part: height, muscles, facial hair, tattoos, piercings, etc. Those men give them the tingles, and they are more interested in showing off than in picking a man who can do the marriage job.

The feminist solution to the natural desires of women to prefer the bad boy is not to direct them towards good men who have marriage ability. It’s to continue to direct them to bad boys, but to remove the need for a provider man by directing them into life-long careers and/or dependency on government welfare programs. I am all for women getting STEM degrees and working prior to the arrival of young children, but feminism is really telling women that staying at home as a wife and mother is wrong. And so, rather than looking for a man who can allow them to stay home with young children, they focus on working or collecting welfare for fatherless kids.

The article says this:

[T]he link between marriage and childrearing has become disconnected in the minds of the so-called Millennial generation, those between 18 and 29. While 52 percent of Millennials say being a good parent is “one of the most important things” in life, just 30 per cent say the same about having a successful marriage, an attitudinal survey found.

The gap, of 22 percentage points, between the value Millennials place on parenthood over marriage, was just 7 points in 1997. The research found that Millennials, many of whom are the children of divorce and single-parenthood themselves, are also less likely than their elders to say that a child needs both a father and mother at home, that single parenthood and unmarried couple parenthood are bad for society.

Young women keep choosing bad boys who are fun and non-judgmental and live in the moment, then they are disappointed when these free and easy bad boys reject the responsibilities of husbands: fidelity, providing, etc. From their small sample of bad boys, the young women conclude that all men are incapable of marriage. But the reason they get the relationship results they get is because they choose poorly in the first place. Unfortunately, this just drives them further into their careers or further into dependency on big government.

What I’ve been finding lately is that the traditional skills that women used to have that made them suitable as wives are disappearing. The traditional skills are soft skills like listening, caring, nurturing, encouraging, supporting, being responsible and frugal, etc. Women traditionally were able to focus on relationships and sacrifice fun and thrills in order to invest in others and build them up. Today, I see a lot of forced busy-ness and impatience with the needs of others. Instead of focusing on relationships, there is a focus on selfishness. An impatience with the demands of relationships, and a desire to delay marriage and child-bearing as long as possible.

3 thoughts on “How feminism undermines a woman’s ability to attract a husband”

  1. This is bad news for the society as the nuclear family is the basic social unit of society. Undermining or weakening marriage leads to a less harmonious society as stable marriages give stable families.

    Personally, I consciously chose or rather decided after my undergraduate days in the late 1970s to not date women who were immersed in this feminist nonsense. Years later, I married a Christian woman from another culture. It saddens me to see the harm that radical feminism has done since the 1960s.


  2. Yes, it’s a two pronged problem: First, women have rejected having men in traditional male roles which include leadership, and have usurped it , placing themselves in that role, feeling they are “liberated” from both men (from whom they need nothing) and the full time motherhood role (seeing that merely as a part time job).
    Second, as pointed out, they have in large part rejected the “soft skills” – ” listening, caring, nurturing, encouraging, supporting” that men are looking for, and which help build marriages and families.
    So what’s in it for men? They don’t get a woman they can care for in the traditional manner – such women don’t want that. Such women are really nothing more than competitors – who don’t fight fairly – wanting everything their way, and when it’s not claiming discrimination, male privilege, sexism, etc. at every turn – even where there is none. And who wants a competitor for a partner?

    At least in gaming men get a fair fight with a familiar opponent who can be overcome using things men are good at – strength, power, determination. Why go into a no-win scenario with a woman who doesn’t appreciate those skills, who doesn’t want you using them, and in short, doesn’t want you doing all the things you’re gifted in? So the man gets neither the soft skills from the woman that he’s looking for; nor is he appreciated when he uses the masculine strengths he’s been gifted with. So what is the point? Therefore I totally understand why today’s young men are rejecting the prospect of marriage with today’s “liberated” women.

    Ironically this really gets back to the core problem in the relationship between men and women spoken of in scripture: Men need to be respected and women need to be loved (Ep 5.33). But feminism interferes with both – producing women who refuse to respect men, and thus creating a marriage pool of women that men can’t (and won’t) love. A vicious cycle. Our only hope: the Kingdom of God manifest in hearts of men and women – restoring things to the way they were designed.


  3. There are a lot of consequences to these of course, and in no particular order and not exhaustively:

    1) I don’t think it’s only feminism’s fault in some men not being marriage-minded.
    Divorce (which also has some root in feminism as WK has articles about who is more likely to initiate a divorce) is a far more significant factor. I noticed in college that a lot of men especially who saw their parents getting divorced were much less likely to want to be married.

    2) Yes, women have in general become more educated and are being compensated better.
    – which may usurp the traditional role of a man of being “breadwinner, protector and provider” (it leaves men trying to decipher their role)
    – some women who are compensated better and are more educated still want men who are more ‘successful’ than they are (so the demand for highly successful men is even higher than before and it shifts the balance of power towards these highly successful men)
    – yet women still want to be loved, cherished, pursued (in the non-Christian culture, I see a lot more of women pursuing men but they sometimes regret having to do the pursuing)
    – the balance of power is to men, by their mid-to-late 20’s, if the men are marriage-minded. However, many women don’t want to accept this reality.
    – with a lack of available marriage or even long-term romantic partners interested, women have had to develop different coping strategies including: a) “finding Mr. Right-Now” (as opposed to Mr. Right), b) going for “Bad Boys” (who are more titillating than Good Men) — almost reframing all the good qualities such as dependability, truthfulness, fidelity, etc. as negatives (“not exciting”), c) hooking up / friends with benefits / sex with no strings attached, etc. d) even sometimes monogamy is equated with monotony, e) bad girls justify their behaviors (e.g., “I was drunk,” “we human beings are not meant for single partners”, etc.).
    – of course when it comes to marriage/long-term partners, they are also shooting themselves in the foot with things like cohabitation; some won’t even wait until they are married before they become pregnant (sometimes if the woman gets pregnant, that’s when the couple rushes to get engaged, and then with some couples, they get married and the child becomes the ringbearer or flower girl); the very small minority might not even wait for a man to be around before they conceive (i.e., artificial insemination and single parenthood). Many of these feminist women who do become pregnant but if it’s at the wrong time / inconvenient / etc. would abort/kill their own child.

    In short here:
    Some women may no longer believe they ‘need’ men.

    From the [non-Christian] man’s perspective:
    What does marriage grant that non-marriage doesn’t?
    You can pursue your own non-relational goals in life in marriage or not in marriage.
    You don’t have to pay alimony if you’re not married.
    You can “play house” (cohabitate) and have “all the benefits” without any of the downsides.
    If the balance of power is with the man and he is not married, why would he give up that power in getting married?


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