Friday, February 3, 2012

Let's Hear It For The Boys

dogma (noun) the established belief or doctrine held by a religion, or a particular group or organization

If there is one theme that seems to replay more often than that ridiculous Bruno Mars song about catching grenades, it is the universal women's cry of "There are no good men left!". And as much as it pains me to admit it, I too have on occasion joined the war cry. As a friend of mine once described it, "All the good men are either taken or gay". In the mormon culture you are more apt to hear something along the lines of, "All the good guys are already married, and the only ones left are either divorced (with reason), "sweet spirits", or addicted to porn".

While it is true that pornography abuse is becoming an ever increasing issue, one which some church members have not been able to avoid, it does seem a bit extreme to assume that every male on this planet is addicted to it. And yet the threat is real enough that Sunday after Sunday and meeting after meeting the men of our church have it pounded into their heads about the pernicious evil they ought to be avoiding like the plague.

That being said, todays topic is not on the dangers or effects of pornography; for the most part I think those are pretty obvious. My aim for this post is to explore this notion that there is indeed a shortage of good decent men left in this world. My hope is that in doing so, we may be able to dispel the dogma that is whipping our women into a frenzy the likes of which a Walmart black friday sale on waffle irons has never seen.

stereotype (n) a simplified and standardized conception or image invested with special meaning and held in common by members of a group
All men are sex addicts. No seriously, I know what you are thinking but go with me on this one. It is indeed true that all men ever think about, desire, and conspire to achieve in life has something if not everything to do with sex. Right? Glad we are in agreement.

I believe that at one time or another in every womans life, virgin or no, she comes to this conclusion. But is it really fair? Or are we perhaps being just a weeeeeee bit extreme? It's hard to not buy into this just a little bit though. After all, we are reminded on an almost daily basis about the sexual escapades of the insatiable man...*cough* Tiger Woods....*cough* President Clinton....*cough cough cough* Spitzer, Gingrich, Kobe.

I like so many single women, find myself wanting to at times, join the one-way man hating train to menarepigsillvainia. But then something happened, well, I guess I should say some"things" happen that have led to turn my critical eye from our male counterparts and focus it instead directly onto my very own sisterhood.

In the last 4 months, I have had the sorrow of listening to the divorce stories of 5 guys who I would consider fall into the category of "good" men. Several were men who I had been asked out by and others were dear friends and/or family members. In each case, when I probed the men to give me an explanation as to why they are now divorced, they all admitted that their wives had cheated on them. I was astounded. True, there are always two sides to every story, and I am in no way absolving these men of any and all responsibility, however, I will tell you that in all of these cases, the men remained faithful to the end, having never returned the betrayal in like fashion.

It is also important to note that these were not what you might consider "worldly" couples; these were devote church-going mormon couples that by their own convictions were meant to be holding themselves to a higher standard. The men of these relationships have, and continue to be clean and genuine men who, for all of their flaws, of which we all have in spades, have continued to stay true to their promises to God and to their companions. They are the "good" guys that the average woman of the world would shank you for just to get her hands on. These are men who love their mothers, honor their fathers, respect the boundaries of women, and following the teachings of Christ.

So in response to the question posed by the epic 80's lyrics, "Where have all the good men gone and where are all the gods?", I would heartily reply, THEY ARE HERE! They are all around us. And if you want to argue doctrinal issues about the Mormon faith then that's fine; but there is one thing you can't argue...The Mormon faith still knows how to raise GOOD men with GOOD values. And while it is true that these men can be found outside of the Mormon church (I personally have dated several), it is undeniable that men raised in the faith whether they remain active in the church or no, have that certain something that seems to be missing from the male population in general.

The reason that "good" guys seem to be going the way of the Thunder Cats is that traditional values are going the way of the world, They are not being taught in the homes and the are certainly not being taught on television. In an age where female value has been reduced down to their waist to breast ratio, it is nice to know that there are still men out there that are trying their best not to buy into it. Are they perfect? No. Are all Mormon guys perfect examples of chivalry? Obviously not (I have dated several of those as well). But my point is, maybe it is time that we as women opened our eyes and started seeing the good men that are all around us. If you want to end up with a good guy, then DATE good guys. But if what you are really looking for is a jerk who devalues and belittles your value by reducing you down to the level of a sex toy, well then, take your pick, for there is no shortage to be had.

I truly believe this principle holds true whether you are a practicing Mormon or attempting to practice abstinence or merely practicing your words with friends skills. A good man is not measured by the faith he follows, but rather by the values that he allows to guide his actions. So let's hear it for all the GOOD men out there, the ones who listen to us rant and still love us, the ones who rub our feet after THEY have worked a 10 hour day. Here's to the guys who change diapers, hold our hair back when we get the flu, and make midnight runs to Walmart; be they black, white, mormon, muslim, atheist,single, married, gay, straight, Coke or Pepsi fans....I know at least one anxious virgin who takes comfort in knowing you are still out there.

1 comment:

  1. You raise many fun points! I'd like to share my RM-temple married-now ex mormon take on a few things...

    1. My fascination with pornography dwindled to almost nothing once I stopped hearing messages about it every sunday. For instance, at this very moment, whatever you do... DO NOT PICTURE A BLACK CAT in your mind. What? You just did? Hmm.... Yes. There is much to be said about not being reminded constantly about what we ought not be thinking about.

    2. Behind every cheating woman is a wussy man who no longer does it for her. Okay, that's a terrible generalization... there are plenty of women who are just plain 'ole liars / cheaters. I will say this, however - I became a serious student of relationships and the psychology of attraction after my marriage ended. My divorce was an undeniable sign that I failed at maintaining my part of a thriving marriage. Though you won't find this in the scriptures, a common feature of LDS culture is to teach men to be almost subservient to their wives. A subservient man who makes too many compromises of who he truly is, to appease his wife, will sow the seeds of deep marital dissatisfaction on her part - and inevitably, his. The "why" behind this merits it's own blog post. For now it may suffice to say that I believe LDS culture does a terrible job of socializing males for success in marriage, and the divorce statistics seem to agree.

    Paul Duane