There I was, happily working from home on a Friday when some music I was playing off YouTube was interrupted by an ad….. for “4 ways to be a Powerful Woman… without intimidating men”
As you well know, ALL men are intimidated by “powerful” women and need that women to mould them in ways in order that they “get the woman what they want”. No really, it’s true because Layla Martin says it is, and she’s got a free ebook for you on that very subject.
I tried, oh did I try, to ignore this video. But it just rankled me so much I had to say something… and at first that was comment on YouTube, which grew into a post on Facebook which ended up being this post on WordPress. The reason it’s grown is that the video is so stupid on so many levels that you just can’t encompass it in X-words or less as limited. Somehow a Tweet isn’t going to cover this.
I find this video extraordinary on just so many levels. But as this is critique and not actually a rant (I was being funny before) lets examine some of the facts as portrayed. Deep breath….
It starts with the basic premise that men are, by their very nature, intimidated by “powerful” women. Now apart from the fact that’s not true, there’s no actual definition of what Layla Lartin MEANS by “powerful”. So lets be useful and look it up.
- having or exerting great power or force.
- physically strong, as a person:
a large, powerful athlete.
- producing great physical effects, as a machine or a blow.
- potent; efficacious:
a powerful drug.
- having great effectiveness, as a speech, speaker, description, reason, etc.
having great power, authority, or influence; mighty:
a powerful nation.
Lets assume Layla means the most “having great authority or influence” rather than necessarily “be a powerful athlete”. But… who can tell, right? I mean she bands the term around as a catch-all without saying what it really means, by hey… generalisations are all the rage on YouTube (he he he). Lets go with it.
The video then suggests that “powerful” women should mould (described as “support”) their chosen man to be what they need. Like Play-doh I guess.
Here are the 4 “cornerstones” for you poor unfortunate lonely, yet “powerful” women.
1. Have compassion. Because are you well know, “most men are not raised to what to do with a powerful woman and it can be scary as a man to feel, like ‘he doesn’t know what to do’ he’s ‘out of sorts’… he hasn’t been trained in this particular modality.” – that’s a direct quote.
Tell me, as a powerful “force of nature”, ladies, could you respect a man you had to train? Just a thought…
2. See the best of the men in your life – Here she suggests that women “many of us as women to actually be critical, nitpicking, to see the worst in men”. Yes ladies, you are all nags; according to Layla Martin. Of course, being critical is actually a necessary defensive posture and Layla sort of says that… by also implying men are not to be trust and might be abusive. Anyway, being critical is a “low energy state with low resonance” so cut it out and stop being a victim about shit. I paraphrased the last bit. Because it’s annoying the crap out of me.
3. Don’t be afraid to tell a man what it takes to please you – Which as an opening sentence is actually great advice. Men are constantly criticised for “not communicating” when in fact this is frequently an issue for women. Lets be honest, if the response is poor… that’s not the guy for you. “and a lot of men like to do things when they know they can be a service” – Yeah, submissive men in a BDSM relationship. Or how about “a lot of men like to do things if they know it brings pleasure to their partner”, doesn’t that sound a lot better?
One thing to note is that Layla’s example for a powerful woman’s measure of desire would be “I love how you design the date from start to finish”. Because ALL women, even “powerful ones” deep down just want a man in charge. Or how about special trinkets and surprises because all powerful women have that whole Princess thing going on; constantly needing to be complimented.
Remember, these are meant to be “powerful and confident women”.
4. Don’t be afraid to train a man – Erm… imagine the reaction if I posted “How to train your woman”, can you imagine the reaction? But to be honest, the way she describes this.. it’s actually just point 3. Tell your partner what you need. And to be honest EVERYBODY should tell their partner what they need.
“I’m sad, please hold me.”, “I’m angry, this is why” I could go on….
And that’s it. Layla’s top 4 (actually 3) suggestions as to how Powerful Women can be a so and not intimidate men.
Be compassionate, be positive and talk to your partner. Boiled down, as I have, these are actually positive messages. But the way they are presented is so ridiculously patronising and sexist (in all directions) it’s difficult for my addled, tiny, powerful woman hating man brain to work out. Clearly, I need training.
And now a compliment to all strong willed women
Of course, I’m not sure where Layla grew up. I’m pretty sure it wasn’t the North and North West of England. Up here we prefer our women to be strong or mind and will and they are portrayed as such in media. The character of the strong, down to earth woman is almost exclusively given a Northern accent.
My mother was a strong minded woman, so was her mother. I did once date a girl who was “whatever you think dear”. She was from Kent. It drove me insane.
I guess when it comes down to it, we prefer strong women because when times are hard you want to know you’ve got a woman who’s “got your back” and life is better with an equal partner rather than someone you’ve got to drag everywhere with you. I’m lucky, I have such a woman in my life.