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Hi Ninisjpc,

I'm sorry that I never saw your last post and didn't have a chance to reply. I was just wondering how you were doing lately. I know you've been around giving your great advice to others :), but I was thinking about you personally and hoping things have been going a bit better. I reread the end of this thread and I have to say, I can see where you're coming from a bit more. I don't think there's any contradiction between being a feminist in the sense that women are just as smart and capable as men, and they can and should succeed just like men have traditionally, and feeling incomplete without a man.

My mom has been divorced since I was a baby, and has made an extremely successful career for herself. My dad helped some, and was always around, a very consistent influence in my life, but really it was my mom and my mom alone who gave me the best of everything: all the toys, books, clothes, cars and education (8 years at extremely expensive private schools). She has taken care of several beautiful homes, inside and out, doing repairs, putting together furniture, all the typical guy stuff, all on her own without a word of compaint. She really prefers it that way, doing things her way on her time with only me to answer to. She has had a few boyfriends along the way, but just isn't willing to give up her lifestyle and privacy for a man. I admire her more than anyone in the world--I can't imagine that anyone could have had a more loving, caring, and supportive mother--but I can't imagine being completely happy like her without a man. Maybe having a child helps, but being a single mom is SO hard, even when money isn't an issue (and my mom had to work her way up from scratch, so she didn't always have plenty of money). Anyway, besides a little tribute to my amazing mom :angel: , my point here is that even with that inspiring example of independence, I have always been much more comfortable with a man in my life.

Since high school, I've always liked having a steady boyfriend, just someone to count on for company, support, and social companionship. I'm not sure it has as much to do with how you're raised as your temperment, and I, while a firmly avowed feminist, don't think I would be as happy without a man in my life. I don't think this makes us less strong, independent women, and I don't think it's anything that you or I should try to change. The truth is, it's great to have a partner by your side. I think that probably a huge reason why you're having trouble getting past this break-up is because of a lack of other relationships to compare it to, so that you can see that there are other guys out there and that he wasn't the be all and end all of men. I wish I had some way to give you that perspective, but I can't. Despite having 4 other serious relationships, I just know that my current SO is the love of my life, the one I'm meant to be with forever. If anything happened to change that, I know I'd never get over it either. I'm sure there must have been lots of wonderful aspects to your relationship, and I'm sorry that I and others focused on his negative traits in an attempt to make you feel better. You wouldn't still be struggling with this if he was really a complete's always hardest to get over your first love, and even harder when you didn't find love until you were mature enough to recognize it and when you invested so much of your hopes and yourself in the relationship. So while I wish I could give you some profound advice as to how to move past this, I can't. I can only give you compassion and understanding, and say that it doesn't make you less of a person or woman to want a man to complete you (cheesy as that sounds). Still, with all the love and care in your heart, I'd bet that someday, when you're not even looking, another man will come to love you in a way that will make you forget this other guy. In the meantime, I hope things get easier little by little.

Also, I wanted to say that I completely agreed with your story about your friend who supposedly considers herself, and all women, inferior and subordinate to men, but still bosses her husband around. I think that in today's day and age, any women who feels that way is either terribly insecure or just a plain hypocrite, spouting out that dated rhetoric as a cover for being controlling and overbearing. I do feel sorry for that woman's daughter--what effect will a lifetime of such mixed signals have on that poor girl's view of herself and men? GRRR...there's nothing wrong with admitting you need a man, but EVERYTHING wrong with saying that you're inferior to them. It's like the women who opposed the Equal Rights Amendment...what kind of woman wants to hold all the rest of us back? Clearly, a hypocritical, bitter woman who begrudges all other woman any happiness and success.

Anyway, sorry for the rambling, and I hope it was okay to bump this thread. If you feel like it, I'm sure I'm not the only one who is concerned with how you're making out these days, so fill us in if you'd like. I hope you've been doing a little better, I can only imagine how hard this is to live with day in and day out. Take care!

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