In a bid to discount the existence of patriarchy in the modern world, I’ve seen some men claim that women are now treated as equals.
If this is true, I have a simple question: what do you call a woman who is in a relationship with a married man?-A mistress. It comes quickly to mind, doesn’t it?
Now tell me, what’s the male equivalent of that? I’ll wait. You don’t know? Well, neither do I.
Here is another one; we all know that an older woman who seeks relations with younger men is called a cougar. But what do you call a man who does the same? Er...I don’t know either.
The Urban Dictionary says that such a man is called a manther but I am not so sure because no one else seems to have written about it.
The reason why male equivalents of “mistress” and “cougar” are unfamiliar or non-existent is because they both fall under the category of derogatory terms only reserved for women.Even when the male equivalent exists, it’s not quite as demeaning.
This is patriarchy. It’s women being unfairly held to a much higher standard than men and receiving an enormous amount of criticism for certain behavior while their male counterparts go scot-free.
A mistress will be chastised for tempting the married man and destroying his marriage. The wife of the cheat will be told that she must have done something to push him into the arms of another woman.
But by no means will the man be expected to fully account for his actions or error in judgment.
In the same way, the ‘cougar’ will be told to respect herself and stop chasing after men who are young enough to be her sons.
But anold man who preys on young girls will not receive the same criticism. Instead, the young girls will be told to stop being materialistic and shallow.
Patriarchy says: “Don’t be such a girl!” or more brutally, “Don’t be such a...” how do I say this?...Well, don’t be the female reproductive organ whose nickname rhymes with pushy.
This statement is used to criticize someone, especially a man for being soft or seemingly cowardly and risk-averse.
People who are told not to be such women get defensive because they feel insulted. Some even self-destruct just to prove that they are strong and manly. You would be hard-pressed to find someone who would feel insulted by beingaccused of being “such a man.”
Here’s the irony about associating the female reproductive organ with weakness, as popular South African comedian Trevor Noah once pointed out; the female reproductive organ is very strong.
Themale reproductive organ, on the other hand is actually very fragile. But no one thinks to imply weakness by saying “Don’t be such a…word that rhymes with duck,” because the patriarchal establishment would be up in arms about the attack on men.
I could gone on and on about the many ways that women are unfairly judged and criticized and called names that men are protected from due to male privilege created by patriarchy. But I think I’ve said enough.