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JENNIFER'S GEMS
by Jennifer Brown Banks

Are You a Stepford Wife in Training?

Stepford Wife (definition)-- Based upon a novel in the 1970s and a subsequent movie, refers to the submissive and robotic state of compliant married women.

Call me crazy, but I believe that total obedience and submission should be reserved for the I.R.S. And God!

Which is why I'm baffled by the many otherwise “savvy” sisters in 2009 that are abandoning their common sense and sense of self worth to please the whims of their men---even the ridiculous requests.

I don’t get it.

Don't get me wrong, as a woman with an old fashioned value system in many ways, I do subscribe to the philosophy that men were created by the divine creator to be the “stronger vessel” and to maintain leadership roles in love and life.

And I'm even okay that modern day wedding vows STILL dictate that women “love, honor, and obey.”

But here's where I have a problem: I refuse to follow any schmuck who fails to demonstrate by his own life's example that we should play follow-the-leader.

In other words, I have no problem submitting to a man if he demonstrates the 4Ds: discernment, discipline, devotion and “divine submission”.

And even so, our union would still have to be an alliance of give and take where we would both work to fulfill one another's needs on an ongoing basis. 

To quote Tyler Perry's movie, “I can do bad all by myself.”

You scratch my back and I’ll scratch yours. Are you with me on this?

Chicks with antiquated mindsets that feel that by mere virtue of a man's gender role that they must dance to HIS tune and jump when HE says jump (including some of my girlfriends), set the Women’s Movement back decades.

Are you kidding me? As my mom would say, “God gave you a brain, use it.”

Here's an example.  I was watching Divorce Court today where one woman's compliance to her man's wishes landed her in a three-some with another female to honor her husband's birthday request.

In another Ripley's Believe it or Not Scenario, a friend of mine's hubby convinced her that he should handle all the couple's finances.

And dig this...as a result of his mismanagement they ended up on the brink of bankruptcy! To her misfortune, it was a classic case of the blind leading the blind.

Are you susceptible to the same fate?

Read on and find out.

Here are clues that you are a Stepford Wife in training.

How many of these traits and conditions are you guilty of?

  1. What your man says goes. It doesn't matter how irrational his requests or demands, you comply. 
    YES___ NO___
  1. Your friends and family take a back seat to his demands for your time. In other words, you will break standing engagements and break your neck to be at his side whenever his social calendar dictates it. 
    YES_____  NO____
  1. To please him you agree not to have any male friends ever while you're together.
    YES_____ NO______
  1. Your friends don't see what you see in him.
    YES______ NO_____
  1. You let him win arguments for the sake of salvaging his ego.
    YES_____ NO_____
  1. He's got your nose open as wide as a Mack truck. 
    YES______ NO______

If you answered yes to at least four of the above questions, honey you’re soon to join the Stepford Wives’ ranks!

Of course this is not to suggest that there aren’t times when you should follow your guy’s lead. For instance, if he’s a money management guru and offers some advice on budgeting or good stock tips, go for it!

Or if he needs your support and wants you to be the “trophy” girl so he can impress his business clients, why not?

Good relationships are the result of good balance and compromise.

Just remember that the only time that “desperate housewives” are viewed as attractive is on T.V.!


Jennifer's Gems is a weekly column written by award-winning poet and writer, Jennifer Brown Banks. It is published every Wednesday. Click here to read her welcome letter.


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