Protect, Attack, Don't Be Pushed Back
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Protect, Attack, Don't Be Pushed Back

Why strength and nurturing should go hand-in-hand, not separated

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Protect, Attack, Don't Be Pushed Back
Photo by Tatiana Syrikova from Pexels

Contrary to the unpopular belief, "beta females" are Not the best females. I know, the handful of ladies at my church who promote the "beta" type are reacting against radical feminism by swinging to the complete opposite extreme but I will say this: glorying in weakness is not only foolish, it is harmful. It is harmful to impressionable young women who listen to these extreme ideas and it is harmful to children, if you have a family. The qualities of strength and nurturing should not be separated, they go hand in hand.

In a nutshell, a beta female is a woman who is quiet, introverted, and seeks out romantic relationships. It is a personality type, but the way it is promoted by these "Catholic influencers" presents the "ideal woman" as a pushover who obeys her husband unconditionally even if it compromises her values. His word is law, in these influencer's eyes. Basically her life revolves around pleasing her man and taking care of her kids. In and of itself, there is nothing wrong with having a family or even being a stay-at-home mom. (Heck, I'd work from home if I was married too.) The problem is how the "ideal woman" promoted by these influencers is an unrealistic spineless caricature of a woman and in real life, "beta females" would not make good wives or mothers. Feminine is not supposed to be synonymous with helplessly weak.

Consider animal mothers. What happens when someone tries to mess with a bear's cubs? She will take her claws out and maul him to death. Of course, an animal's aggression in defense of her young is instinctual, naturally wired to continue the species. A mother bear does not love her cubs the way we humans may love our children, but the example of strength in nurturing is seen in nature and in no way goes contrary to it. One should never mess with a mother.

It blows my mind, how so many mothers have known of or even witnessed their own children be abused but let it happen. Some of these women were, sadly, failed by the authorities. Others were, at some point, convinced that it is "not her place", to take action against her husband. I am no mother but can still imagine myself washing an abuser's blood off my hands if I was. How is fighting back in such circumstances not a mother's first instinct? These women will promote being nurturing but will cower to bad men, even at the cost of their children's well-being. Cowering is not "your place". Your "place" is to protect your child, so do your job! Don't be an enabler. Our right to defend ourselves and those under our care comes from nature and is reasonably in line with moral principles.

Children, especially daughters in this case, may look up to their mothers for an example. If the example she is setting is to depend on her husband and obey him blindly even when he is in the wrong, these children do not learn how to tackle the problems in life head-on. If you need to rely on others to save you all the time, you will not survive the real world.

Reality is messy and does not follow ideal models. Ideally, a husband should take care of his wife and kids but what if he dies, becomes disabled, or leaves? Someone will have to fill in the role of provider, like it or not. Building a solid resume just in case is smart. Every now and then, the men will fail to protect. I know this because my own father, though not a bad man, did not possess leadership skills or protective strength, given his flegmatic personality. (Contrary to what one retreat master said, my father took care of his kids when we were sick... and had more patience to do so than our mother!) Some men have strength and the ability to lead but abuse their strength and authority. While my father tended to be an enabler, I know of peers who were abused by their fathers. These were bad men who instead of defending their children's innocence, stole it from them. When the patriarchs in our lives fail, we need a Judith or a Joan of Arc type, not an enabler.

Depending on others, in general, is dangerous. Life is not a fairytale. No one will come and save you in the real world. That is your own responsibility. If sons see their mothers fawn to abusive husbands, they will think it is okay to belittle and abuse their future wives and girlfriends and they may look specifically for women who are easier to control. Don't be easy to control! A strong mother will demand respect from her husband and sons, raising boys with proper discipline. This guidance can be gentle and approachable, but always dignified.

Some of these "beta" women promote absolute obedience to a man. Obeying blindly, in general, is also dangerous. Just because this man is your husband does not mean you need to compromise your values and safety just because he demands you to. He is not God. The content of his words and their alignment to common sense and moral principles is what matters, not what's in his pants. Questioning rules is intelligence, not rebellion, if you spot red flags. (I mean you ladies think you're such crusaders because you "won't be forced to wear a mask" in public but you still let your man tell you what to wear? You don't sound so woke!)

Of course, we must keep in mind that a lot of this relies on personality. I cannot relate too much with these so-called "beta females" because I do not possess enough of the qualities. There may be more categories than "beta" and "alpha" and honestly, I do not think there should even be these idealistic boxes because most women have qualities of both. People are complex that way. We cannot force someone who is more quiet, caring, and romantic into a role of leadership she does not fit and likewise, we cannot force who is someone strong-willed and confident into being "seen and not heard". Yes, there is a nurturing side in all of us women. At times, even I feel protective over my younger sisters, or girls who remind me of them. I have compassionate qualities but I also speak up when I see something is wrong. However, I know I cannot promote my own personality type as the ideal because (aside from having its flaws,) not everyone can fit into it. Not everyone will be happy in marriage and not everyone can handle remaining single. You can't force an introvert to be extraverted and vice versa. If it doesn't fit, don't wear it. I have nothing against being nurturing and caring. I think those are good qualities! What I do find problematic is promoting a weak character as an ideal. For the same reason these women don't want a "masculine" strength pushed onto all women, I think it's just as unrealistic to convince every woman into being meek pushover. Maybe you naturally have "beta" qualities, but that does not mean you should be okay being treated as a toy or a puppet. Being caring is attractive, being spineless and soft is not (at least not to the right people). Your maternal instinct should not be presented as a weakness. Some of us need to work on being more selfless and merciful, while some us us need to build confidence.There is a maternal and self-preserving strength that should come naturally to us and it should not be suppressed. Anyone who tries shaming us into suppressing that protective instinct wants us to lower our defenses to easily defile, abuse, and control us.

In conclusion, it is foolish to say that strength should be separate from nurturing. It should not be treated as inherently un-feminine. Meekness is not the same as weakness. Strength and independence should not be shamed. It's a natural part of survival and for some, an innate personality trait that serves a purpose. To be a good nurturer, you need strength of character in order to protect your children and your own wellbeing. Roses have thorns for a good reason.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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