June 24, 2010

What Women Want?

So Blogadda has another contest: What Women Want? No, I am not participating but simply thinking a loud.

My problem with the topic (oh yes, I have a problem. Why else will I write a post, if not complain?): who is eligible to write on such a topic?

Men are, by default, unqualified to write about this topic. How can they possibly know what women want? At the most they can ask women in their lives (or speculate, or make sexist jokes/comments) what they want and still I am pretty sure, it will be hard for them to understand it completely, let alone write about it.

Women? Can any woman, or any individual, really know what all women want? there are approximately 3 billion of us. Each of us lives in different society, have to obey different sets of rules, have different life situations and hence, have completely different needs and wants. For example, a woman in war torn Somalia would want not to be raped while a woman in India would simply want the freedom of walking on the road without a frown, to ward off any molestation attempts.  How can one woman tell what all of us want? Isn’t it ridiculous to bundle 3 billion individuals in one and wonder what they want?  And yet, we find so many theories on the subject and all start with the same claim: Women are mysteries or no one knows what women want etc. If you bundle 3 billion individuals into one and then try to decipher what they want, of course, you will be confused. It will certainly seem like a mystery.

You see, here is the thing. Women are not animals that you can study and learn about their behavior, habits, needs or desires (oh well, technically we are all animals but you know what I mean). You can’t go looking for “patterns” among intelligent individuals. We all process information differently, so is it fair that we try to categorize ourselves in such broad classes? Can we really classify the human race in two groups: man and woman, and then go defining the traits of each group? Is the question:  “What women want?” (or the question “what men want?”, for that matter) really a fair question to ask?

P.S.: I have serious objection over comments like: “Even women don’t know what they want?”, or “Even God is trying to find that one out!” etc (and these types of comments are always from, surprise surprise, a man. The individuals that are completely unqualified to say anything on the subject and yet, they have to comment). Do men really think they are better than that? Are you seriously telling me that men don’t have mood swings, or that they don’t take out their work frustrations by snapping at people closest to them, or that they don’t cry, despite all the social conditioning (the things they accuse women of and the reason they claim no one knows what they want)? Because they do. They don’t want to admit it and would probably make fun of any male, who they think does such things but at some point, they all have done that. They are, after all, humans too; and having emotions is a human trait.


  1. I couldn't agree more. Topics like this almost make women sound like some outlandish species.. As for the comments , well, the less said the better!

  2. Bingo...you said everything I've been thinking.

    I (or anyone else, for that matter) can only talk of what I want as a woman, and definitely can't generalize and say that's what all women want. For each his own. And what's the point even of something like this?

  3. Oh God! I was so irritated with the comments I saw on that post that I had to write a response.
    Thank God, I'm not the only woman annoyed by this.

  4. I have no idea what is the point of this, except getting so many sexist remarks. I have been reading few responses and most of them have been getting on my nerves. I am boycotting this contest...though I wonder if I can girl-cott this instead? :)

  5. I know! And for some reason it's always "what women want" and rarely "what men want". I guess it's just because we live in patriarchal society and whatever men think is norm. I couldn't help but imagine what if it was other way around and what women think was normal. We would have ridiculed the way man behave then, right? Not that I am in favor of that one either, yet it does sound like a better world to live in as a woman, don't you?

  6. I know what you mean. I had been reading few responses and have been fuming over last few days. I am boycotting this contest completely. I think it's a sexist question and should not be given importance. But may be replying back to them is a better approach. I don't know, I am just enraged by this whole thing, especially when they have done a contest for pride day this week. They have done a contest for almost all the days and they conveniently forget the pride day this week. I am just so angry at them..

  7. IHM suggested I come and read this post of yours and wow ,I love it. I have written something on similar lines. :)

  8. Welcome to the blog Shail!

    Guess we both had the same opinion about the topic! Great minds think alike or, fools seldom differ?

  9. Oh I agree with what you say Richa! We aren't cattle! Leave us alone! WE aren't a species to be studied under a microscope and a pattern to be made!

    Loved your post! And I didn't like the comments I saw there, so wrote my piece a day later!!