Jump directly to the Content

Women

Opinion | Family

How Marriage Changed My View of Men

When you live side by side a flesh-and-blood man, stereotypes fall short.

Earlier this year I reflected at Her.meneutics on lessons learned in anticipating my upcoming marriage. I continue to learn new lessons, for marriage is an ever-present schoolmaster. You see, I married relatively late (39), and through those single years, I had far fewer positive relationships with males than I would like to admit, not to mention a couple extremely negative ones. I've been tempted to attribute the failings of a few to the larger group, at times wielding what C. S. Lewis called the "hidden or flaunted […] sword between the sexes," which Lewis himself thought could be removed by what he called an "entire marriage."

For me, marriage has indeed dispelled certain prejudices against men. I realize now how I had drawn big conclusions from small, unrepresentative samples. Such fallacious patterns writ large are exactly what generate gender stereotypes, in both directions. Women, so the stereotype trumpets, are passive followers, emotional, relational—the feelers. Men, in contrast, are assertive and rational—the leaders and problem solvers, the thinkers. Or worse: aggressive, exploitative, predatory.

As a philosophy professor, my husband has taught many business ethics classes, and he's told me that those students who are the staunchest defenders of the most cutthroat and unscrupulous business practices, almost without exception, are men. He admits with chagrin that sometimes, because of such anecdotal evidence, he's tempted to believe that women in general ...

Subscriber access only You have reached the end of this Article Preview
To continue reading, subscribe now. Subscribers have full digital access.
Already a CT subscriber? for full digital access.
Tags:

Read These Next

close
hide this
Access The Archives

Member-Only Access

Subscribe to Christianity Today to continue reading this article from CT's digital archives.

Subscribe

Already a subscriber? to continue reading.