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Gender Switch: When Did Men Become So Feminine?

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Temper tantrums, emotional outbursts, the need to be chased, an addiction to handbags, manicures and pedicures…I’m talking about men. When did they become the new women?

By: Amanda Anderson

Am I the only one who has noticed that men just ain’t the same? The changes that have taken place have vastly affected the dating scene, the way men and women interact with one another, and the overall complexity of selecting the appropriate partner. It’s hard enough finding a good man with all the trash intoxicating the relationship front, but when you add on the lack of REAL MEN to the already frustrating dating environment, things just start to look depressing, and more women just end up single. Somewhere down the line, masculinity began to shrivel up and die in some dark corner of romantic possibility, and now, men are the new women. And pursuing these bitches ain’t easy. And no, I’m not exaggerating; I’m just another woman sick of seeing men being chased and pursued like they have the greatest jewel that holds the key to all human life: vaginas. And now these same “men” have the nerve to walk around with “man” bags and manicured nails? Honey, I don’t think so.

It all started (and ended) with the women’s independence movement. Women started leaving their homes, and for the last couple of decades, we have become a vital part of Corporate America. We’re managers, boss ladies, CEOs, and entrepreneurs; and for black women, we’re even out numbering black men in colleges and universities. Turns out the career thing looks damn good on us, and now we’re bringing home the paycheck and taking care of home like no one’s business. We made it look easy, and somewhere down the line, we made men look like…women.

To survive Corporate America, and hold on to independence, we had to get aggressive. We took that same aggressiveness and applied it to our pursuits in love and relationships. No longer do we sit and wait for that fine brother to notice us and start up a conversation; now we approach him and buy him a drink. He liked the go getter attitude, and men realized just how good it feels to be pursued, and how even better it feels to be the prey of a hunter in 6 inch stilettos, designer labels and a coke bottle figure to match.

It was fabulous to play the game and switch roles at first, but who honestly believed that it would have such the impact that it has?

I had a recent conversation with an old girlfriend from high school. Apparently, she had been dating a guy who had some serious vanity (or insecurity) issues. She’s a gorgeous woman by nature, so naturally, he would always tell her how beautiful she was. She would shoot him her gorgeous smile and thank him for the courtesy. But one day, he grew tired of the unreturned compliments. He asked her why she never complimented him the way he compliments her. And then he proceeded to tell her that men need to hear it just as much as women do. Burr?

Oh it doesn’t stop there. They’ve even coined themselves as “metrosexuals.” They get manicures and pedicures, carry bags, complain more than we do, and have a greater addiction to material things than most of our self obsessed girlfriends.

They can’t even cut their own grass, and only sweat during sex, because they feel any form of labor (or work) is beneath them. And like desperate women holding on to the infamous biological clocks, some of us will overlook all of this as long as he makes a six figure salary. Meanwhile, resentment builds when he can’t even do the basic things for you like come change your damn tires when one blows out from that raggedy behind pothole that they city council still hasn’t fixed.

While he was getting his manicure or going on another shopping spree, you managed, only because your daddy taught you how to change your own tire because he peeped game about your sissy for a boyfriend. Turns out, daddy ain’t no fool. He knew that these young dudes have no clue on how to take care of you, so he figured he’d teach you to take care of yourself.

Like women, men have undergone their own evolution. These men ain’t nothing like my daddy, grandfathers, or even my uncles. Smart women want men they can build something with, and who can contribute to the household besides a fat paycheck, yet you’ll find yourself relying more on the Yellow Pages than your own man because he knows little about how to fix things around the house. Women may have changed, and we may exceed in the corporate world, but deep down inside, we want to trade in our superwoman capes for a superman, and some form of protection. Superman was bullet proof, but damn homie, can’t you at least cut the grass?

I got so frustrated with these new vanity and ego driven, too good to get dirty, I’d rather be chased than do the chasing type brothers, that I took a little break from the dating scene all together. I took two whole years to evaluate the evolution, discern what I needed, and most importantly, I allowed the big chase to continue without me. Some sisters say I should have stayed in the game, but chasing after men has never been my thing, nor have men that have better manicured hands than me ever been attractive to me.

Then finally, a man came along that actually pursued me. I could have easily missed him if I had listened to the current society, and went after what I thought I could live without, instead of waiting on what I could not live without. It’s the traditional things that seem so much better now in a world that is on a mission to strip all that reeks tradition.

Call me crazy, but it just bamboozles me that so many young men would rather undress you with their eyes instead of approach you like a man, and start some decent conversation. Some sisters may take the googly eyes as a sign to go after the prey, but hell, I am the prey, and a man better show me some assertiveness before I forsake all others. I’m worth the chase, pursuit, and the upkeep…I’m a treasure, surely not just another dime a dozen. Therefore, you have to get off of your ass to get me, staring me up and down won’t make me get off of mine. So I’ll pass, good sir, and pull your pants up before you walk away.

Now I’m still career driven, and I’m still very much on the path I intended: media domination. But I very much prefer the traditional kind of man that isn’t too into himself to give me what I need, that can cut a little grass, isn’t focused on self and materials, doesn’t need or want a manicure or man bag; and last but by no means least, pursues me like I am the best woman he’s ever laid eyes on. Some women are about the chase, but I’m about being chased. I decided I’d let him catch me, since I’m worth it and much more anyway.

To each its own, but the new man just ain’t my style. One thing’s for certain, change ain’t always good, nor will it always lead to something worth holding on to. And honey, I’m worth holding on to and chasing like his life depends on it. Are you worth being pursued?

23 Comments

  1. Anonymous

    October 19, 2010 at 12:32 am

    haha I just love it! so funny and true. me and my friends were just talking about this the other day.

  2. The World We're Living In Sucks

    October 19, 2010 at 1:07 am

    Oh I cannot handle the manbags! Kanye has really messed with these young dudes heads. They can't even see how feminine they have become. It's so sad.

  3. Shayla

    October 19, 2010 at 4:08 pm

    Truth! The sad thing is no one really noticed the changes. All of this has been accepted as normal by the majority of our society. smh

  4. Anonymous

    October 19, 2010 at 4:19 pm

    Men are more sensitive than usual, and crossing right on over to female territory, and I'm talking about men who claim to be heterosexual. I believe a lot of it has to do with the lack of fathers in the household. The only way to conquer this is to handle the daddy issues.

  5. jayinatlanta

    October 19, 2010 at 4:51 pm

    Amanda, I hope you'll welcome feedback from a man. I really liked your article. It was well-written and made some great points.Just a couple of things to contribute from a male perspective, if I may:First, I was struck by the story about your friend whose man eventually wanted a compliment or two. I think every human would want some positive comments on their looks every once in a while. As you point out, women get the huge majority of them, and rightly so (especially with our gorgeous urban/southern belles). But I do think it's worth noting that men have been encouraged to watch the same TV shows & movies as their partners, and even at times be interested in the same magazines. Therefore, body image for the man (abs, hair, clothing, etc., etc.) has gained some emphasis. If you want the men to look good — just like if we want the women to look good — then throw 'em a compliment every ONCE in a while, huh? But if you see 'em spend as much time in the bathroom or working on their outfit as a female, I'd give the relationship some thought.Second, IF you want a man who wants to have some focus on your intellect, then that means you want a man who appreciates being challenged by his woman. Right? Assuming that's true, I think it's the reason that so many men are on the lookout for "strong" women, and one of the ways to show strength is definitely to act like you want something. You make this point yourself, I think, because being chased makes the man seem stronger to you.Now, I'm not saying that strength is just in being aggressive in a club/bar setting, but I do think it might send a signal to a man that makes him interested in what you have to say.Finally, to the Anonymous comment from today at 9:19 am: you're right, there's a lack of fathers and even father figures. No argument that it makes a different kind of man when he's raised by women (trust me, I know). As a straight, VERY happily married guy, I can tell you I don't have much respect for these "mama's boys" or even for these "metrosexuals," but there are positives and negatives to this.From a man's perspective, if what you're looking for is a well-rounded man, Amanda's article offers some really good advice. But hopefully I shed some light on other things to consider.

  6. Anonymous

    October 19, 2010 at 11:57 pm

    Yeah it's hard out here. Men are on some other stuff now, so it's even harder to meet a decent man. But from talking to some of my guy friends, they feel the same way about women. But I will say, I will not date metrosexual men. They are just the worst.

  7. Patrice

    October 20, 2010 at 2:50 am

    Yes! I'm glad there are still women out here that want real men, and who want to be chased! I refuse to run after a man, or date a man who's more emotional than I am. I don't care what's hot in the streets these days.

  8. Anonymous

    October 20, 2010 at 8:54 pm

    Man bags are an EPIC FAIL.

  9. Mel

    October 21, 2010 at 12:29 am

    This is very real and I am so glad someone spoke on this. I think men and women are forgetting that the basics are crucial to healthy relationships. Women may be in the forefront now in our careers and education, but we still appreciate masculinity, and a man that can provide/protect. I think all of these factors play a role in the difficulty of finding a partner these days. And I think Jay's comment was on point as well.

  10. Anonymous

    February 1, 2011 at 2:03 am

    You are so right I want a man to chase me not the other way around. Nor do I want a man that want do any dirty work, girl I totally agree change isn't always a good thing, especially this change in men.

  11. Anonymous

    March 25, 2011 at 10:12 pm

    Hi Amanda, There are many valid points you've made within your article, however, it is just as important to note that it is just as difficult for a men to find a "good" woman as it is for a woman to find a "good" man. And honestly, by whose definition is "good" made definitive? Wherever one may be in life has some direct link to decisions one has made… some "good" and some not so "good". Nevertheless, the bottom line is, whatever things one may focus on, desire, & work to achieve will largely determine one's access or opportunity to meet, rub elbows, engage with those who have sacrificed to obtain the best within their reach.

  12. Amanda

    March 26, 2011 at 7:04 pm

    This comment has been removed by the author.

  13. Amanda

    March 26, 2011 at 7:07 pm

    @ Anon above meIf you read this site often, you'd know that I stress on many occasions that it's hard for good men and good women to find each other. I've never, nor will I ever say the contrary…we don't preach to the choir around these parts. Also, I could write a book on just how so many people's definition of good men and good women are incorrect and absurd. I haven't even touched on it though…maybe I ought to?Secondly, this article is not about "good men." In fact, it doesn't even really touch on "good men." It touches on the lack of masculinity that I am seeing in men in this present day. I wrote it because I've noticed how the gender roles have switched…men are more feminine and women have gotten more masculine. So I'm not sure where your comment fits into this discussion.Regardless, thanks for reading anyway.

  14. mahagwa

    October 5, 2011 at 7:21 pm

    I am a man, one who once played the corporate game, climbed the ladder, tired of the politics and set out to blaze my own path.Unfortunately, when I was in corporate america, I came across very few black women…Your article is on point. Men have become disgustingly feminine. What is worse is that these feminine men have become very lazy, and very self-absorbed and vain. It goes beyond the clothes, hair, nails, etc. Their entire psychological make-up has morphed into some alien entity.These same feminine, lazy men have also become haters of the greatest degree. I play sports (amateur boxer as well as basketball and soccer); I also play the guitar and piano as well as compose music. All of these activities require commitment and discpline. The discpline to train every day to practice every day. When these lazy men see you striving to excel, they choose to sneer or in other ways try to discourage you.. I guess they want you to join their company of lazy imbecilles.So it affects not just women, but also men who have retained their masculinity. I find it hard to even associate with these men, they truly are pathetic.The funny thing, is that it seems women are actually drawn to these 'pretty' boys. I see them with women all the time — although I am frequently puzzled as to who wears the pants in the relationship.

  15. Pingback: Urban Belle Online Magazine • The Metrosexual Male: Masculinity’s Friend or Foe?

  16. Pingback: Urban Belle Online Magazine • The Metrosexual Male: Masculinity’s Friend or Foe?

  17. JC

    July 29, 2012 at 8:42 pm

    When did females become so masculine?

  18. Feminism=AsBadAsMisogynism

    April 6, 2013 at 5:45 am

    Most of these responses are really old; but the premise (which, in my opinion, is no more than thinly-veiled and un-thunk man-hatred) deserves a genuine response from a person who, while deeply uncomfortable in his masculinity; takes no comfort in prissy, man-bag-laiden metrosexuality. Especially because the new man is such an obvious reflection of the needs of feminism (i.e. A man who won’t hurt you, and is sensitive to your needs and your “plight”; a man who will identify with your moods; but not have moods of his own, etc). I’m not surprised at all that so many women have such deep comtempt for the man they have wished for and raised/created since the late 60s. Although, far be it from me to suggest that women don’t really know what they want… No; I expose myself as a “new-man” to shed light on the fact that the new less-manly man is a direct creation of women’s unmet need for superiority. The newer, softer man is, in my experience, the result of an angry reaction, by women, to what was once an unjust subjection of their will to men. The problem is that women, empowered and informed by a feminist doctrine and often propelled by some un-examined hurt, are raising men who are overly-attentive to womens’ needs and often uncomfortably similar in their general way-of-being; and who are, ultimately, unnatractive to the women they are meant to pair with.

    As for me, my mom taught me to define myself by the notoriously turbulent and mercurial nature of a woman’s emotional state by always looking to me to reign in her most extreme and unruly emotions while only expressing love for me when I met her unmet parental/emotional/developmental needs; while at the same time making a mantra that may as well have said “you are but one in a long line of rapists and misogynists who can’t control his need to slap and f-ck women w/o their consent. All-the-while my Dad made (actual/unfiltered) masculinity seem unattainable by posturing himself as the most awesome man who ever lived, criticizing me constantly, treating me with contempt and disdain; and expressing constant jealousy of me as though I were some kind of male interloper.

    The sad thing is, as much as I’d like to hate my dad for his psychotic selfishness, and his underlying pathetic weakness; and as much as I’d like to hate my mom for her infantile regression, and her frequent and inappropriate parentification of me, I can’t. You see, I am a white male. I have no one to blame but myself.

  19. Michael Steane

    April 24, 2013 at 1:40 am

    Perhaps it has something to do with women invading traditionally male territory.

  20. BLokis

    April 24, 2013 at 1:16 pm

    men acting like men are pigs

    men acting like women are sissies

    ugh, men just can’t win!

  21. Bondo

    April 27, 2013 at 6:10 pm

    So, the feminist movement has allowed women to break out of the traditional gender roles, but men are still required to fulfill the masculine stereotype.

    This is the most basic proof that feminism is not the same as equality.

  22. Blairzey11

    January 26, 2014 at 3:33 pm

    [link removed]

    I also have noticed the dramatic shift from there being two distinct genders to an overall more feminine personality in not only women but men, too. Check out my theory on how the strategy of post third wave feminism is actually to demonise; destroy; and ultimately, deprogram conventional masculinity only to replace it with only femininity! It’s definitely a very interesting read!

  23. Notna

    May 23, 2014 at 2:10 am

    Awesome article. I’m a 58 year old white Australian male. I’ve just finished mowing 2.5 acres. I was in the same class as Shane Brennan, NCIS LA Show runner. Man, we were beaten by the Marist Brothers for just looking sideways, but they never let us be lazy. Maybe the American education system needs to man up and allow boys to climb trees, play rugby (that’s like grid iron without the girly cladding), british bulldog, and all those other fun things I got to do as a kid, and I was a whimp. However, nobody was allowed to sook, and our generation new how to strip and rebuild car engines, chop wood and play with electrical wires. Now everything is namby pamby.

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