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'You are my cat': how women turn men into pets



Gestalt therapist and practicing psychologist Ilya Latypov talks about how to express tenderness without humiliating.

Фото: Depositphotos

There is a special creative genre on the Internet, which can be called "Tips for the domestication of men," writes Most of these are texts that tell you how to behave properly with men in order to “tame” them. They say men are such independent, free, self-willed creatures, and simply need special training actions that will curb these children of nature.

This genre is a modern continuation of the old councils of young girls from the side of experienced grandmothers / mothers / aunts about how these men work and what they need. In a situation where a woman held a subordinate position, many of these councils were reduced, on the one hand, to service, and on the other, to the manipulation of men.

Direct and equal interaction was impossible, it was necessary to act on the assumption that all power was with a man. At the same time, he is a creature often near, and he can be controlled, the main thing is to know how to do it. It turns out a paradoxical situation - a woman is both a lower and a higher being in the hierarchy (which is perfectly illustrated by the saying that the husband is the head and the wife is the neck).

Modern strategies of "domestication" inherited this paradoxical confusion. When you read about these strategies, you get the feeling that this is not about the interaction of a woman and a man, but about the relationship between mother and the little boy, on the one hand, and on the other, the relationship of the tyrant and his subject.

Here, for example, some of the tips on "taming". An adult peasant needs to: a) feed him, b) iron his clothes, c) praise them in a timely manner, d) not question his superiority.

All this is reminiscent of the instructions for the care of infants and children of preschool age. Imagination draws such a karapuz, incapable of independent living - neither to cook for yourself, nor to iron a shirt, plus one who needs constant adoration and caress, like a baby.

Yes, such men are not so few, unfortunately, those who, being fully grown up at work, at home or in communication with a woman, turn into coddled infantile boys. For example, he may sit and be hungry, but in no case will he invent something to cook for himself - there is a wife for that! Or go to work in a mint shirt.

For young children, there is no separate, independent life for their mothers: mother should think first of all about the baby. So for such men - no matter what in the life of his wife-mother, she is obliged to serve her beloved under any circumstances.

What is bad here is that women are often included in such relationships on the roles of moms. And then in the public space you can hear such strange forms of tenderness as “you are my cat”, “hare”. And once I even heard “you are my hippopotamus” addressed to my husband, who, as you can guess, did not differ in his slim build. Often, by the way, a lot of passive aggression is hidden in such diminutive nicknames.

And if in the intimate space these diminutive appeals are possible (because both partners are here in their openness and vulnerability - like children), then in a social environment this is the appeal of the mother to the child. Women try to express their tenderness to a man, and it turns out - the tenderness of the mother to the toddler.

A woman towards her man can express tenderness not through a “hare”, “Hippo” or “you are the coolest”, but, for example, through touch. Or he may whisper in his ear to his man about his feelings, and not about what he looks like or how cool he is. "I am very grateful to you for today", "I love so much when you ...", "I melt from tenderness when I see how you communicate with your son / daughter" ... It can be a special gesture that is understandable to both - and no one else . Or look.

Imagine that you want to express your love and tenderness to an adult and equal to you in respect and dignity of a man. It seems to me that there is no place for a “cat” in this space filled with adult, exciting energy.

The problem is to find a ready for equal and adult relationships. And be yourself ready for them.

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