A romantic relationship happens between a masculine personality and a feminine personality. In order to work, a romantic relationship requires a certain amount of masculinity and femininity—and a balance between those two. Everyone has both masculine and feminine sides, and in most individuals, one of them is more dominant than the other. Hence, a romantic relationship works best between two individuals whose level of masculinity and femininity are compatible with each other.
The masculine qualities are more focused on how to provide, to protect, to build, etc, while the feminine qualities are more likely about how to take care of, to nurture, to raise, etc. A person with dominant masculine traits attracts a person with dominant feminine traits and vice versa, because they need each other in order to fulfill their masculine/feminine satisfaction.
For example, a dominantly masculine person needs someone who needs his/her masculine skills (to provide, to protect, to build) to make him/her feel ‘useful’—or amelioratively speaking—to satisfy his/her masculine ego. Someone with a dominant-masculine personality won’t be sexually attracted to a person with a higher or the same level of masculinity. In mate seeking, he/she usually sees such person as a threat or as a competitor.
On the other hand, a dominantly feminine person needs someone who can support him/her in his/her fulfillment of his/her feminine satisfaction (to take care of, to nurture, to raise)—thus a dominantly feminine person are more likely to be sexually attracted to a person who could provide a secure and safe condition for him/her to do his/her feminine jobs—which is why he/she needs someone with a dominantly masculine personality, whose roles are mainly to protect and to provide. Someone with a dominantly feminine personality will see people with higher or equal level of femininity as rivals in finding a sexual partner.
The competition for finding a sexual partner is a biological instinct that animals we have. Each species will flaunt their masculinity/femininity to attract the opposite sex. In other animals, masculinity is associated with male while femininity is associated with females, but in humans, it doesn’t necessarily that way. A person with strong masculine side will be more instinctively and sexually attractive to feminine people because it indicates a stronger masculine traits and a better possibility to maintain a masculine role in a relationship. A person with strong feminine side will be more attractive to masculine people for the same reason. In short: everyone wants an equal; whose level of masculinity/femininity matches his/her level of femininity/masculinity
A masculine man will be sexually attracted to a feminine man/woman. A feminine man will be sexually attracted to a masculine man/woman. A masculine woman will be sexually attracted to a feminine man/woman. A feminine woman will be sexually attracted to a masculine man/woman. This is how it works. The more masculine a person is, he/she will be more likely to be attracted to someone with strong feminine side, vice versa. Once I comprehended this, I then understood why certain kind of people always seem to be attracted to certain kind of people.
[I have heard about how people always said that women who wear revealing clothes are more likely to be raped or sexually abused than women who wear modest clothes. In my opinion, this is because modest clothes will hide the physical feminine features of a woman (curves, long hair, etc), or harshly speaking, such clothes de-feminize women—hence it will not trigger the masculine aggressiveness in men, or in other words ‘it will not turn them on’.]
In ancient ages, people assumed that all mans had to be (dominantly) masculine and all women had to be (dominantly) feminine, but in modern times, there have been some changes regarding this stereotype. The concept of gender equality is rising quickly, and it has brought a new paradigm about masculinity and femininity.
Men, who were thought to be the dominant one because of the long-applied-patriarchy, used to be the only ones who had the say in anything, perhaps because the masculine traits are considered to be more ‘active’ and ‘aggressive’—thus ‘stronger’, while the feminine traits are considered to be ‘passive’ and ‘receiving’—thus ‘weaker’.
This model of patriarchy can be destructive to women, who were thought to be the submissive ones in every aspect of life, since patriarchy has invented some ‘comforting’ reasons to convince women to stay subordinate and submissive to men.
[Confession: until recently, I was so sure that “A man is measured by how many women he can conquer, but a woman is measured by how long she can make a man stay.” I was sexist, I know.]
On the other hand, there are some people who respond to this patriarchy with feminism, in which they take some aggressive and extreme way to fight the ‘male oppression’, and in the name of gender equality, demand that women, too, have to be allowed to take some masculine roles in society.
In my opinion, gender equality is not about closing the gap between men and women and trying to diminish all the differences between both sexes. Instead, it is more about allowing every individual to explore their masculinity and femininity and be comfortable with it. It is more about giving both men and women the rights to have their opinion without being discriminated because of their gender, and the rights to make their own decisions in their life. Gender equality is how to make men and women equal in dignity, equal in their roles in society, equal in rights, without having to be exactly the same.
A woman can go to work and pursue her career, but she can also choose to stay at home and take care of her family; the point is the decision has to be hers. If she prefers to be the feminine type of woman, no one should force her to be more masculine, just so she can be ‘equal’ with a man. If she is more of a masculine type, no one should force her to be more feminine and ‘act like a woman should do’.
Gender equality is about realizing that men and women are different, but both men and women are equal in these differences. No one is more superior or inferior to others, even though they play different roles in society.
[Note: it is interesting that the concept of ‘gender equality’ only exists in human species, indicating that humans are the only species that feel the need to highlight that both genders are equal. Looks like the sophisticated structure and function of human brain are both a gift and a curse. Being on the top of the food chain, humans are able to develop beyond their primal instincts because they think they have ‘conquer the nature’, thus they have eliminated or have prepared for all possible dangers/threats. The feeling of being ‘safe’ enables us to expand our mind and thoughts to bother about things other than basic survival skill. Kindly read my other post The Change of Paradigms in Society.]
Lastly, since there is a trend where some women post the reason why they don’t need (radical) feminism, here is mine:
I don’t need (radical) feminism because I enjoy (modern) chivalry.
P. S. Recently, I found a nice article about gender equality: Cinderella 2.0 and ‘The Clooney Effect’. Enjoy!