A couple days ago a man came up to me and told me that I should have Lisa stop lifting weights because she is getting too strong.  I thought he was messing around because I have recently been beaming with pride as I’ve watched Lisa do heavier power and strength lifts.

Well, he wasn’t kidding.  He said it wasn’t attractive.  I have no idea why he let me know that.  I can’t remember ever asking for his opinion on whether Lisa is attractive or not, and I don’t think any other guy will hear me ask them such a preposterous question.  Of course she’s attractive.  She’s drop-dead gorgeous.

Although this guy made these remarks, he’s still a nice guy.  I like having him around, and I like seeing him.  I just think that his thoughts allude to a deeper issue in society.  This issue is what it means to be feminine.

At least here in the US we’ve gotten farther in giving women their due recognition than in a lot of less developed countries.  However, we’ve got a ways to go in truly allowing women to be their own person.  If a girl wants to be strong, she should be encouraged to do so.  If a girl wants to succeed in the business world, she should be encouraged to do so.  Women should have the same level of opportunity as men.

I’m not promoting somehow catapulting women over men and using men as the scapegoats for their frustration.  I’m vehemently against any overly-feminist attempt to repress men in order to promote women.  However, I’m also vehemently against any male chauvinist attempt to repress women.  If the woman is better than the man at a job, she should get the job.  Gender has nothing to do with it.  It’s a matter of productive ability.

Regardless, I’m troubled by our society’s image of the ideal woman being thin with implants.  It disturbs me at a deep level.  Are we as a society afraid that women are often capable of more than men?  Why can’t a girl choose to be strong if she wants to?  What if a girl just wants to be healthy and feel good?  What if a girl wants to be strong to prevent osteoporosis later in life?  What if a girl wants to be strong to be able to move stuff around on her own?

But here’s what disturbs me the most.  What disturbs me the most is that Lisa and I have fought so hard for over a year for her to come to a point where we can honestly say that she is strong.  She is now healthy after gaining 35lbs of muscle from her prior weakened state.  And now somebody is going to tell my wife that she should become weak again?  No way.  I’ll never sit by and watch that happen.

I’m immeasurably proud of Lisa.  Although her eating disorder has probably caused some level of permanent damage, she is doing everything perfectly now so that she can be a healthy and fit individual.  I want my wife to be strong and healthy so that she can do whatever she wants to do without her body getting in the way.  If she wants to go climb Machu Picchu, she can.  If she wants to lift something heavy, she can.  In just about everything, she can.

It hasn’t always been that way, but I will always encourage her to continue her current path of gaining healthy strength and power.  She is beautiful, and she is strong.  They aren’t mutually exclusive despite what our sometimes psychotic society tells us.

Strong femininity > Weak femininity

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