November 09, 2005

I Get Defensive

The past couple of weeks have been notable for a flurry of wonderful posts by several blogfriends (as Nappy40 has also noticed) on basic questions of identity and how we feel about ourselves and how we got that way. These posts aren't ephemera (from the Greek meaning "things of a day"). I keep rereading them, and I'm sure many others do too.

They're by Danny and by Jean and by Tamar and most recently by Adriana.

I love these personal essays, and in a sense -- that much-debated, ill-defined sense in which we wonder about blog friendships -- I love these people. And I'm uncomfortably struck, almost shocked, by the extent to which the women in the group tell of being emotionally scarred by their mothers, although it rings true to my own experience as well.

Despite this, the myth remains that women are gentler, kinder, and more loving than men. I know many wonderful women, but I've not noticed a difference in how kind or loving the two sexes are. I've noticed that women talk more about how kind and loving they are, and that women usually have softer voices than men.

A good many years ago there was a survey -- I wish I could track it down -- that asked men and women whether they ever lied. 47% of men said they never lied. 57% of women said they never lied. What do we conclude from this?

A few days ago I wrote a post, one of my fantasy reflections, describing a male-pronouned god who was disssatisfied with human accompishments. Tamar commented, "Ah, but if God was a "she," she'd gather us into her large embrace and keep us all for trying ..."

Really, Tamar?

We all, all our lives, keep looking for a good mother, and that's why we believe things like that.