A Kept Man..why I can’t do it nor believe any man can.

Wanting to out-earn your partner isn’t a sign of insecurity, it’s in your DNA. Ok..put the guns down. let me try to explain my thinking on this.

Is it wrong that I believe that no man should live off his other half – and to deny that and you’ll feel as empty as your wallet.

Dubai is amazing and living with someone you love, is even better. The lifestyle, the weather, the view on the Palms. The Gym on the 5th floor and the asian crew to welcome you and say goodbye every day is all just a dream come true.

Lord Jason Scott - Award Winning Money Maker

Lord Jason Scott – Award Winning Money Maker

So why am I sad?

It’s the suits. The suits I packed but have not had a reason to wear.  The suits that I have made my armour against tough sells, hard events, tougher bosses and made me smile when *looking at photos of myself. (* Dont judge me, you know you do it too).

It represented the code I have given my life to. It symbolizes my self-image, my role in this world. Those long days when it has been abandoned in my closet and it has been like an open casket. I see the suits and it says everything about me and my attitude to work, duty and love.

I am a breadwinner.

When it comes to the loved ones, the male of the species is driven by two basic instincts: To protect and Provide.

Nothing is more natural. Nothing is more powerful. Nothing is less likely to be changed because of prevailing economic or social factors.

Protect and provide. That is what we do. That is who we are – and if we forget it, if the instinct to protect and provide is diluted or weakened, then we are neutered, ultimately pointless, little more than eunuchs. ( if you’re sitting beside a man when he reads this, watch him cross his legs here).

Wanting to protect your loved ones means that, if something goes bump in the night, or if someone kicks your front door down, or climbs through the window and stands at the bottom of your bed, then you put yourself between your loved ones and danger. It doesn’t matter if you are a tough guy or not. It doesn’t matter if you are a hard man. The important thing is that, without thinking about it, you put yourself in harm’s way because that is the way you are made, and because it is the right thing to do.

Protecting your loved ones is a physical act. And providing for them is a financial act.

Wanting to provide for those you love is just as natural as putting on your pants at 3 am, picking up a bat and going downstairs to say hello to a couple of drug-addled burglars who are carting off your Big Screen HD TV.

You work for those you love. You do your best, and sometimes you fail miserably, but every day you go out into the business world and earn a living because there are people at home depending on you. You do it for them and you do it for yourself. Because deep down in his DNA, every man is a breadwinner.

But while the modern world has no objection to you wanting to go downstairs and kill and die in the wee small hours, it raises an appalled well plucked eyebrow when you say that in the morning you want to go forth into the wicked world and bring home the *bacon.( * As I don’t eat Bacon, lets say bread).

They don’t mind that you want to protect.

They don’t like it that you want to provide.

The male breadwinner has gone out of fashion. Like white stonewashed jeans.

Somebody asked me about the male breadwinner and I stumbled into controversy – one of those overheated little debates in 140 characters or less, where the Twitter Taliban curse you forever for telling the unremarkable truth.

Cheryl Cole, Madonna, Chloe Sevigny, Julian Moore and so many very powerful and talented woman, have remarked how hard it was for them to find a man because they earns so much more than they’re potential suitors.

“I think it’s still a problem if a woman earns more than a man,” said Chloe Sevigny. “I try to pay for half of dinner and a guy will behave as if I’m trying to prove I have more money than him.”

She went on to say that men feel “intimidated” by the fact that she is far wealthier than they will ever be. So far, so uncontroversial. I mean – what do you think is going to happen? No man ever won a woman by saying that he wanted her to take care of him. Someone asked me if Sevigny was right – are men intimidated by female breadwinners?

And I said what I know will be true on the day that I die – if a man earns less than the woman he loves, he will feel as if he has failed her.

Not every man is the principal breadwinner.

But every man wants to be.

“Men who need a large pay packet to feel like real men make me wonder if they can deal with real women with bigger packets,” sneered a female columnist in some magazine I found next to the bed.

“It’s career envy,” said a female writer. “Real men aren’t afraid when their partner does well. Instead, they encourage it.”

But hold on just a micro-blogging minute – it is not a question of your partner doing well. I love that my partner does well and I am her biggest supporter ( and I have some stiff competition ) It is not about needing a large pay packet to make you feel as though you are large elsewhere. This is about the hearts of men, and the feelings that they hold.

I have been living with an amazing woman for a while now who has gone to work and come home and offered to pay the way and made jokes about not minding being the Sugar Mommy but why would that change my desire to protect and provide? Why would that make me want to cower under the duvet if something went bump in the night, and why would it make me want to give up my role as breadwinner?

These are not choices a man makes. A man does not choose to be a breadwinner. It is, simply, part of what it means to be a man. It’s what we do.

It is not sexist. It is an act of love.

One day I want my son or daughter to emerge from his/her expensive education with the ability to support him/herself for a lifetime. I want him/her to be a strong, independent wo/man with a great career that pays his/her way in the world. The last thing I want is for my boy/girl to end up relying on some man or woman to support her/him.

But I would expect my son-in-law to want to provide for his wife. I would expect him – if he is any kind of man at all – to take care of his wife and children, in every way imaginable.

Otherwise – what exactly is the point if him?

Stay with a woman for long enough, and they will see you riding high and they will see you down and out. They will see you when you are the golden Lord, and they will love you even when you are yesterday’s man.

If they love you enough then, at your lowest point, they will help you. With encouragement, with money, with support of every kind. And of course we are grateful. In these hard times, it is probably not realistic to expect a man to support his family for 50 years – to be a breadwinner for a lifetime. But that is what we desire.

The impulse to be a breadwinner is not realistic but it is very real. And any man who tells you that he is untroubled by being out-earned by his partner is either incredibly enlightened, or an incredible liar.

From Radio and Cosmo to the Twitter Taliban, there isn’t a shortage of tame men willing to come forward to refute my nasty thesis about the male breadwinner. All these men lining up to deny the deepest imperatives of manhood, all these boys shrieked saying that, now you mention it, they would really like to earn less than their woman.

“Most British guys – me included – would love to be a kept man,” dribbled one. “Emasculated? Emancipated, more like! Why can’t we get to enjoy the benefits of female equality too?”

Good luck with that. To those men who seriously think that, Jenny from the Block: wants to support them, I say you should really work a lot harder. Work when the competition is taking a breather. Work when your mates are at the football. Plan to die with your business suit on.

I do ! 

I firmly believe, from what I have read and the conversations I have had, that feminism was never about reversing the traditional roles. If you read the classic text, Germaine Greer’sThe Female Eunuch, you will discover that feminism was not even about equality. It was about liberation – women being free to be themselves, and to fulfil their potential without restrictions placed on them by society or some man, and to follow their true nature.

The man who seeks to be a breadwinner is only doing the same thing – following his true nature.

There is no law that says it can’t be done the other way around. There is no law that says a woman who is an expert in Krav Maga can’t be the one to go downstairs to confront drug-crazed burglars while her wimpy man cowers under the duvet, wetting his silk PJ’s with terror. Equally, there is no law that says a high-flying female trust fund manager or magazine editor can’t be the breadwinner while her man stays home writing blogs or applying for jobs or buying the groceries.

No law against it – only the law of nature.

Given the choice, most 21st-century men will say that they want their 21st-century woman to help out with the breadwinning. We prefer it when the woman has money of her own, and contributes to the family coffers, and takes some of the heavy load from our weary, broken backs.

But ultimately that changes nothing. It’s still our job. And the man who denies this, to himself and the world, can never be at peace. Does it rock the family boat if the woman earns more? No, it just drives the boat into a Titanic-sized iceberg. Because that man will feel as if some deep part of him is empty.

My dad didn’t always have money, any kind of money for that matter and for a while even had low-paid, low-status jobs where his Ex seemed to love her job. My father  always seemed to hate his job. I think what he hated about it most was that he knew he could never walk away from it. Working was his role in life. Working will always be his role in life. He left school young, he has had many jobs, many careers and most will tell you his best skill is “selling the dream”. More than any of the other roles he played – son, brother, husband, father – the role of breadwinner was the one that  I believe my dad loved the most.  I don’t think it makes him happy. I doubt if he expected it to.

My father never stops hustling, he is always selling – I might be imagining this, but I don’t think so – I can remember every film we saw, every stick fight we ever had. It happened very often. He always tried to be my friend even though he was always working. But my father wasn’t a breadwinner because it was fun, or fulfilling, in fact in the beginning I am sure he told me that selling was the worst job in the world and  the only job he loved was when he was a fisherman. Lol

But he was a breadwinner because he loved us, me and my brother. And because he was the kind of man who is going out of fashion.

You know – a real man.

Suit Up and Be The Best Man you can be...

Suit Up and Be The Best Man you can be…

Advertisements

~ by Jason Allan Scott on October 18, 2012.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

 
%d bloggers like this: