Many women these days have never been told nor shown that they are beautiful. Here’s why.
1. Men. Yes. Men. My tribe. Somewhere along the way, we stopped talking to women. We talk about women. We talk along with them. But, in a mass media sense, men (in the most general number) stopped having dialogues with women. I can admit, the Maxim Man virus has spread and affected a sizable chunk of the American male populace. We will jump through hoops to talk to or text a “chick”. But we’ll pump the brakes if we have to talk to a woman. The end result of the lack of real male to female communication is men not telling women things they should know and hear: Women are appreciated. Women are revered. Women are special. Women are beautiful.
I know. More than a few men (and most likely women) will call bullshit on me. Well, many of the culture/gender crimes I wrote of in the first paragraph are things I’ve been guilty of. For years. I’m just now re-booting my communication lines with all of the women in my life (girlfriend, mom, aunts, cousins, etc.). There are men out there who do regularly engage in smart, positive conversations with women. And kudos to them (seriously). But, a big chunk of males in this country are very limited in not only conversing with women, but how to converse with them, and a big reason why is the next reason on this list.
2. Hip-Hop Culture. Don’t test my Gangsta. I’ve been a hip-hop head since 1983. To my fellow hip-hop heads, chill. I know that “real” and underground/alternative hip-hop culture is heavily diverse and all inclusive.
But mainstream hip-hop?
Bruh. With the daily images of scantily clad women in music videos, and the vivid descriptions of “hoes” in the music (and on radio at times), it’s no wonder nearly two generations of men have grown up not knowing how to tell, or show, a woman how beautiful she is. In some circles, you can only tell your “main chick” how cool she is for holding you down (translation: sticking with you through the ups and downs). In mainstream “hip-POP” culture, having distance from deep feelings for women has been the norm for twenty plus years.
I know what I’m talking about. Your’s truly was one of the main ones in the club with a glass of Hennessy in one hand and a cell phone in the other. In my 30s. I probably told tons of women back then that they were “hot”. Or sexy. I may have told possibly a handful that they were truly beautiful.
In mainstream hip-hop culture, there are examples of men falling in real love. Jay-Z and Beyonce come to mind. But for the most part, communication with women in this culture is pretty basic. “Girl, you’re hot. Come get in my car.”
Since hip-hop culture has been the dominant youth culture of America for years, many young men have learned in some way how to talk to women via this culture. And, at times, it’s not good. If you get on Twitter, or even Facebook, you can see many men digitally approach women bluntly, with little tact, and just poorly. And the word “beautiful” rarely, if ever, comes up.
There are times in mainstream hip-hop culture where women are shown appreciation, but it’s few and far between. And you have to wonder how many men who’ve grown up with mainstream hip-hop may have been…stunted in their exchanges and communications with women.
3. Mainstream media. America’s media, digital, print, and broadcast, has played a major part in the destruction of female confidence. How can a woman know that she’s beautiful if A. she sees a magazine at the grocery store telling her how fat she is and that she needs to constantly improve in bed to keep her man, B. some A-list actress who already weighs 130 lbs shouts on television that’s she’s “never felt better !” after losing 25 lbs of post childbirth weight, and C. endless pictures of Photoshopped internet “models” on social media get thousands of “likes” and re-tweets?
Never before have women so powerfully been told how they should look. Just to be accepted in and into social circles. And even the women that mainstream society deems beautiful had to diet and get certain physical “enhancements” to get there (I’m looking at you, Kim K.). Not only are tons of women in this country not being shown, or told they are beautiful, they’ve been lead to believe that only a certain look warrants being called beautiful. That means legions of women have been sporadically told they were beautiful. At best. Thin, or athletically built, with a stripper’s backside? Beautiful woman. Any other physical description? Tell us where your beautiful friend is.
Ladies. There are men out there who will tell you that you are indeed beautiful. Just know that there are certain cultural roadblocks that keep many more men from telling you the same thing.
(This article originally appeared at The Good Men Project.com)