From Feminist to Doormat, and Liking It?
And liking it, she claims. Or not.
But as a single mom at age 42 she met “the Cowboy,” a conservative ranch manager who watches Fox News and believes women must submit to men. Her book blurb:
Their relationship finds harmony (and) she finds the strength, peace, and happiness that comes from embracing her femininity.
Femininity. Which here means doormat.
Instructions from Cowboy include: No back-talking; no second-guessing; no sarcastic, smart-ass remarks…
… and apparently, stay monogamous while he cats around.
In one incident she hears a women’s voicemail telling Cowboy she wants him in her shower. Alisa feels the agonizing pangs of jealousy. But she remembers that women are biologically wired to find cheaters alluring. What can you do?
Through it all she celebrates her submission, embracing women’s “natural role.” So does anti-feminist, Christina Hoff Sommers who calls the book,
An irresistible, post-feminist Taming of the Shrew… a riveting tale about how a brilliant, strong-minded woman liberated herself from a dreary, male-bashing, reality-denying feminism.
But weeks before going to press the two broke up. A problem since, as Amanda Marcotte points out, Valdes insists women will live happily ever after in orgasmic bliss if they just submit to controlling, misogynist men.
The abuse escalated soon after turning in her manuscript. During one fight he
dragged me down the hall to the bedroom, bent me over, and took me, telling me as he did so that I must never forget who was in charge.
Later, when she accidentally got pregnant and wanted to keep the child Cowboy got violent and left her. She returned to him after a miscarriage, but the violence escalated. Mostly verbal, with threats of violence.
The last time she saw him she jumped from a moving truck, fearing he would hurt or kill her:
I landed facedown on a bunch of rocks, nearly crushed under the back tires, dislocating my shoulder, badly cut and bruised everywhere, my hip filling with blood. I screamed. He stopped the truck, walked over, looked at me on the ground as I begged him to call an ambulance. “Only you would be stupid enough to jump out of a moving truck,” he told me. He did not help me, or come near me. Instead, he said he was going to the hunting lodge to get some witnesses, in case I tried to tell the police he had done this to me.
Noah Berlatsky at The Atlantic explains that:
Finally, Valdes realized that “this man did not love me. He could not love anyone,” and she left him for good—though, obviously, something of the terror remains. She notes that writing the (blog) post (about the violent incidents) puts her “in danger—real physical danger.”
Plenty of people, men and women, celebrate male dominance and female submission. But it hasn’t been so great for Ms. Valdes, and I have friends who’ve tried it and not liked it.
There is much wounding in this story that passes, in her mind, as “the natural order of things.” And Ms. Valdes as is now in a relationship with another abusive man.
The poet and writer, bell hooks, asks us to consider the nature of relationships.
“Pleasure + wound” vs “pleasure + love.”
Which makes you happier?
Which will you choose?
Posted on January 25, 2013, in feminism, gender, psychology, relationships, sex, sexism, violence against women, women and tagged Alisa Valdes, feminism, gender, psychology, relationships, sex, sexism, The Feminist and The Cowboy, violence against women, women. Bookmark the permalink. 17 Comments.