Women in religious debates

JCE
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Women in religious debates

Not trying to scare off the guys - I need everyone's help.  I seriously need some debate pointers for this situation:

 

 The discussions I have had with women regarding religion nearly always take an emotional detour into the effects of religion versus the mechanics.  They do not seem terribly interested in whether or not it is true so much as they worry about their families and 'doing the right thing'. 

I spoke to a woman recently whose adult son is now Baptist, while she and the rest of the family are Catholic.  Her take on it was that at least he is going to church.  She spoke to her priest about this and he backed her up saying that she had done a good job raising a moral child (he did not mention religion anywhere in that statement) and that she should not worry because there is one god and he does not care what church people attend.  I tried to steer the conversation back to the mechanics by mentioning that her priest certainly does not echo the sentiments of the Catholic church, particularly the current Pope.  She agreed and said she was glad about that and she doesn't like the current pope either and he should not have said what he did.

 

She then went on to talk about her other son who does not attend church at all anymore.  Her exact words were “He is a lost cause on that.”  I missed a prime opportunity (as pointed out to me by BGH) to force her to specify what she meant by that.  Saying your child is a ‘lost cause’ is a strong statement and I should have questioned her to what degree she deemed this child ‘lost’.  I know in casual conversation clichés are thown out that don’t necessarily mean anything as negative as they sound when picked apart, but (and again I will have to give credit to BGH) that is precisely what needs to be done.  People need to be forced to THINK about these phrases and what they mean by them.  For instance, this woman is a friend of mine, but since I do not go to church, does that mean I am a ‘lost cause’ too?  What exactly DOES that mean?  I don’t feel like a lost cause.  I also don’t think she really thinks I am, but I should have pushed the issue a little more to get her to think about it.

What I have found is that most theist women (not fundies) are able to discern the inconsistencies and improbability of religion, but feel that it is up to them to take their children to church because they are expected to - I am not at all convinced that these women even believe the things they are told.  They go, they take their children, they feel their duty is done and go about their business the other 6 days of the week.  If their children turn away from the church at a later date, they consider themselves guilt free in the eyes of the family, the community and society. 

So, here is my question (finally!):  How do I engage these women in a debate and get them to at least consider that what they are doing may end up being psychologically harmful to their children, especially their daughters who will be given the same expectations as they were?  I do not want to reduce these women to tears, I just want good tips to get them to THINK.

Thanks everyone - sorry this is so long! 

 


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Quote: The discussions I

Quote:
The discussions I have had with women regarding religion nearly always take an emotional detour into the effects of religion versus the mechanics.

I didn't know you'd met my mother.

Quote:
They do not seem terribly interested in whether or not it is true so much as they worry about their families and 'doing the right thing'.

I doubt you have time for the lengthy rant I could go into about the religious subjugation of women.

Quote:
She then went on to talk about her other son who does not attend church at all anymore. Her exact words were “He is a lost cause on that.” I missed a prime opportunity (as pointed out to me by BGH) to force her to specify what she meant by that. Saying your child is a ‘lost cause’ is a strong statement and I should have questioned her to what degree she deemed this child ‘lost’. I know in casual conversation clichés are thown out that don’t necessarily mean anything as negative as they sound when picked apart, but (and again I will have to give credit to BGH) that is precisely what needs to be done. People need to be forced to THINK about these phrases and what they mean by them. For instance, this woman is a friend of mine, but since I do not go to church, does that mean I am a ‘lost cause’ too? What exactly DOES that mean? I don’t feel like a lost cause. I also don’t think she really thinks I am, but I should have pushed the issue a little more to get her to think about it.

It's a double whammy. When I've had discussions like this with my mother, two very bad things happen. First, it becomes less of a discussion and more of a psychological clinic on how to take advantage of the religio-social conditioning instilled in women. Instead of making a point, I am taking control of the conversation and exerting "male power." If I was debating a man, it would be different. It sucks that the world is that way, I suppose, but mincing words about the reality doesn't help anything.

Quote:
What I have found is that most theist women (not fundies) are able to discern the inconsistencies and improbability of religion, but feel that it is up to them to take their children to church because they are expected to

What you can't see in my words is how frustrated and aggravated I am right now, thinking of all the women I've known who had perfectly good brains but refused to use them because of these fucking expectations.

Quote:
I am not at all convinced that these women even believe the things they are told. They go, they take their children, they feel their duty is done and go about their business the other 6 days of the week. If their children turn away from the church at a later date, they consider themselves guilt free in the eyes of the family, the community and society.

Total side note, but one of the reasons I'm a difficult person to date is that I don't put up with this duty shit. I ask the tough questions, and I don't accept pat answers or self deception. Most of the women I've dated in the past have left rather than answer questions honestly.

Quote:
How do I engage these women in a debate and get them to at least consider that what they are doing may end up being psychologically harmful to their children, especially their daughters who will be given the same expectations as they were?

Fantastic question.

You've actually answered your own question in the asking, though. Women, especially mothers, are biologically, culturally, and religiously trained to feel a profound empathy with children. Women who really want to be good mothers will tell just about everybody else in their life to go sit and spin if they truly, deeply believe that their child is being harmed.

The trick is to continue to ask questions about the child and the effects of the religious upbringing, with an emphasis on exactly how inconsistencies in dogma, religious repression, etc... might very well cause permanent emotional (KEY WORD! EMOTIONAL!) damage.

Do you know anyone in common who has an emotionally distant son or daughter because of religious disagreement? Do you have examples of people who've been fucked up by religion in ways that this woman can clearly see?

I think the best approach is empathetic examples, not logical explanations. If you're right, and she doesn't even really believe it, the trick is to ask her questions that let her hang her own beliefs from the rafters, and use stories and examples rather than claims of logical facts to disagree or to point out an error in her thinking.

 

Atheism isn't a lot like religion at all. Unless by "religion" you mean "not religion". --Ciarin

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I am sure you already know

I am sure you already know what I think but I agree with Hamby, ask the tough questions. Pick out portions of her statements that don't seem right, like "lost cause" and press her on it. Ask her why she would use such terminology when referring to her son. Don't let her get away with pat answers and make her dig deeper and figure out what would make her say that about someone she dearly loves who is a good person.

Just keep pressing and listening VERY close to assess what your next question should be. You were telling me this story and that phrase jumped out at me, train your mind to listen for these types of things. 

 


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You guys are great! 

You guys are great!  Thanks so much.  You are both right, keep the question empathetic but keep digging for answers.  BGH is well aware of the fact that I tend to get on a soapbox instead of listening for cues and asking questions.  This issue will undoubtedly come up again and I will make sure to do better. 


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Doesn't the BuyBull say

Doesn't the BuyBull say women aren't allowed to even talk in church?


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Unfortunately, most females

Unfortunately, most females see through the eyes of emotion and, yes, duty.  They not only instinctively want to "do right" by their children, they usually want everyone else to know they're a good mother.

Hambydammit made an excellent point, though.  In most cases, woe be to the person who harms a mother's child.  A woman scorned could not hold a candle to that!

Hambydammit wrote:
Do you know anyone in common who has an emotionally distant son or daughter because of religious disagreement? Do you have examples of people who've been fucked up by religion in ways that this woman can clearly see?

I think that's good advice.  (How about how screwed up some of the mormon girls are due to their upbringing?)  A even better example would be of a family torn apart by religion.  A nice family where everyone loved everyone else until a god got in the way.

Think about Sugarfree (I know. That's hard!) and how her religion was completely based on emotion and warm fuzzies.  You and I are horrified, but alas, that's how many females actually think.

Think author John Gray and his book Men Are from Mars, Women Are from Venus

Heck, I don't really even know that many females that have in depth conversations about topics iike religion.  Most prefer much lighter subjects.

In short:  You usually cannot discuss things like religion or politics in the same way with most women as you can with men.

Sad, but true.

 

NOTE:  Damn!  The RRS is lucky to have all the logical gals we do!  Eye-wink 

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Susan wrote: Hambydammit

Susan wrote:

Hambydammit made an excellent point, though. In most cases, woe be to the person who harms a mother's child. A woman scorned could not hold a candle to that!

Crap!  I had totally forgotten this aspect!  You and Hamby are exactly right - my own mother is a tiny woman but I swear she turned into an NFL linebacker if she thought we had been injured by someone else.  

Susan wrote:

I think that's good advice. (How about how screwed up some of the mormon girls are due to their upbringing?) A even better example would be of a family torn apart by religion. A nice family where everyone loved everyone else until a god got in the way.

Think about Sugarfree (I know. That's hard!) and how her religion was completely based on emotion and warm fuzzies. You and I are horrified, but alas, that's how many females actually think.

Perfect!  Just from this site alone I can glean plenty of stories that would show just how negative religion can be. 

Susan wrote:

NOTE: Damn! The RRS is lucky to have all the logical gals we do! Eye-wink

Isn't that the truth!  Smile


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BGH wrote: I am sure you

BGH wrote:

I am sure you already know what I think but I agree with Hamby, ask the tough questions. Pick out portions of her statements that don't seem right, like "lost cause" and press her on it. Ask her why she would use such terminology when referring to her son. Don't let her get away with pat answers and make her dig deeper and figure out what would make her say that about someone she dearly loves who is a good person.

Just keep pressing and listening VERY close to assess what your next question should be. You were telling me this story and that phrase jumped out at me, train your mind to listen for these types of things.

Poor BGH - he has to read and listen to my debate woes! 

Here is the thing - one of the first rules in trial law school is to never ask a witness a question you don't know the answer to.  That is the part I struggle with - I need to formulate questions I know the answer to and ask them and keep asking them to retain control of the conversation.  When you ask questions of other people I practically lean forward to hear the answer because I already know where you are headed.  When you ask me questions, my stomach churns because I am afraid I will give the wrong answer and back myself into a corner.  (Yes, you are THAT good.)  I tend to go on the attack to avoid being put on the defense.  <shrug>  I'll work on it.


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jce wrote: Poor BGH - he

jce wrote:

Poor BGH - he has to read and listen to my debate woes!

Damn straight.... poor me!! LOL 

jce wrote:
Here is the thing - one of the first rules in trial law school is to never ask a witness a question you don't know the answer to. That is the part I struggle with - I need to formulate questions I know the answer to and ask them and keep asking them to retain control of the conversation.

You don't need and 'answer', per se. You just need to have an opinion and reasoning why you feel that opinion is valid. 

jce wrote:
When you ask questions of other people I practically lean forward to hear the answer because I already know where you are headed. When you ask me questions, my stomach churns because I am afraid I will give the wrong answer and back myself into a corner. (Yes, you are THAT good.)

Whatever...

jce wrote:
I tend to go on the attack to avoid being put on the defense. <shrug> I'll work on it.

Don't I know it, today at lunch this very thing happened. LOL

 

 


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BGH wrote: Don't I know

BGH wrote:

Don't I know it, today at lunch this very thing happened. LOL

Yell  I only cried for a few minutes!  I'll work on it - promise.


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You guys crack me up. Yes,

You guys crack me up.

Yes, we do have an abundance of very smart women on RRS.  It's a little bit of a digression, but it might be interesting to go through some of the podcasts where Kelly is featured and listen to what she does with guests.  She doesn't say much, but when she does, as often as not, it's something that seems like it's from out of left field, but as soon as she asks it, you see that she's just trapped the poor bastard who thought she was remaining silent out of ignorance.

 Some ancient asian guy on top of a mountain would probably say that every weakness is a hidden strength.  Men often assume women's silence is indifference or ignorance, but women are guilty of making the same assumption sometimes.  This is an advantage in a debate.

(Again, it comes back to listening!)

Last thought for the moment... we all know that knowledge is power, but think of it in terms of a dynamic event like a debate.  Every word you say is knowledge for your opponent, and nothing for you.  The reverse is also true, of course.  Every word your opponent utters is a chance for you to catch a mistake.

Oh, I lied... one more thing.  It's always better for someone to think they have thought of something.  In other words, if you can get good enough that you can ask just the right questions, they'll think of what you want, and think it was their idea all along.

 

Atheism isn't a lot like religion at all. Unless by "religion" you mean "not religion". --Ciarin

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One thing to keep in mind

One thing to keep in mind is that you’re talking about the results of thousands of years of conditioning to which females have been subjected, not simply religious conditioning, but social conditioning.  For how long have women been taught to believe their worth as a human being has been tied to their success in relationships, both familial and social?

 

According to that conditioning, these are some “attractive” traits to which girls & women should aspire:

 

Be polite

Be passive (don’t talk loud, don’t use rough language, don't challenge authority i.e. men)

Don’t upset people (be agreeable)

Take care of people (be nurturing)

Be nice

 

Is it really a mystery that so many women don’t allow themselves to question the BS they’ve been fed?  It seems people are expecting women to change the way they think by simply challenging long held beliefs.  Speaking as a woman, this is a perfect example of why we have to change how we raise girls.

Susan


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Actually, the difference

Actually, the difference between male and female psychology and how it affects their feelings toward religion is an interesting subject for me.

 I enrolled in a religious philosophy course this semester, and one of the first aspects of the bible we observed (of course) was the Abraham and Isaac story. Our professor cited from Soren Kierkegaard to create different scenarios showing what Abraham and Isaac might have been thinking and feeling as the events unfolded. He then asked everyone in the class to vote on the scenario they thought was the most plausible.

It was almost (not quite) a perfect division where males voted for the scenarios that made the most sense to them mechanically and females voted for the scenarios that made the most sense to them emotionally. Of course, no one realized it was happening until it was pointed out to us, but I had never even considered the question that way before.

 

Have there been studies done on this? It seems like there would have been, but it's a new idea for me.

 

A place common to all will be maintained by none. A religion common to all is perhaps not much different.


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Archeopteryx wrote: Have

Archeopteryx wrote:

Have there been studies done on this? It seems like there would have been, but it's a new idea for me.

 

I don't know how scientific it is, but there's always Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus

by Dr. John Gray.

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Update:  I spoke to the

Update:  I spoke to the woman referenced in the OP again and this time I tried the approach suggested - questions.  It was a very revealing conversation!  Basically, this woman is an atheist in all but name.  She does not want to give up the socialization of church and enjoys working with the small children in Sunday school, but her personal beliefs are....well, let's just say that if the pope heard her views he would excommunicate her.

I asked her about her thoughts on morality from the bible and she stated that there is very little from the bible that is of any moral use.  She said a few things are, but they are the same things most people get from home.  I asked her about her thoughts on the accuracy of the bible and her exact words were "You can take half of that shit out and maybe you would have something useful."  Then I asked her why she goes to church.  Her answer?  Habit.  LOL

We talked a little about whether or not a person needs to go to church and whether they should take their children.  Her thoughts on that were as follows - no, a person does not need to go to church nor do they need to take their children.  If someone chooses to believe or not to believe is a personal choice, but the example set at home by parents has more impact on children than church.

At this point I feel that I have made her comfortable enough to express her views without fear of criticism and I want to keep the topic open ended to continue at a later date.


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Quote: At this point I feel

Quote:
At this point I feel that I have made her comfortable enough to express her views without fear of criticism and I want to keep the topic open ended to continue at a later date.

You did great!

Isn't it awesome how much you learn from questions like that? It's unfortunate that the internet isn't as conducive to that sort of dialogue. Someone is going to jump in and preach. It's just the nature of the beast.

If you haven't read it yet, here's an essay I wrote last year dealing with exactly this kind of situation. I think you're in the middle of steps one and two with this woman. Step three needs to be set up carefully so you don't turn her off by being nasty or preachy. Steps one and two could take a while. Are there any other freethinking types you could invite her out with regularly? Maybe you could start some kind of weekly book club or something, and focus on thinking books instead of the Oprah Book Club. Maybe you could just go out for dinner twice a month. Food clubs are fun!

Anyway, if I have any advice at this point, it's to go with your gut and keep it open for a while. This is no time to blow it by going all crazy atheist on her. Smiling

 

 

Atheism isn't a lot like religion at all. Unless by "religion" you mean "not religion". --Ciarin

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Thanks Hamby - for the

Thanks Hamby - for the compliment, the link and the advice!  I printed your essay and will read it tonight. 

Quick question:  Are there any atheists that actually like Oprah?  IMO, she is considered a god in her own right and I personally cannot stand her. 


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Quote: Quick question: 

Quote:
Quick question:  Are there any atheists that actually like Oprah?  IMO, she is considered a god in her own right and I personally cannot stand her.

A few months ago, someone reprinted an article about how Oprah slants her shows to make woo-woo seem more believable, especially with psychics and shit like that.

Any atheist that knows this about her ought to be flogged if they still like her.

My opinion is that there are many, many women who believe she's almost a demigod.  She is unquestionably a demagogue.

 

Atheism isn't a lot like religion at all. Unless by "religion" you mean "not religion". --Ciarin

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Hambydammit

Hambydammit wrote:

Quote:
Quick question:  Are there any atheists that actually like Oprah?  IMO, she is considered a god in her own right and I personally cannot stand her.

A few months ago, someone reprinted an article about how Oprah slants her shows to make woo-woo seem more believable, especially with psychics and shit like that.

Any atheist that knows this about her ought to be flogged if they still like her.

My opinion is that there are many, many women who believe she's almost a demigod.  She is unquestionably a demagogue.

 

Julie - rumor has it she was at Madison Square Garden yesterday morning.  The streets/sidewalks were so packed with women and old men I actually had to shove my way through.  I haven't seen it that busy for anything else.  Her popularity is almost obscene.

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Her popularity is obscene

Her popularity is obscene and yeah, millions of women do think she is a demigod. 

She is single-handedly reversing the progress women have made in the country with her woo-woo and by convincing them that they are 'special'.  Women are different from men.  No shit!  That does not make women 'special' and I have no need for others to acknowledge that. 

I would be willing to bet all my dollars (don't get excited, it isn't much) that the atheist women on this site develop friendships and relationships with men that treat them as equals.  I simply cannot be friends with a male that would treat me otherwise and I sure would not pursue a relationship with one.  Furthermore, I am not going to put up a giant purple banner proclaiming that I MUST be treated a specific way.  I'll fight that fight quietly and with intellect, thank you very much. <climbs down from soapbox>

(Hmm...it appears that I have hijacked my own thread so y'all can continue to express your views on Oprah here until I post an update.  Thanks!) 


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Quote:

Quote:
(Hmm...it appears that I have hijacked my own thread so y'all can continue to express your views on Oprah here until I post an update. Thanks!)

ROFL

I'm notorious for doing that... at least in my own mind I'm notorious...

um...

anyway...

This is a very un-pc thing to say, but I'm more interested in truth, so here goes... I've had a very hard time having meaningful friendships with women because I've had a very hard time finding women who were interested in having intellectual discussions. That's sad, considering I live in a town with 19,000 female college students.

There's only so much casual conversation I can have in a meaningful friendship, you know? At some point, you have to connect on a more intellectual level, right? Or maybe it's just me.

(Ok, now I've hijacked your thread, and you're going to have to hijack it back if you ever want to talk about debate again!)

 [edit: removed a word after realizing an unintended sexist connotation]

 

Atheism isn't a lot like religion at all. Unless by "religion" you mean "not religion". --Ciarin

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jce wrote: I would be

jce wrote:
I would be willing to bet all my dollars (don't get excited, it isn't much) that the atheist women on this site develop friendships and relationships with men that treat them as equals.  I simply cannot be friends with a male that would treat me otherwise and I sure would not pursue a relationship with one.  Furthermore, I am not going to put up a giant purple banner proclaiming that I MUST be treated a specific way.  I'll fight that fight quietly and with intellect, thank you very much.

You make a very interesting point here with the platonic relationships.  I certainly have more male friends than my female friends who are a bit religious.  Though, honestly, I think that has more to do with their husband's sense of propriety rather than their own. 

I would not be able to be friends with someone who didn't think I was their equal.

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Hambydammit wrote: There's

Hambydammit wrote:

There's only so much casual conversation I can have in a meaningful friendship, you know? At some point, you have to connect on a more intellectual level, right? Or maybe it's just me.

 

No, you are right - it isn't just you.  I suspect many of us feel that way or we wouldn't be here. 

It is funny how I can just tell during a conversation with a guy if I am being scammed or if he is genuinely interested in what I am saying.  Some guys are great at playing the "I'm listening" game, but they don't care at all.  The ones that are don't do this are tough to find, but worth the effort.


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Hambydammit wrote: I've

Hambydammit wrote:

I've had a very hard time having meaningful friendships with women because I've had a very hard time finding women who were interested in having intellectual discussions.

I agree Hamby, especially the crazy chicks I work with (cough *JCE* cough).

I am kidding about JCE, she is one of the good ones who cares about intelligent discussion, along with Jane, Susan and most women from here.

[rant on]The problem is I don't think this part only applies to women, there are a lot of men that way too, they just don't seem to care about shit and only want to talk sports, guns or breasts. Now I appreciate those types of discussions from time to time, but some men seem like intelligence and real issues don't matter. There is a guy I work with, JCE will know who I am speaking of, who is a pretty intelligent guy but when discussions get on serious topics he makes jokes and cannot handle discussions of religion at all. He claims to believe in god to hedge his bets but if you try to press him on issues he resorts to calling us "heathens", and making jokes with his final comment always being, "what does it really matter anyway". I don't think he has EVER looked at anything critically, he just can't be serious enough.

[/end rant]

 


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Quote:

Quote:
It is funny how I can just tell during a conversation with a guy if I am being scammed or if he is genuinely interested in what I am saying. Some guys are great at playing the "I'm listening" game, but they don't care at all. The ones that are don't do this are tough to find, but worth the effort.

Since this thread is far beyond hijacked, I'll continue digressing.

One day, when I've single-handedly eradicated religion from the world, I'm going to get around to compiling my unifying theory of sex, religion, and inter-gender communication. It's going to be one of the most profound works ever written, because once everyone's free of religion, they'll read my unifying theory and realize that they knew absolutely everything in it, but never put it all together.

Part of the theory involves the triple (or even quadruple) standards of friendship, sex, and "what the fuck is love, anyway?" We passed double standards eons ago.

1. Men want sex.

2. Women want sex.

3. Men want friendship

4. Women want friendship.

5. Friendship requires attraction on some level.

6. Attraction is never just one on level.

7. (Insert a PhD dissertation on the cultural influences of the myth of monogomy, lifetime partnerships, and "true love." )

8. Men and women spend half their life having sex with people they aren't friends with, having friendships with people they're not having sex with, and in almost no cases are both parties honest or even clear about their own desires.

8a. Many men and women spend half their lives having no sex and/or no friendships with the people they want to have sex and/or friendships with, due to all the shit in item 7.

9. Therefore, platonic inter-gender friendships are always difficult to begin and/or maintain.

10. Of course, I'm speaking about heterosexuals, and almost nobody is exclusively hetero or homosexual.

11. Therefore, friendships become even more convoluted.

12. Therefore, we drink heavily.

13. If we're lucky, we end up getting too drunk to screw our friends and mess up platonic friendships...

Hmmm....

I seem to have digressed a little from my original point...

Now that I've taken my tongue out of my cheek, I'll make my actual point. The intergender game is so complicated that almost any statement you make is going to be wrong in some way. For instance, I'm a really awesome guy -- I have lots of testimony to that fact -- but I've definitely played the listening game because I wanted to get laid. I've watched women do the same thing to me. In the end, not only do you have to have compatible intellects to be friends, but you also have to have compatible sexual goals, and that makes it sooooooo much harder to find. After all, you've seen the research that proves that when we're lusting after someone, our capacity for rational thought decreases, right?

As if it wasn't difficult enough for people thinking rationally...

 

 [edited for clarity.  Yeah, right.]

 

Atheism isn't a lot like religion at all. Unless by "religion" you mean "not religion". --Ciarin

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BGH wrote: I agree Hamby,

BGH wrote:

I agree Hamby, especially the crazy chicks I work with (cough *JCE* cough).

Asshole. 

BGH wrote:
I am kidding about JCE, she is one of the good ones who cares about intelligent discussion, along with Jane, Susan and most women from here.

Damn straight! 

BGH wrote:
[rant on]The problem is I don't think this part only applies to women, there are a lot of men that way too, they just don't seem to care about shit and only want to talk sports, guns or breasts. Now I appreciate those types of discussions from time to time, but some men seem like intelligence and real issues don't matter. There is a guy I work with, JCE will know who I am speaking of, who is a pretty intelligent guy but when discussions get on serious topics he makes jokes and cannot handle discussions of religion at all. He claims to believe in god to hedge his bets but if you try to press him on issues he resorts to calling us "heathens", and making jokes with his final comment always being, "what does it really matter anyway". I don't think he has EVER looked at anything critically, he just can't be serious enough.

[/end rant]

Yeah, I know who you are talking about and that is why I don't consider him a friend. 

The part that kills me is that he is one of those that thinks people should be respected for their religious beliefs.  What about respecting me for my intelligence?  Oh, I have to earn that respect?  Hmmm...odd that I have to earn respect for intelligence, but I am suppose to grant respect for whatever crazy beliefs another person has. 


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jce wrote: At this point I

jce wrote:
At this point I feel that I have made her comfortable enough to express her views without fear of criticism and I want to keep the topic open ended to continue at a later date.

Excellent. That's a great way to leave it. You're likely to get much more interesting conversations after that. 

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I definitely have

I definitely have friendships and relationships with men who treat me as equals. In fact, I have many close male friends (including my significant other of five years) and very few close female friends.

 My female friends years ago used to actually get angry at me for not being emotional enough for their tastes. I would act rational, and they would interpret this rationality and lack of getting emotionally bent out of shape over some issue in our little group as not caring. One of my closest female friends says I am one of her heroes for being the "queen of logic" yet occationally gets mad at me for being "too rational". 

My male friends like to tell me how awesome I am for engaging in traditionally masculine activities. I own a Trans Am, a motorcycle, and a gun. I drag and drift my car. I do my own work on my car and motorcycle when they break. I  build, fix, and take things apart. I am not very "feminine". 

So anyway, Oprah is disgusting. Not only does she enhance her stories to make woo woo more plausible, but she at least on one verifiable occation completely fabricated a story about teenagers to scare mothers. A few years ago she had a segment on "rainbow parties" which according to her is a game teenagers play where they wear different colored lipstick and then perform oral sex on a male. The male suppsedly then handed out those Armstrong type rubber bracelets as party favors to the girls, and then the guy with the biggest rainbow on his penis was declared the winner.

I decided to look up rainbow parties on the internet because the whole thing did not make much sense - since when does lipstick transfer to penises like that? You'd think if this were such a widespread game kids were playing, it would be all over the net. Nope. No mention of it on any website created before her show aired. 

I belong to the local pet ferret club here and the ferret club was selling the rubber bracelets with "I heart ferrets" to raise money for the vet bills for ferrets in the shelter. This woman came up while the club was at petsmart telling us how horrible we were that we would sell these rainbow party bracelets. When I tried to tell her she was misinformed, she actually yelled at me, calling me stupid and saying I must live in a cave and never get out and how I must be out of touch with reality (I worked at a school too)...

So... Oprah sucks. 

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Not_Your_Therapist wrote:

Not_Your_Therapist wrote:

My female friends years ago used to actually get angry at me for not being emotional enough for their tastes. I would act rational, and they would interpret this rationality and lack of getting emotionally bent out of shape over some issue in our little group as not caring. One of my closest female friends says I am one of her heroes for being the "queen of logic" yet occationally gets mad at me for being "too rational".

I've had friends accuse me of acting like their boyfriends when they start complaining. lol.  I just see what the problem is and offer to fix it.

Unfortunately, this talent does not work on myself, only on others.   

Not_Your_Therapist wrote:
My male friends like to tell me how awesome I am for engaging in traditionally masculine activities. I own a Trans Am, a motorcycle, and a gun. I drag and drift my car. I do my own work on my car and motorcycle when they break. I build, fix, and take things apart. I am not very "feminine".

I get the sense that most of the women on this forum aren't exactly 'delicate little flowers'.

Short story - I was at a bar and some guy was making fun of me.  Being really mean.  So I started making fun of him back.  He gets totally offended and tells me 'no one likes a confrontational bitch.'  This guy basically mocked me about my glasses all the way down to my height (I'm 5'1'&#39Eye-wink  He even suggested I was a slut (a knee length skirt is almost too short for me) for no reason at all.  But because I stood up for myself, I became the problem. 

Even in this day and age, if you stand up for yourself, or become vocal about something important that doesn't sit well with mainstream America, you're a bitch.  And then they attack your personal appearance.    

Not_Your_Therapist wrote:
I belong to the local pet ferret club here and the ferret club was selling the rubber bracelets with "I heart ferrets" to raise money for the vet bills for ferrets in the shelter. This woman came up while the club was at petsmart telling us how horrible we were that we would sell these rainbow party bracelets. When I tried to tell her she was misinformed, she actually yelled at me, calling me stupid and saying I must live in a cave and never get out and how I must be out of touch with reality (I worked at a school too)...

So... Oprah sucks.

You just became my hero.  Ferrets are the best little critters ever!  Now I have to go find my Gizmo and give him hug.  Smiling 

 P.S. jce - did we derail your thread well enough?  Sticking out tongue

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Ferret club? You'll be

Ferret club? You'll be hearing from Pariahjane! She's a ferret person.

And good for you helping the critters in the shelter. They ALL need all the help they can get.

(I'm trying desperately not to climb onto my critter soapbox right now.)

 

I find it can be hard to have meaningful conversations with most people.

 

Men: How 'bout them Rams? (variation of "didjaseethegame&quotEye-wink

Man, I'd like to get in her pants.

Don't talk to me until it's a commercial.

I gotta mow the lawn tonight.

Women: I need to go shopping.

My little Tommy (or Susie) is sooooooooo smart. S/he's so creative and sensitive.

I'm on a diet. So this is what I ate today....... (fill in the blank)

Can you believe what so-and-so said/did?

 

There are very few people you can ask if they've read a specific book.

There are very few people you can discuss politics (other than the obvious).

There are very few people you can discuss beliefs with.

When you get right down to it, there are very few people with whome you can use three syllable words in a conversation!

 

I'm lucky. A lot of my friends do, in fact, read books. Not too many of my friends are glued to the TV when the "big game" is on. Most of my friends can hold their own in a good conversation over a cup of coffee.

Of course, these things are what brings us together as friends.

These are also some of the joys of being here on the forums.

 

{Has this thread been hijacked far enough yet? tee hee. Sorry, JCE!}

 

EDIT - I see that Pariahjane beat me to posting about the ferrets! 

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pariahjane wrote: P.S.

pariahjane wrote:

P.S. jce - did we derail your thread well enough? Sticking out tongue

Nah!  I am enjoying the discussion.  You guys crack me up!  So:

Oprah sucks.

Ferrets rock.

Men who can't think of anything more intelligent to say than they don't like you because of your height suck.

Knowing what a timing belt is rocks

Does that about sum it up?  LOL


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Do all rational women like

Do all rational women like ferrets?

 

 

 

 

Silly me, of course they do!


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Hey, as long as we're still

Hey, as long as we're still remotely talking about women, we're on topic, right?

 

What's not to like about ferrets? they fold, they dook (make cute little monkeyish sounds), the steal your wallet and hide it, they climb up your clothes and into your backpack, they try to hide from you by going flat in the middle of the floor, they sleep on each other, they hop around like mofos when you let them out to play, and they like to be gently tossed in the air onto beds... and so on and so forth forever.

The downsides to some people (not me) are they have a strong body odor (not really bad, but strong), they have "beady" eyes, and some people think they look like rats. One big downside is that in the USA they almost all get cancer and no one knows why. I have had 6 in my life and now I have 4. The other two died of cancer, and two of my 4 now have cancer. Sad 

So back to the women + religion thing. In my experience, the women i have discussed religion with definitely discuss things from an emotional standpoint. The women friends of mine who I have discussed religion with have said the following to me:

1. It is wrong to make fun of other people's religious beliefs

2. Everything that people believe is true... if not in this dimension then in some other dimension

3. I can't stand the idea of god being not real, therefore he is

4. I don't care how much evidence you present to me to show me my idea is false. I will still believe it because I know in my heart it's true. 

5. You just have to open up your mind. You won't see god if you don't want to see god.

Sigh.

 

 

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Not_Your_Therapist

Not_Your_Therapist wrote:

Hey, as long as we're still remotely talking about women, we're on topic, right?

 

What's not to like about ferrets? they fold, they dook (make cute little monkeyish sounds), the steal your wallet and hide it, they climb up your clothes and into your backpack, they try to hide from you by going flat in the middle of the floor, they sleep on each other, they hop around like mofos when you let them out to play, and they like to be gently tossed in the air onto beds... and so on and so forth forever.

They steal EVERYTHING. I can't tell you what I've found in their hidey holes. They even stole an iPod once and hid it inside a bag that was inside a bag and in a ferret sleeping bag. They're smart as hell, too.

Not_Your_Therapist wrote:
The downsides to some people (not me) are they have a strong body odor (not really bad, but strong), they have "beady" eyes, and some people think they look like rats. One big downside is that in the USA they almost all get cancer and no one knows why. I have had 6 in my life and now I have 4. The other two died of cancer, and two of my 4 now have cancer. Sad

Admittedly, they are a wee bit stinky. Ok, they're pretty stinky, but you get used to it.

The cancer thing is a terrible issue. I've only had two ferrets, Loki and Gizmo. I got Loki first as a gift. We got Gizmo because he was a big fat doofus in the pet store and had been there for months. Anyway, Loki was diagnosed with adrenal disease at age 2 and died this past May from adrenal disease and insulinoma at age 5. She had a wonderful life and was a sweet creature. Me and Gizmo miss her very much. He's still a big doofus, lol.

Not_Your_Therapist wrote:
So back to the women + religion thing. In my experience, the women i have discussed religion with definitely discuss things from an emotional standpoint. The women friends of mine who I have discussed religion with have said the following to me:

1. It is wrong to make fun of other people's religious beliefs

2. Everything that people believe is true... if not in this dimension then in some other dimension

3. I can't stand the idea of god being not real, therefore he is

4. I don't care how much evidence you present to me to show me my idea is false. I will still believe it because I know in my heart it's true.

5. You just have to open up your mind. You won't see god if you don't want to see god.

Sigh.

 

With most women I know, it's always about not offending other people. These are often the same women who whisper disparaging comments about homosexuals and unwed mothers.

Sorry for the ferret rant.

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pariahjane

pariahjane wrote:

They steal EVERYTHING. I can't tell you what I've found in their hidey holes. They even stole an iPod once and hid it inside a bag that was inside a bag and in a ferret sleeping bag. They're smart as hell, too.

 

Well I just have to comment on this. Before my boyfriend and I lived togehter, he stayed the night over with me at my parent's house. He left his clothes on the floor *wink* when we went to sleep. The next morning I got up and went to work, he got up after me, put on his clothes and left.

Driving home he realized he wasn't sitting on his wallet. He went back and found that the ferrets had taken his wallet out of his pants and put it under the dresser.

He chanced to open the wallet and noticed $50 was missing... Yup... He found it in their cage, carried all the way up to their hammock, under a pile of ferrets. LOL.

 

[MOD EDIT - fixed quotes] 

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Not_Your_Therapist

pariahjane wrote:

They steal EVERYTHING. I can't tell you what I've found in their hidey holes. They even stole an iPod once and hid it inside a bag that was inside a bag and in a ferret sleeping bag. They're smart as hell, too.

 

Not_Your_Therapist wrote:
Well I just have to comment on this. Before my boyfriend and I lived togehter, he stayed the night over with me at my parent's house. He left his clothes on the floor *wink* when we went to sleep. The next morning I got up and went to work, he got up after me, put on his clothes and left.

Driving home he realized he wasn't sitting on his wallet. He went back and found that the ferrets had taken his wallet out of his pants and put it under the dresser.

He chanced to open the wallet and noticed $50 was missing... Yup... He found it in their cage, carried all the way up to their hammock, under a pile of ferrets. LOL.

Ok, this thread is officially derailed, lol. Loki used to open my purse (she knew how to use zippers apparently) and she would take all the credit cards and hide them in one place and take all my money and hide it in another. I got all the way to work one day (in NYC from NJ) only to discover that they pretty much hijacked all the goods from my purse! I had to borrow money from my boss just to get home. lol. Naughty little ferrets.

They've also hidden work boots under the bed, tampons, pens, packages of gum... the list goes on and on. Gizmo will tear plastic bags out of my hands and run off with them. They each had their specific items that they stole, too. Smiling

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Hambydammit wrote: This

Hambydammit wrote:

This is a very un-pc thing to say, but I'm more interested in truth, so here goes... I've had a very hard time having meaningful friendships with women because I've had a very hard time finding women who were interested in having intellectual discussions. That's sad, considering I live in a town with 19,000 female college students. 

Since Hamby has already kicked off the misogyny (Just kidding Hamby, I just find that whenever I express a similar opinion I'm shredded by angry feminists) I'll express my irritation at the mindset of the average human female too.

since highschool I've found that I have less and less female friends. what I've notived about all of my friends (including the small number of women) is that they are not afraid to live outside the square. If they choose not to do something it's because they don't enjoy it or because it's against their personal morality. It's never because it goes against social expectations. Most women seem terrified by the prospect of not perfectly meeting the social expectation of a generic woman. I just can't have fun with those people.

I know men are not exempt from this fear of nonconformity but it seems to be much more debilitating phobia in women. 

And as evidence that I'm not a hypocrite, who simply expects women to conform to what I think is fun, I am going to see a ballet for the first time tomorrow night and a performance of a Gilbert and Sullivan musical next week.

Oh, a lesson in not changing history from Mr. I'm-My-Own-Grandpa!


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jce wrote: Knowing what a

jce wrote:

Knowing what a timing belt is rocks

All I know about timing belts is that it sucks when one breaks.  

Oh, a lesson in not changing history from Mr. I'm-My-Own-Grandpa!