The Girl Whisperer
as published by the Sunday Guardian
on Sunday July 8
Everybody is Somebody’s Fool
Many of us are street-smart, able to hold our own in a discussion, an argument, and for the really wild ones, even in a fist fight. But in everyone’s life, at some time or the other, we will come face to face with another human being whom we would do anything for. A person who can ask us for anything and be confident we’ll deliver if it’s within our power to do so, no matter how inconvenient it is for us. Maybe it’s an issue of chemistry or some peculiar kind of alignment of the stars, but at least once, we all will meet someone who has control over us and whom we will obey without question. This is great when the person cares for you as much as you love him or her, and even though there is a danger of unhealthy dependency here, the trust given is not usually violated or misused.
However, in the hands of an unscrupulous partner, this need can be a deadly weapon. The manipulating male or female understands the nature of the power possessed over the docile partner and will use this without mercy to achieve his or her own ends making demands that would cause a more rational partner to rebel.
The demands may cover the various ranges of human experience. For example, in the area of emotions, the stronger partner may cause severe distress to the weaker partner by pushing the limits of endurance. If the female is the “fool”, her male partner might make it plain he is unable to remain faithful to her. He might state to her that the only way she can have him is if she’s ready to share him with other women. The female’s need to keep this partner will cause her to accept a situation that would ordinarily be unacceptable to her. There will also be a corresponding lowering in the self-esteem of the “fool”. This situation is not as far-fetched as one might think. Cases abound of women who know that their men chase anything in skirts, these men having pushed the women into a state of acceptance of a seemingly incurable trait. Let no one think this particular ‘condition’ is limited to men alone. There are women, who being so confident of their beauty and charm, tell men who want them, that they must share.
At the physical level, the “fool” may be the subject of abuse, accepting verbal and psychological abuse as part and parcel of the relationship. She does not see that the relationship is an unhealthy and degrading one. There are men who do not fend for their families or take responsibility for any domestic needs. The females are exploited for their material possessions and they live and work only to please the domineering partner.
There are cases of females who are physically abused, the subjects of violent and criminal attacks by their partners and spouses. A dangerous aspect of this is when the female regards the punishment as normal and what she deserves.
Love may be a many splendour’d thing, but it is wise to know that any kind of relationship that leaves one partner seriously disadvantaged is a very unhealthy and unacceptable one.
Relationships are about partners meeting themselves halfway, each striving to please the other. If one partner has to give favours to be accepted, or has to accept demeaning situations so he or she can remain with a partner, it’s time to rethink the situation. No matter how hard it is, a “fool” must find the courage and pride to remove himself or herself from a situation of abuse. Love cannot be bought no matter how hard we try and the sooner all “fools” realise this, the better for them. Anyone who requires that you accept what you would not ordinarily take from any other, is setting you up to be a fool. Speak up and step out of this kind of situation immediately.
Nat King Cole sang in “Nature Boy”, ‘the greatest thing, you could ever learn, is just to love and be loved in return.’ True words.