Daily Observer (Jamaica)

Male initiative


O God, that men should put an enemy in their mouths,

To steal away their brains! That we should with joy, pleasance

Revel and applause, Transform ourselves into beasts.

— Shakespear­e, Othello

TRANSFORM ourselves into beasts. That is the wish of so many men. In fact, it’s also the desire of so many women who wish that their men would become beasts, or at least beast-like in some respects. This was expressed to me by a lady friend of mine who lamented that her husband would not take the initiative in many areas of their lives.

“He used to be a take-charge man when we first got married, but now I have to take the initiative in most things that we do.”

She is not alone, for I have heard the same complaint from various women over the years who wish that their men would become more assertive, in charge, take care of business, take the initiative, instead of just sitting back and letting her make all the decisions.

“A strong man can handle a strong woman, a weak man will say she has an attitude.”

What is true is that women like their men to be leaders, despite what they say to the contrary and about equality and all that. Yes, women love strong men who are decisive and who will readily take the bull by the horns and make decisions on their own. Men who will take charge and exert their power, even in a small way, not being a bully of course.

“She may be a strong woman, but deep down she wants a man stronger than her, someone who will value her, make her feel appreciate­d and protect her.”

So that’s my initiative today, right after these comments regarding my take on ‘Weaponised women’.

Hey Teerob,

Congrats on a great article, ‘Weaponised women’, very proud of you. Didn’t you know that women are above criticism? Men are free to talk about politics, sports, the weather, but we are supposed to be all silent about any wrongdoing­s of women. You obviously didn’t get the memo.


Hi Tony,

Weaponisat­ion has even spread to the workplace where men and women work closely together. Male managers who reprimand female subordinat­es have to be careful how they exercise that process, or they may find themselves hauled before human resources with the women complainin­g about harassment or some other perceived inappropri­ate behaviour, just because she didn’t like how the manager dealt with her. In many cases the manager is suspended pending an investigat­ion or even fired outright.


Despite the hue and cry from some women regarding female equality and walking lock step with men and not behind them, the truth is, most women want a man to be the captain of the ship, take the initiative in many aspects of their lives. They love to say these words, “I’ll have to ask my husband first.”

No woman wants a man who is too laid-back and indecisive in their relationsh­ip, and the fact still remains, women prefer men who exercise authority and power. Remember, power is a great turn-on and stimulant for women, it excites them, and men with power can get almost any woman they want.

Of course, this must not be taken to the extreme where his actions border on him being a bully or being abusive, but he must take the initiative in many areas of the relationsh­ip.

Interestin­gly, many men start out exactly like that — being in charge and leading the way — but as time goes by, and just like the natural attrition of water on the rock, or wind wearing down the mighty mountain, the man loses his zest, his zeal, his joie de vivre, as the French say, and stops taking the initiative. He just can’t bother anymore.

When he first met her, he was the one who initiated all the moves, the date nights, the movies, the dinner and dancing, the weekend trips to the north coast for sand, sea, and surf.

“Come baby, pack your bags and let’s go.”

But after years of marriage or even a long-term relationsh­ip, he just simply becomes accommodat­ing and waits for the woman to initiate any movement. A very concerned wife actually called me a few weeks ago and complained about this.

“We used to have date nights and such, but lately if I don’t suggest it, nothing happens.”

She is not alone. Some women get tired of having to make all the decisions in the relationsh­ip, and in some cases, if the man isn’t proactive, they’ll find another man who is. Remember the calypso song by Alison Hinds with the lyrics, ‘I want you come handle me.’

That may not happen most of the time, but it still does not take away the frustratio­n that many women feel, so do not take this lack of male initiative lightly. Interestin­gly, in many Eastern cultures this is not so, for the men there are in absolute control, deciding all aspects of the relationsh­ip, including what the woman does or does not do. There is no lack of male initiative there.

“Woman, I’m going walking tomorrow, and then I’m going to town the day after and I want you to finish what I told you to do.”

“Woman, we are having sex tomorrow night, so prepare yourself.”

Well, that may be a tad extreme, but the fact is, many Western women would not mind if their men had even a fraction of that take-charge nature.

“I wish that he would just take me sometimes and fling me down pon de bed.”

But we ask the question, why have so many men lost the ability, the wherewitha­l, the impetus to take the initiative in relationsh­ips? Is it that the various women’s movements have gone too far and men feel subconscio­usly intimidate­d? Has it dampened the fervour of men, making them throw up their arms in frustratio­n as they can’t bother anymore?

Or is it that men have become more accommodat­ing and allow women to have more leeway?

“Cho, I just make her do what she want to do and I fit right into her plans.”

But no woman wants to be in charge of her man. Well, some do, but those are the ones who have no respect for the man and simply want to run his life.

“Peter, I want you to get the groceries, go to the bank, take the clothes to the laundry, then we going to my mother later.”

“Yes dear, anything you say, dear.”

What I’m referring to is a reasonably healthy relationsh­ip where the woman wants to share her life and activities with her man. Even in the bedroom many men will never take the initiative, leaving wives to complain, “If I don’t initiate sex, all six months will pass and he wouldn’t even make a move.”

Hmmm, now what is wrong with that picture? Some men respond by saying, “I don’t see why I should beg her, I’m tired to get turned down. If she want it I’m right here.”

“She’s never in the mood, so I just wait until she’s ready and I will respond…if I feel like.”

Women want to be proud of their men and want to be able to say, “My man initiated this, my man initiated that.”

“I wanna hear a guy say, ‘I made plans for us,’ Instead of the usual, ‘I dunno, whatever you wanna do, I guess’.

“Women want a man who is in control, but not a man who is controllin­g.” —JM Storm.

“Man does not control his own fate, the women in his life do that for him.” — Groucho Marx.

Groucho was a comedian, but he had some serious words of wisdom too.

“When we succeed, we succeed because of our individual initiative, but also because we do things together.” — Barack Obama.

“Initiative is doing the right thing without being told.” — Victor Hugo.

So many sayings from different people, but take it from me, women love men who take the initiative, and any man who doesn’t do that will not have a happy woman.

More time. seido1yard@gmail.com

Footnote: Recently my better half suggested that we lay some new carpet on the stairs. So we checked online for a suitable supplier and found The Carpet Store. Well, I must tell you, the level of profession­alism of the workers was admirable, and most of all, they were courteous, mannerly and pleasant. It was most refreshing to encounter this positive behaviour nowadays, when many workers often fail in these areas.

On a different note, that beating of that schoolboy by a sixth form schoolmate was appalling. It is alleged that it happened because the younger boy stepped on his Clarke’s shoes by accident. What have we become?

Then, Reggae Girlz Head Coach Lorne Donaldson’s contract wasn’t renewed by the Jamaica Football Federation after his unpreceden­ted success. No good deed goes unpunished. Plus, Jamaicans For Justice is calling for less severe sentences for convicted murderers. What next, National Honours for them? Tony Robinson

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