I am quite moved by all the #metoo’s I am reading on Facebook. So grateful that we have found an opening, a place to begin this conversation. I am hearing about years and years of aggression, defense, confusion, pain, shame, and rage.
I am experiencing this moment as women wanting to, once again, emerge with all the power that the sacred feminine embodies. It seems almost impossible not to share our stories. It is a true emergency.
The blame game language that I hear the leaders in our country use seems to be waking us up on many levels. Everyone, whatever our thoughts are on these matters, seems to be awake, alert, and participating.
Not only are women finding their voices, but also people of color, people who identify sexually different than the cultural ‘norm’ are saying “I am here. And I am speaking up”.
Obviously, the people on my Facebook feed are saying things that I find inspiring, and I agree with much of what they are writing. Mostly, I am inspired that they are writing. While I don’t particularly see the other posts, I do see the news, so I hear enough —enough that I can be aware of what’s happening out there, and manage my feelings.
At the same time that I feel excitement and some relief hearing people I know speak up, I also feel a well of dread and despair reading some of the language in my friends sharing, and reading about what is being reported in the #metoo movement. It seems that most of the energy here is against men. Men did this. And yes, men did do these things. Women have something to do with it. We all do. I am concerned with how easily we are joining in the blame game. It is THEM. THEY did this.
I understand that it takes a great deal of energy to say things that we have been holding onto for so long. A freedom, and sense of our own power is required and also generated by speaking up. Please let’s not take our power at the expense of the men on this planet. The power of the feminine is different, and I would like us to remember that. Especially now. It is our time, it is our responsibility.
Young men as well as young women have been brought up inside a culture that allows for this all to happen. This is an US thing. WE TOO. Men have been brought up not to understand their own power or value, so it is expressed in these tragic, tragic ways.
My teen years were in the 1970s. Sex, drugs, and rock and roll. I had literally zero explicit input from my parents about how to talk with boys or how to negotiate sex. All I had to go on was my intuition, which was filled with self-doubt, needing lots of acknowledgement. When I said "yes" to sex in those days, I got lots of appreciation. So I said "yes" a lot. Did I want to have sex all those times, back then? I don’t even know. It is very difficult for me to sort it out. I remember it being fun sometimes. I remember wanting more connection afterward, and rarely getting it, and I remember not having a soul engaged enough to talk about it with.
I had no language to ask for what I wanted - so how could the men I was with know what I really wanted? There were so many drugs back then that I don’t remember the who, what, and when that much. I am certain that I had sex with people I didn’t want to have sex with. Many times, in many different ways. I could not find a way to speak up. I remember bosses sticking their tongues down my throat at Christmas parties and never speaking of it ever. Bosses that I loved dearly in jobs that I loved dearly.
My guess is that those people who I was with, as well as many other men, weren’t getting much of their own needs met. They, too, longed for some sense of value and importance - and getting sex was their strategy. They, too, were not taught about how to talk about what was happening. Likely, for many, their deficit for valuing themselves was so deep, they took it in ways that had (have) a HUGE COST. So here we are. Unpacking all of this now.
Power Over vs. Power With
I am having trouble joining in the blame game. Blaming the people I was with. Blaming the men. We all have been taught tragic ways to find our power, and ultimately our deep sense of belonging and value. It just can't be men. We all know men who are 'not like that'.
I watch television and see the sitcom family, as it's time for the parents to have 'the sex talk', and how they dread and actually avoid it. This is not funny. We must take our bodies back. Men and women both must. We must teach our young people what these parts are, how they work, and how to navigate and communicate our desires, and the impacts of all of it.
Yes, we must take our power back. Stop what is happening. And then do something different.
If it is as I believe — that women will be the change agents, then please let’s connect with the feminine energy that has been so undervalued in our culture. This is our task. Let’s stop giving up our true nature to be accepted in a patriarchal/dominator culture. Can we truly celebrate our bodies, our emotions and our wisdom and our strength? Can we actually be the ones to help men find their strength and authentic power, as well? I can only imagine this as the healing that we are looking for. Can we find our resilience, over and over again, without resignation? Can we inspire and generate a culture of power with vs. power over? A cooperative or partnership culture vs. the competitive one we are in right now. The ‘utopia’ in which we are supported and valued and cared for cannot be found inside the same blame-game thinking which has created this imbalance.
We can grow a true matriarchal society. A culture where relationships, the unseen, nurturing energy and intuition can blossom and be woven into how we make choices and decisions. We are the gatherers. We gather around each other, we gather knowledge, we gather our hearts and minds. It is the task of the feminine to bring this forth now, if we want something different. We must teach our children to care about, and for, one another. We must speak up — even though we might have so much shame — and teach our children (boys, girls, and all genders) about their bodies and power. We must not shy away from this responsibility.
We must learn how to talk with one another - especially when all we want to do is scream at one another. If we truly want a cooperative culture, we must collectively use the power that we all share. We must combine protective use of force, too, so we are safe as we uncover and allow the true nature of humans to emerge. Let's emerge and see.
I suggest reading these books, if this speaks to you:
- The Chalice and the Blade, Our History, Our Future. by Riane Eisler
- Sacred Land, Sacred Sex: Rapture of the Deep: Deep Ecology and Celebrating Life. by Dolores Lachapelle
- The Fifth Sacred Thing. by Starhawk