Author: has written 5293 posts for this blog.

Jill began blogging for Feministe in 2005. She has since written as a weekly columnist for the Guardian newspaper and in April 2014 she was appointed as senior political writer for Cosmopolitan magazine.
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94 Responses

  1. Katie
    Katie November 26, 2012 at 11:08 am |

    Fun Fact: Suzanne Venker is Phyllis Shlafly’s niece.

    1. Jadey
      Jadey November 26, 2012 at 11:19 am |

      Oh, colour me unsurprised.

      I always *loved* how Schlafly built a political career on telling all other women not to do what she was doing (i.e., leave the house and have a career).

      1. RoryBorealis
        RoryBorealis November 26, 2012 at 11:48 pm |

        ‘Wingers are nothing if not consistently hypocritical.

  2. MrRabbit
    MrRabbit November 26, 2012 at 11:21 am |

    If certain men aren’t marrying because they are threatened by women who think they are equal to men, well, good. Do we really want those men marrying?

    1. Kxx
      Kxx November 26, 2012 at 4:23 pm |


      Reading through that, I thought, wow, some men don’t want to get married because these days marriage doesn’t mean they get a maid/sex toy to wait on them hand and foot? We’re better off without those men, and I certainly wouldn’t refer to them as ‘marriageable’!

      I will be an equal partner, with a career and money, and a life of my own or I will remain single. I’m better off alone than spending my life doing nothing more than cooking, cleaning and preening for some bullying pig who thinks that being male makes him inherently superior to me.

    2. Sun
      Sun December 10, 2012 at 10:30 pm |

      No. The last time I checked those men are marrying, they just aren’t marrying you.

      Isn’t the who hate men and never date them or have a career is more important then being a mother part of the who Feminism spiel?

      Feminist have less children then Traditional women do.

  3. Kristen J.
    Kristen J. November 26, 2012 at 11:33 am |

    I’m thinking its possible her definition of “marriageable” and Mt definition of marriageable are completely different.

    One thing that I find interesting about this line of thinking is how much it relies on giving up autonomy for faux acceptance. Its very reminiscent of the surrendered spouse/Christian Women theology. People are not autonomous beings with desires, hopes, and quirks. We are vessels for the execution of someone else’s will. We would each be happier if we just surrendered to our purpose. Then God or men or whoever would finally give us the love we are entitled to. But of course the flip side of that logic is that men or God or whoever cannot love people, they can only love archetypes.

    Sad way to look at the world even if you do happen to be a person who fit their norms.

  4. Comrade Kevin
    Comrade Kevin November 26, 2012 at 11:33 am |

    I’ve seen way too much in my life to believe that men aren’t somehow allowed to be “men” anymore. Granted, I have seen men who are threatened by the loss of their supposed autonomy. I’ve seen the multiple benefits of gender equality, too.

    A childhood best friend of mine got married, with great satisfaction, to a woman he loves dearly. He is now every ounce the doting father. Marriage and fatherhood have been good to him, and he quite eagerly and unselfishly contributes to raising his daughter.

    He was drifting aimlessly, unhappily, in his life until he found his wife. Meeting her was exactly what he needed. This not to say that marriage is the salvation of every single person (or should be), but that I think it has many merits, provided two people are honest and open with their expectations.

    1. Bagelsan
      Bagelsan November 26, 2012 at 11:55 am |

      I don’t have the numbers to hand, but I believe that marriage tends to be very good to men; married men live longer, healthier lives than unmarried men, while women take a bit of a lifespan dive.

      1. TomSims
        TomSims November 26, 2012 at 1:42 pm |

        married men live longer, ”

        No, it just seems longer. :D

        1. XtinaS
          XtinaS November 26, 2012 at 2:59 pm |

          Is TomSims a troll now, or do we still have to wait?

  5. And with that, anti-feminist history repeats itself « Feminéma

    […] As the brilliant Jill Filipovic over at Feministe explains with a brilliant post (and headline), “Women need to stay home and serve men, says woman who […]

  6. Drahill
    Drahill November 26, 2012 at 12:01 pm |

    I’m fascinated by how she equates providing for one’s family as money support only.

    My husband supports me plenty. He gives me lots of his time. He gives me the products of his labor, time, thoughts and ideas. He encourages me. Somehow, he manages to not feel emasculated by my higher income. The continued insistence on men’s need to control the monetary support his wife has is not just outdated, to me, its downright creepy. Total finance control is one of the easiest ways to control the other partner’s life, interests, movements and such (not to imply that single-earner relationships are inherently abusive or creepy, just that such an arrangement, to me, has a higher potential for an abuser to exploit).

    And how is the “protect” thing coming into it? I like to think that my husband would try to defend me if I was being harmed. I know that he hopes I’d do it for him (I practice MMA frequently, so he knows that I’m up for it). But she frames it as such an argument for helplessness – that a woman is only protectable if she cannot help herself. So she’s setting up some kind of obligatory helplessness for women, less we offend some men. Again, it’s bordering on pretty scary stuff.

  7. Catherine
    Catherine November 26, 2012 at 1:09 pm |

    I got to the end of this article and hunted around for page 2 for a while. I kind of can’t believe that even this lady would leave her argument so unsubstantiated and undefined. “Start being more feminine.” Umm… k. What does that entail, exactly?

    I honestly can’t even figure out what she’s saying.

    1. Drahill
      Drahill November 26, 2012 at 2:00 pm |

      Feminine is code for submissive. It has nothing to do with a style of dress or anything. Plenty of women I know dress plenty “feminine” but are still self-sufficent, confident women – the kind this article rails against. Look at this choice quote:

      Armed with this new attitude, women pushed men off their pedestal (women had their own pedestal, but feminists convinced them otherwise) and climbed up to take what they were taught to believe was rightfully theirs.

      Its railing against women demanding what men “used” to have – independence, careers, self-sufficiency, income. So anything you hear a conservative use “feminine” in an article, its usually code for reverting back to traditional gender roles and power dynamics.

      1. Anon21
        Anon21 November 26, 2012 at 3:59 pm |

        I don’t even know that it’s coded when the action verb of choice is “surrender.”

      2. Catherine
        Catherine November 26, 2012 at 4:47 pm |

        Yeah, one can assume as much. It’s just so fucking incoherent, though.
        I mean, imagine for one second that I am an impressionable wisp of a female looking for love. *snort* What is my action plan after I read this article? Quit my job? Refuse to put out (oddly, she has casual sex bundled up in this equation without really explaining why)? Take a culinary course?
        This husband-hunter needs a little more help.

  8. Betsy
    Betsy November 26, 2012 at 1:09 pm |

    I enjoyed the article by Venker. It sounded like what Dr. Laura (A REAL Feminist you should be familiar with) would say. Your sarcasm and generalizations of what Venker is trying to say reflects YOUR true character and ability to take information from an article. Keep trying!

    1. Andie
      Andie November 26, 2012 at 2:13 pm |


      *deep breath*


      haha.. ha…

      Dr. Laura..

      That’s a good one.

    2. 10G
      10G November 26, 2012 at 2:55 pm |

      Dear BLOG, I hope Betsy is joking. Or you know…just drunk.

      1. Bagelsan
        Bagelsan November 26, 2012 at 3:31 pm |

        Tomorrow morning Betsy’s gonna be so embarrassed that she drunk-posted. “Sorry guys, I’m a self-hating drunk! :(“

    3. EG
      EG November 26, 2012 at 4:47 pm |

      My sarcasm always reflects my true character. That’s why I use it.

      Things right-wingers don’t like: feminism, sex, and now sarcasm. Their lives sound worse and worse to me; I don’t think I’m going to take advice from any of ‘em.

      1. Bagelsan
        Bagelsan November 26, 2012 at 5:00 pm |

        I like to do feminism, sex and sarcasm simultaneously. It’s the best!

    4. samanthab.
      samanthab. November 27, 2012 at 4:52 am |

      FYI, Betsy, you’ve just left a sarcastic, generalized comment. I wonder what that says about you?

  9. elena
    elena November 26, 2012 at 1:14 pm |

    “Q:You say feminism invented the concept of oppressed women and pounced on marriage as akin to enslavement. What about its efforts to broaden awareness of, and options for, oppressed and trapped women, women abused by their husbands?

    A:Awareness of battered women? That would be like what I said about the workforce. It looks like a gain at the outset, and awareness is great. But now the policies that have increased awareness—the solution—have become the problem. The abuse problem is smaller than it’s made out to be, and when you draw attention to something that’s so terrible, it’s like the issue of homosexuality today. The awareness that gays exist, or that terrible men beat their wives, is good to recognize but not to belabor or exaggerate. It’s almost as if every man is a potential abuser or every man is gay. I don’t know that it’s fair to take these situations and apply them across the board.”

    Holy shit. How is this kind of rational even possible?

    1. White Rabbit
      White Rabbit November 26, 2012 at 2:03 pm |

      “The abuse problem is smaller than it’s made out to be”

      I don’t even. Also, did she just compare being gay to being an abuser?! Her latest article left me mildly annoyed, but this here has me enraged. Thanks for sharing.

  10. EG
    EG November 26, 2012 at 1:21 pm |

    Wait. Before the election, according to the Republicans, women were really concerned about the economy.

    Then, after the election, it turned out that married women were concerned about the future of the country, and the rest of us were sluts who cared only about abortion and contraception, which prior to the election, the GOP dismissed as totes unimportant to us, but important to their base somehow.

    Now, it turns out, what we really care about is getting married?

    I’m calling bullshit. Republicans may be concerned about us getting married, because they misunderstand statistics and think that if more of us get married, more of us will vote Republican, but when it comes to what we care about, they need to get their story straight. So to speak.

  11. macavitykitsune
    macavitykitsune November 26, 2012 at 1:40 pm |

    What did I just read.

    1. Lolagirl
      Lolagirl November 26, 2012 at 2:33 pm |

      Epic fail to such an extent that it’s difficult to verbalize just how fucked up it actually is?

      I just, wow, Venker is such a piece of work. I’m unable to come up with anything that isn’t nasty and ad hom to respond to her, she’s just that infuriating in her offensiveness and stupidity.

  12. Miriam
    Miriam November 26, 2012 at 1:41 pm |

    Honestly, I ain’t even mad. Not about the message in the article, anyway.

    If anything, I’m truly astonished by the depths of Fox’s stubbornness and stupidity to continue publishing this dead-horse crap. Do they realize how hilariously out of touch this article is? Do they not understand that this kind of thing only serves to alienate the vast majority of women, further eroding their credibility and, by extension, the credibility of their own political party? Why are they still doing this?! Why do they insist on hanging onto their totally boring and roundly-rejected-by-the-majority social conservatism, preventing us from having real debates about interesting, consequential things that are worth disagreeing about? WHEN DO WE GET TO MOVE ON??! BLARGHLARGHL DOES NOT COMPUTE.

    1. (BFing) Sarah
      (BFing) Sarah November 26, 2012 at 9:48 pm |


      I mean at this point I am just rolling my eyes at Fox. If they keep it up, even my mom will start voting Democrat. I might just have to send her this article–maybe she will read it while taking lunch at her well-paid, supporting-the-household-equally-with-my-dad job?

    2. (BFing) Sarah
      (BFing) Sarah November 26, 2012 at 9:49 pm |


      I mean at this point I am just rolling my eyes at Fox. If they keep it up, even my mom will start voting Democrat. I might just have to send her this article–maybe she will read it while taking lunch at her well-paid, supporting-the-household-equally-with-my-dad job?

  13. rain
    rain November 26, 2012 at 1:57 pm |

    Armed with this new attitude, women pushed men off their pedestal (women had their own pedestal, but feminists convinced them otherwise) and climbed up to take what they were taught to believe was rightfully theirs.

    Now the men have nowhere to go.

    Sure they do. They can climb up and take women’s pedestal. I hear it’s free for the taking.

    What’s that? It’s not really a pedestal? You don’t want it? Well, join the club.

    Or maybe we can just do away with the pedestal business.

    1. AnnieD
      AnnieD November 27, 2012 at 3:58 pm |

      The bit I don’t really get about the pedestal is if both men and women are on pedestals, what is the significance of the pedestal? Elevation vis a vis children, LGBT people or people of colour? Elevation cannot be significant unless something is less elevated.

      1. Alyson
        Alyson November 29, 2012 at 1:35 pm |

        I think it’s supposed to be some bullshit about separate but equal spheres? As in, men are on a pedestal based on their family-supporting and woman-protecting, and women are on one based on their food-cooking and child-bearing, and those two things are EXACTLY EQUAL AND SHOULD NEVER CHANGE. (Ordinarily, I’d go into an explanation about how this is wrong…but it doesn’t seem necessary here.)

    2. Tony
      Tony November 27, 2012 at 5:09 pm |

      This link sums up the issue of ‘the pedestal’ (as it’s usually used, not in the way this bizzare article analogizes) so clearly. Thanks!

  14. jeffliveshere
    jeffliveshere November 26, 2012 at 2:20 pm |

    Out of all the sad-funny things in this piece, this is the saddest/funniest: “It’s in their DNA.” Really? That’s where it is? Clearly we’re dealing with a scientist here.

    1. Lolagirl
      Lolagirl November 26, 2012 at 2:35 pm |

      Yes, along with our drive to own fancy designer handbags and shoes. It’s all in our DNA. Didn’t you know that?


      1. Bagelsan
        Bagelsan November 26, 2012 at 3:34 pm |

        Don’t you have the designer shoe gene? It’s so weird; it’s the only piece of DNA that’s pink and kinked into the shape of a highheel. Crazy.

        1. Lolagirl
          Lolagirl November 26, 2012 at 4:01 pm |

          Don’t get me wrong, I would love to stock my closet with the best Louboutin and Vuitton have to offer if only my bank account would cooperate.

          Better tell the spouse he needs to get back out there and work some more. Mommy needs a new pair of heels!

      2. macavitykitsune
        macavitykitsune November 26, 2012 at 11:33 pm |

        Completely unrelated to any of the things, but I just wanted to express how much I hate wearing high heels. That is all.

        1. Lolagirl
          Lolagirl November 27, 2012 at 8:45 am |

          But, but, but, it’s in your DNA Mac!

          I don’t mind heels so much if I don’t have to actually walk or stand around in them much…

    2. DouglasG
      DouglasG November 26, 2012 at 5:00 pm |

      I SO want to work the DNA line into a parody of “It’s in His Kiss” – but it just won’t quite fit properly. Aaargh!!!

      1. Computer Soldier Porygon
        Computer Soldier Porygon November 27, 2012 at 12:53 pm |

        “He Hit Me (It Felt Like His DNA)”

        1. Bagelsan
          Bagelsan November 27, 2012 at 4:25 pm |

          His DNA, huh? Bow chicka bow bow!

  15. JetGirl
    JetGirl November 26, 2012 at 2:54 pm |

    Well, you know, those uppity women who decide they don’t need a man until they’re in their mid-30s have as much luck getting married as getting killed by a terrorist!
    Ms. Venker — The ’80s called. It wants its sexist argument back!
    –Married at 35

    1. sheriji
      sheriji November 26, 2012 at 8:46 pm |

      The ’80s called. It wants its sexist argument back!


  16. Best of the Rest (November 26th)
    Best of the Rest (November 26th) November 26, 2012 at 2:57 pm |

    […] finally, Feministe points out the irony of a woman making a career out of telling women they must stay home a… including her use of some seriously-distorted research statistics. This line is brilliant so […]

  17. Chris Campbell
    Chris Campbell November 26, 2012 at 2:57 pm |

    Wait, I’m confused. As a man, feminism gives me the ability to have sex at “hello” and avoid any responsibility, but I’m supposed to be pissed off at that? I don’t understand.

    Perhaps because first, I’ve never had sex at “hello” (and would not care to) nor do I think that what anyone else does has enything to do with my own sense of responsibility to others.

    The only notable quality in this article is the writer’s ability to pack so much wrong into so little space.

    1. Bagelsan
      Bagelsan November 26, 2012 at 3:35 pm |

      Aw geez, you went and said “hello.” Now we all gotta sex you up. Feminist rules. :(

      1. Chris Campbell
        Chris Campbell November 26, 2012 at 4:43 pm |

        Well, that is quite a . . . my goodness, look at the time, really must be going . . . have to do a . . . thing at . . . the place . . . perhaps another time . . . do you have my number? . . . no . . . well, how about that? . . . cheers!

        1. friday jones
          friday jones November 30, 2012 at 10:56 pm |

          I believe the correct response would be to say “homina-homina-homina” like Jacky Gleason playing a gobsmacked Ralph Kramden.

          You can look up all my outdated references on the intertubes!

  18. Ashley
    Ashley November 26, 2012 at 3:05 pm |

    Thank you for this post. “Out of touch” is the perfect idea here. I read the article quoted on another blog and was floored by the interpretations of the research and the perception that follows.

  19. Snow
    Snow November 26, 2012 at 4:19 pm |

    I am deeply suspicious that the “subculture of men who’ve told [Venker], in no uncertain terms, that they’re never getting married” because “women aren’t women anymore” is, in fact, the MRA subculture.

    And I’m sure they’re just eating it up that Venker is trumpeting their weird, messed-up views as How All Men Think™.


    1. umami
      umami November 26, 2012 at 5:34 pm |

      That’s what I thought too.

      I’m sure they’ll use this to validate themselves. Most of them apparently genuinely believe that their weirdness is How All Men Think. All the other men who say they don’t think that are just lying to get sex, or something. It’s absolutely fascinating, if you’re into travelling down other people’s mental rabbit holes.

      I don’t understand how somebody, let alone a divorced female journalist who mashes multiple MRA rage buttons just by existing, could talk to some MRAs and still write a column about them as if they’re in any way representative of men as a whole, but then I don’t anything about the thought processes of the mind which producedthis column.

  20. Alara Rogers
    Alara Rogers November 26, 2012 at 4:25 pm |

    So wait a minute.

    Let’s say I want to spend my life with a person who is my equal, who stands behind me and helps me when I need help, who I can help when he needs it, who I can share my triumphs and my burdens with. And let’s say that because I am straight (I’m not, actually, but none of the rest of this is true either), I need this person to be a man. And let us say that because men are sexist pigs who need to be in charge, I cannot have this, because no men would be willing to tie their lives and fortunes to me if they cannot dominate me.

    Why is the solution to this problem supposed to be to give up what I actually want, which is an equal who loves me and who I can love, in favor of a sham that pretends to be what I want but in fact destroys my humanity?

    I mean, this woman’s basic data is wrong. But suppose it was right. Suppose that women want companionate loving marriage with an equal and men want a slave. How does this suggest that women should settle for being slaves, rather than women should settle for being alone? How is being someone’s unpaid, unrespected servant better than being lonely?

    Frankly, if all women want to love and be loved by someone who respects them and treats them as an equal, and if all women refuse to settle for anything less, then any man who wants to get married will have to marry an equal he respects. Advising women to settle for less than equality so that they can get married is like advising people to marry photo standees of the person they love, rather than getting an actual person to agree to marry them. It’s about name over substance. And just like, if you marry a photo standee then you’re not free to marry a real person, if you marry a person who treats you as a servant than you’re not free to marry a person who treats you as an equal.

    So if you have a very dark and ugly view of human men, and you think they can never change, I can see believing that there is no way to marry a man who will actually treat you as an equal. What I can’t see is concluding from this that marriage has any value. If men are worthless shits who will never love you if they have to treat you as a human being, why treat them as if they have any worth? Why consider it valuable to be loved by a person if that love comes with the need to behave as if you are inferior to that person?

    If men are really that awful and can never change, then women should be legally binding themselves to other women, in legally recognized sisterhood relationships that are not sexual but are about raising a family and running a household together, and using men for sex and babies. It would be sad to never be able to experience heterosexual love with a person who can actually treat you as a person, but it would be less soul-destroying than loving someone who thinks they are superior to you and have the right to dominate you. Best to raise your family in platonic love with a person who can actually care about you, and fuck people who you don’t care about, because they’ll never care about you.

    Or, you could believe that men could actually change, and that it is possible to have a husband who loves you *and* considers you his equal, and you could refuse to settle for less. And if you believe that men are human, and are not worthless, and are capable of genuinely loving an equal, then you are right to hold out for a man who feels that way. And if every woman who wanted this did, in fact, hold out, then men who want to get married would learn to treat women with respect. And *all the evidence we have* suggests that this is exactly what happens. Men who expect women to be their equals, who are comfortable with women outearning them, who want their wives to be strong and to be able to take care of *them* if they need it, are much more common than they used to be.

    If you want to be the submissive in a 24/7 D/s M/f relationship and operate without safewords, fine. That’s your kink and it’s ok. I’m not going to tell you you can’t declare yourself your husband’s legally owned slave girl if that’s what turns you on. But you have no right to try to tell me I have to live that way too. And you have no right to try to twist data and logic around to try to suggest that all women should live that way, even if they don’t want to, because it’s the best they can hope for.

    1. tinyorc
      tinyorc November 26, 2012 at 6:04 pm |


      It seems like Venker’s worldview is based around the idea that marriage is the single most important goal for everyone on the planet. So she’s dangling this carrot of “But if you don’t act like a good little housewife you’ll never get MAAAARRRRRIED!!!” as though it’s the ultimate wake-up call for all the nasty feminists, who will immediately abandon their all their lofty notions of independence once they realise it’s not going to bag them a man. The idea that many women would happily stay single forever than rather than marry a misogynist ass and then spend then spend the rest of her life cooking and cleaning for him… it’s obviously just completely beyond her extremely blinkered view of reality.

    2. GaryW
      GaryW November 26, 2012 at 6:42 pm |

      As someone who is happily married to a Photo Standee, I resent those jibes!

      I can’t see how the “subculture she accidentally stumbled across” (read here: MRA) choosing not to get married could possibly be a bad thing though.

      Is her argument that these men are particularly deserving of marriage? That women owe it to these men to change become more ‘the right kind of woman’ and thus marriage-material?

      If this subculture has looked around and decided that they don’t want to get married…that’s kind of awesome, they would be toxic and horrible partners. Next, let’s get them to stop blogging!

      1. Kxx
        Kxx November 27, 2012 at 5:10 am |

        Is her argument that these men are particularly deserving of marriage? That women owe it to these men to change become more ‘the right kind of woman’ and thus marriage-material?

        Well if course. Every man is entitled to a woman that fits his exact list of specifications, but women had better not get the idea that they can expect anything in return. That would just make them selfish, picky bitches.

        What do they mean that a relationship where they’re expected to follow men around and clean up after them, all the while making sure they don’t accidentally say something too clever (because that would be emasculating!) isn’t good enough? Pah.

        Seriously, this shit reminds me of someone I used to know (who strangely enough, I now go out of my way to avoid) who spent a significant amount of time complaining that no woman would go out with him. And of course, it was nothing to do with him. No, the women were all selfish, frigid bitches (and possibly lesbians) who would only date rich men. Or something. Then he went on a date with a woman and afterwards complained that she spent time talking about her job and hobbies and you know, life, like you do on a date, instead of spending the entire evening swooning over his awesome masculinity. I bet he’d fit into this category quite well.

  21. Lolagirl
    Lolagirl November 26, 2012 at 5:45 pm |

    In all seriousness, it’s articles like this that make me understand why so many feminists end up hating on SAHMs. Because the more vocal proponents of SAHing seem to always be of the throwback to the ’50s, offensive variety like Venker and Schlafly. I kind of hate me now, too, even though I disagree with every single thing Venker has to say.

    1. Past my expiration date
      Past my expiration date November 26, 2012 at 6:50 pm |

      I don’t hate you. (In case you were worried.)

      1. Lolagirl
        Lolagirl November 27, 2012 at 12:57 pm |

        Thanks, PMED!

    2. (BFing) Sarah
      (BFing) Sarah November 26, 2012 at 10:00 pm |

      I’m with you, Lolagirl! I used to practice law and I quit to stay home for awhile (for a variety of reasons including a terrible, awful, life-altering pregnancy). Now I work part-time doing non-law stuff, and I like it, but articles like this make me want to slap myself. Seriously, I feel so guilty and self-hating after reading them! Reading stuff like this makes me want to go back to work as a lawyer full-time and also attend medical school at night so that I can become a doctor-lawyer and just run around pushing men off of their pedestals and emasculating them with all of my money and power. BRUWAHAHAHAHAAHAHA!!! TAKE THAT MENZ!! I WILL NEVER SUBMIT TO YOU!! NEEEEEEEEEEVEEER! Its usually my partner who suffers after I read lovely anti-feminist articles like this, too. So I’ll have to tell Mr. BFing Sarah that he has Suzanne to blame for my man-hating behavior tonight. Good job, Suzanne! Way to subject men to *more* suffering! [sheds silent tear]

      1. Lolagirl
        Lolagirl November 27, 2012 at 1:08 pm |

        I totally hear you Sarah! I also left the lawyering to be home with the kids full time after they were born. I don’t actually regret that decision, my job (insurance defense, what fun!) was already making me a stressed out, miserable person before the kids ever came along. And I quickly realized that trying to continue working and parenting infant twins was just not going to happen without me tearing myself into pieces.

        But it’s become more apparent to me over the last few years that I will never make either side of the SAH/WOH divide happy. I didn’t become a SAHM to fulfill my feminine destiny or to embrace traditional gender roles, but I also didn’t work to blaze new trails or to find personal fulfillment either. In the end, I went with the least crappy of two crappy choices, something about which I’m sure Venker has not one iota of a clue.

        Maybe the best revenge for me will come in raising four feminist kids who refuse to fall for Venker’s false paradigms of manly manliness.

  22. megara
    megara November 26, 2012 at 6:00 pm |

    Dear Suzanne,

    I grew up in the midwest as a child of the 1980s. My parents divorce and re-married. I can tell you from experience that having four parents who loved me and live with partners that made them happy was definitely the worst thing ever. On top of that, all four of them took part in parenting and worked outside the home. I was definitely inundated with the wrong messages about the strong differences between men and women.

    All my life I have been a person who is able to see to the truth of things. The real truth. And I believe when someone is in need of that truth, that it’s my job to make sure they hear it. That’s why I’ve put tens of thousands of hours into thinking about gender and relationships.

    Susan–I am concerned about your feminity. Do you vociferously assert your opinions? Are you entrepreneurial? Do you try to fix people’s problems for them? Do you travel for work instead of staying home with your children? Do you think the public should listen to what you have to say? Have you been divorced in the past? Are you trying to speak for men?

    If you answered yes to any of these questions, maybe you should read my book on how to keep a husband.

    1. sheriji
      sheriji November 26, 2012 at 8:48 pm |

      The ’80s called. It wants its sexist argument back!


  23. Past my expiration date
    Past my expiration date November 26, 2012 at 7:04 pm |

    Women aren’t women anymore.

    So wait. I’m confused. I’m a woman, therefore I’m not a woman? Help, please!

    1. Marni
      Marni November 28, 2012 at 9:20 pm |

      It’s quite clear. When woman = house slave, then ‘women’ who won’t be house slaves are not being women any more. You see, there is NO WORD in their vocabulary for a human being who is not A Proper Man. It’s like speaking a language you don’t know well and hand waving your way past the tricky words.

  24. Nea
    Nea November 26, 2012 at 8:55 pm |

    When I read Venker’s article, I did not get the impression that she was saying that women shouldn’t pursue careers (in fact woman pursuing careers and exceling in the workforce is some of the only good fruit from the feminist movement). That’s the first mistake of the rebuttal at hand. The problem isn’t whether women are or aren’t climbing corporate ladders or being stay-at-home moms. Really, the problem is woman not holding men accountable for their actions in an honorble way. Venker is right, woman are angry and defensive. This article proves that. And you have proven that Jill. According to your article you have no idea what true womanhood is, the kind that brings positive and life-altering changes to society and culture.

    *And now the on-slaught of angry woman comments shall be heaped upon my head by every angry feminist out there.*

    Have a good day ladies.

    1. (BFing)Sarah
      (BFing)Sarah November 26, 2012 at 10:11 pm |

      I think you forgot to capitalize “True Womanhood”…hasn’t that been trademarked?

    2. Kayay
      Kayay November 26, 2012 at 11:08 pm |

      We are NOT angry and defensive! RAAR

    3. RoryBorealis
      RoryBorealis November 26, 2012 at 11:25 pm |

      I <3 Poe's Law!

    4. pheenobarbidoll
      pheenobarbidoll November 26, 2012 at 11:26 pm |

      *And now the on-slaught of angry woman comments shall be heaped upon my head by every angry feminist out there.*

      Defensive much?


    5. EG
      EG November 26, 2012 at 11:37 pm |

      Venker is right, woman are angry and defensive.

      I can’t imagine why.

    6. shfree
      shfree November 27, 2012 at 1:08 am |

      Tee hee. They are so funny when they toss in something to get us all het up then assume that every woman under the sun is going to have a hissyfit. I, however, think they are ADORABLE and want to give them pinches on the cheek, especially for the “ladies” bit. So polite.

    7. EG
      EG November 27, 2012 at 1:16 am |

      And you have proven that Jill. According to your article you have no idea what true womanhood

      Nea’s right! I got back from taking my womanhood to be appraised, and it turns out that it’s a fake! I should’ve known better than to buy my womanhood from a street vender, I guess. Next time I’ll save up so I can go to Bergdorf’s. Even if it takes years.

    8. Chataya
      Chataya November 27, 2012 at 9:49 am |

      I am a perfect fucking flower of womanhood, asshole.

    9. Alara Rogers
      Alara Rogers November 27, 2012 at 10:11 am |

      If the problem was that women are not holding men accountable for their actions in an honorable way, why would she say “women aren’t women” or “men have nowhere to go”? When people don’t hold me accountable for my actions, I can go anywhere I damn well want, because I’m not accountable. And women only have the power to hold men accountable for their actions to the degree that women have power at all; in the idyllic past when men were men and women were personal slaves who lost all control over their own finances once they got married, women who “held men accountable” for actions like cheating on them, drinking their entire paychecks away, or beating them up, ended up in dire poverty because men were men and protected and provided for their helpless feminine women, except when they didn’t, which meant that the helpless feminine women starved to death.

      I’m not angry that men think they can get laid without getting married. Good for them! I got laid without getting married, and I eventually got married for health insurance because I don’t actually believe in marriage as an institution but health insurance depends on it, in the US. I’m angry that there are men who think that they are such amazing prizes that I should have a sad that I can’t marry them because I am too much of my own person to be their doormat. And I am very, very angry that there are women who actually get print who think that other women, including me, should sacrifice our independence, our strength and our ability to provide for ourselves, all for the chimera of “love” from a person who wants a slave, not a lover.

      Men who will not marry a woman if she is insufficiently submissive to them do not deserve to get married. Men who will not love a woman if she is not their doormat do not truly offer love and should not be loved by women. Only men who genuinely respect and honor their lovers should have lovers; only men who genuinely respect and honor their spouses should have spouses. And no one, man or woman, deserves to feel like their ability to find love is dependent on their ability to be enslaved. If MRAs don’t want to get married because they feel like equal, companionate marriage is equivalent to male slavery to women, well, I think they are idiots, but I respect their desire not to marry, and I appreciate it, because if they did get married they would try to psychologically break their wives down and enslave them, and it’s just better if they don’t even try.

      Marriage is, historically, an abomination. It has been a system for enslaving and abusing women and calling it love. I have not given up on the concept that heterosexual men are genuinely capable of respect for the women they love, and I don’t have any objection to the notion that equals who are lovers can share their lives together. But marriage is only that if that’s what you make it, and the vision of marriage that Venker presents is actively harmful and dangerous to women… because you cannot find true love with someone who does not respect you, no matter how much he claims he does and he’s just trying to take care of you because that’s the manly man thing to do.

    10. mxe354
      mxe354 November 29, 2012 at 9:27 pm |

      Venker is right, woman are angry and defensive.

      Of course. It’s not like I ever have the right to be angry or defensive. After all, I’m not a man.

  25. Archie
    Archie November 26, 2012 at 11:47 pm |

    Venker, you are ridiculous and deserve scorn. Have enjoyed reading this entry and humorous (and serious) comments. Also I have learned that wearing blue and white striped shirts may cause people to think that I’m a douche. I will now donate my version to Goodwill in order to preserve self esteem.

    1. tomek
      tomek November 27, 2012 at 12:03 am |

      yes i am interest to know why shirt is considered bad. i like shirt like that

    2. Bagelsan
      Bagelsan November 27, 2012 at 12:06 am |

      Nice try, but we already know you’re a douche because of how you string Betty and Veronica along!

  26. Henry
    Henry November 27, 2012 at 3:41 am |

    So her entire point is based on the difference between men and women circling a 5 or 4 on a survey. Maybe all this says is women like the number 5 slightly more than men. I prefer 4’s because while lower in value than 5’s, they can be divided easily, they also look nicer when circled.

    Either that or journalists should stick to asking questions of the study authors and other scientists and leave the guesswork at the meaning of the stats to people who actually do it for a living.

  27. Fox News and “The War on Men” « Unladylike Musings

    […] Women need to stay home and serve men, says woman who makes a career out of telling other women not … (Feministe) […]

  28. A Feminism Laugh « An Open-Minded Journey
    A Feminism Laugh « An Open-Minded Journey November 27, 2012 at 11:43 am |

    […] A Feminism Laugh […]

  29. alex
    alex November 27, 2012 at 1:46 pm |

    “more people in the workforce does men that men will have to work harder to secure the same positions …” should be “more people in the workforce does MEAN that men …”

    Otherwise, <3 <3 <3

  30. Undead Sexist Cliche: Once again, a right-winger tells us how feminism makes women suffer | Fraser Sherman's Blog

    […] on Fox News’ website, Suzanne Venker discusses how women need to surrender to “their femininity” to get married, because “Men […]

  31. Kiddalee
    Kiddalee November 28, 2012 at 11:55 pm |

    “… I’ve spoken with hundreds, if not thousands, of men and women. And in doing so, I’ve accidentally stumbled upon a subculture of men who’ve told me, in no uncertain terms, that they’re never getting married. When I ask them why, the answer is always the same.

    Women aren’t women anymore.”

    If sexist men don’t want to get married anymore, it’s win-win. They’ll create fewer long-term abuse cases than before. As for the women, we’ll just have to find men who see us as human beings.

  32. marc sobel
    marc sobel November 29, 2012 at 8:05 pm |

    As I understand the conservative position on marriage, Suzanne who calls herself Venker, is living in sin with someone since she is married to someone. She admits to having had children with this other man. She excuses this by having gone through a so called “divorce” which is not a sacrament God recognizes. I would not recommend someone taking advice from her about marriage.

  33. Notable News: Week of November 24-30, 2012 « unchained faith

    […] A woman who makes her living as an anti-feminist.  How original.  I’m glad I have Suzanne Venker to tell me that I was taught by “feminists” to hate men.  It’s refreshing to know that someone else understands my childhood better than I do. […]

  34. David G
    David G November 30, 2012 at 5:53 pm |

    This article is very important. I am a man and I definetly do not believe that women are ruining marriages. I feel like marriage, like other social institutions, is a way to keep people organized and in a definite category. Me and my girlfriend watched this documentary last night called Sexy Baby and I couldn’t help but laugh when I saw a woman who took pole-dancing lessons, post a video of her dancing on YouTube. It was insane to me. I believe she’s allowed to do what she wants to do, but it just proves that institutions can kind of control us. Just like there used to be pressure for women to marry and have children, now, we see that women are pressured to upload attractive pictures of themselves online, in order to gain popularity.

  35. xZaebos
    xZaebos December 4, 2012 at 9:27 am |

    “Believe it or not, modern women want to get married. Trouble is, men don’t.”

    Who gives a fuck? :D

  36. Women and staying home… | Feminism is For Everyone

    […]… Like this:LikeBe the first to like this. This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. ← Gender: a Thing of the Past? […]

  37. Shayne
    Shayne December 10, 2012 at 9:17 pm |

    Does her making a career out of telling other women to not have careers seem eerily reminiscent of Serena Joy to anyone else?

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