Water seeks its own level

Posted on August 16, 2011 by


One of the really fascinating things about this site is that there are so many people here in complementarian marriages, but the exact form our marriages take varies rather widely. I’ve spent the morning ruminating on this, and I’ve narrowed it down to three basic types:

The Egalitarian

Egalitarian marriages tend matriarchal, but there are some in which the husband leads, if ever-so-subtly. These marriages tend to be inhabited by the Very Polite and Uptight and they have constructed elaborate rules and vocabularies so that the husband can have the final say while the wife can pretend that they simply agree on everything. It is fascinating to watch them split hairs, dwell on euphemistic-precision, and follow argument-patterns exactly.

It is highly inefficient, but appears to suite them well as everyone saves face. Most people observing such couples are under the impression that the wife leads and are repeatedly surprised when the husband gets his way, time and time again.

The women tend to dominate psychologically in the bedroom, and focus quite a bit on technique and performance. The women are slightly dominating and the men are slightly wimpy, but everyone is generally “getting some” and happy enough with the end result. Other complementarians tease egalitarian-types relentlessly, but they are too snobby to care.

They tend to be religious liberals and the women’s dress tends androgynous or stylish.

The Mild

Everyone likes the mild marriages because everyone seems so… mild. Mild people are pleasant people, so it makes sense that joining them together in one marriage would double the pleasantness. It’s a veritable orgy of mildness.

The spouses are more relaxed and easy-going than in the other marriages, but they also tend to have a narrower emotional spectrum. They enjoy sex but don’t obsess over it, they disagree but rarely argue, the husband clearly leads but he tries to bend as far in his wife’s direction as possible.

She thinks he’s great, he thinks she’s great, everyone’s great, everyone’s happy, no complaints. These couples are cute but rather boring, and prone to romanticism. Sometimes they’re so sweet that they make your teeth hurt, and when they erupt into yet another chorus of, “Oh, my husband is so great! Everything is so great! Life is great! Hallelujah! Would you like a cupcake? How about a hug?” you look around for an OFF switch. There’s only so much mildness and well-meaning lectures one person can take.

They tend to be more fundamentalist in their religion and the women are generally dressed in a modest, feminine manner, with a hint of casualness. The men describe their women as “good wives” and the women describe their men as “good husbands”.

The Tyrant

These are the least popular marriages; the marriages everyone loves to hate. Everyone rails against these marriages, and they’re held up as a “prime example of what feminism was fighting against”. The women are downtrodden, the men are authoritarian, and everyone seems to be miserable.

Except that they’re not necessarily miserable, and the women in these marriages generally prefer this structure to any other. They complain because such women tend to complain; they’re perfectionists and are rarely satisfied by anything. In fact, they tend to choose men who are good at ignoring their complaints so that they can complain freely without a guilty conscience. Sometimes the complaints are actually mild compliments (the female version of a neg), as the women note the negative aspect of a positive trait.

Sometimes the men make the mistake of “softening up” a bit, and their wives promptly eat them alive (being even more ferocious and tyrannical than their husbands), so they make a quick retreat back to their safe, authoritarian position. The women are female chauvinist pigs, tomboys, and cool intellectuals. Their religiosity tends scholastic.

“You are such an asshole,” is this type’s mating call, and the women tend to have male sexual habits including the typical emotional-detachment and territorialism due to their slightly-elevated testosterone-levels. They have little patience with foreplay and romance, and just want to “get down to business”. They like spankings and other naughtiness, and find compliments tiresome.

The women dress a bit sexily and are slightly preoccupied with their appearance (due to their own tendency toward visual-stimulation), and many have slightly shady pasts and are a bit wild. The men describe their wives as “frisky” or “challenging”, while the women describe their men as “hard but trustworthy” or “strict but fair”.

Posted in: Relationships