On When He Takes Your Femininity Away

This one is a weird topic but we were discussing this subject yesterday and it came up about my friend Josh who I knew a senior year in college. We liked each other, and hung out all the time but it was always very weird between us. I was never sure if he liked me in that way or even if I wanted to kiss him or not. We just hung out all the time and touched each other a lot and flirted but never kissed. Then we went on holiday that summer after graduation in Asia. And we were walking in downtown Hanoi and it was night and a group of young men were acting a little bit….suspicious and I was a little bit scared. So I grabbed hold of Josh’s hand and he looked down at me (he’s six two and I am five four) and he said “if anything happens you’re gonna have to protect me because I am white.” It was the most startling thing I had ever heard someone say. And it stuck in my head even now.

I did understand what he meant in a way because I am Asian and he is not and these guys were Asian. But at the same time, I felt like it shouldn’t matter that I am Asian or Latina or White or Black. I am still the girl and he is still the guy and it is his role or job to protect me. Not the other way around.

I confessed to my friends yesterday that that is the moment when I realized that Josh and I were not destined to be lovers. And I felt guilty about it and could not understand why I felt the way I came to feel about him. And one of the girls explained that it was because he had “taken your femininity away.” And she argued, and I agree, that a woman’s femininity – and the man’s ability to make her feel like a woman- are key to the success of the relationship.

So then of course comes this post and me trying to generalize this notion of how stolen femininity can destroy a marital bond. I am not sure how it would work in marriage to tell you the truth but I am sure it happens where a man makes his wife feel less like a woman, in other words he “takes her femininity away” and she no longer feels attracted to him and the marriage dies.

Is this biological? Why is feeling like a woman next to your man such an important emotion and instinct? What is it that makes us need and want a man who not only wants to protect us, but does and is proud to do so rather than a man who…does not?

Josh and I are still friends. But he never became my boyfriend and I think this is because of what he said in Hanoi.

What about you? Are you married or were you married to someone who takes or took your femininity away with idle words or insensitive deeds? How did you deal with it? Share your story in the comments section below. I would like to hear from you on this because maybe I was just hypersensitive. Maybe I was wrong to feel the way I feel about what Josh said.