Several women of my generation, whom I admire for intelligence, independence and insight, have discussed with me how they view male/female relationships. They think they have to manipulate a man to get and keep him. Yes, they are women of my generation, but I am rather stunned when it comes from younger women who appear forthright and comfortable in their own skin.

The maneuvering is often to avoid issues that women fear might make men uneasy, like announcing your own needs and wants. Another is, even if she solves her own problems, making the man she aims for think that he solved her problem and suggesting that he is masterful and brilliant. She might try to make him feel that she is needy and dependent on his enormous abilities, and that she is much less informed about worldly matters.

What a burden to have to plan each day filled with pretense, constant editing of thoughts and creating outright lies. It is great to tell a man he is a terrific person and mean it – not as a ploy to get what you want. I would imagine that such behavior is addictive to an insecure man. The problem is that the deceit can never end. If the perpetrator of the game stops she may fear that her man will seek the “unconditional adoration” from someone else – many times that is exactly what happens.

The addiction to adoration is no different, to me, than any other addiction. Dealing with unending deceptions is that it has to be dredged up on a daily basis and near impossible to keep up indefinitely. Sadly, many times tying the knot will give a woman a rest from such tension, but it can be misinterpreted as a loss of interest.

It is best to be honest up front and to be yourself and not planting a false face all the time. Deserving compliments are very important. Deception is fatiguing. 

Copyright, Frances Metzman, Progress in Male/Female Relationships, 2018

So, About Writing?

I came from being a sculptor and moving on to becoming a writer about 30 years ago. How did that happen? I always loved the arts, and had moderate success as a sculptor. The question was: if I stayed in the art world I could make a bigger impact. But gnawing at the back of my head was something that had always intrigued me – being an author. Could I make the transition from creating images with my hands to making images with words?

How does this transition come about? What I had learned at Moore College of Art as a sculpture major was that one needs discipline and structure before becoming an artist. Thirty percent talent and seventy percent work. It was a life-changing attitude learning to build a foundation in any area of endeavor. So much had to be learned, and so I applied this background to my mission to become a writer. I dedicated myself to learning the importance of techniques of writing before putting a word to a blank page. It wasn’t easy. For now, suffice it to say, one has to learn the basic elements that I absorbed before striking out on the vast road to learning my new craft.

I have been in many “discussions” about precepts of structure, but I will swear by them. It is argued that if one is passionate about writing the story will come and flow. Not really. Framed within the discipline of writing is the story told that a reader can grasp and hold on to. It is imperative to keep the reader entranced. Although it is a time to give respite to your brain and escape life’s annoying issues, it must impart deeper meaning.

I know there is applause for stories that we can’t understand but to my way of thinking, why waste my time or yours reading it? I feel strongly that it is not fair to ask someone to read something so private no one gets it, and then call it brilliant – just because it is unintelligible. The story must resonate for the reader to make it worth the effort and time it takes to read it. In kindness, as authors we must share the ups and downs that everyone encounters. There must be insights to help get through the vagaries of life.

What inspired me to write? Well, let’s leave that for the next essay.