Does competence make you nervous?

Recently my husband was espousing my competence (thank you, Hon), and a young woman asked him “Does that make you feel like less of a man or anything?” Which I take to be another way of asking “Will men like me if I am too competent?”

Wow, are young women still asking that question?!?

Allow me to answer it for you:

Some men won’t like you, some men will.  Duh.

When I was, shall we say, “looking for a man” (uggh, that sounds so bad), sure I met a lot of men who wanted to play the knight in shining armor opposite some chick’s damsel in distress.  They were not the least bit interested in me when I told them that I can take care of myself, don’t need saving, and even carry most of the heavy objects in my life by myself.  They were not interested in me – but nor was I in them.

Do I care if someone who I am not attracted to is not attracted to me?  No.  Actually, it’s better if he is not.

Young, competent women, listen to this:

Yes, you want to “find a man” (I know, I’m being heterosexist here, replace it with “woman” if you want – but I’m not sure that quite the same stereotypical worries figure in there…).  There’s really nothing wrong with that.  Most people do want a life partner, it’s nothing to be ashamed of.  But you don’t have to be attractive to all men…  nor to most men…  not even to a lot of men to find yourself a man.  There are men out there who will like you for the competent woman you are.  For every man who finds you interesting and attractive, there may be twenty, or fifty, or a hundred men who find you difficult/unattractive/weird/scary/whatever – who cares about them?  They are not the men you want.

The hard part may be finding a man who appreciates your competence and has his own to match it.  If you don’t want to be the one handling everything, if you want someone equal, you may find that you have to weed through some guys who think “cool, she can take care of everything – she’s tough.  I’ll just cruise along looking pretty.”

If you find someone else who is able to do things, handle things, accomplish things, and doesn’t mind you doing the same…  hopefully your abilities compliment each other nicely, and between the two of you, you will be able to tackle most anything.

Of course, occasionally you will  have to hire a professional.


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