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Feminism: A hierarchy of entitlement

In 1963 Betty Friedan started “second wave feminism” by identifying the woes of women as “The problem with no name.” The reason it had no name is because it wasn’t really a problem. Well, okay, it’s a problem for people who don’t have actual problems.

Twenty years earlier, Abraham Maslow developed his Hierarchy of Needs theory which provided a ranking system placing types of human development on a pyramidal scale. The base of the pyramid consists of survival or physiological needs which must be met before the next level, safety, can be sought and so on up through the progressive levels that follow; love/belonging, esteem, self-actualization, and self-transcendence at the apex.

Betty had a degree in psychology but it seems she missed the lectures on Maslow. Either that, or she was unable to grasp the concepts because he avoided “crippled, stunted, immature, and unhealthy specimens” like her when he chose subjects to construct his theory.

Here is a graphic of Maslow’s hierarchy to explain what sorts of problems normal humans face.

maslows-hierarchy

This chart is not an escalator that only moves in one direction. A person might find themselves, as we do, thinking they have achieved love and belonging only to find themselves looking for food and shelter the next day… because their wife “left” them by making them move out, and filed for child support and alimony where possible.

A person might be about to realize their life’s ambition then find themselves suddenly driven off the road in a random car accident, trapped in a car under water and struggling in the red zone. They might be about to get a promotion at work then suddenly find themselves in jail on a trumped up accusation of a felony just praying they can prove their innocence. Shit happens to all of us and we can only choose what path we take get back on the ladder. The chart is a handy way to assess where we are at and try to focus on reaching the next level up.

In The Feminine Mystique Betty Friedan’s problem is that, after providing her with the first four levels in the pyramid, men hadn’t given her the fifth.

Second wave feminism was kick-started on the premise that housewives who had safety, security, resources, family, health, sexual intimacy (if they wanted it), confidence in their bundt cake baking skills and interior decorating choices, and peer respect from the PTA committee, were horrendously lacking that top tier on the hierarchy of needs called “Self Actualization.” Betty proposed this callous lack of concern for women’s self-expression meant oppression from the evil patriarchy. She was incapable of concerning herself with the fact that most men function below her purple world because they are busy paving the way for her to sit back and worry about such fuckery.

The aching need for self-actualization, for that guru moment in which you come to terms with your own battle between ego and the world around you, of being recognized as a person of worth and significance in a world of meaning, of feeling capable of dealing with a spilled cappuccino that ruined your designer dress because when you tweeted it all your facebook friends simultaneously told you that you still look stunning in brown… doesn’t mean you are oppressed. It means you’re spoiled.

This is not to say I don’t feel Betty’s pain, it’s just to say “fuck your pain, you narcissistic twat!”

And I’m not just talking to Betty, may she finally rest in peace.

Feminists, when entering a discussion or debate, need to look at the level of need their opponent might be addressing. For Friedan, she was bemoaning a lack of fulfilment while her husband was busy paying her bills. For Friedan, she was mourning the psychology degree that she didn’t make use of while writing for most of the major women’s magazines that existed at the time and pursuing her political goals under her maiden name.1 While Betty’s self-expression was used to decry her lack of self-expression she never stopped to ask what more her husband was getting out of his day. They got divorced.

So that’s a summary of the fraud of Betty Friedan. But it doesn’t mean that the women she purported to speak for were also living a wild, and wonderful life of free expression, it only explains that the woman credited with initiating the second wave of feminism was a complete cunt.

A lot of feminists feel the same way about Betty. One of the feminist criticisms of The Feminine Mystique is that it only dealt with the problems of middle class white women. It’s true. That being said, they still use it as a staple text in Women’s Studies. Choose your degrees carefully.

While regular people worry about banking fraud, global economic collapse, the military industrial complex, over population, and the privatization of prisons, feminists are campaigning to get Jane Austen on a ten pound British note, bikini models off page three of the newspaper, and worrying about how to re-brand feminism so more women will like them again.

A twitter trend called #solidarityisforwhitewomen opened up a potential dialogue with mainstream feminism recently that doesn’t take the issue far enough. It’s time for feminists to stop comparing just women’s “problems” with other women’s problems and start comparing them with the problems of men. The next hashtag should be #allfeministsareentitledbitches

While feminists declare sexism against women by men makes the female life miserable, studies show that sexism is subjective. It’s only bad when it doesn’t feed a woman’s sense of entitlement. In a study called The Allure of Sexism: Psychological Entitlement Fosters Women’s Endorsement of Benevolent Sexism Over Time, 2 it was found that women themselves are quite content to cultivate a narcissistic environment which treats women as superior and caters to their needs.

Betty Friedan set the bar for entitlement and third wave feminism has not sought to reconcile the disparity in the hierarchical need concerns of women vs men. Betty was right about one thing: there are a lot of bored housewives who didn’t decide how to fix their own toilet, learn how to drywall the addition they want, or write a best selling romance novel based on all their repressed desires. It’s indisputable that many women wish to have a fulfilling career but what women really want is to know that their career is optional. It’s so much more fun when you choose to do something instead of doing it because you have to meet a need at the bottom of the triangle.

While some women are homeless, men make up 75-80% of that demographic. If you want to know which gender has a “problem with no name” ask which gender is killing themselves. That’s a good indication of who is lower on the pyramid of needs. Answer: It’s not women.

You can use Maslow’s hierarchy to understand many arguments in life that pass your way and leave you thinking “what the fuck just happened?” In a personal relationship, check to make sure your partner is meeting you on the same level of need.

If you are asking how to pay the bills this month and your partner is more concerned with why s/he doesn’t feel loved you’ve got a Maslow problem. If you are asking how you are going to drive to work without falling asleep at the wheel and your partner is complaining that s/he feels unappreciated, you’ve got a Maslow problem. If you’re working every day at a job that is slowly killing your body, mind, and soul and your partner is complaining that they want a new sofa, you’ve got a Maslow problem.

I’m all for self-actualization. If you can do it: great. I’m happy for those that have the time and comfort to indulge their inner wish fulfilment. What I won’t do is feel sorry for pansy ass feminists and fuel a system that funds their narcissistic agendas while the rest of us go about wearing the work boots that put them in a position to fret about the meaning of life.

The modern world seems doomed to pander to self-indulgent cretins but it doesn’t have to be that way. There is a growing sense of social unrest and a lot of self-interest groups are busy pointing at each other. Oppression can continue for a long time but it runs afoul when those who support it have nothing left to lose by fighting. That’s where the majority of men are at.

Tyranny requires the co-operation of the masses. Don’t co-operate.

1. http://www.amazon.ca/Betty-Friedan-Making-Feminine-Mystique/dp/1558492763
2. For more info see http://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-2470085/Women-fine-sexism-long-benefits-scientists-reveal.html and http://gynocentrism.com/2013/10/23/the-allure-of-chivalry/

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  • John Narayan

    Blog gold!

    • Blacque

      Like Barbarossa so clearly stated. “Stop paying for women,” Simply stop. Providing your time, your effort, your money to a person woman or not who has no obligation or moral consideration to repay you in any way is simply foolish.

    • Bewildered

      Clarity of vision+lucidity + coherence+ ….. = Diana Davison

  • markis1

    wish i could upvote this :)

    • http://www.deanesmay.com Dean Esmay

      A good way to do that is to Tweet it, Facebook it, etc. :-)

  • Stu

    Yes, I’ve used the Maslow’s window to explain the increasing problem of women focusing on smaller and more trivial, or non-existent problems. The bottom line is, if somebody is complaining about piss arse bullshit like, the male gaze, being ignored (usually because you’re being a pig) and claiming that people saying things that hurt their feelings or that they disagree with, it is because they have no REAL problems to contend with, and they have been made so weak and pathetic by having their every need catered to and taken care of, that they have nothing else to do except navel gaze and focus on things that would not even register at all with anybody that had any actual pressing concerns to contend with.

    Ever notice that in this day and age of technological marvel, where even an unemployed lazy couch potato is more secure in their basic needs then the majority of the population of hard workers were a couple of hundred years ago. Where even a single mum with several demon spawn to several drug addict fathers, can live a life of almost complete lack of concern about things like, food, housing, clothing, medical needs…….hell, she can spend her days watching Oprah, texting and talking to her friends, surfing the net, and feeling like a victim because she hasn’t got the latest iphone 28.5 or the latest 300 inch virtual reality TV.

    It never dawns on them that the reason they are free to worry about he trivial emotional bullshit issues that they worry about is because all of their actual needs are taken care of, by those who don’t get to worry about such non-issues, because they are too busy providing for themselves and the likes of cupcake sitting on her arse watching Oprah

    • John Narayan

      You on fire mate!

  • TigerMan

    So that’s a summary of the fraud of Betty Friedan. But it doesn’t mean that the women she purported to speak for were also living a wild, and wonderful life of free expression, it only explains that the woman credited with initiating the second wave of feminism was a complete cunt.

    I’m soooo glad I didn’t have a mouthful of coffee when I read the above – I would have either choked or sprayed my computer screen – as it happened I just laughed – loud and long!
    The whole article was brilliant – AVFM is lucky indeed to have you writing articles here. :)

    • Codebuster

      Lucky you. You got off lightly. My screen is dripping in scotch that I now have to wipe off.

  • http://gynocentrism.com/2013/07/14/about/ Peter Wright (Tawil)

    This article sums up the problem of feminism, it has cultivated a Maslow problem for the world to clean up after; self-actualized Disney princesses getting cloned en masse by feminists and their Barbydoll factory.

    The hierarchy of needs provides a theoretical framework for what we in the MHRM talk about daily, and we can only hope the ‘Maslow problem’ becomes required reading in university courses in the not too distant future.

  • externalangst

    The problem with no name always was a problem of boredom for those privileged enough to have all life’s necessities taken care of. But what did the leaders of the women’s movement do? They then could have contributed to the majesty of life with all that free time. You know; add to everyone’s quality of life through the arts and sciences.

    No. They made up a hate-mongering conspiracy theory. All financed by their male counterparts. What does one do with so much free time provided by whitegoods? Where the role of housewife became redundant by mechanical devices.

    Imagine if they actually joined forces with men instead. We’d all be working half the time for the same material benefit. The women’s movement has been so sad in so many ways.

    • Cousin Dave

      That’s a great point. You would think that people (adults, anyway) who have all of their basic needs taken care of would spend their time pursuing higher callings in life. Not too many people get to spend a lot of time at the top of the Breslow pyramid, and the ones who do ought to regard it as a great privilege and treat it as such. But with few exceptions, that never seems to happen.

      I observe that, for any level of the pyramid, a person can be in one of three states: (1) actively being denied those things; (2) having the opportunity to pursue them, or (3) having those things given to them. I observe that people who are in state (3) at the lower levels tend to get stuck there. They forget that state (2) exists, and so they assume that at any level, if they aren’t in state (3), they must be in state (1).

    • dungone

      The problem does have a name: Trustafarianism. And you’re right, the privileges of a comfortable life are often wasted on those who haven’t earned as much. They say that wealth rarely ever lasts more than 3-4 generations (http://www.fa-mag.com/news/why-wealth-disappears-8227.html), but with feminism you can witness it being squandered on the spot. This is yet another place where traditional values and feminism fall into the same cesspool of ignorant thinking in my book. The way I look at it is a little different: for every over-educated Betty Friedman complaining about her lack of self-actualization, I see a homeless man who could have changed the world.

    • Dave

      The pinnacle of Victorian English society was to become a gentleman: some one with a sufficent investment/rental income that he no longer needed to work, and could persue his own interests without distraction. Many noted scientists, writers, historians, archeologists and engineers of the era were exactly that. So when women had the luxury of reaching the pinnacle of life, what did they do? Complain.

  • Jim Muldoon

    Excellent article.

  • OldGeezer

    “… but what women really want is to know that their career is optional.”

    … along with every other aspect of their lives that may be inconvenient and/or inconsistent with their aspirations of the moment, most notably including any familial obligations apart from profitable possession and command authority.

  • John A

    Great read and well put.

    “The problem with no name” yeah, it had a name alright – “boredom”, but every mother knows how far their kids get when they say “I’m bored mum.” So she called it “the problem with no name,” rather than “the problem with a name we can’t use because no one will feel sorry for us if we use it.”

  • tspoon

    How telling that for much of humanity, Maslows hierarchy describes the levels of physical and spiritual needs via which a persons life can progress. For feminists it is a hierarchy of the relative inanity of various complaints, a catalogue of ways to measure the failings of others, with absolutely no introspection possible or required. Maslow only studied high functioning individuals and his findings are clearly not universal among human beings.

  • Zane

    Great article, loved the video as well. Thank you.

  • Codebuster

    There’s real talent here among our sweet, delicate, lady-like contributors. Talk about kick-ass. This is one anti-feminoid movement of which I am proud to be a part. Keep ‘em comin’!

    • OneHundredPercentCotton

      X 2, rounding applause of appreciation, Diana. World Series material.

  • https://www.facebook.com/pages/A-Voice-for-Men/102001393188684 Paul Elam

    It occurred to me tonight as I was enjoying the latest Walking Dead episode. Feminism is a zombie. A huge problem to have when they are in large numbers, but they are totally dead. Killed by the brick of logic a long time ago. They just don’t know it.

    Smoking good piece, Diana.

    • OneHundredPercentCotton

      Time to hide your Twinkies.

    • Heisenberg

      Right on, Paul …. you can’t even drive a car through it.

      • Nightwing1029

        Maybe not. But you can drive large vehicles through the holes in feminist logic.

  • Falland

    If you notice, the first two rungs on the pyramid are the material things that men are supposed to be providing to women gratis. That can either be through marriage or taxes, but either way, men are paying. A few women are self sustaining but men are never provided for. Once men figure out that by regaining control of their economic power they will finally start to get something for their efforts.

  • Andy Bob

    Very few people have ever reached the purple plateau of self-actualization. Most of those who have conquered the summit of Maslow’s pyramid, have been men. Thanks to feminism, women are further away from the apex than ever before.

    The vast majority of women are stalled at the yellow stage of love and belonging, wreaking maximum havoc on their families, friendships, their ability to connect and achieve genuine intimacy with their partners. Listening to the majority of women’s ideas on how to conduct relationships, and watching how they put them into practice, reveals their utter cluelessness on how to successfully negotiate this level. Feminism has encouraged women to be selfish, entitled, and have unrealistic expectations, as opposed to the necessary skills to negotiate this area of their lives successfully. The result has been a disaster for all.

    Feminism has also deceived women into believing that they have mastered the green level. Real self-esteem – the kind that can only be developed through genuine personal achievement – has nothing to with false delusions superiority. You can award as many big, shiny trophies for 7th place as you like – at the end of the day, their recipients know in their heart-of-hearts that they didn’t win. Illusions of grandeur are just that: illusions. That is why they dissipate so quickly when tested, contradicted or challenged. Our feminist-driven culture constantly reassures women that they are awesome diva-goddesses, and they seem to believe it, but it is nothing more than a charade of wishful thinking – studies, revealing that women’s self-esteem is lower than ever, attest to this fact.

    Has anyone seen the plus-size edition of ‘Say Yea to the Dress?” 400lb women come into the salon declaring to the consultants that they’re proud of their curves and want to show them off. “Remember, I want to look pretty,” Tiffany warns hopefully. The svelte consultant tells her not to worry, but you just know that she’s thinking that the only way that’s going to happen is by throwing a sequined tarpaulin over Tiffany, and nailing down the corners. After being shoe-horned into one unlikely silhouette after another, Tiffany begins to get huffy that her consultant can’t seem to find that ‘magic dress’. Eventually, she settles on something that makes her look like an embroidered ivory tank. Tiffany tearfully declares herself to be pretty, and hot, but look at her face – she knows.

    You just can’t fake self-esteem, however much you try.

    • John Narayan

      Magic tent pegs?

      • Kimski

        Think Zeppeliner’s on legs.
        Perpetually in danger of spontaneous self combusting, when not floating around with their massive proportions among the clouds.

    • OneHundredPercentCotton

      Isn’t it true, the only way to reach the Purple level is by unselfish GIVING of yourself instead of selfishly TAKING from others?

      • Cousin Dave

        That, and a lot of introspection. Which a lot of people seem to regard as a waste of time these days.

        • Kimski

          There’s probably not much there to see.
          I mean, compulsive eating and shopping is basically an attempt to fill an emotional void of significant proportions.
          -Just sayin’..

          • Cousin Dave

            Good point. I’m just saying that a lot of people who have it work like heck to deny that knowledge from themselves.

    • Dave

      It is said that someone who has made his millions and then gone bankrupt is a far superior bet to make more millions than someone who has yet to make his first million. We learn things through adversity. You can see this with children coping with physical pain: the first time they stub their toe, it seems like its the end of the world; but having lived through it, some similar distress is no longer such a big deal.

      Since feminists don’t have to deal with the difficulties of the lower levels of the pyramid, they are easily upset by minor issues higher up. They haven’t learned coping stategies nor the resolve to take an issue fully on to overcome it.

  • ComradePrescott

    I will definitely start saying “You’ve got a Maslow problem” in the future. I love it.

  • Dunamace

    You can use Maslow’s hierarchy to understand many arguments in life that pass your way and leave you thinking “what the fuck just happened?” In a personal relationship, check to make sure your partner is meeting you on the same level of need.

    Reading this paragraph was a lightbulb moment for me….brilliant Diana, as is the rest of the blog.

    I shall be applying the “Maslow criterion” to not only new/potential partners but to any dealings I have with women.

  • John Narayan

    Feminists come after AVfM, in this scene Paul Elam in trapped in his car.

  • Aimee McGee

    The thing that throws almost everyone off in their efforts to self-actualize is the failure to recognize that you have to reframe your own internal dialogues away from valuing what you do and towards who you are.
    Although I get lots of positive feedback about car-pooling three non-drivers to Sunday worship, it is being part of that worshiping community that gives me that sense of “right ordering” as I go through my day. The “Human Doing” is nurtured through external feedback,the Human Being through the internal feedback.
    Self actualization is transitory, even I believe for the most advanced practitioners of mindful living. I’ve often felt it is like the “tapu” (sacred/holy) state associated with a funeral in the Maori culture. During the funeral, you are in a tapu state, at the end there is a ritual to bring you back to the “noa” or common state. Simply put, you can’t meet your body survival needs in a constant state of sacred bliss

    • Nightwing1029

      Well put.
      And I think that’s where a lot of people seem to miss the point of self actualization.
      It is similar to a feedback loop.
      You continually have to come back to the lower portions, to make sure they are being taken care of.
      And that is always on the individual.
      I often see people missing that self actualization is always changing.
      I believe it’s the Tao that states that it is in a constant state of change where people find the most fulfillment. Because we are always changing. Most of those changes are small and subtle. Some are large and drastic.

  • http://pinterest.com/zetapersei/male-privilege/ Perseus

    Excellent

    That men meet women’s needs for them via protect and provide, inherently puts females higher on the pyramid, thus contributing to need disparity and hypergamy. It’s a twisted web we weave..

    Oh Miss Roberts, do go find yourself.. and while you’re there, by all means, do fuck yourself..

  • IronDuke

    This reminds me of this article I ran across. I’m not sure what to make of it.

  • onca747

    More precious ammunition in the War Against Self-Entitlement.

  • tamerlame

    “Betty proposed this callous lack of concern for women’s self-expression meant oppression from the evil patriarchy. ”

    Most women are not fully there! I mean they are so creative and self absorbed, you can’t suppress something that doesn’t exist. Feminists are blaming men for lacking something internally.

    I think women are listened to too much in my opinion, it is about time they where ignored and silenced. I don’t take 95% of women seriously at all.

    • carchamp1

      “I don’t take 95% of women seriously at all.”

      Well that’s too bad. Believe me I live with the embodiment of entitlement and she’s my wife. Life sucks. But, most women I come into contact with work, do their fair share, and are very worth taking seriously. No white knight, here. Just not willing to circle-jerk on that 95% number.

      • Stu

        They only look good by comparison

  • feeriker

    A big part of the problem, methinks, is that Maslow’s various pyramid levels have been redefined or, more accurately, inverted. In particular, too many women see the top of the pyramid as being their most essential life goal. This stands to reason, given that few women have to worry about satisfying their actual survival needs, owing to a combination of masochistic mangina-white knights rushing to their aid or, should that fail, Daddy/Husband State to fall back on. For this reason women are afforded ample opportunity for pointless, narcissistic navel gazing, which merely compounds their own unhappiness, not to mention the unhappiness of those around them. Having to be brought back to reality, being forced face and cope with basic survival needs, would be the quickest way to end all such nonsense. It ain’t gonna happen in the immediate future (or maybe it will, given the impending state of socioeconomic collapse in the western world), but it’s a necessary remedy for anything to change.

    • Itdarestospeak

      My wife is a staff nurse and unsurprisingly feminists among her colleagues are non-existant as you will never find a feminist where there’s hard work. ….

  • dejour

    Great article.

    To be fair, I think that some of Friedan’s goals were to fulfill unmet needs in the green section (self-esteem, achievement, respect of others).

  • Phorcydes

    The most powerful feminist debunking articles I’ve read, the relevance and insight are incredible.
    Thank-you Diana Davison !

  • http://salientsight.com/ergot/ Limeywestlake (Neil Westlake)

    Let us not forget the DV – that Betty ‘Haridan’ used to beat her husband too…

  • Fredrik

    I would expect that self-actualization achieved through striving against the phantom menace of Patriarchy is about as rich, fulfilling and durable as self-esteem gained from a soccer participation trophy.

    • Fredrik

      Also, I just realized that calling it a “Maslow problem” is basically addressing the same issue as my frame that the complaints of modern women are humblebragging. When they go on and on about their high-level concerns while ignoring your low-level concerns, they’re implicitly bragging about doing better than you. Same thing.

  • colttaine

    Holy shit Diana, every article i read of yours is a new best.

  • Diana Davison

    I’m going to try and talk about this some more in my next youtube video. Maslow’s Hierarchy has always come to mind every time I hear feminist complaints so it was nice to finally get it into words.

  • rayc2

    Interesting article Diana

    I think our legal system is also geared towards doing everything it can to place women in
    the top part of the triangle to the exclusion of men. It’s feminism on steroids.

    Planned parenthood versus Casey

    http://caselaw.lp.findlaw.com/scripts/getcase.pl?court=us&vol=505&invol=833

    “A husband has no enforceable right to require a wife to advise him before she exercises
    her personal choices….”

    Like lying about being on birth control?

    “The ability of women to participate equally in the economic and social life of the Nation
    has been facilitated by their ability to control their reproductive lives.”

    But men’s ability to participate equally,including being able to afford an education and
    being able to effectively support a family of his own choosing in the future, isn’t affected? Women also have adoption and safe haven choices available to them, while men have what exactly?

    “At the heart of liberty is the right to define one’s own concept of existence, of meaning,
    of the universe, and of the mystery of human life. Beliefs about these matters could not
    define the attributes of personhood were they formed under compulsion of the State. [505
    U.S. 833, 852]… ”

    Men, however, are not worthy enough to define their own concept of existence?

    “As we described in [505 U.S. 833, 859] Carey v. Population Services International,
    supra, the liberty which encompasses those decisions includes the interest in independence
    in making certain kinds of important decisions.” While the outer limits of this aspect of
    [protected liberty] have not been marked by the Court, it is clear that among the decisions
    that an individual may make without unjustified government interference are personal
    decisions “`relating to marriage, procreation, contraception, family relationships, and
    childrearing and education.'” 431 U.S., at 684 -685 (citations omitted).”

    By “indivudual”, they of course mean “woman.” Everyone knows that men are not individuals.

    “Her suffering is too intimate and personal for the State to insist, without more, upon its
    own vision of the woman’s role, however dominant that vision has been in the course of our
    history and our culture. The destiny of the woman must be shaped to a large extent on her
    own conception of her spiritual imperatives and her place in society…”

    His suffering, though, is irrelevant?

    Roe is an integral part of a correct understanding of both the concept of liberty and the
    basic equality of men and women….

    Well if this is the USSC’s definition of “equality”, then fuck the court and the state it
    rode in on.

  • Bewildered

    Tyranny requires the co-operation of the masses. Don’t co-operate.

    This indeed, is the panacea for the present social ills.

  • rayc2

    Oh….I suppose that the court did take men into consideration when they made this ruling exclusively for the benefit of women. Here are SOME of this court’s opinions about men revealed in the ruling…

    “284. Women of all class levels, educational backgrounds, and racial, ethnic and religious
    groups are battered. . . .

    “285. Wife-battering or abuse can take on many physical and psychological forms. The nature
    and scope of the battering can cover a broad range of actions, and be gruesome and
    torturous. . . .

    “286. Married women, victims of battering, have been killed in Pennsylvania and throughout
    the United States. . . .

    “287. Battering can often involve a substantial amount of sexual abuse, including marital
    rape and sexual mutilation. . . .

    “288. In a domestic abuse situation, it is common for the battering husband to also abuse
    the children in an attempt to coerce the wife. . . .

    “289. Mere notification of pregnancy is frequently a flashpoint for battering and violence
    within the family. The number of battering incidents is high during the pregnancy, and
    often the worst abuse can be associated with pregnancy. . . . The battering husband may
    deny parentage and use the pregnancy as an excuse for abuse. . . .

    “290. Secrecy typically shrouds abusive families. Family members are instructed not to tell
    anyone, especially police or doctors, about the abuse and violence. Battering husbands
    often threaten their wives or her children with further abuse if she tells an outsider of
    the violence, and tells her that nobody will believe her. A battered woman, therefore, is
    highly unlikely to disclose [505 U.S. 833, 890] the violence against her for fear of
    retaliation by the abuser. . . .

    “291. Even when confronted directly by medical personnel or other helping professionals,
    battered women often will not admit to the battering, because they have not admitted to
    themselves that they are battered. . . . . . . . .

    “294. A woman in a shelter or a safe house unknown to her husband is not “reasonably
    likely” to have bodily harm inflicted upon her by her batterer; however, her attempt to
    notify her husband pursuant to section 3209 could accidentally disclose her whereabouts to
    her husband. Her fear of future ramifications would be realistic under the circumstances.

    “295. Marital rape is rarely discussed with others or reported to law enforcement
    authorities, and of those reported, only few are prosecuted. . . .

    “296. It is common for battered women to have sexual intercourse with their husbands to
    avoid being battered. While this type of coercive sexual activity would be spousal sexual
    assault as defined by the Act, many women may not consider it to be so, and others would
    fear disbelief. . . .

    “297. The marital rape exception to section 3209 cannot be claimed by women who are victims
    of coercive sexual behavior other than penetration. The 90-day reporting requirement of the spousal sexual assault statute, 18 Pa.Con.Stat.Ann. 3218(c), further narrows the class of sexually abused wives who can claim the exception, since many of these women may be
    psychologically unable to discuss or report the rape for several years after the incident.

    . . .

    “298. Because of the nature of the battering relationship, battered women are unlikely to
    avail themselves of the exceptions to section 3209 of the Act, regardless of [505 U.S. 833,
    891] whether the section applies to them. 744 F.Supp., at 1360-1362 (footnote omitted).

    These findings are supported by studies of domestic violence. The American Medical
    Association (AMA) has published a summary of the recent research in this field, which
    indicates that, in an average 12-month period in this country, approximately two million
    women are the victims of severe assaults by their male partners.

    In a 1985 survey, women reported that nearly one of every eight husbands had assaulted their wives during the past year. The AMA views these figures as “marked underestimates,” because the nature of these incidents discourages women from reporting them, and because surveys typically exclude the very poor, those who do not speak English well, and women who are homeless or in institutions or hospitals when the survey is conducted. According to the AMA, [r]esearchers on family violence agree that the true incidence of partner violence is probably double the above estimates; or four million severely assaulted women per year.

    Studies suggest that from one-fifth to one-third of all women will be physically assaulted by a partner or ex-partner during their lifetime. AMA Council on Scientific Affairs, Violence Against Women 7 (1991) (emphasis in original).

    Thus, on an average day in the United States, nearly 11,000 women are severely assaulted by their male partners. Many of these incidents involve sexual assault. Id., at 3-4; Shields & Hanneke, Battered Wives’ Reactions to Marital Rape, in The Dark Side of Families: Current Family Violence Research 131, 144 (D. Finkelhor, R. Gelles, G. Hataling, & M. Straus eds. 1983).

    In families where wifebeating takes place, moreover, child abuse is often present as well. Violence Against Women, supra, at 12.

    Other studies fill in the rest of this troubling picture. Physical violence is only the
    most visible form of abuse. Psychological abuse, particularly forced social and economic
    isolation of women, is also common. L. Walker, The Battered [505 U.S. 833, 892] Woman
    Syndrome 27-28 (1984). Many victims of domestic violence remain with their abusers, perhaps
    because they perceive no superior alternative. Herbert, Silver, & Ellard, Coping with an
    Abusive Relationship: I. How and Why do Women Stay?, 53 J. Marriage & the Family 311
    (1991). Many abused women who find temporary refuge in shelters return to their husbands,
    in large part because they have no other source of income. Aguirre, Why Do They Return?
    Abused Wives in Shelters, 30 J.Nat.Assn. of Social Workers 350, 352 (1985). Returning to
    one’s abuser can be dangerous. Recent Federal Bureau of Investigation statistics disclose
    that 8.8 percent of all homicide victims in the United States are killed by their spouses.
    Mercy & Saltzman, Fatal Violence Among Spouses in the United States, 1976-85, 79 Am.J.

    Public Health 595 (1989). Thirty percent of female homicide victims are killed by their
    male partners. Domestic Violence: Terrorism in the Home, Hearing before the Subcommittee on
    Children, Family, Drugs and Alcoholism of the Senate Committee on Labor and Human
    Resources, 101st Cong., 2d Sess., 3 (1990)….

    And on and on.

  • http://www.iamthewill.wordpress.com Will of The People

    Yes. This. I can’t tell you how many times I tried to express to my ex that we had a “Maslow problem.” She wanted a new car, I wanted to be able to spend time away from work and have time with my kids. She wanted to live in the most upscale and most expensive part of town, I wanted to build a nest egg for retirement. She wanted to drain my life away from me for her own personal aggrandizement and wish-fulfillment, and I wanted to survive, and thrive, to see my daughters grow to thrive as well.
    So I left. It’s cost me a fortune, but it’s still the best decision I ever made (after the worst decision I ever made)

  • DavidicLineage

    This provides me with quite a few cohesive arguments. Thanks again D, hat’s off to you.