Volume 93, Issue 48

Wednesday, November 24, 1999


Warfare not be confused with love

Degrading implications

Warfare not be confused with love

Re: "What's love but a second hand emotion?" Nov. 17

To the Editor:

What you discuss here is basic psychological warfare. These boyfriends, who treat their girlfriends terribly, are breaking down their self-esteem, making the women feel as if no one else will want them and that they need these guys.

Women who stay in abusive relationships often can't leave because they feel dependent upon their men and that they cannot leave them.

Have you ever spoken with the girlfriends of your friends to hear what they're really feeling inside?

Also, your friend may be a wonderful and charming person, but were you there during the times they were alone? Do you know what exchanges went on beyond what "Romeo" has told you? Maybe his ex told him he was too nice to her as an excuse to get rid of him because she didn't know how else to go about ending the relationship.

No girls want to be "treated like crap." No guy does either. Go ahead and treat your girlfriend like "crap" and you will have someone who will stay with you, but you will also have someone who will resent you more and more until something snaps.

What you get is not going to be a girlfriend, but a reflection of yourself – she won't have her own personality and she will simply be your clone. She will have been stripped of her identity and self-esteem throughout this type of relationship.

Many relationships don't begin with one person treating the other terribly. It slowly develops and by the time the person who is being mistreated realizes this, that may be when they leave.

You have also contradicted yourself in one of your statements. If you say that men are conditioned to be jerks, where do the Mr. Nice Guys come from?

On the other hand, if men are conditioned to be jerks, maybe women are conditioned to like jerks, or want jerks, or to believe they have to be passive and accept how they're being treated.

By the way, Shakespeare uses "Where for" as "Why," not "Where are you." But you knew that, didn't you?

Meris Bray Media and Information Technoculture II
Dina Mashayekhi MIT and Women's Studies II

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Copyright The Gazette 1999