First it was mommy guilt, and now it's aggressive women. There seems to be a theme this morning... anyway, we had a segment in the third hour about women in relationships, and whether they can be too aggressive. Dave Zinczenko, editor-in-chief of "Men's Health," recently wrote a blog entry about this topic on yahoo.com, and it was one of the most read and responded to blogs in yahoo's history. Clearly, the topic of aggressive women speaks loud and clear to the nearly 1900 people who sent in comments to his posting.
One of the interesting aspects of this story deals with marriage statistics in the US, and where they figure into this debate. Marriage is down more than 50% since 1970, and as we all know, divorce rates are increasing. Both Dave and psychotherapist Robi Ludwig, who joined this morning's segment, think that people perhaps don't know how to be in relationships anymore. They see divorce as an easy solution to problems. Going along with the aggressive women theme, Dave thinks that women nowadays are simply more liberated and independent in so many regards, thereby influencing this decrease in marriage rates. On the plus side, people do not feel that they have to settle just for the sake of getting married, since that societal pressure does not exist as much as it used to.
Robi brought up the distinction between the terms aggressive and assertive. Aggressive can have a much more negative connotation, whereas assertive is something that men might appreciate in a woman. Both Dave and Robi said that men and women both are seeking partners who can be more assertive in their relationships. Perhaps this is the problem with decreasing relationship rates -- both sexes are waiting for the other to take that first step. One of the comments that was submitted to Dave's blog asked where this entire debate leaves us. So where does it leave us? Al and Natalie led this morning's discussion, and many interesting points were raised. But where does it leave us? What is the status of aggressiveness versus assertiveness in today's society and between the sexes? A conclusive study or discussion this is not, but watercooler fodder? Absolutely.