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Old 07-20-2006, 10:38 AM
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Infantilism

No, this thread is not about 21st century fetishes. It's open to discussion by men and women.

Yesterday, I saw my nephews and nieces, and there was a strict difference in how they were treated according to their gender. It was nothing strange - just the usual behaviour of double standards that children are often treated to at a young age and internalize throughout their lives.

I started thinking about how I was raised as a girl in a family of boys, mostly male cousins, and brothers. I saw and experienced firsthand many of the opportunities that were open to the boys, were closed doors to me. It ranged from things like curfew, how far I could go, employment, travel, freedom of social movement (the people I chose to hang out with), or interests I had. I'm wary of feminist gung ho nonsense and place zero faith in any of that discussion. I'm also quite familiar with historic representations of women, and am not concerned about the moaning and groaning of how women are oppressed to the point of an argument bordering on arrogance. I also recognized that a great deal of these closed doors, let's say, were done out of love, and not out of malice.

However, I noticed very strongly that this was a limiting factor in a lot of growth that could have been started at a much earlier age. I'm interested to hear of experiences or insights from others (both guys and gals here) who felt restricted to an extent, or had seen female members restricted in their movement. Did this have a great effect on their nature?

In some cases, the restrictions infantilise women and force them to behave in ways that are nearly permanently childlike in the degree of sheltered life. Are these necessary in the big bad world out there of rapists and convicts? Or is it so ingrained in us that it is difficult to change?

For men, do you realize how these affect natural growth or is it a kind of safety precaution that society has learned to instill to "protect" (and I use this word loosely) women?

For women, perhaps as a woman, you never did experience this and what I just described made no sense at all. Though I doubt that many of you, as mothers, older sisters and caretakers, have not in some way been faced with these decisions. Thoughts?
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Old 07-20-2006, 10:44 AM
ares ares is offline
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Re: Infantilism

:)

Of course all of this has a big impact. Psychology studies have shown children are aware of gender at a very early age (forgot, maybe 3?). It's been going on for thousands of years. I've been reading the Chinese classics; you'd be surprised the kind of stuff that's in there about women.

It's not going to change for thousands of years. The extent of the effects are far greater than you realize.

If you want a detailed answer, you'll need several years (or decades) of reading philosophy, psychology, biology, and feminism, sorting thru everything and figuring it out.

Last edited by ares; 07-20-2006 at 10:48 AM.
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Old 07-20-2006, 07:13 PM
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Re: Infantilism

So what if kids are aware of gender differences? The two genders are just like different cultures of the world - one is not better than the other, but the two are different, and unfortunately I honestly feel in today's society we're trying to change that. We're trying to say that it's OK to blur the gender lines (transsexualality, etc), but no, the two genders are different, always have been, and always should be. Why try to change that?
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Old 07-20-2006, 08:51 PM
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Re: Infantilism

There's been an attempt to strive for equality as far as males and females, but we all know that we're different. If we were truly equal, we would not be inclined to be chivalrous towards you, be told as boys it's not ok to hit girls, and that there are certain things you should not do because "she's a lady." It's been instilled in all of us that women are to be cherished and protected since time began, and while it's been blurred as of late, it's still a prominent way of thought. I think even the most pro-feminist, strong woman still wants a man at times to be there for her, whether as protector or whatever.
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Last edited by TB4000; 07-20-2006 at 08:52 PM.
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Old 07-20-2006, 10:32 PM
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Anaestacia Anaestacia is offline
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Re: Infantilism

QUOTE:
Originally Posted by Hiroshi2
So what if kids are aware of gender differences? The two genders are just like different cultures of the world - one is not better than the other, but the two are different, and unfortunately I honestly feel in today's society we're trying to change that. We're trying to say that it's OK to blur the gender lines (transsexualality, etc), but no, the two genders are different, always have been, and always should be. Why try to change that?
Well, I wasn't necessarily expressing a desire to change it. I understand where you're coming from however. Just musing outloud and wondering how many people are conscious of this or strongly/directly affected by that sort of upbringing. If it matters at all or whatever thoughts people have.

QUOTE:
Originally Posted by TB4000
There's been an attempt to strive for equality as far as males and females, but we all know that we're different. If we were truly equal, we would not be inclined to be chivalrous towards you, be told as boys it's not ok to hit girls, and that there are certain things you should not do because "she's a lady." It's been instilled in all of us that women are to be cherished and protected since time began, and while it's been blurred as of late, it's still a prominent way of thought. I think even the most pro-feminist, strong woman still wants a man at times to be there for her, whether as protector or whatever.
But is there a thing like over-doing it? When do those assumptions become damaging?

Last edited by Anaestacia; 07-20-2006 at 10:33 PM. Reason: Automerged Doublepost
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Old 07-21-2006, 02:08 AM
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Re: Infantilism

QUOTE:
Originally Posted by TB4000
If we were truly equal, we would not be inclined to be chivalrous towards you, be told as boys it's not ok to hit girls, and that there are certain things you should not do because "she's a lady." It's been instilled in all of us that women are to be cherished and protected since time began...
It has not been like that since time began. Has anyone here read social science about the world during 500 B.C. and before? Anyone here read any anthopology?

There's a great deal of evidence that suggests pre-agrarian and pre-feudal culture was matriarchal. There are even cultures that existed a few hundreds years ago and even now where either women are the dominant sex or women and men were equal. In thoses cases, women act nothing like they do in most civilized cultures. There's even biological evidence we were not always matriarchal. Were were only when civilization began around 2500-3000 years ago. This was when China and Europe became civilized, when the Roman concept of family was invented (all the slaves and women a man owned).

All of this is about exogamy. And Levi-Strauss is right, exogamy is also the reason why incest is taboo in most cultures. There is no morality or biological basis for why we are. Civilization is not much more than a warrior class dominating farmers and barbarians; everyone else becomes a slave and acts like it.

All of this will change thousands of years from now.

Anaestacia, still think it's useless to study what happened 3000 years ago?

For studing ancient China, I highly recommend this collection (in French):

http://classiques.uqac.ca/classiques...ine_index.html

or if you don't, look for stuff in English or Chinese. The French who studied China are unique; many are trained philosophers and sociologists.

Last edited by ares; 07-21-2006 at 02:31 AM.
  #7  
Old 07-21-2006, 02:30 AM
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Re: Infantilism

QUOTE:
Therefore the drive to date individuals who look different from oneself or have a "sexy foreign accent" may derive from an innate drive to seek the healthiest combination of DNA possible for one's offspring by out-breeding as far as possible.
Oh snap.
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Old 07-21-2006, 02:41 AM
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Re: Infantilism

Biological exogamy is a fad that will past in the next 500 years. It's all cultural. And that article is not much of an explanation.

At least the French entry is slightly better:

http://fr.wikipedia.org/wiki/Exogamie

Last edited by ares; 07-21-2006 at 02:51 AM.
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Old 09-02-2006, 01:05 PM
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Re: Infantilism

I dislike girls with a visible infantile personality. Maybe thats part of the reason why I make such a poor boyfriend.
 

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