Thursday, April 11, 2013

Confession: I Cringe A Little When Men Refer to Wives as Their "Queen"

Act #101: Marriage is a partnership, not an unyielding list of formal obligations.

It's true.  I think I would throw up in my mouth a little if my husband ever called me his queen.  Given my love/hate relationships with princesses, this shouldn't catch anyone by surprise. Why you ask,would a woman not relish in being catered to, cared for, protected with the hightest honor and dignity?  Well quite frankly, because I'm a 40 year-old grown adult, and really, I got this.  Plus, my husband can barely feed himself, so he'd be hard-pressed to be able to really cater to me.  Also, just yesterday, I saved the day by crawling under the house to change the air conditioning filter because the king's 6'1 stature didn't allow him to do so comfortably.  When I emerged from the crawlspace, my husband and son were standing there applauding my heroic act of bravery.  There were spiders down there, people.

I know, I know, there's that whole element of respect, but how much respect are we talking about if at the end of the day your life is still subject to the will of your husband, and your primary responsibility is to provide your king with an heir?  That's right, your most important duty in life is to be inseminated in order to produce a child for someone else.  Not because you wanted to experience motherhood, or because of a mutual love you have for one another, but so the king could have a mini-me to perpetuate his legacy of patriarchal domination.

Another unfair expectation for the queen is that she is to serve as the king's confidante, which on its surface sounds loving and healthy for any relationship.  But in monarchies this expectation was not reciprocal.  So in modern day times this would equate to me eagerly supporting my husband as he tells me about his challenges in getting the President's high-end laptop to work again (he does tech support at a college), but I get to keep all the fun, uplifting sexual violence stuff (I work at a rape crisis center) all to myself.

In medieval times while the king was away, the queen would fill in as leader.  But only when he was away.  Can you imagine the field day my 5-year old would have with that?  Mom, can I have another cookie?  No son,  you've already had two.  Well I'll just ask dad when he gets back from work.  Well, he is the ultimate leader.  You think he'd let me have one too?

So thank you, dear husband, for never calling me "your" queen, and for not claiming me as your property, or subjecting me to your ultimate will.  But most importantly, thank you for being the one who bakes the cookies for all of us, when you return from battle today.

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