I am a woman born 1949 and my quest is to find a mindmate
to grow old together as a mutually devoted couple
in a relationship based upon the
egalitarian rational commitment paradigm
bonded by intrinsic commitment
as each other's safe haven and secure basis.

The purpose of this blog is to enable the right man
to recognize us as reciprocal mindmates and
to encourage him to contact me:

The entries directly concerning,
who could be my mindmate,
are mainly at the beginning.
If this is your predominant interest,
I suggest to read this blog in the same order
as it was written, following the numbers.

I am German, therefore my English is sometimes faulty.

Maybe you have stumbled upon this blog not as a potential match.
Please wait a short moment before zapping.

Do you know anybody, who could be my mindmate?
Your neighbour, brother, uncle, cousin, colleague, friend?
If so, please tell him to look at this blog.
While you have no reason to do this for me,
a stranger, maybe you can make someone happy, for whom you care.

Do you have your own webpage or blog,
which someone like my mindmate to be found probably reads?
If so, please mention my quest and add a link to this blog.

Thursday, February 7, 2013

639. A Disheartening Research Result

639.   A Disheartening Research Result

People are generally motivated towards behaviors for the purpose of improving or maintaining their subjective well being (SWB) as far as ability, moral restrictions and circumstances allow it.

The following study about the positive effects of power on the SWB is very scary for women.    It implies indirectly men's asymmetrical option to enhance their SWB by harming women.

"Across four surveys representiedly different primary social roles (general, work, romantic-relationship, and friendship surveys; Study 1), and in an experiment (Study 2a), we found consistent evidence that experiencing power leads to greater SWB. Moreover, authenticity mediated this effect. Further establishing the causal importance of authenticity, a final experiment (Study 2b), in which authenticity was manipulated, demonstrated that greater authenticity directly increased SWB. Although striving for power lowers well-being, these results demonstrate the pervasive positive psychological effects of having power, and indicate the importance of spreading power to enhance collective well-being. "

The power situation between women and men is asymmetrical.    Men have a choice, which women do not have.  

Men are on average physically stronger than women.   They have the innate options to either install power over women or to voluntarily refrain from doing so.    If women have any option at all, it is only the option to avoid those men, who would use power to harm them in the case of their exposing themselves to be harmed.   Women have no option to remain unharmed once they have allowed themselves to be under the control of a man using power.   In civilized countries, women have the option to refuse and to leave a relationship with a man using power.   But there are still many societies, where women are owned, sold and married forcefully by their parents.  

If a woman and a man were stranded on a deserted island, this innate asymmetry becomes virulent.  He has a choice, while she is at his mercy.   As long as there is nobody else present to interfere, he has unlimited power over her.  He has the physical strength to do, whatever serves his convenience.    He can kill her, rape her, deprive her of supplies, coerce her, constrain her, torture her, exploit her.   
If he helps and protects her and shares the supplies, he does it by choosing this as an option.   The woman has no options.    

Women can only have power, when they either have a weapon or when their power is provided by rules, laws, law enforcements and third parties protecting her and acting on her behalf.  
A women can have the power to control something, which a man wants or needs, but only under the condition that usurping it by coercion is either made impossible or if the serious consequences are worse than not having it.   A man can use physical force to take away any object from a woman, but he cannot get at what others control on her behalf, like her bank account.   The fear of being severely punished serves in a limited way as a deterrent against men coercing women.   

Therefore women's safety, wellbeing, let alone happiness, all depend on men's voluntary choice of not using the power, with which they have biologically been endowed.   The result of the study implies a special hazard for relationships.   
Both genders usually enter a relationship for the purpose of enhancing the SWB.    Between egalitarian partners, this can be symmetrically, mutually and reciprocally beneficial for a shared and interdependent SWB experienced as a unit of being a couple.      
But men are favored by the asymmetrical alternative option.  They can choose to install power and thus enhance only their own SWB, while this automatically damages the women's.

While men usually know what harm they inflict when applying power or intimidating to do so for the purpose of getting what they want, they are often not aware of the detrimental effects of unintended intimidation.   
Women can never be fully sure, what those men will do to them in the future, who have so far never used the powers available to them.   Violence against women is ubiquitous and men's innate option to decide at any moment to use power and harm women is real.   Living under the permanent threat of male power is a part of women's life, no matter how much this threat is conscious or only subtle and subconscious.
Men are encouraged and they learn to fight and to use aggression as a way of getting their due from other men.  They choose their behavior based upon the expectation of resistance.   But when men express anger and aggression towards women, who lack sufficient physical strength for successful self-defence, the effect is intimidation due to women's realistic awareness of being at the men's mercy.    While intimidation can be subtle and subconscious, it nevertheless prevents women very often from daring to stand up for what they really want, need and consider as fair and correct.   
Intimidation leads to unfortunate consequences.   When a woman's only option to end being harmed by a man using power is to leave him, while she has no option to make him stop his harming behaviors and enable her to stay together, this impedes women from reacting appropriately to all transgressions, which are below the threshold for leaving.   Men do not only get away with inappropriate and harmful behavior, but they also get the wrong impression as if women would accept, what they merely do not dare to protest against due to intimidation.   Thus men are mislead to enhance their SWB by damaging the women's, even when the men are not aware nor intending to do this.           

Sadly enough, it is logical when seen as a result of evolution, that physically strong men using power on women had also the result of unwanted pregnancies and that they contributed more to the gene pool than the considerate and respectful nice guys did.   

I am wondering, if the combined effects of birth control and low risk abortion with the modern technology of intelligence being more important for survival than physical strength could influence the evolutionary trend.   
Maybe over the next many thousands of years, the difference in physical strength between men and women could dwindle?
But even if there will ever be a golden age, when men are no longer stronger than women, I will not be around to enjoy it.