Damsel in Distress?

“The Princess awaits”

The square-jawed dashing prince mutters to himself as he rides through the darkness. The ogre’s lair his destination

“She must be so miserable, languishing in the dungeon. Don’t worry my fair lady. I AM COMING!!!!!!”

He leaves a trail of broken minions in his wake as he makes his way to the throne room and finally after much swash buckling (with the occasional preen for fourth wall fan service) he bursts in with a flourish and finds:

damsel not in distress

Eh?

HANG ON THAT’S NOT RIGHT?!

Or is it?

Dear reader I have been thinking of archetypes. Specifically the damsel in distress archetype (which from now on will be referred to as D.I.D.). The popular picture of the pretty pretty princess in captivity, helpless and pining for her Knight in shining armor to come deliver her from whatever it is that decided that “Kidnap Princess” was the day’s agenda. It is the stuff of fantasy and high romance yesterday and today.

princess waitingwaiting

Dear reader I don’t know about you but as a guy who once embraced the D.I.D. Archetype and sought to be as capable a  Knight as possible (clumsy and weird as hell but still capable) I have undergone a series of paradigm shifts and I now have issue with the above

I do not wish to engage in conspiracy theories but I perceive that the celebration of the D.I.D. archetype has been a major contributor in dis-empowering the woman. When this picture of a lady, helpless and hoping for salvation from a man is relished and romanticized, I feel that all are conditioned to see ladies as having no other option in life except to look pretty and wait in expectation for that Knight to ride in and liberate her from whatever shackles she finds herself bearing. Today the “Knight” has traded his armor for a suit, his steed for a “posh car” and his lance and sword for money and a ring. He comes to free his lady from the doldrums of living. He comes to affirm, upgrade and wife her and all she has to do is look pretty and keep it warm and wet cause “daddy” is coming:

bean

And when a woman refuses to embrace the D.I.D mindset and actively seeks to carve out her own piece of heaven, a lot of times she is considered “abhorrent”, an “upstart” and  threat to masculinity and “advised’ to dumb down her initiative so as not to scare away the Knights (wouldn’t want to want to wound his fragile ego now would you?)

I believe that this has contributed to creating within our women mindsets of helpless and dependence. The woman looking for answers, liberty, freedom everywhere else but within. The woman never considering her life as having worth unless a man says “Yes” and this perpetuates the cycles of dysfunctional relationships, disillusion and rank dissatisfaction.

Woman you are more than you have been portrayed to be. No man bears your key. You alone are your savior. You were born as the image and likeness of God and you bear within you everything you’ll ever need to make your life beautiful. So here is my counsel (if you choose to accept it) Realize that you are powerful. That you are able and that you do NOT need another to be the best of you (help is welcome when it is offered genuinely but your salvation will always be in your hands). Yes things are tough and the system is not skewed in your favor but you can overcome. You are able and even greater will your victory be.

You are not some damsel in distress.  You are the hero of your own legend.

I leave you with a poem i wrote a year ago. It’s called “Daughter be Free” Read it here.

Bless you

P.S. If you like the featured image of this article (My design) and you would like more, then please visit my shop on Etsy here. It’s the Wordsmith Cafe. Home to Inspiring digital print art. Thank you 😀

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