Monday, September 20, 2010

Chivalry: Is It DOA or on Life Support?

In college, one of my male friends would always point out that I never allowed him to open the door for me when we would leave or go to class. When I first started dating my boyfriend, I thought it was foreign that he would carry my luggage when I came to visit for the weekend. I would always tell them "don't worry, I got it" as if it was as simple as picking up the check for dinner. Then one day that same friend asked me why did I insist on not letting him be a gentleman and then I realized something: chivalry isn't laying in a casket six feet under with a death certificate dating back to many decades ago. It was that question that sparked a whole bunch of other questions in my mind like when did we as women stop thinking that men should be gentlemen and do courteous things for us? When did our expectations and standards stoop to a new low? Where are all the chivalrous men at? How and when did the mothers and/or fathers teach (or not teach) their boys the importance of being a chivalrous man?

The only we can ever bring chivalry back to life fully is if we make it a part of our norm. As it stands right now, chivalry is foreign to a lot of people my age. All that means is that it's not something that's widely taught or something that is widely expected. As a female, we should expect chivalry from men. Now keep in mind that even if we do change our mind frame that not everyone will be receptive to this, but don't worry: they're just not up to the challenge. But make make chivalry part of your standards and slowly but surely we can bring it back to life.

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