Sunday, September 18, 2011

"Snow White Syndrome"

Disney is a very helpful indicator of problems in cultural values. This popular song from the movie Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs is a prime example of cultural illness:
Some day my prince will come,
Some day we’ll meet again
And away to his castle we’ll go
To be happy forever I know…

Some day when spring is here
We’ll find our love anew
And the birds will sing
And wedding bells will ring
Someday when my dreams come true.

My apologies for inflicting that song upon you, dear readers. But this Disney song perfectly displays two peculiar types of foolishness that many females suffer from. Combined, these types of foolishness can be termed “Snow White Syndrome.” 
The first is the belief of many women that a handsome, flawless prince will sweep a woman off her feet and love her forever. 
The problem is, very, very few men are actually the handsome princes that infatuated women believe them to be. Men, even good and honest men, are imperfect creatures, who sometimes fall into sin and error. Men will sometimes fail women and bring pain to them. And women who believe otherwise are bound to be disappointed.
This tendency is based upon a common trait in women. Men tend to fall in love with women as they are. Women tend to fall in love with an idealized version of men: what they think men will turn out to be.  
This phenomenon does serve a purpose. It is part of the power of a good woman to be able to influence her chosen man for the better. The ability of woman to “see” what a man can be, properly utilized, allows her to help her man become a better person.
But every gift, misused, becomes a curse. And the tendency of women to idealize men, divorced from the understanding that it is woman’s role (and indeed responsibility) to make the man a stronger and better person, leads to disaster.
The second and related error is that many women accept the “happily ever after” myth that Disney and so many other entertainment venues provide. Often, women believe in the fantasy that their lives will be perfect after they find “the one.” This is an even more dangerous delusion than the first.
Any relationship requires a LOT of work to build and strengthen. Marriage takes even more work to develop and maintain. And there will be bumps along the road in any marriage. There will be strain, disagreement, and discord in even the best of relationships. To believe otherwise is self-delusion. 
The "happily ever after" notion does great harm to those who are credulous to believe it. Women who expect everlasting bliss after finding "the one" are bound to be disappointed – and their relationships will suffer as a result.

Note: Read the editor's note in the comment section.

1 comment:

  1. Editor's note:

    While the second part is very dangerous, it does also serve a purpose. What it is supposed to be is the realization that marriage is a permanent and exalted calling. It is not simply a drive by, "let's try this out and then leave, I'm only in this if I feel like it arrangement." What society has done is to tell women that there are no consequences, that it is both easy and profitable to have the love you want without any of the fears or work that comes with it. The women in fairy tales come out believing that everything will come to them, not that they actually have to do something to earn the trust that they receive. There are a lot of interlocking issues here that society has been drumming on the doors trying to get women to believe such as: "you're not fulfilled if you are not attached to a man," "all that has to happen is that a man has to look at you," "once gotten always gotten," "no suffering and work necessary to get the right man," and "if you're not feeling it it was not meant to be."


Rules for Posting Comments:
1)All commentary is to be respectful.
2)Foul language/crude commentary is prohibited.
3)Use proper punctuation and capitalization.
4)Keep all posts in understandable English.
5)Refrain from personal/ad hominem attacks.
6) Sarcasm, humor, and witty commentary are welcomed.
All posts that violate these rules will be removed.
And the most important rule:
7) All posts are to reflect a spirit of Christian charity.