Just to show that women are truly different and each individual wants completely different things, I wanted to write about my favorite Disney princess. (My reasons for using Disney are twofold: 1-In order to continue the theme begun by my eloquent co-writer, Sapphire. And 2- Because most people, especially women, have seen the Disney movies and they are highly relatable.)
My favorite Disney princess is, and probably always will be Ariel from the Little Mermaid. Aside from all of the amazing songs (which I still sing on a regular basis in my shower) I love the general message sent about relationships.
Let me tell it from my possibly-feminist-biased point of view: (Feel free to skip to the next paragraph to get to the point)
Ariel sees Eric and falls in love entirely. (Like, Sapphire, I am a bit uncomfortable with this aspect, but for arguments’ sake I’ll overlook it.) Basically, she sees what she wants. Then she rescues the guy. I love this! She makes that hurricane her %#&@$! Then, Eric also instantly falls in love with her and her voice. (At least they are equally unbelievable.) Ariel stands up to the Man (her father) and convention to defend her love. After which she goes to extremes to get what she wants. When we see Eric again, we discover through causal conversation that he has also been searching for his lost love. (Granted, at this point I am a bit miffed he doesn’t make the connection between his savior and the girl in rags; however, in his defense, Ariel’s voice is a very memorable feature.) Is Ariel deterred by his thickheaded-ness? No, sir! She keeps at it. She gets awfully close, too. Until Eric is hypnotized by the Sea Witch; and Ariel must rescue him again! (You go girl!) Finally, Eric sees what has been right in front of him. She gets taken away from him, and he in turn rescues her. Love!
So, in short, it’s a fairly equal relationship. Yes, for those keeping score, Ariel does a bit more than Eric. However, Eric comes back in the end (as Sapphire points out) which sort of makes up for it. I really like that model. If something is just too much for one to bear (either a gigantic Sea Witch or a hurricane) the other comes to lend a helping fin or ship or whatever.
Perhaps we all have been influenced a bit too much by our experiences in childhood, because, like Sapphire, this has largely been what I’ve looked for in a relationship. Equality. I want a man who will rescue me, but I want to feel secure knowing that I will rescue him right back when he needs it.