Episode 137

Define: Masculinity and Femininity | ACW137


August 16th, 2021

42 mins 23 secs

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About this Episode

Do you have any resources to recommend for approaching body image and an eating disordered past with Theology of the Body? What is the definition of masculinity and femininity?

Ask Christopher West is a weekly podcast in which Theology of the Body Institute President Christopher West and his beloved wife Wendy share their humor and wisdom, answering questions about marriage, relationships, life, and the Catholic faith, all in light of John Paul II’s beautiful teachings on the Theology of the Body.

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Patron Question:
Dear Christopher and Dear Wendy, thank you for the wonderful work you do. I love to listen to you two while driving; I feel you are part of my family. My husband and I are practicing catholics and saved ourelves from sex until we were married. My husband is a holy man, I think of St. Joseph when I see him. He is always giving his life for me and our children through loving sacrifice and gift of himself. This is why I want to make him happy and I struggle with the following situation. During our marital embrace, my husband has never felt his own climax even though he ejaculates, he cannot feel anything. I often suggest to him that we look for help to figure out what is wrong, but he insists he accepts this as a mortification, that helps him not focus on the pleasure but on the love he has for me. I know the end of the sexual embrace is not the pleasure, but God wanted that pleasure to be there for a reason. Should we look for help? Should we accept it and let it be? Is it wrong to let it be? Thank you and God bless you.

Question 2:
Do you have any resources to recommend for approaching body image and an eating disordered past with Theology of the Body? Although I do not have an eating disorder any more, praise God, I still have wounds from my past in these areas and after praying about this for some time and listening to your podcast, I am certain that Theology of the Body and the healing of Jesus in the Eucharist are a necessary part of the healing process. I would love some guidance on where to start with this. Thank you so much for considering my question and God bless you.

Qestion 3:
My question is this: What is masculinity and femininity? a definition perhaps? What does the Church say? Are they complete binaries only found within their corresponding gender? I have often observed that sometimes a man may seemingly possess more feminine characteristics than other men and that some women seem more masculine than other women, not just on a superficial level but more so in their character. Why might this be? If both masculinity and femininity come from God would it make sense to find aspects of each "intertwined" within one person regardless of gender? Lastly, does masculinity and femininity become more pure the holier we become? I have a feeling that my understanding of these concepts is a little mixed up and I would love to hear your thoughts on these mysteries.

Submit your question at AskChristopherWest.com.

Resources mentioned this week:

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Christopher and Wendy hope their advice is helpful to you, but they are not licensed counseling professionals. If you are dealing with serious issues, please consult our list of trusted professionals.

Featuring music by Mike Mangione.