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Women are Blissful vs. Mothers are Pitiful

Posted December. 15, 2005 08:59,   


“Jewish men are so kind. We had sex in every corner of my apartment, and he tried really hard to arouse me. We were even getting very bold. But he didn’t know where the clitoris is.” (Rafi)

“Really? Did you show it to him?” (Lisa)

“Of course. He was an avid learner. He said he only slept with two women so far.” (Rafi)

“With two women?” (Lisa)

“I know why men search for young women. Fresh youth, hot body, cute innocence, and fiery passion!” (Rafi)

“Look. This is really awkward, so could you stop…”

“His penis was so beautiful I wanted to knit it a little hat!” (Rafi)

This is one of the main scenes in the over-15 rated movie “Prime.” Rafi (Uma Thurman) is a 37-year-old divorcee and Lisa (Meryl Streep) is her psychoanalyst. Rafi talks to Lisa about her first sex with a young man 14 years her junior. Then what’s wrong with this situation? It turns out that Lisa is the mother of Rafi’s 23-year-old lover.

How would Lisa feel, to be a therapist who cannot but listen to Rafi’s story because of her work ethics? And how about Rafi, the divorcee who just left an unsatisfying life to fall in love with a “boy” who loves her passionately? A 38-year-old single woman and a 43-year-old mother each step into Rafi’s and Lisa’s shoes and defend their positions. Who would you stand for?

38-year-old Single Woman -

Ah, how blissful Rafi is! Rafi is not the kind of woman who teaches sex to a boy to have fun with him afterwards. She wants to fill the man’s empty spots (or weak sexual knowledge) with her body. Women think they look great when they make love with a man who truly loves her. The same goes even when the partner is a young man 14 years her junior. When a woman is with a man who tries hard to satisfy her, the woman does not think, “I want to have fun with him,” but rather, “I want to give my all to him.” Rafi said, “I want to knit it a little hat” not because she looks down upon the man, but more because he is so precious to her. It is like how a mother feels as she places a hat on her son on a cold winter morning as he is getting ready for school, hoping he stays warm in the hat. Because of the difference in physical structure, women have fewer chances to see their private parts. Therefore Rafi’s act is an “act of witness” that can be shared only with a man whom a woman loves with all her heart.

43-year-old Mother with a Son in Middle School -

Ah, how pitiful all the mothers of the world are! Mothers cannot stand it when women other than themselves talk about their son’s private parts, even when the other woman is her son’s wife (or her daughter-in-law). Mothers cannot see her son’s body properly once he passes adolescence, but mothers comfort themselves with the thought that they “know everything about their sons.” So how devastated would Lisa have felt when suddenly a woman appears from nowhere and chats about how cute her son’s penis is! It is not simply the vigilance that she might be deprived of her position or her possession. It is more like the feeling of loss that comes from the realization that her son now belongs to another woman. By listening to Rafi mention “fresh youth, hot body,” Lisa comes to a depressing realization that her son is subordinated to a woman in a sexual relationship, and that he may eventually be subordinated to her emotionally as well.

Seung-Jae Lee sjda@donga.com