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Thread: Alpha Females?

  1. #1
    Let me count the ways Betty Blue's Avatar
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    Default Alpha Females?

    So i became interested after a close friend told me i was one last night.
    I'm not keen on several the descriptions in the article at all, and it is yet another box i would not like to be "put" in.

    Link to article

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2003/sep/22/gender.uk


    Excerpt:

    "Achievement is the focus of alpha female's life; anything else is secondary. She does not obsess about relationships. She is dominant: if she married alpha male, there would be a bloodbath. Novelist Fay Weldon sees alpha female running corporations, paying little or no attention to the domestic sphere - which is where she differs from Superwoman: "Superwoman was everything man and woman wanted her to be: she did everything and was a good wife, earned a good salary and kept the carpets shampooed. Alpha woman wouldn't concern herself with housework: she would find someone else to whom she would delegate."



    Going by the descriptions in the article i don't see much in common with myself. But i do see some.

    Does anyone else identify?
    Does anyone else see the "alpha female" in friends/family/celebrity?
    What do you make of the idea of this?


    I have some ideas but they are floating as yet. I shall add more later.
    Last edited by Betty Blue; 03-03-2012 at 09:02 AM. Reason: checked myself
    "We knew he was someone who had a tragic flaw, that's where his greatness came from"

  2. #2
    Senior Member Survive & Stay Free's Avatar
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    I'm yet to meet any alpha females, most of the supposed alpha males I've met are over compensators for secret doubts and personality flaws.

  3. #3
    Senior Member lauranna's Avatar
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    I know one pretty well. I work with her and have known her as a friend for years. She is an ESTJ intent on world domination. She is a single mother, works away from home. Has an au pair look after her home/kid. She has her own company and is pushing to take over more and more contracts.

    She earns a lot of money but she also spends a lot. Her basic outgoings are huge, for the status symbols, the nice house and car, the child, all her other dependents (the au pair, the dog, the cat, the hamsters, the useless trophy girlfriend) And she is always overspending on designer clothes, alcohol, holidays. I am not entirely sure why she is not more financially astute. She is often having financial crisis and borrowing money. I always thought she would be better with money, given her alpha female type status.

    She likes her home and everything to be immaculate, clean and tidy, but likes to pay someone else to do it. She likes the idea of having a child but really she is nobody's idea of a good mother. Again she likes to pay someone else to bring up her child. Even when she isn't working, she rarely spends time with the kid.

    So yeah, I'm not saying alpha females can't have it all, but this particular one is a pain in the ass. (Mostly because I have to be closer to her than I actually want to be) And I feel sorry for the kid. Although she is fun on a night out.

    In fact, thinking about it I seem to get mixed up with a LOT of ESTJs. Maybe they want in some way to control me... mostly they just annoy me.

  4. #4

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    Women do not like alpha female very much, nor do they want to be like her. Women want to be liked, which holds them back.
    I find this to be a rather irritating generalization about women and, having been an employee of an "alpha female," I can say that even alpha females want to be liked. Almost everyone (gender unspecific) wants to be liked and accepted in some way by someone. And no, I don't think this natural desire holds people back at all. If anything, I think it introduces tact into their dealings with others, which is essential when you're trying to get your ideas across. Without tact, you're just a bulldozer plowing through to your vision and to hell if anyone actually understands where you're going. This does not a good business model make.

    I find the idea that a person who is "strong" and a "good leader" has to be brazen, outspoken and not afraid of stomping on others as shortsighted and, frankly, bullshit. People don't tend to like these alpha people because they are all of those things. So, pray tell me, what makes a generally disliked person a good leader of the general populace?

    No, give me a leader who is egalitarian, listens to others and doesn't have their own hidden agenda of "gaining success" that they're trying to feed into because it makes them feel worthwhile as a person. I don't want your ego messing all over something that is supposed to be a collaboration. There is nothing to be gained from that.

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    Post Human Post Qlip's Avatar
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    Yeah, I work with one. She dated a slew of men that would kowtow to her and found one to mary. She does anything she can to get recognition, including throwing people under the bus. Everybody hates working with her. If she were a bit smarter, then she would've been further ahead by now. Also, if she were a man she would be further ahead by now. I hate that that's a factor, but I personally equally dislike males like that, so I'm being egalitarian.

  6. #6
    FRACTALICIOUS phobik's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lark View Post
    I'm yet to meet any alpha females, most of the supposed alpha males I've met are over compensators for secret doubts and personality flaws.
    I wouldn't limit those along with a possibly longer list to a single gender only.
    To avoid criticism, do nothing, say nothing, be nothing.
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  7. #7
    Dali
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    There was an ESTJ in my uni class, she was invariably voted facilitator/leader of every major class project we undertook or every class group she was in - mostly because of her brilliance and competence - and was also the valedictorian of our graduating class. She was pretty much like Meryl Streep's character in the Devil Wears Prada. She never raised her voice but she had this steely aura of authority about her; you couldn't help but respect her. She also managed to be social yet maintain this emotional distance from everyone else in the class so no one ever really knew what was going on with her, aside from her INFJ bff (who was a close friend of mine). She was also conventionally beautiful, though that's neither here nor there. Anyway, future CEO, IMO.

    I often wondered whether she was happy though.

    I befriended her on FB about two years after we graduated. Geez. EVERYTHING that is not 'normal/conventional' by her standards outrages or annoys her. Her status updates are basically rants. I wouldn't rule out future dictator either.

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    Senior Member Hera's Avatar
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    Alpha female/male is, to me, a term for a woman/man that is highly respected in his/her own right for their leadership qualities or even their ability to be a deviation from others in a very significant way. I can relate to some concepts of what an alpha female is, but I am not an extreme example. I am dominant and domineering, though I think people close to me don't "see" this as much as strangers do. My dominance is very low-key; I have a way of getting it across without it being suffocating or in your face. Although I don't think I am entirely opposed to the domestic sphere, I am not opposed to the idea of what comes with it. I would, eventually, like to have a family. But I want it on my terms, and I want it when I'm ready for it. This term is used loosely to describe women with no urge to have families and are career focused. I am not either in any intense fashion.

  9. #9
    Senior Member Survive & Stay Free's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by phobik View Post
    I wouldn't limit those along with a possibly longer list to a single gender only.
    I agree, although most of the women I've known who're "alpha" females or aiming to be what they believe is "alpha" are aping men that are in executive positions, in fact the whole thing is laden with management metaphors to be honest and smacks of the authoritarian personality which Adorno and Fromm analysed.

  10. #10
    78% me Eruca's Avatar
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    Ridiculous.

    The popular psychology idea of the alpha male groups many traits associated with dominance (aggressiveness, confidence, competence, a controlling nature and an invisible babe magnet) and gives a pseudo-evolutionary explanation based on the pack dynamic of wolves and apes: these animals have an alpha (a dominant male) in each pack that rules it, therefore humans, as social animals, must also have such leaders and they must be called alphas. So the popular idea of the Alpha is justified. But why is this true, accurate and a useful category?

    Keep in mind Im not saying there aren't people with the traits listed above. I agree that there exist people who have them. I just wonder why we have decided to call them Alphas. I can only assume the term must be used to bring up the ideas of humans as pack animals, humans in a dynamic of power, humans interacting in a natural way. These traits made alphas amongst animals therefore they must make alphas amongst humans.

    Why are we following the rules of the jungle? We are no longer animals. Fine. I'll role with it. In fact I'll argue from this position.

    As far as I know in packs of social animals, such as the apes, it is expected that the alpha male breed with the alpha female. The alpha female submits to the alpha male. She must, as she has a lower status. If the current alpha male dies, a new one will take his place and she will submit to him in the same way. This is natural for their species, as I assume it was once for us.

    I assume then, if the term Alpha is to have any meaning beyond the arbitrary grouping of certain traits it is in its justification as "natural" to us. It follows, then, that it is natural for alpha females, as well as any other females in the social group, to be submissive (sexually and over-wise) to the group's dominant alpha. Therefore I hope that every female who claims their boyfriend is alpha is prepared to submit to him under all circumstances, as is only natural. I also hope all the "alpha" women out there understand their dominance ends as soon as they meet an alpha man. Its only natural.
    I hope I'm wrong, but I believe that he is a fraud, and I think despite all of his rhetoric about being a champion of the working class, it will turn out to be hollow -- Bernie Sanders on Trump

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