Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Igorot Men Are Not Sweet Lovers. True Or False?

About a week ago, I was browsing through one of the many Cordilleran groups on Facebook when I came across a thread wherein the main post said something about Igorot men being not expressive enough when it comes to professing their love to their girlfriends or wives. Apparently, they fail miserably in the sweetness department. It was of course posted in a joking manner but still it had me thinking.

To answer the question "Are Igorot men sweet lovers or not?", first we need to define what is meant by the term "sweet" in the context of a man having feelings towards a woman. The common understanding of the term is that a sweet man is someone who is rather generous or bold when it comes to expressing his affections. He holds the girl's hand in public. He buys her flowers. He sends her boxes of Toblerones. He ends his text messages to her with mwuah's. He serenades her at her place of residence. He picks her up at school and accompanies her home. These are just among the instances that would make an observer exclaim "Wow, ang sweet naman." It's therefore safe to say that this is how most of us define the expression sweet.

Calling Igorot men not that sweet is a form of stereotyping but as we all know stereotypes carry some truth to them. There's basis to them, a foundation if you may. Like Ilocanos are often tagged as kuripot or taga-Kiangans are deemed pilosopo. People did not just come up with these conclusions out of thin air.
Photo from Credits to the owner/photographer.
Based on how we defined the term sweet above, let's go back to the question "Are Igorot men sweet lovers or not?" It's not of course black and white so the question can't be answered by a definitive yes or no. However, if we are to compare Igorot men with men from other groups, say the Tagalogs or the Ilocanos or the Bicolanos, I think most of us would agree when I say that Igorot men's "level of sweetness" pales in comparison  to the other groups mentioned.

Why is this the case? Why are Igorot men not that expressive when it comes to matters of the heart? Is it because of our cultural and traditional roots? We'll try to answer these questions in Part II of this planned three-part article series. We'd like to hear your thoughts and reactions so please feel free to leave your comments in the comments section below.

Related story: What Does The Common Cordilleran Word "Taraki" Mean?