In the world of porno parlour games, movie erotica and Jackie Collins' novels, the presence of 'bossy women' is a standard feature and fuels a range of escapist male fantasies. But in a society where traditional male roles are changing can forthright ladies be seen by some as a ball snipping threat to the male ego?
There are three typical views of 'bossy women' mainly reinforced through popular culture that of the sassy female boss in specs and high heels, the old battleaxe or the nagger, usually associated with henpecked husbands.
But in an age of so called sexual equality where as many women work in managerial and professional roles as men, why do some guys still find bossy women not just a challenge but also a turn off when it comes to dating?
Rebecca Newman, a sex shrink for GQ magazine in the UK, has her own views on why 'bossy women' can be a turn-off for some men.
"I think there is a level where many men are put off by incredibly oppressive women. A classic example is Sex and The City and its characters, such as Miranda the successful lawyer who can't even get laid.
"If a woman wants to impress a guy on a dating website she's more likely to do it if she talks about how fun she is, adventurous and loving, rather than saying that she's got ten PhDs and a BA in economics."
Some of the traits that guys mention they find difficult to deal with in 'bossy' women range from being 'over controlling' and 'scheduling their time' to 'always being right' with one of the biggest annoyances being 'choosing a guy's friends'.
But isn't the notion of 'bossy women' and calling them such simply a throwback to when sexism wasn't even an acknowledged concept?
"A bossy man certainly isn't such a problem in society in the same way" says Newman. "It's almost accepted because it reflects the status quo. It's been part of historical tradition that women were oppressed and stayed at home and even today this still feeds into the way that a woman tends to be called a 'slag' but a man would be called a stud or bachelor. Where a woman may be termed 'bossy' a man would just be called 'assertive' and I think the same behaviour in men and women is more tolerated in men."
There's no doubting that some guys are prone to a schizoid mentality towards women the old cliché of wanting a perfect motherly figure in the kitchen suddenly able to transform into the Whore of Babylon in the bedroom.
Likewise some men seem to have a problem taking orders from women but conversely also like the idea of a woman being sexually liberated and adventurous.
Perhaps that's why comic-strip, ass-kicking females like Barb Wire and Lara Croft are so popular with some men?
The problem it seems is that as 'traditional' roles for men have been changing over the past 30 years, guys can feel 'disenfranchised' if they're not the breadwinners or clubbing some unwitting female to take home to the urban cave.
But what's odd here is that most of these same guys with identity issues who seem threatened by a self-assured, high earning and even possibly argumentative woman, don't seem to have a problem with other men who are equally forthright, direct and generally bossy.
Perhaps rather than blaming women for a lack of spine fluid they should be examining why they hold onto double standards in a world where half the female population is working?
Why bossy women appeal
Conversely bossy women are exactly what some guys are looking for in life with the exception of those searching for a Mother-figure who fail to break away from the apron strings.
It may be a bit of a myth that behind every successful man there's a woman driving his career but it can't hurt a guy's promotional chances if his wife or girlfriend is smart, tenacious and can play a guy's employers with smooth manipulation.
If you do have problems with bossy women at home or work it may be a good idea to ask what it is that is so irritating. Is it because such women are demanding of your time or feeling that they are in a role of superiority? Do they make you feel obliged to do things you don't want or is it simply the fact that a particular woman is in a senior position?
If it's any of the above the issue may be one of boundaries rather than certain women being specifically bossy. Newman from GQ believes it's a matter of changing mental perspective.
"Maybe some guys are placing themselves in a position to allow a bossy woman to push them around? So learn to say no, you may be surprised by the reaction. It's important not just to develop a more assertive outlook but also to remember that these 'bossy' traits aren't to do with women in general they just happen to be personality traits of an individual."
Relocate your balls
Perhaps it's time for some guys to stop whinging about it not being a man's world anymore as if it ever was and to start being a bit more assertive themselves in their relationships.
After all, according to many surveys in women's magazines, besides wanting men who are sensitive, romantic and willing to share domestic duties, women also want guys to be confident, show initiative and display a bit of pre 'New Age Man' masculinity in body language and actions.
It's a bit of a challenging schizoid role to play but women today still fantasise about meeting the kind of man who has the confidence to walk up to her, start a conversation and sweep her off her feet.
Newman agrees, as long as the woman in question has an approachable nature.
"Even with the term 'bossy women' you can almost feel men's testicles contract. I think what's really off putting is that one person in a partnership should have this narcissism and an attitude that the whole world revolves around her. It's not good for a relationship or friendship and it'll mean he'll be hideous in bed. The idea of one domineering person dictating left, right and centre is as attractive as a bucket of cold water".