• Activity
  • Votes
  • Comments
  • New
  • All activity
  • Showing only topics with the tag "men". Back to normal view
    1. What's hard about being a man?

      I started reading Liz Plank's For the Love of Men: A New Vision for Mindful Masculinity, and it opens with the author's experiences asking men this question (emphasis mine): The more I read about...

      I started reading Liz Plank's For the Love of Men: A New Vision for Mindful Masculinity, and it opens with the author's experiences asking men this question (emphasis mine):

      The more I read about men’s relationship to directions and maps, the more it explained the absence of a substantive and open conversation about masculinity. While women are encouraged to ask questions, men are expected to pretend like they know everything even when they don’t, even when it comes to large and existential questions about their gender and their lives. As I traveled across the world, from Iceland to Zambia, I asked men the same question over and over again: What’s hard about being a man? Every single time I asked that question it was like I had just asked them if unicorns can swim.

      It was met with a pause, a smile, and then followed by another long pause followed by the words: “I’ve never actually thought of that.” When I asked women that same question about their gender—in other words, when I asked women what was hard about being a woman—it was like I had asked them to name every single thing they loved about puppies. I got nearly the same response from every woman I spoke to: “How much time do you have?” Judging from the conversations I would strike up with (half-)willing strangers, women had spent a lot of time thinking about how their gender impacts their lives, but men visibly hadn’t. While that conversation had been blossoming with women for decades, for men, accepting directions was proof that the system was broken, which goes against the natural impulses of what being a man means: not to admit confusion or ask questions.

      I thought it was a worthwhile question to consider, and I'm interested to hear how people here on Tildes would answer it.

      Also, while I'm confident in our community's ability to apply the principle of charity, I do know that discussions about gender online can often become contentious. I would very much like this to be a place for people to be able to share open and honest truths about themselves, even if those are difficult or revealing. If you are replying to someone, especially someone who has just opened up about their own personal experiences or beliefs, please make sure you are being thoughtful and considerate when doing so.

      Finally, while the question is specifically about men, I don't want to limit responses to men only. I think women and non-binary people definitely have valuable insights into masculinity as well and I welcome your voices should you choose to answer.

      49 votes
    2. Thoughts on male relationships

      Right now, the number one post on my personal Reddit feed is this: https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/9bryj8/straight_guys_of_reddit_whats_the_most_intimate/ Reading through this made me...

      Right now, the number one post on my personal Reddit feed is this: https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/9bryj8/straight_guys_of_reddit_whats_the_most_intimate/

      Reading through this made me feel quite a few different emotions, but I would say that my biggest takeaway is disappointment.

      I'm pretty young, being in my late twenties, but I know that the largest Reddit demographic is younger than me. And it terrifies me to see that people who are probably less than 15 years younger than me appear to be far more stricken by toxic masculinity than I was when I was their age. Right now the top response is a story about someone scratching his friend's back during a military deployment. He later mentions that his comrades gave him a hard time for it. Is the idea of machismo so fragile that we cannot take simple actions - even to provide relief to a friend?

      I'll be the first to admit that a single AskReddit thread is not going to be an accurate representation of the levels of intimacy men actually give each other. But the simple fact that it's full of jokes, to me, makes it appear that they are using humor as a defense mechanism.

      The fact that young men have so many barriers preventing them from building bonds with other men in a society often partitioned by gender deeply concerns me. I worry that this is the beginning of a societal issue in the same vein as racism was for our parents and grandparents and will only cause more problems as we age and gain political sway.

      I'm bringing this up here because I would like some perspective on this. I've always been very sympathetic to other people, and my views as a gay man are obviously going to be different from straight men. Where is this toxicity coming from? Is there a way we can stop it, or is it already ingrained in the collective psyche?

      29 votes