Expectations of Men
It's hard to love a man for who he is when you expect him to be much more than who he is.
You come to him with father hunger that you don't understand. you desperately want your husband and sons to be the ideal man... or perfect father.
A love you could have is blocked by the one you didn't know
Look at your husband tonight. See in him the boy that had to be too strong, the man who had to be too powerful and the father who felt inadequate.
Like you, your husband has been trapped by socialization. Understanding his inner-boy could help you feel compassion and be more forgiving of him.
Kiss Your Life... 365 Reasons to Love Who You Are
By: Ann Mody Lewis, Ph.D.
Reason: 78 Page: 96
So many of our expectations feel personal, but they really are cultural. Its culture that makes us yearn to be normal...even to the point of death. Men seem to wear their expectations very deeply within. Wanting to be a man can drive his ambitions, depress him, and ultimately make him sick.
Because we glamorize manhood, most of us fail to see the prevalence of depression among men. "More men in the UK have died by suicide in the past year than all the British soldiers fighting in all wars since 1945." "Being male is now the single largest demographic factor for early death for men under fifty." To escape their depression many men create a pretend life. Only they know about this pretend life. Its secrecy separates them from the love they need to be healthy.
While in some ways we expect men to be heroic. We are just as motivated to excuse their lack of virtue. Men too, collaborate to excuse the sins of other men; because, even if they don't like one another, they are loyal to idea of masculine privilege. Coaches excuse the abuse of other coaches. Pastor, Bishops and Cardinals protect predators in religious institutions. Executives look the other way when their co-executives abuse subordinates.
Our expectations of men vacillate between idealization and disgust. Is it time we ask ourselves: Can any man be BIG enough for the glory of manhood or honest enough to face down the truth about culture? Men who are silent must speak about their lives...and we must listen. Only if we listen will we be able to separate healthy expectations from those that slaughter the happiness of countless men.
A Gender Liberation Movement is the only way to free both sexes from the rigid roles of the past that represent a false normal, so we can create a flexible and healthy future. Our discussion this month is calling men and women together to protect the lives of our sons.
When Jesus was asked: "Who do you say you are?
He replied: "I am who I am."
All of sons deserve the opportunity to discover who they are. This month's discussion is not supposed to polarize readers, but invite them to appreciate the unhealthy expectation of men; so we can help men create a healthy future. Discussions will involve: How gender controls the lives of men. How gender doesn't prepare men for family life. Why do most men dread fatherhood rather than embrace it? Are men ready for a healthier future?
Let's talk about expectations of men. Because the world needs them to LIVE!