No one ever taught me how to be a Man.
I love my two fathers (dad and step-dad). I’m truly blessed to have both of these good men in my life. But it was my two mothers (mom and step-mom) who were the strong leaders in my early life, who held the families together and made sure that I always knew everything would be ok.
My dads were never fully present for me and often seemed to be hanging on to their wives, my moms, for dear life. One was an alcoholic and the other I mostly interacted with by phone during the formative years of my life.
I didn’t just grow up with absent and weak-masculine fathers.
Surely like you, I have been immersed in a world dominated by warped, immature expressions of masculinity:
Constantly sexualizing women.
Woman-magnet, gun-toting hero-worship.
Power-focused blame-game government politics.
Bullying from every angle.
A win-at-all-costs / winner-take-all competitive ethos.
Anti-feminine misogyny of infinite variety.
Even the offensive words I learned to use as a young boy to assert dominance: pxssy, bitch, fag, crybaby, nancy-boy, coxksucker, motherfuxker. All insults that strike their blow by chopping down the Feminine. My personal favorite is “douchebag.” I figure anything that helps keep our beautiful women’s life-yielding vaginas clean and healthy should be reserved for only the highest of praise. Yet it’s merely a tool for insult. … us and our misogynistic genital shame.
Generations of western men are in crisis.
We don’t know how to step up as mature masculine men in our relationships with women.
At 39, I’m only now discovering what this immature masculine ethos has cost me and the women I’ve been in relationship with. I’ve demeaned my female partners by treating them as emotionally-flawed versions of men. I’ve run away from them, fed up and disgusted, when they only needed me to stand fast and love them deeply. I’ve lied because I thought their weaker sensitivities couldn’t handle difficult truth (little did I know I was the one who couldn’t handle it). I’ve used their bodies for my pleasure and then disappeared quick as I came, so to speak.
I’ve failed my feminine partners in countless heartbreaking ways because no one ever taught me how to be a Man.
I don’t mean details like paying for everything or being the one to get the car fixed or simply opening doors. I don’t believe in fixed and firm rules like this.
I simply mean that no one ever taught me how to show up in my life and the lives of those around me … FULLY PRESENT … AS. A. MAN.
I see so much of it now. My heart still breaks as I look back and see the wake of female wreckage I created in years past. Sure, they had their own growing up to do. Let me not condescend now by suggesting that I – a man – was solely responsible for these “poor girls’” experiences. Of course not. That’d just be self-righteous misogyni in disguise … hey … I see you.
Nonetheless, I see so clearly how I failed to show up for the women in my life, over and over and over.
Today, our boys are still in crisis. They commit suicide at a higher rate than girls. They feel isolated and angry. They’re the ones shooting up schools.
Naturally, our girls are in crisis, too.
Our world is confused as ever. We’re disconnected from the profound gifts of our true masculine/feminine core. And we’re infusing a new generation of boys and girls with the same stunted-growth versions of masculinity and femininity.
Fortunately, we’re collectively beginning to grow wise to this deception.
I’m certainly seeing it.
As I near my 40th birthday, the mature masculine Man in me is finally waking. He’s a fuxking Giant … in Heart, Vision, Commitment … and appreciation for the Feminine.
And He’s on a Mission.
Related Post: “Women are not defective Men (and Vice Versa)“