Thanks for writing this.
Not just a perception, it is true that men aren’t well suited to talk-therapies or go to the doctor since in almost every culture and from a very young age they are prepared to just accept, suck it up, don’t cry or express any sort of need for support. This is offered and setup as a major weakness that they struggle to shed after leaving the protective ‘wing’ of their parents, so to speak.
Tragically the suicide statistics reveal a need for therapy across the board. From work to relationships, it is important for men to be independent, the lone wolf tough exterior has always been valued by both genders. You can see it in the quality of conversation boys have amongst themselves when treated poorly within their own peer group: usually and constantly made fun off as opposed to girls who usually get more support and sympathy from within. Usually not always.
The same society that is usually blamed for the unfair burden placed on women in several areas, is never questioned when placing the same pressures on boys/men. Body shaming isn’t only reserved for girls; both genders happily make fun of the wimpy kid. Media constantly berates men with a women smart, man stupid message — this is constant, everyday and via all channels. Whether purchasing insurance, duct tape or viagra.
To the point that the terms “Boys” and “emotional skills” can’t possibly belong in the same sentence, unless you’re poking fun at someone. (I know you’re not, but you get my point). Serious consequences indeed: We’ve seen other unfortunate manifestations of this unsupported emotional turmoil with the spate of violence in schools and elsewhere.
Identity from work & relationships is equally important to all, however I don’t see any ostensible effort to make boys and men feel special at all today. This will instantly be perceived by many as catering to a cause that does not exist. As in how can boys and men possibly be any kind of victim here?
But I think you understand and have wonderfully captured the same in your article.
So thank you.