To be a man

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To be a man

Diane Abbott is due to give a speech tomorrow about a “masculinity crisis” that we are suffering from in the UK. Well it’s good that she has let us know that we have an issue because it’s not something I was aware of myself.

She talks about the way we are “meant” to be and the way we apparently are a “Jack Daniels and Viagra” group. Nonsense. We are what we have become – useless. OR is it useful – I missed this month’s edition of “The right thing to say” magazine. She argues that with Feminism there has been an erosion of the classic male role in society and that we tend to become “increasingly pornified” with our outlook on life. Sorry Diane but you don’t seem to be living in the same world as me.

Men have changed roles I the last half century because of the rise of the role of the female and the strengthening and empowering of the last few generations of women. This may come across as a sexist thing to say – and that’s not my intention – but women have said more and more that they can’t do it all themselves and the idea of this “Superwoman” is a media construct. Therefore they need men as much as men need women – or in same sex relationships we need someone to share life with and share everything that life throws at us. To pigeon hole an entire sex like this is preposterous and fails to see modern society for what it is. We have a myriad of difference between groups of both sexes and different needs too. We are not a group that all work and behave in the same way.

In our house it’s a more traditional set up where I go out to work and my wife stays at home to look after the kids and the house. That’s a choice though and one we made together – not to fit any fixed view of our roles but because we decided it was the best thing to do. Seeing boys in school everyday they are all different and will lead different lives. Some boys will talk openly about feelings and thoughts – others will close up, but that’s not exclusive to one gender. We are who we need to be in life; we make choices and structure our lives accordingly. There’s nothing to say that in a few years that Jill will be the main breadwinner in our household and some would say that emasculates me and takes away my role in the relationship – not true it would again be a decision and discussion and I’d be happy to stay at home and let Jill develop her career instead.

Humans are not in two groups divided by sex, we are divided by money, society, parents, where we live, our life experiences and so on. We are a composite of our lives to that point and no two people have identical journeys. Just because I’m male doesn’t make me a certain way and Diane Abbott should respect that.

JD

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