This Is What Being A Man REALLY Means, Because It’s Not All About Masculinity

guy in route 66 arizona t-shirt in the summer sunset on the beach
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Being a man is uneasy.

Being a man means standing alone because in a world like ours, we teach males to suppress their emotions instead of expressing them. We tell them that needing a woman means being weak. And so they never choose love because they are strong, independent beings. We make men scared to let someone in, to talk about who they are, to be seen by another. We tell them that they are the ones in-charge, so they never learn to ask for help and when they do they feel ashamed.

We don’t support men in speaking-up about the abuse and sexual assault they experience. We don’t provide services like we should for men who are in abusive relationships and men who are in the sex business by force. Then, we wonder why the definitions of masculinity is often misunderstood. It’s because we fail our men when we put them in a box and tell them who they need to be. Instead of allowing them safe spaces where they can be who they really are, stripped down from the mask they wear along with the stereotypes and the unrealistic expectations.

Being a man means not leaving when things get difficult, it means staying. A man doesn’t abandon his significant other because they got in a fight, he goes to couple’s therapy to learn healthy ways of communication. A man doesn’t give his woman the silent treatment when she does him wrong, he takes time out then he addresses it with her. A man doesn’t project his insecurities on his woman, he works through them.

A man doesn’t commit to a woman he has no genuine intentions for, he lets her go so she can find someone who she deserves. A man doesn’t say goodbye to the love of his life because she deserves someone better, he becomes better. A man doesn’t blame his wife for his shortcomings, he owns up to his mistakes and does all he can to fix them. A man doesn’t stop fighting for his relationship and a man doesn’t gives-up on his woman.

A man doesn’t control everyone else around him, he gives them the freedom to be who they are and to choose for themselves. A man protects his family and doesn’t take them for granted. A man doesn’t hit his wife or children because he had a bad day, he opens up about his day. A man doesn’t run away from his responsibilities, he takes care of them. A man teaches everyone around him what love, respect, and trust are because a man leads by example.

A man apologizes when he’s wrong.

A man breaks the cycle of oppression. A man earns his place in the world instead of using it as a privilege. A man supports his fellow men instead of competing with them. A man stands-up for women’s rights instead of disregarding them. A man looks after animals and nature instead of harming them. A man doesn’t take advantage of the vulnerable, he helps them. And a man doesn’t belittle knowledge, he seeks education.

A man isn’t all masculine—he’s vulnerable, he’s weak, and he’s human.

A man allows his family and friends to support him, he doesn’t push them away and pretend that he doesn’t need them. A man talks about his childhood and the losses he experienced in life. A man shows his woman his insecurities. A man doesn’t build a wall between him and the rest of the world, he builds a bridge.

A man isn’t abusing, he’s loving.

A man isn’t selfish, he’s generous.

A man isn’t a player, he’s committed.

A man isn’t perfect, he’s always growing.

Being a man is a beautiful thing, it’s something to be celebrated not deemed and recognized not ignored. Thought Catalog Logo Mark

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