Being A Man Is Harder Than You Think: 50 Men Explain Why

Flickr R. Halfpaap
Flickr R. Halfpaap
Found on AskReddit.

1. It’s so lonely.

“It’s so lonely.”


2. If I am abused or exploited in a relationship, I have no recourse.

“If I am abused or exploited in a relationship, I have no recourse.”


3. We don’t have anyone to talk to.

“We don’t have anyone to talk to.”


4. We have to deal with rejection on an entirely different level.

“Rejection. We have to deal with rejection on an entirely different level. Women will get depressed when they don’t get approached enough. We’re taught that we have to play a numbers game. We’re expected to approach woman after woman, get rejected to our face, not let it affect us on any personal level, and continue on to the next woman until we find someone who’s game.

We can’t let the rejections affect our ego at all, no cracks in our armor allowed. Because the number one thing a guy has to have is CONFIDENCE. Gotta have confidence bro. Don’t let women get you down, there’s another one out there. It’s to the point where I want to call it confidence-shaming.

So to a point you have to develop sociopathic tendencies and kill your sense of empathy so you can maintain your ego. That’s what it takes to not give a shit about the women who reject you. And that has consequences.”


5. We hurt inside as much as women do. We’ve just been taught to suppress it.

“We hurt inside as much as women do. We’ve just been taught to suppress it, so when we do actually cry or articulate our emotional pain, the odds are very high that even those displays are heavily muted….You probably have no idea how much we do hurt.”


6. As a man, nobody cares about you.

“I think the most important thing that is worth mentioning, is that as a man, nobody cares about you. If they do, you probably had to earn it in some way rather than just being valued for your humanity. You can be the shittiest, most shallow (and even proud of that fact,) immature, and self-centered, validation-seeking asshole as a woman and people will be falling all over themselves to be your friend, to help you, to get you to come to their party, to date you, etc. As a man you can be the most attractive, mature, well-rounded, put-together, and emotionally intelligent guy around and it’s still a fight to get people to pay attention to you. On a subtle and sub-communicated level, it’s like having an argument to prove your worth in order to get people to acknowledge you and in some cases even show you the most basic human respect.

This is not like an ‘oh boo-hoo, poor me’ type of comment, either. There are, I’m sure, down sides of being a woman (or any human grouping) that I have never imagined, but this question is about men, and that is a reality of being a man, and I don’t think a lot of women realize that. I’m not condoning the bad behavior, but you would be shocked and in all honestly probably very sad and sympathetic, towards some of those weird, creepy, or slightly inappropriate guys if you realized that for the majority of them, that behavior is the result of a lifetime of alienation from almost all positive social facets of society. That really maybe, besides maybe their parents or immediate family nobody has ever shown them real love or let them know that they have value, which has likely either kept them from ever learning real social skills or caused them to develop such a resentment for the world that they just don’t give a fuck anymore so now they seem weird or creepy, so people treat them badly which just makes it worse. I said this to somebody yesterday but I sometimes hear the complaint that there aren’t enough ‘good men,’ to which my response is, if you want more good men, treat more men like they are good. You really personally have a lot of control over this.”


7. Body-shaming happens to men as well.

“How body-shaming happens to men as well. As a former high school linebacker and as a guy that gained weight due to surgery, I can tell you that the men that have decent bodies are on a different level than men that don’t. Men that don’t look ‘good’ are reminded every day of how inadequate they are.”


8. I’m pretty sure it’s even worse when you’re black.

“As a black guy, being a bogeyman of sorts. I’m sure other guys experience this, but I’m pretty sure it’s even worse when you’re black. Women tend to be pretty afraid of you when you walk behind them in the afternoon or at night. I’m not trying to scare you, I’m just trying to get home.”


9. It physically hurts when you hit us.

“It physically hurts when you hit us. I don’t know why women feel they can playfully punch us all the time. We’re not impervious to pain. We’re human beans!”


10. It’s supposedly okay to insult us to our faces.

“It’s hard. People think we’re given everything, so we get a lot of shit. Since we’re supposed to be stoic and emotionless, it’s supposedly okay to insult us to our faces. We don’t get compliments. We don’t get nice things said to us. We’re supposed to bottle everything we feel up.

Believe it or not, we’re also objectified at every turn, too. My Facebook feed is littered with mostly naked guys in suggestive poses, yet I would get slammed if I posted a sexy cosplay girl. Meanwhile, if a guy is even slightly overweight, he’s portrayed as a dumb, worthless lunk. But if a guy is too muscular? He’s a dumb, meatheaded lunk. There’s no guy equivalent of ‘girl, you’re looking good today’ from your friends. No positive reinforcement. Only ‘do what you’re supposed to do.’ =/ There’s a reason we kill ourselves three times more than women do. I know if I didn’t have my cats, I’d be another one of them.”


11. Women can be astoundingly mean to men in the dating scene.

“Women can be astoundingly mean to men in the dating scene—and it affects us just as much as you.

Women will laugh at men, ignore them, give them the cold shoulder, etc. just for asking them out. Put yourself in the man’s situation and imagine asking a guy out you are very attracted to and having him treat it like an insult that you would think he’d consider you. Ya, that feeling is just how we feel.”


12. How terrified we are that you could ruin our lives with one accusation.

“How terrified we are that you could ruin our lives with one accusation.”


13. We pretty much go through life unnoticed (save for negative attention).

“We pretty much go through life unnoticed (save for negative attention).

I have been going to a pet supply store for about a decade and although I’m always greeted nicely, I’m generally left alone.

I walked in with a baby in a carrier one day, and I was greeted by everyone, and every single employee went out of their way to ask me what I was getting and if they could get it for me. I was fully capable for getting a 30lb bag of dog food and the baby but one employee simply wasn’t having it. He ran to the back to grab the food and carried it to the check out and then carried it to the car. I was shocked. I told my wife about it and she said, ‘They do that every time you go there don’t they?’ Apparently this is the service she receives every single time she goes there, or pretty much anywhere with decent customer service. She was shocked to hear that I didn’t receive the same service.”


14. We really do care about a lot more than society says we do.

“• How much we would like to feel wanted and not simply useful or needed.

• How much pressure there is on us in terms of body image. We hear about all the crap women go through, but ever stop to think about all the dick size jokes? That alone can cause insecurity, and that doesn’t even touch things like losing your hair, graying, muscle mass, etc.

• That we really do care about a lot more than society says we do. We’re just not allowed to show it because that’s a sign of weakness and we’re taught at a young age that you have to put up a perfect image or no one will ever want you.”


15. The unwritten expectations on ‘being a man’ are a big part of how our lives are shaped.

“The unwritten expectations on ‘being a man’ are a big part of how our lives are shaped. For some it works out fine, for others it’s a disaster.”


16. Men aren’t as sleazy and gratuitous as most women make us out to be.

“From my experience, women talk about sex with their friends much more, and in MUCH more graphic detail than men talk about the same subject with other guy friends. I guess my point is that men aren’t as sleazy and gratuitous as most women make us out to be.”


17. You’re depressed? You need to suck it up.

“We are taught from a young age that things don’t happen to you, they happen because of you.

You got a raise at work? Clearly you’re a hard worker.

Have a wife? Obviously you wooed her correctly.

Got divorced? You fucked up.

She just fell out of love with you? You should have fought harder for her.

You’re depressed? You need to suck it up.”


18. You have to be scared of kids.

“You have to be scared of kids. For example one time I was in the supermarket and a little kid came up to me and told me he was lost. But because people jump to call men pedophiles in the U.S., instead of walking the kid to the front or trying to help him find his mom and dad, I had to tell him to stand there and not to move, and I went to the front and got an employee. Now here’s the craziest thing. The first employee I found was male, and his response was ‘hang on, it’s store policy that male employees don’t handle these situations.’ So he had to go get a female employee who then helped the kid out. I asked the guy after why that was the policy (even tho I kinda knew the answer) and he explained to me that it’s happened before just in this store alone, where a male employee had gone to comfort a crying kid or help them find their parents, and either the parents or a stranger has accused them of trying to kidnap them. So if you haven’t thought about this before, there you go. Now if you see guys walking past a kid who’s lost, you know why a lot of them are. It’s not a lack of wanting to help, it’s the intense fear of being falsely labeled something.”


19. How awkward it is to cry or be emotional in front of other people.

“How awkward it is to cry or be emotional in front of other people, even in situations where it would be normal, such as funerals. Usually bottle that stuff up and save it for when you’re alone and then let it out so no one sees.”


20. The complete and total lack of regard or value for our own lives.

“The complete and total lack of regard or value for our own lives. Both internally, and all too often, externally.

I don’t mean to pick fights here…But when you hear about ‘women and children first,’ ‘men must register for the (military) draft,’ etc., it gets ingrained in you. You learn, slowly but surely, that your value is contingent upon what you do and not just who you are.

You never feel truly satisfied just being there. Just existing. You always feel like you have to constantly be working at something.

And, God forbid, you ever become unemployed. Then, you are essentially invisible. A homeless woman is often seen as more of a pity or someone to be sympathetic to—she must’ve been abused, raped, etc. A homeless man? He’s seen as a threat. He’s seen as an outcast. There is little sympathy. Even though, oftentimes, he may have gone through those same exact issues as the woman.

It often feels like, on a certain level, society tends to see any problems that women have as being externally caused, whereas men’s issues are often seen as his own failures, doings, etc. Men’s problems are seen as being internally caused.

Men are seen as having more control. Which can be beneficial if you’re wanting to be in a position of esteem and power. But it can also be harmful if you’re struggling with a mental illness or just to make ends meet.

And that’s why, I think, we so often refuse to seek help. We don’t want to admit that a problem might be there. Because we’re afraid that it’ll turn into an indictment of ourselves and no one will sit there and say… ‘It’s not your fault. You’re good enough. You’re valuable just as a human being.’

Because I’ve never felt that a man’s life is seen as unconditionally valuable. It’s valued so often based mostly on what he does or, failing that, doesn’t do.

Women and children, by contrast, are valued just by being. And it’s a bitter pill to swallow, once you grow up and become a man. You still remember being valued. But it’s just not there anymore. You’re supposed to have all this control. But you don’t.

Eventually, that pill all too often becomes literal…That’s why we turn to weed, sex, video games, painkillers, porn, the Internet, social media, alcohol, heroin…wherever we can escape to and pretend that we have control through or have value in.”


21. We fear being creep-shamed.

“You know how worried you are about seeming like a slut? We are at least that worried about seeming like a creep.”


22. We feel everything the same as girls.

“We feel everything the same as girls. That compliment, that insult, that breakup. We also like to be cuddled and have a girl play with our hair. I’ll probably delete this because of embarrassment soon which kind of proves that men aren’t allowed feel this way. When you think a guy has no interest in you he’s probably thinking the same thing about you. When you think a guy has to make the first move, he’s probably afraid to make the first move. Men don’t just want sex; while we like it very much, we also want love and affection. While men are labelled ‘studs’ or ‘players’ if you sleep with many girls, there is no real joy in it, only to raise our self-esteem. What we really want is a relationship who you can be yourself with.”


23. We weren’t born tough; we had to become that way.

“How tough being a man can be.

Men are generally seen as tough, stoic, and overall just resilient.

Well, we weren’t born that way, we had to become that way.”


24. Women would be surprised by how little support men have.

“I’d say women would be surprised by how little support men have. Even when we’re surrounded by people, it’s very easy to feel completely on your own. Similarly, men almost never receive compliments or reassurance. I don’t think most women will ever truly understand that (admittedly major) part of the male experience.

Funnily enough, I’ve been meaning to watch a short documentary about this woman who lives as a man for a year, at the end of which she decided life as a woman was indeed favorable.”


25. Men are treated with much less kindness than women.

“How we’re treated by strangers. Of course this varies from man to man, but in general I would say that men are treated with much less kindness than women, particularly attractive women. I often think about how different my perspective on life would be if most of my encounters with strangers were warm and friendly.”


26. How much stress a man can undergo without a mental breakdown.

“How much stress a man can undergo without a mental breakdown. My wife stays at home with the kids and I work 65 hours a week so we can live in the suburbs. She has no idea how hard it can be to say no to her or the kids because money is tight. It breaks my heart sometimes to not be able to give them everything they desire. My wife could never understand how hard that can be on me. Feeling like I’m not doing enough or not man enough to provide. Tuff shit. Life as a dad and a man. Sole breadwinner. Can be tough mentally and physically. My wife works hard. She takes care of our kids and our house. She also pays the bills. But I’m so tired. Always.”


27. How easily you can make a woman feel uncomfortable just by existing.

“How easily you can make a woman feel uncomfortable just by existing.

I’m a pretty average guy in most ways. Average height and build, at the very least. But I’ve been called creepy enough times that now I get nervous about interacting with women. It’s kinda like approaching a cat; you don’t want to do anything sudden that might startle it….Like, I don’t feel like I’ve changed but at some point in my life I started making girls feel uncomfortable with being around me. And I know you girls have good reasons to feel this way but it’s a pretty dramatic shift when suddenly you start being treated like a potential rapist.”


28. Most of us don’t have the type of friend system where you just go to someone and emotionally vent about your problems.

“That most of us don’t have the type of friend system where you just go to someone and emotionally vent about your problems. Any problem you have must be solved in silence. Even today men who never ever complain are praised like they are superhuman.”


29. You are made to believe that you are disposable, not worth saving, and worth only what you do.

“How strongly you are made to believe that you are disposable, not worth saving, and worth only what you do.

How much people believe on general principle that you are dangerous.

How little your pain matters compared to a woman’s.

How much work goes into receiving positive feedback, compliments, company or reassurance. I think this is mainly what I do daily, what I put most effort in, to get a basic, minimum amount of these things. Most days I fail.

This is from someone who is reasonably attractive, has a prestigious job, and is comfortable in groups and social situations. I can’t even imagine what it’s like without these things.”


30. How incredibly easy it is to be completely invisible.

“How incredibly easy it is to be completely invisible.”


31. I feel like most girls don’t quite grasp how little society in general cares about the average man.

TLDR: How much it sucks.

1) Not showing any pain or weakness
It has been drilled into our heads since childhood and reinforced with every significant other. Every girl I’ve been with has told me to emote more, share more, and when I inevitably doubt my prior experience and share with them why I might be sad this particular day the loss of attraction is easily visible. I don’t think they even realize it, but its obvious after you’ve seen it enough times. I want to share with my significant other, I want to feel some support, I want her to be able to care about my issues, but doing so inevitably ruins the relationship. Oh and don’t tell me I’m just dating the wrong girls. Seriously, can we not just admit were not as evolved as we think we are and that strong men who don’t show weakness are more attractive than weak ones? All of human history has acknowledged this fact, but now in the last 20 years suddenly we’re more civilized than that. Please. I’ve made peace with this fact, that for a girl to love me I must be stoic but it makes it so much harder when every girl tells me otherwise and then inevitably proves me right.

2) Zero Support
There is none. I feel like most girls don’t quite grasp how little society in general cares about the average man. We don’t have friends we can be emotional with, we can’t share these emotions with a significant other, we beat our emotions so far down that we often have trouble feeling them at all. The total lack of support extends beyond a personal level, too. I am suicidally depressed, I have made this fact clear to the mental health professionals in my town. I am currently waiting six months for a single hour-long counseling session and can expect to wait another six for the next one. My GF showed me a list of all the counselors available to her across the many women’s centers and shelters across town, and her expected wait time of two days. There is a reason men complete suicide 400% more than girls. For a man, having zero support is normal, being supported is weird, and if you ever come to suicide you’ll notice even that doesn’t change the situation much.

3) Dating
It seriously sucks. I buy the drinks, I buy the dinner, I buy the movie, I buy the Valentine’s Day present, I buy the anniversary present, I buy a thoughtful birthday present, I buy the random little surprises, I’m there for her when she’s upset, I support her emotionally, I encourage her to follow her dreams, I help her and push her, I pay her compliments, I pay attention and learn about her passions. I like any man, do all this, but often we get none of it in return. I’ve never had a drink bought for me, I’ve never been taken on a date, I’ve never received a Valentine’s/anniversary gift (sex doesn’t count, that’s for both of us), I get a generic zero thought T-shirt for my birthday, she either can’t tell or doesn’t care that I’m upset (unless I yell, and then I have to cheer her up), I’ve never felt emotionally supported and I’ve never been able to have an actual conversation about my passions, I don’t want to just talk at you while you nod and agree; I want you to make me think, too. So dating sucks and I’m not surprised my generation is moving to a hook-up culture.”


32. No one really cares about you.

“Most women aren’t attracted to you and eventually, you just kind of settle for the ones who do like you who usually aren’t the ones you’re into. Also, no one really cares about you. If you’re a guy whose mother just died, you’re just expected to be the ‘family pillar’ even though you’re coming home to a bottle of whiskey and a fuck ton of drugs to cover up the pain.”


33. Solitude is our biggest friend and worst enemy.

“Solitude is our biggest friend and worst enemy. Sometimes you need to just be alone, and chill out and listen to music or get something done. And it is amazing. But sometimes you finish everything you have to do and then you are all alone. The loneliness begins to eat at you sometimes. It’s a constant struggle between wanting to hide everything in public, to hiding it so well you end up breaking down when you are alone and feeling lost in the world.”


34. We’re expected to work until nearly our dying day.

“We’re expected to work until nearly our dying day or we are considered losers and not worthy.”


35. We’re actually very similar to women; we’re just not expected to act like it.

“We’re actually very similar to women; we’re just not expected to act like it. Mentally I think most guys experience the very same doubts, insecurity, and frustration as women. I might try really hard to act stoic, but that’s expected of men to do. I like to think this will change with time, but I’m uncertain it will ever completely go away.

In American society at least, men are also looked at as a potential threat, and women are looked at as ‘safe,’ so there is a whole cultural set of expectations women probably don’t even notice. Really simple to overlook, the concept of being treated as a danger can actually be really goddamn restrictive in a lot of ways people might not realize. When women break the mold, it can be looked at as attractive, but when men break a mold I think a lot of time we just seem scary. Most men who are aware of this will alter their behavior to avoid looking like a threat as much as possible.

Basic American Cultural “Men in public” rules:
• No walking near kids if you’re alone unless you’ve known their family a long time/donated an organ to one of them. Don’t talk to kids, don’t wave to them: Don’t do it. Avoid contact or you’re a potential predator in the eyes of the concerned public.

• No asking directions unless it’s absolutely necessary (you might scare/make someone uncomfortable), people don’t want a large bearded man to walk up to them and force a conversation.

• No walking close to people. Slowing down or adjusting pace is recommended when walking at night to give the people (especially if it’s a woman) ahead on the sidewalk/street some distance (so they don’t feel like we’re approaching them, even though it might be nice if they would walk faster so we could get where we wanted to go).

• Avoiding situations where some random mother is going to give the “mamma-bear-don’t-trust-you” stink eye because of your proximity to kids. This means walking down streets at certain times, walking past schools or in public parks/similar places can be culturally off-limits. This means certain jobs are culturally frowned upon, and men are heavily stigmatized for entering. Elementary/preschool teachers are the easiest example.

• Avoiding entire hobbies/sports/activities for the same reason as just mentioned above.

• Men are expected to ‘suck it up’ when something is unfair. This is no podium of gender to mount and shout from. You shut up, and you deal—or you’re considered a whiny little prick. This reinforces the stoic mindset. In everyday life, there are thousands of examples of this. People will not help you if you’re neck-deep in shit because the expectation is that a man can/should find their own way out. The most apparent example of this in recent memory was a video about changing a tire: Women = bunch of help, Men = left to fend for themselves. Women generally seem to have a higher social/cultural value when it comes to receiving help from strangers.

• Men are also a threat to other men. There is little to no natural camaraderie outside of close circles or shared familiarity of a job or profession. Women group together under similar banners, but men often fragment into safer solitary ‘bubbles.’

Single dads especially report this stuff to be frustrating, because unlike the rest of men in the world, they’re often forced into the situation by complete lack of options. They have a kid/s and the kid needs someone to look after them as they go into these situations, but I can’t tell you how many times I’ve read about dads getting questioned by an army of concerned mothers/a police officer to why they’re at a park/playground.

If you’re a guy (especially if you’re larger or have facial hair) you need a real excuse to go and do certain things. Activities as basic as just taking a walk outside alone can earn you a stink eye or a nervous look. The media and society at large portray men as potential dangers/threats/predators. We’re expected to be stoic, expected to let women and children go first, and expected to ‘act like a man’ in the public eye. To do otherwise is to find yourself labeled a coward or an unstable individual.

Now that school is back in session, I’m really glad I have my dog with me on my walks in the morning, because the bus stops and the mothers waiting on every damn corner watching me = unwanted trouble if I were to go out on my own. I still try to walk around them, but my dog only likes to poop in certain spots on the walk and I can’t leave her at home and head off to work until she goes, so it’s honestly a pain in the ass sometimes. Maybe I just notice this because my dog wants to poo where the moms stand and drink their coffee every morning. Not sure.”


36. As a rule, 99% of the time—no one gives us compliments, positive feedback, or shows desire for us.

“How much a little attention or a genuine compliment can mean to us. Especially if it makes us feel wanted.

As a rule, 99% of the time—no one gives us compliments, positive feedback, or shows desire for us. Hell, we’re trained to dismiss anything we do hear—‘they’re just being polite,’ ‘They’re paid to act friendly,’ etc.

Most guys I know have ridiculously little information to base their self-image on—for some, they decide they’re awesome anyway and say fuck it, for others they decide they’re losers and give up—it’s almost pure chance which way they go and has almost nothing to do with objectively how good/good-looking/awesome a guy actually is.

Any genuine compliment that gets through to us will be remembered by a guy. Forever. If it’s from a highly respected or highly attractive person? It can literally change their life.

Ask your guy when was the last time someone really complimented him and what effect it had. They may not be able to talk about it well, but they’ll remember it, and it meant something to them, more than you’d expect.

Ask any guy to tell you about the time the attractive girl/respected friend/respected teacher/whatever did or said something that made him actually believe he was worth something. If it ever happened, they’ll remember it and it’ll have left a mark. Don’t be surprised if it never happened, though…

Men are used to—99% of the time—having no worth as a person, only mattering for what we’ve done, not really being seen and not really being cared about…and when someone really sees us, or shows that we matter? It leaves an impression.

I’m not sure how different this is for women, it’s not like we have an exclusive on insecurity, but the general amount of attention, reassurance, support, etc. that women get seems to me to be significantly higher than men. I think it would surprise them by how much, though—that it’s not like ‘Women 80, Men 70’ or something—it’s more like “Men 0″—and that messes with guys.

tl;dr: Give a guy a real compliment.”


37. How much media has an impact on our body image as well.

“How much media has an impact on our body image as well.

We always hear about how magazines and Hollywood set unrealistic expectations for what women should look like, but nobody ever complains about the image the media portrays of men.

We’re supposed to be at least 6’0″ tall. Broad shoulders. Excellent pectorals. Strong legs. Thick biceps and forearms. You should be able to run a 6-minute mile, squat 250, and do ab crunches until the washboard is jealous of how rigid your stomach is.

On top of that you have to be intelligent, have a good facial structure. Be able to grow a beard like a lumberjack on command and style your hair. You need to be an emotionally stable rock so that your girlfriend/wife/s.o. can cry if they need to, but don’t ever call her ‘yours’ because that’s sexist and chauvinistic. Oh and don’t ever try to enforce a rule with a woman because she’s strong and independent and you’re disposable to her. She can get any man she wants. You should be lucky to have someone apart of your life you bigoted, sexist, racist asshole.”


38. Men would like women to just be nice to them.

“Men would like women to just be nice to them. When we’re boys, we’ve got our moms, and sometimes they’re not even nice. When we’re older we’ve (sometimes) got wives and girlfriends, and sometimes they’re not nice, either. We’re supposed to be tough and just take the meanness.”


39. A man just…wants to be wanted.

“I think that they’d be surprised by what constitutes a man’s fantasy when it comes to romance.

Many women would probably think that a man just fantasizes about the kind of thing that you see in various adult videos. Sure, we have an animalistic side that thinks about that. But when we think with our heart we fantasize about something completely different.

When it comes to romance a man, typically, is expected to take on a very active role. He’s expected to make the first move and do something or be something to prove his worth to her right away. He’s expected to walk up to her and put on a good enough show in order to qualify as a candidate. He needs to be charming and/or funny and/or other beguiling enough to receive a passing mark on the entrance exam to dating.

For a man, dating is work. It’s a lot of work. He needs to put his heart and soul into a performance that is enough to be noticed.

But in society it’s the opposite for a woman. She is allowed to just be there. She just needs to exist and be visible and it’s expected that she just needs to be available for a man to make put on his display. Dating for a woman is far more passive. He comes to her and puts on his show and then she decides if he gets the chance to move on to the next round of trying to impress her.

The typical romantic fantasy from a woman’s perspective is for a man to come and ‘sweep her off of her feet.’ It’s for the man to put on such a good, enchanting show that there’s no way that she could possibly reject his advances. Her fantasy is to have the ultimate active partner.

So here’s the point of all of this. A man’s romantic fantasy is just be accepted for who he is.

Men are tired of having to constantly put on a show. They’re tired of putting so much of themselves into trying to read a woman in order to be this wonderfully charming individual to pass her barrier of entry. He’s tired of having so much on the line and then waiting those gut-wrenching moments where she’s silently deciding, over the course of the attempt, whether he gets the thumbs up or thumbs down.

A man just wants to be wanted for who he is a regular basis. He wants someone who stand by his side and support him even when he can’t be ‘on.’ He wants a moment to feel what’s it like to have that more passive role where someone else makes him feel desirable simply for being there. He wants a partner to show him that he matters for no reason other than being recognized as someone who actually does matter.

A man just…wants to be wanted.”


40. We don’t have it half as easy as the ‘ZOMG PRIVILEGE’ types want to believe.

“We don’t have it half as easy as the ‘ZOMG PRIVILEGE’ types want to believe. Sure, there are cultural norms that don’t affect us (we’re assumed competent until proven otherwise being a big one), but there are countless cultural norms that affect only us.

Being excluded from the norms that negatively affect others doesn’t mean we live easy lives…men have just as many soul-crushing expectations placed on them as anyone else. There are systemic issues that shit all over men but hey, that’s not a sexy topic to get riled up about…men can’t possibly be victims, they have all the power! It’s why they call oppression ‘the man’! It’s only gotten worse with the rampant denial of the individual in favor of the systemic, especially with the rise of the echo-chamber Internet and places like Tumblr. (The ‘a black woman can’t be racist/sexist because systemic’ thing…no, no, she absolutely can be, subsystems do not automatically conform to broader systems; anyone can be a hateful bigot, and anyone is capable of discriminating.)

Nobody protests in the streets about how misandrist and objectifying and unrealistic body image Calvin Klein ads are, or how stupidly revealing pro wrestler short shorts are, for example. I know of very few men who even care, but it nicely serves to point out the double standards.

A ‘juiciest Olympic swimmer dong-prints’ piece doesn’t get rebuked, but if a guy dared do the ‘best cameltoes of the Olympics,’ you can bet that’d be a viral shitstorm of outrage…

There’s this attitude that men can’t possibly be victims, because men are strongTM. When a guy gets unduly fired, he must’ve deserved it because it’s not like the boss could be a sexist; sexism only affects women. There is constant pressure to perform…never good enough, not a good enough provider, not strong enough, not allowed moments of weakness, and it’s goddamned exhausting. I just want to come home, take off the mask, and be the little spoon for a while.

Or domestic/sexual/etc. abuse. A woman only needs to make an unfounded accusation to get his ass thrown in jail; a man can be the victim for years, and the response is ‘Yeah right, she’s a woman, she can’t hurt you!’ Rape of men is laughed off for the same reasons…and it only gets worse when it comes down to men being the victims of physical violence…a woman hits a man in an offensive sense (not defending herself) and he deserved it; a man hits a woman in self-defense and how fucking dare you don’t you know you’re so much bigger and stronger than her you fucking monster! It’s not like there’s such a thing as men’s shelters…and in my experience women’s shelters would rather leave a male child in the hands of an abusive father than allow him into the shelter with his mother and sisters.

Or social safety. Men are less likely to get welfare, because they’re men…go get jobs, you fucking mooches, how pathetic is it that you can’t provide for yourself, you’re a MAN.

And don’t get me started on divorces. Not too long ago a judge used ‘I couldn’t imagine coming home and my kids not being there…’ to justify giving full custody to the mother…without even once considering that hey, the father is going to be just as heartbroken. The ‘women are helpless and incapable of providing for themselves’ mentality runs rampant in the legal system, everything from custody to support/alimony….

When it comes to topics of a less depressing or infuriating nature, something that just kind of sucks: Romance for women is a seller’s market. Societal norms is that men have to express interest first…and then get blasted as evil horny pigs because she’s getting hit on repeatedly, which usually gets taken out on the most recent guy. I get that it must be exhausting, but you know what? So is getting chewed out because men are expected to take the first steps and others have come before me. If women would make the first move often enough that ‘if you like someone, express interest’ becomes the cultural norm, both of our problems would go away.

Now…I know there’s a lot of angry tirade in there…no, I do not blame women specifically for any of this. The systems are at fault, the only thing I do blame individuals for are when they come along and start vehemently denying that the bullshit men have to go through on a daily basis even exists ‘because privilege.’ Everybody deals with shit; just because they’re not dealing with your shit doesn’t mean they’re not dealing with any shit.”


41. Having to put emotions aside and be ‘strong.’

“Having to put emotions aside and be ‘strong.’”


42. It take a lot of guts and determination to date.

“It take a lot of guts and determination to date. You have to be the one to approach a woman. You have to take getting shot down and ridiculed with a smile. You have to make the first, second, and third calls yet be able to take the hint that she’s not interested or else you’re a creep. It’s why a lot of my guy friends are single. They just don’t feel like running that rat race anymore.”


43. You’re expected to be physically capable of resisting a violent assault and if you aren’t, you will be looked down upon by both sexes.

“The peculiar relationship with violence that men are supposed to have.

First let me define violence: The use of, or the use of the threat of force. You use appropriate violence when you put a child in time out. If they do not comply to verbal commands, you use force to ensure that they stay in their room/the corner, etc….if you tell them not to eat that cookie, and they start to bring the step stool over, you tell them again, they pull the box out of the cupboard, etc etc, at some point you’ll have to escalate to physically preventing them from eating that cookie. (Taking it away) This is what I mean by violence.

…You’re expected to be physically capable of resisting a violent assault and if you aren’t, you will be looked down upon by both sexes.

Women will expect you to ‘stick up for them.’ What they don’t understand as well is that as a man, verbally escalating has a high risk of turning into violence. Women can get away with that damn near all day long, but as a man, if you decide to get into it with someone, you’re likely to face an escalation of force…more intense verbal altercation, physical intimidation (getting in your face), physical contact, pushing, then maybe or maybe not a sucker punch or all out brawl with the capacity to escalate into deadly force. How you respond will determine where that goes.

As a man, if you are fairly tall and or built, you are likely to have people single you out to start fights with you for literally no reason.

You are expected to be able to have ABSOLUTE CONTROL over your relationship with violence. While you are implicitly expected to be able to turn it on if the need arises, (Homeless belligerent drunk starts accosting your wife/gf for instance, or trying to physically intimidate her) you are expected to have absolute control. You must never turn it on accidentally in situations that don’t require it.

Society expects you to register for the draft and be the implied threat of force (or its actual implementation) for your nation should the need arise.

Boys learn and practice this peculiar relationship by the whole ‘boys will be boys’ type of play that is presently so condemned in schools with a zero tolerance policy…we then expect those same boys to have mastered their relationship with violence. Frankly, I know I’m probably in the minority here, but I believe that the condemnation of relatively harmless violence or violent play has led to the high prevalence of mass shooting scenarios where boys/men haven’t learned the appropriate escalation of force in response to bullying and instead suddenly escalate to 11 on the 10 scale.”


44. I’m never allowed to be weak.

“I’m never allowed to be weak. Everyone in my family is allowed to get weak and let their emotions get the best of them. They yell and say hurtful things. But they don’t mean them, so it’s okay. It’s my job to just suck it up and accept that my wife/daughter/mom/co-worker/mother-in-law didn’t mean it when they said something mean to me.

But me? I’m not allowed to get weak. I gotta be strong all of the time. I’m not allowed to get carried away. I’m not allowed to yell at someone. I have to keep a level head.

The problem is that I get weak, too. I struggle, too.

I hate feelings. I hate that I have to feel. I miss the numbness I used to have when I did drugs every day. I could be strong enough to carry all of my family’s problems back then because I didn’t feel weight of that emotional burden. Here I am, four years off of meth, and I hate it. I miss being high so badly. My life was so much better back then. They said I’d be happier if I quit. And in every possible way, my life has gotten worse since I quit. Well, maybe it hasn’t gotten worse, but I have to feel it now. I didn’t before.

And if I express this feeling, everyone just says I need to fix the problem myself. But I can’t do it. I don’t know how.

Others are allowed to seek help. I gotta figure it out on my own. I’m so lost…”


45. Nobody cares about adult men. People do care about women.

“That nobody cares about adult men. People do care about women.”


46. It’s still cool to depict Dad as an incompetent idiot in sitcoms.

“The expectations for you as a parent are far lower while the expectations of you are a provider are far higher. It’s still cool to depict Dad as an incompetent idiot in sitcoms and even in medical practice it’s all about mom and child, not dad. In real life if you are an involved dad and take a very active role in raising your kids you are looked at like a superhero for just doing what you are supposed to. Meanwhile if you are out of work, you are a deadbeat dad. If mom is out of work that’s cool. If you get a divorce good luck getting even split custody of your kids. I’ve had folks tell me ‘let your wife do that’ when I change a diaper or make food, etc. I just explain they’re equally my responsibility, but I shouldn’t have to. Doctors will address my wife, not me. When talking to my child when examining them they’ll reassure that mom is there despite my presence.

You just aren’t deemed as important as mom….That’s a fact that makes me boil with rage every time I think about it. My Dad was devoted to me (and now is devoted to his grandkids) and it’s made me a better person. Everyone should have an involved Dad and Dad’s role should not be downplayed.

All of this is slowly changing thankfully.

Additionally, the dating world ain’t fair. A guys says he will only date girls with a big rack and he’s labeled a misogynistic asshole. A girl will only date tall guys and she’s just got preferences and knows what she wants. They’re the same exact thing but the reaction is the polar opposite.”


47. The level of loneliness we live in.

“The level of loneliness we live in. As a man, you get less initiative from others to do stuff than women. If you happen to have little to no friends, it can be really hard, because women will think you are going after them, and the little amount of men you would consider as potential friends are usually too busy being insecure, cocky jerks who will feel threatened when interacting with unknown men.

Basically, if you let your social life loose, you can spend weeks without a call or text. That’s a reason we treasure our friends so much. They really mean a lot.”


48. How little women actually seem to care.

“How little women actually seem to care.

Maybe I’ve just had bad experiences, but from what I’ve seem women seem to like what guys can provide for them and couldn’t give two shits about the actual guy. It’s all so shallow.

Sometimes I wonder if that’s why women think their own appearance is so much more important than it actually is. Guys couldn’t care less about how a specific outfit or hairstyle looks on you, about your makeup or fashion coordination, or the tiny little details you think are imperfections. We typically like YOU as a person and you’ll always be you regardless of how you’re dressed. And if we do like your looks, literally none of that is conditional on outfit or hairstyle, etc.

Are all these irrelevant things stuff women pay attention to on guys?? The accessories hanging off the person and not the person? The appearance, not the substance?”


49. Men are objectified for their utility.

“Men are objectified for their utility. Don’t make enough money to afford a nice car? Strike. Can’t support your spouse and children on your own? Strike. Can’t fix something yourself? Strike. Can’t physically protect someone? Strike. Can’t tough out emotional, physical, or mental stress? Strike, strike, strike. I’d keep going, but I struck out a long time ago…”


50. We’re increasingly alone as adults.

“We’re increasingly alone as adults. There comes a point for many of us when we get married or enter into a relationship like marriage. Friendships with other men get less time and attention and are increasingly treated as juvenile, unnecessary, and a waste of time. Friendships with women become acquaintanceships and fall away.

When we have kids, our relationships with our wives change, and we have less and less time for friends, and male friends are regarded increasingly as a waste of time, and female friends as inappropriate.

For many of us, the changes in our relationship with our wives means that our last close friendship becomes increasingly utilitarian, to the point that we have no close friends at all.”

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Lorenzo Jensen III

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