So you think you’re a man eh!!! Think you’re something real special. You reckon the chics think you’re ‘ALL THAT!’
What is ‘All that!’ any way? What is it to be a man, a REAL MAN? The world view has changed over the past 80 – 100 years. A man has been seen in so many different lights and shades, so much so that most men don’t really know what it is they are aspiring to become.
Before the first and second world wars, the rolls and responsibilities for both men and women were established and accepted. Women were the home-makers, men were the defenders of the home, fending off bills through their bread winning ability, and providing for their family. They were tough, rugged, rarely showed emotion, but when the time came, they were a rock of strength to those around them, and of course, on the odd occasion, would shed a tear if need be.
After the Second World War in particular, men, who were exposed to things that humans should never be exposed to, came back numb, cold, almost lifeless. Many were suffering from post traumatic stress disorder, although very little, if anything was known about it back then. It was passed off as shell shock, men were dubbed crazy. During the time when the men were off fighting, careers and job positions that were formerly taboo for women, now had to be filled by them because there was no-one else. Not only was the woman the house keeper, but she had to step up into the role of provider and protector as well.
Upon the return of the men from the theatre of war, many came back, but few came home. Men were emotionally detached, and understandably so. As Bono says in one of the U2 songs of recent times, “I’m not broken, but you can see the cracks!” really described the state men were in. They then went on to produce the Baby Boomer generation. Now the baby boomers were raised in households where the male showed little to no affection at all, so that is all they (the Baby Boomers) knew. From Dad, love was shown through provision, or fits of rage whilst delivering discipline to his offspring, keeping them in line, knowing what really happens if you lack the necessary discipline needed to survive in this world. The baby boomers have become known as the ME generation, then came Gen X & Y, then onto the .com generation. Most of you reading this will be one of the latter three I’m sure.
We need to understand that what one generation sees as an example, they will amplify or they will rebel against. The baby boomers amplified the seemingly selfish attitude of their parents, fathers in particular, then Gen X , needing to fill the natural void of acceptance and endoresement that tender love and nurture brings, that they missed out on (especially from their Dads), started to search for it themselves amongst themselves, pushing life to new limits, becoming almost reckless in their attempt to achieve something worth being accepted for, searching fro their endorsement. Gen Y saw the challenge and met it head on, and took it to greater lengths, all the while, natural rolls and responsibilities became confused, lost in the quagmire of people trying to re-define what roles and responsibilities actually were for men and women.
We had men being described as SNAGS, a gulf was drawn between the different stero-types of what a man really is, was he rugged and emotionless ( Rambo), or was he totally the opposite and a crumpled mess of tears and quivering (Hugh Grant like!), was he a womanizer, was he gay, was he strong, was he weak , what was it to be a man. What is it to be a man?
In a time in our history where almost 55% of our youth in Australia grow up in single parent families, where positive male role models are found on the TV screen rather than in the lounge room that screen occupies, or the magazines on the coffee table in that same room, we need to find answers. Why? Because as humans, just like animals, we need to have an example to follow. What is it to be a man.
In a wildlife park in Africa, recently, a strange phenomenon was noticed amongst young Bull Elephants, they were displaying unusually violent behavior, some times pushing over young females and then gouging them to death with their tusks. After much research, they realized that some years before, in an attempt to control spiraling numbers, many of the older Bull elephants were killed off, the now new male leaders of the herds, having no example to follow, became increasingly violent and out of control. Not knowing how to focus or channel their new hormone driven strength and drive.
It’s a bit of a long bow to draw between men and elephants, some blokes would admire that comparison, but really, we need to look at this situation. Boys need positive men around to show them how to be real men. Femininity cannot beget masculinity. It is up to the older generations to take some responsibility for our own actions, and become that positive example of manhood to our young guys.
I believe that to be man you need strength, strength of character, strength of convictions, strength to make the hard decisions. You need to be sensitive, to your own emotions but not ruled by them, there needs to be logic and reason in the decision making process. We also need to be aware of those around us and respectful towards them and their property. It is essential to have an opinion, but also imperative that we listen to the opinions of others, know what you know, and know what you don’t know, no one knows everything! At the end of the day, we need to be responsible for our own actions, positive and negative. If we all do this, I think a revolution of man hood will take place.
If you are a young guy reading this, you may never have heard this statement before, but listen to these words and allow them to resonate in your heart, “You young man, are tough enough, you are wise enough, you are smart enough. You can do and be what ever you set your heart at doing and being. YOU HAVE WHAT IT TAKES!”
For the young ladies reading, you may never have heard these words, but let these dissolve into your heart, “You are precious, you are valuable, you are beautiful, you are worth protecting, YOU ARE A PRINCESS!”
Let’s have an impact and Make a Difference.
MEN, I DARE YA, DARE to be MAN!