What is your opinion?
I am serious and I want to know?
Does this question offend you?
If yes, then I am happy because that is my intention.
I want you to get offended and get thinking.
You know, too many times we hear people say emotionally alienating things about men.
Cultural beliefs, ignorance, peer influence and at times just the desire to please men are some of the driving factors for this kind of behavior.
Too bad that such people forget the impact of the words they use. Factually, the things they say build up to the social norms and belief systems which impact generations.
To their little sons, teenage boys and young men, some parents continue to say with emphasis, things which slowly but steadily disconnect boys and young men from their emotions.
As a result such boys grow up thinking emotional expression is shameful and/or it makes them less of men. You could have heard the expression, man enough. So commonly used yet very highly alienating. The struggle to live up to the expectations of others may make some people to do everything possible to earn the approval that one is man enough. In the process however, one may hurt themselves so bad that it becomes inevitable for one to rise to the approval they so much sought in the first place.
Do you believe that many men are violated by their women?
Mostly but not limited to psychological abuse through verbal and hateful treatment but also physical violation.
But how often do you find a man who has reported his wife/partner for abuse? Or even just told a close friend about it?
Some men end up emotionally dysfunctional or cold which leads them to behave in certain unacceptable ways. Unfortunately, some may break the law by battering their wives, neglect their children or abuse the children in other ways as a result of displaced anger.
Some men may also be subjected to different sorts of criticism for their behavior but what really caused that behavior may not be explored? Some men may go through a whole court process in silence and be sentenced for a crime they did not commit simply due to the fear of shame.
How will they see me or hear that such happened to me! I am a man!
Has society asked itself what happens when men are raised to think they are superpowers and that they have subjects, servants or subordinates?
That life can only be fitted within two domains: public and private, where by the private is strictly for women and the public for men. Looking at how society is structured today, some men may allow ‘their women’ into the public sphere but they themselves may not cross over to the private because, they are men.
They believe that their sisters, female friends, wives, girls and women in society, will do everything for them.
Simple things as saying sorry, please, genuinely apologizing for their mistakes, exercising intentional kindness or empathy are basic mannerism expectations which some men unfortunately, find hard to practice as a result of emotional alienation.
But, I mean such things really trigger my mind.
How do you think men will come to such an idea while customarily they are raised and socialized in a way that disassociates them from believing they are ordinary humans capable of doing everything for themselves just like women and even expressing themselves.
Whereas this is predominatly an issue of the developing world, it is not limited to that world. In cultures which promote male supremacy, anything that portrays a man as sharing his emotions would be condemned in a way that alienates such a man from expressing his human emotions. But how do the men really feel and what do they think about that?
You always hear;-
Why are you crying?
Men don’t cry.
You are a man.
Be strong like a man.
You man, you cry like a woman.
You talk about your problems like a woman.
You walk like a woman.
You want to be close to your mother and sisters as if you are a woman.
You want to be close to people all the time, are you a woman?
Why do you associate with women? Do you have psychological problems?
Caring and nursing is the responsibility of women. Why should you do it? You are a man!
The above are some of the common normative social expressions among the people of Uganda.
In some traditions, boys are prohibited from entering the kitchen. They are told that the kitchen is a place for women.
If you stay in the kitchen and associate with women, you will end up like them: soft and emotional. Others should not even wash utensils because that is the responsibility of their mothers and sisters.
For God’s sake🙏🏿, are men less or more than human?
Could that be the root cause of the lack of empathy or less empathy and remorse which some men exhibit?
What is this drama all about?
Is there anything wrong with the boys and men in those cultures where boys do everything that women do?
Imagine some rural women wake up and go to the gardens to cultivate and plant food.
They harvest and bring food home. Prepare and serve. And it is also their absolute responsibility to clean up after food. The best way the men help them is by sitting, watching and enjoying their manhood earned service provided by the women.
Other drunken men quarrel and beat their wives for not cooking in time as though it would rain with hot water if they helped make food ready in time. s
Dear traditional men, I have a question and please do me a favor and answer it aloud or silent in your heart, the choice is yours.
How do you feel when your pregnant wife runs around doing all the housework at your watch?
I believe modern men help their wives and participate in raising their families. So what type of a man are you? Do you ever assess your contribution to your family’s life?
I have heard that men are physically stronger than women, so men, why do you reserve that energy by not part-taking in raising your own children? If you will not support your wife, how do you justify love and companionship?
With regard to the rural women, what are the men’s duties if the women must:-
#Clean the home and care for children.
#Fend for the family and prepare their meals.
#Do the laundry for the children and their husbands.
#Receive no help at all, especially from a fellow adult in the house.
#Be beaten for any shortfall.
December 2019, I traversed Northern Uganda on research and what I saw just along the roads with regards to those rural women and their men was enough to paint the picture (Of course I am a rural born Ugandan and I always travel back).
So embarrassing! Seeing cohorts of men seated by the roadsides as early as 8:00 am either playing cards or drinking while women were either carrying farm tools going to gardens or already tilling the land.
They later harvest and carry the harvest on their heads first home, process if necessary then to the markets. They sell and come back with washing soap, salt and other basics while the men are watching.
Our traditions teach men not to express their emotions right from childhood and in deed, their feelings die in all ways. Many don’t even notice that the only way they contribute is by getting drunk and beating their wives which causes all the violence thereafter. The neglect of children among other forms of violence against children’s rights.
Upon that background, this is what I say:
# Feel free to cry because you are human.
That is a way of expressing your emotions and connecting with the people around you.
# Apologise when you find yourself in wrong. Saying the five lettered ‘S’ word never killed anybody.
# Share your problems freely because a problem shared is a problem half solved.
# Talk to anyone beside you, woman or man whom you trust and you will feel lighter. We all need it and you will be happier you did.
# Teach your boys that there is no difference between them and their sisters because that is the whole truth. The differences come because we create and reinforce them.
The purpose of this writing is to get men to express their emotions a little more. So, my hope is that as a reader, you don’t focus only on critising the content but you rather also reflect on the intentions and meanings of the texts.
Intentionally, raise your boys for a better world by shaping them into better men💖
The idea of a single sex or race being more superior is stone age in my opinion.
In my dream better world everybody believes so.