Being a man has often been misunderstood. The society (especially the Indian diaspora) behaves in a certain way and you grow up believing certain things that are extremely flawed and baseless. Things such as masculinity is about a few punches, not cooking food, driving cars and bikes, and many more deeply rooted problems of the patriarchal society stem from these minor and major misconceptions around masculinity.
The creepiness of getting excited on every item song of Sunny Leone or on every mention of the word ‘sex’, we have created a society where a woman have to actually ‘fear’ the presence of men, right from the walls of her house to public transport, from educational institutions to mass events and functions.
Breaking the misconceptions around masculinity, here are certain things which actually make you a “Man”, and have often been misunderstood –
Its not about Physical Strength (at all)
Its good to have muscles and be fit, but more often that not, men are supposed to be winning their battles with physical power. We are much more than for opening sealed bottles and shifting heavy furniture. Men should be about emotional strength. Its more about holding the family together at times of emotional turmoil, or putting back a business together at times of crisis. Its about leading with emotions and showing love to the people around.
Shedding a tear or two sometimes, is fine!
Its not about your suave hobbies!
We have lead our generation to believe that masculinity is in watching Game of Thrones or Football, going on a bike tour to Ladakh or having tried and tested all kinds of booze. However, a man is known by the strength of his character and not the speed of his cars. You need to have integrity and people should stand with you and rely on your words. Success is not about your trophies or awards, its about winning the respect of a few people around you, from the watchman of your building to your own wife.
Its not about the money you make!
A man is not about the car he drives or the smartphone he owns. A man is about wise and mature handling of what is given to him. It might a few thousand bucks or a million dollars, if he knows how to handle it wisely and not let it ruin his mindset, he is good to go and person of great mettle!
Its not about the number of women you have dated!
Though we have progressed as a society and moving towards equality gradually. But it is still considered to be extremely “cool” to discuss the number of women a man has dated. Sadly, the cool part is about caring for one all your life, instead of increasing the count month by month
Its not about what you have already done!
Now you might have a million dollars, you might have pretty good savings, you might be professionally and personally happy. But there is something that a man should always be recognized with – The people he has helped! Empathy is something that we have lost as a generation and it is worsening among the kids now. However, you will always be remembered by the deeds that you have done and if you have helped people and stood by their side at times of need, that is what people are going to talk about you behind your back
The world needs more men to act like men. We need good human beings and people who can make this world a better place. On this International Men’s Day, let us come together, break the stereotypes and pledge for equality and respecting individuality.