Ending the Cycle of Emotionally-Gagged Men & Boys
I have heard too many times in the last several weeks “Well, men are just not as good as women at expressing feelings.”
Verbatim. From the mouths of women of different ages, education and who don’t even know each other.
It’s as if they have all been quoting from some manual on life that I clearly did not get a copy of.
I love these women. I know them. I respect them and I hope I don’t hurt their feelings when they read this but every time I hear it, I think to myself “This is horse shit.” And I'm not saying this to discredit them in any way but to challenge what we've all been taught. Because they are kinda right but it doesn't have to be that way.
One, biologically & neurologically speaking, our brains are the same. We have all of the same parts – parts that allow for cognitive and executive decision making. Parts that create and save memories. And parts that respond to these memories with emotions and feelings.
What is different in ALL of our brains is how our neural pathways form. And that is not just genetics. That is from experiences. In particular, our childhood. And the influence gender will have on this formation is from what biases we hold and what experiences we choose to share with our sons & daughters and what we don't…
So, if we live in world where are led to believe that communicating emotions and developing empathy are regarded as a feminine-sacred and deny our sons these gifts because someone told us they are handicapped, what world do we get?
We get a world of sexual assault. Rape. Violence. Bullying. And at minimum – relationship problems.
Because again, boys & men have the same brain us and they still feel like we do. They still hurt. They get angry. They feel abandoned. Unheard. Unloved. And without an ability to express themselves or identify these emotions, they are locked into their dark inner world without a key.
And if the one they look to teach them as children how to regard these feelings (their mothers typically) is biased against them, and doesn’t believe they are worth the time to instruct and nurture to feel & speak like women because they assume a boy will never be able to fully grasp how to do it, we are doing a disservice to our sons. And quite frankly to our daughters who may become victims of their violence and betrayals.
The fallacy must end today. Because if it is unconscionable to think a woman is not capable of being an engineer in this day and age, then the same holds true for our brothers, husbands, fathers, lovers and sons with their emotions.
If we believe they can't communicate, we won't teach them to communicate and then... they won't be able to communicate. And we keep the cycle going...