"Be a Man"
There is a constant vulnerability, expectation and amount of pressure that is present in my life. I feel I must modify my social identity and adapt to a gender specific role that our culture enforces. I am attached to this image, and confined by its constrictions, and am excluded from an understanding and acceptance of human interaction, personal identity, and myself.
I find the male image and its attached associations and labels comical. From the beginning of the male race we have been taught to compete, to win and be the finest and most advantageous of all humans. Concealing our weaknesses and emotions runs through our veins. This endless need, this continual search, is fueled by ignorant and exploited testosterone, and the interminable reassurance of self-importance.
I have never been comfortable being with or communicating with other males, as I feel restricted by the lack of confidence I have in myself, which limits my ability in conversation. I am afraid of being exposed, defenseless, and fragile. I am horrified by the power of trust, mental and emotional attacks, since from such a young age I have been taught, or indirectly shown to suppress and destroy any of my thoughts, ideas and feelings. This barrier of confidence and awkward behavior has manifested from the expectations that I feel from my Father. Our communication is restrained, as its foundations lay in interpretation. My Father and I have never discussed our relationship – our thick walls barricade any expression. This lack of oral communication translates into my personal fears and portrays my incapability to place reliance on others, especially males.
This neglected form of communication in my home life has been embedded within me, and is apparent in social situations. I find myself awkward and uneasy around people, and hyper – aware of their expectations of me to interact. Aristotle’s philosophy was that men held a superior aptitude of logic over women, because men thought and acted with reason, while women are controlled by their emotions. This idea of women being less sensible than men placed them in a degrading and demeaning position for 2000 years. Aristotle’s notion set men in an uncertain position, where any indication of reaction, response, or feeling was shunned and hidden, as it was seen as intolerant and humiliating.
I feel that this belief and perception of dignity is exploited and abused, and has been forced until human nature’s empathy, communication, understanding, and individual voice and opinion is denied and blanketed by an ancient misconception and expectation.