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#438098 - 06/13/13 07:08 PM Re: Masculinity [Re: concerned_husky]
Magellan Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 12/31/10
Posts: 1402
Loc: California
My emerging understanding about emotions is not to repress or suppress them - but to accept, embrace, and feel the feelings so that they naturally ebb away (like the tide). Feelings are meant to come and go (in healthy people).

Not about containing or controlling, but having a healthy relationship with our own feelings. But remembering that feelings ebb and flow like the tide. That we don't have to be held hostage by our own (or anyone elses) emotions.

A strong masculine man is not a robot, but is someone who has an understanding of his own emotional language and can deal with his feelings in rational and even creative ways.

Originally Posted By: concerned_husky


Originally Posted By: Magellan
A strong man, to me, is one who can maintain his level of direction and goal setting despite whatever feelings he or others around him might be having.

He uses reason/logic to understand and gather information, but ultimately, he is lead by trusting his own gut instinct.


I agree, Magellan. It does bring up the question though - if being able to focus on goals and maintaining a sense of direction is part of being a man (which I agree with), doesn't that entail repressing feelings to some extent? I guess feeling emotions is good as long as you can contain and not let them control you, but on the other hand the very experience of feeling itself can be quite overwhelming sometimes. Does that mean repression is the only way to stay focused? Or maybe it's the speed at which you can label your emotions, contain them, rationalize and process them so that they doesn't take so much time and energy out of your life?
_________________________
It's a heroes journey, and you are the hero.

Loving Kindness Meditation will dramatically improve your spirits; give it a try for just 3 days: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sz7cpV7ERsM

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#438099 - 06/13/13 07:11 PM Re: Masculinity [Re: concerned_husky]
Magellan Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 12/31/10
Posts: 1402
Loc: California
This is a really great question, and pretty astute observation!

The line / distinction I can see is this:
When I can start defining myself by my own values and my own sensibilities, I am becoming the man I want to be.

When I allow the actions of others to define who I am (or who I think I am), then I am prone to taking on masks of masculinity that aren't mine.

I have direct experience with abuse, bullying, and the mask I took on. Hyper masculine (read: angry), very thick walls, stoic, emotionless. That was a result of the bullying I received, and I had created this thick masculine personna because there was no way in hell anyone was ever going to find out about my "disgusting" sexual urges. As long as I acted hyper masculine, no one could be given a chance to wonder if I was gay.



Originally Posted By: concerned_husky
Thanks for the links Gary, I'll have a look at them.

I think you're also right about there not being any 'masculinity checklist' - I suppose most guys have their own ideas about what masculinity entails and try their best to live up to those expectations...it's probably what I'm doing right now, trying to figure out what it means for me. You also bring up a good point of victims of abuse, whether from sexual abuse or bullying or physical abuse, feel more pressured to prove their masculinity. I hadn't thought of it that way before, I always thought of it as regaining a healthy sense of natural masculinity that was lost...is there actually a line to distinguish these two ways of looking at it...?
_________________________
It's a heroes journey, and you are the hero.

Loving Kindness Meditation will dramatically improve your spirits; give it a try for just 3 days: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sz7cpV7ERsM

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#438115 - 06/13/13 09:50 PM Re: Masculinity [Re: concerned_husky]
concerned_husky Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 08/29/12
Posts: 585
I really like the wave/tide analogy. And what you said about the distinction between living up to other people's expectations of masculinity, and defining yourself by making clear your own values - thanks so much for that, that really cleared things up for me. It's so true. Sadly it's been a lost word on me as of late, 'values'. Standing up for your own values when they differ from most of society's is a tough but necessary task, and I think I had been shying away from it for a long time...
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#438124 - 06/13/13 11:22 PM Re: Masculinity [Re: concerned_husky]
concerned_husky Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 08/29/12
Posts: 585
.


Edited by concerned_husky (06/14/13 04:05 PM)
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#438205 - 06/14/13 05:52 PM Re: Masculinity [Re: concerned_husky]
iSurvive Offline


Registered: 03/31/13
Posts: 5
Loc: NYC via Indy, Chgo, FL
Husky,

I think a “comrade” is a good masculine characteristic. Possessing many of the traits that have been mentioned with this post. One that supports and holds a friend or loved one in need and is comfortable and appreciative when the same is offered. One that mutually stands side my side unconditionally without judgement.

I am working on those traits. I’m having to relearn, or learn for the first time actually, how to trust, how to have caring relationships and friendships. I’m working on being an emotionally strong masculine man for myself and for my fellow comrades.

Thanks for the post Husky. Very thought provoking and perfect timing during my journey.


Edited by iSurvive (06/14/13 05:54 PM)
_________________________
"Friendship is unnecessary, like philosophy, like art... It has no survival value; rather is one of those things that give value to survival."

— C. S. Lewis

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#438268 - 06/15/13 11:27 AM Re: Becoming a Good Man [Re: concerned_husky]
concerned_husky Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 08/29/12
Posts: 585
That's a good one iSurvive, comradeship - thanks for adding that. I think it's a huge and important step you're making, and it's awesome to hear you're doing it. Opening up is a bumpy ride for sure but when you find the right people it's so rewarding. I do agree that how well you treat your friends is a big factor in becoming/being a good man; I've never given this part of it much thought but this is making me reflect. Thanks again.


Edited by concerned_husky (06/15/13 11:30 AM)
Edit Reason: Changed title.
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#438288 - 06/15/13 04:11 PM ! [Re: concerned_husky]
Smalltown80sBoy Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 03/25/12
Posts: 2217
!


Edited by Smalltown80sBoy (02/28/14 07:40 PM)

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#438306 - 06/15/13 08:27 PM Re: Becoming a Good Man [Re: Smalltown80sBoy]
concerned_husky Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 08/29/12
Posts: 585
Originally Posted By: Smalltown80sBoy
For me, it's confusing because I have to sort out who I really am. Since abuse was so much a part of my life, who am I, really?


Gary - this might come off as controversial, but I'm going to say it anyway. I think the good part, maybe even the great part, of taking steps to recover and heal, is that to some extent you get to create the person you want to become. You still have the time and opportunity ahead of you to be able to create new and positive experiences, that will become as much of who you are as what you've experienced in the past. A lot of people who haven't gone through traumatic experiences have had their paths made for them, whereas since we're questioning ourselves deeply, we're somewhat in more of a position to change. That gives you quite a lot of freedom that others don't have in terms of forging your own identity. That's just my opinion.

Your comment about 'not being tough enough' brought to my mind another issue as well - isn't it actually insane to expect so much from a small, developing, helpless, dependent and powerless little boy? This made me realize perhaps another asset of being a good man is having respect for the weak, and not abusing one's own power...I think this goes as much for others around us as it does for our little inner childs...
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